Thursday, September 11, 2008


As I share my intentions on this Blog, Melanie tells me a story from her childhood which I never knew. She says she always loved Grandma Ethel Kirkpatrick Crawford's Mailbox and would quickly volunteer to get the Mail.

I love our Mailbox. I think all 3 C's do. Even Laddie likes the walk there unless it is too hot. He uses his Sniffer to check out Messages of Another Sort. Sometimes the 2 Cats follow us up the Drive and back.

Mailboxes surely must be embedded in the lore and magic of Farms and Country Landscapes. Our little Mailbox on Butterfly Hill Farm is simple, straightforward, black and plastic. (No, I am not enamoured with the plastic part.) Someday we will replace it with a big old Country Mailbox. In fact, we have 1 waiting for just the assignment, thanks to Gerald and Connie. For now, the Basic Black Mailbox will do.

When we moved to the Farm, one of our 1st actions was to remove the name of the previous owners and carefully put letters of our name in their proper place. Now, after 16 months, some of those sticky letters are falling off. You have to use your imagination for our last name. Regardless, that little understated Box is one of our cherished connections to the rest of the world.

Six days a week, that Mailbox is the center of a ritual. We walk down the Drive, place our mail in the Box, and put the little Red Flag up. Sometime later, the Rural Letter Carrier pulls up in his Vehicle on his low flight through the Countryside. He and his Vehicle have seen a lot of miles and variation in Seasons. His car is also basic black, but carries on dry days a dusting the color of northeast Missouri Country Roads. Almost every day, he drops off Mail. Should we miss seeing him come down the Lane, Laddie announces his arrival with a bark.

On cue, we head back down the Drive to pick up the Mail, unless we are in the midst of chores, which of course we often are. On the way back down the Drive, we eagerly go through the Mail to see especially if we have: some personal news from Those We Love in the Great World Beyond, magazines that stir our pot on our Journeys to Make a Difference, or perhaps something we have ordered for the workings of the Farm.

Today, I got what I suspect is a Birthday Greeting from Becca Lieberg who is way out in Utah. When she writes, it is a newsy note and in exuberant hand. The outside envelope bears images of Wonder Woman. I smile and hold the little envelope close. We also got the Summer 2008 Small Farmer's Journal, which is one of our favorites. I wonder who will claim it 1st. On the cover is the simple statement: "Visualize Small Farms Everywhere." We smile and continue walking down the Drive. Life is very good.

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