After a period of work, I like a break. After a day spent mostly working around our farm, I recently called Lisa and said I was going into town for some coffee. It had been a few days of pretty-focused work and I wanted a little fun.
Those drives into town have always represented recreation for me. I grew up on a dairy farm so long trips weren’t possible however short car rides were not only possible-they were necessary. Even my dad, who was a very hard worker, would let us take a break and drive the pick-up around the section if only to cool off. I still take a quick drive to cool-off on a summer day. One particularly humid summer day, I would put in five fence posts and then take a quick drive to cool-off, fill my water glass then repeat.
Night-time was always good for a recreational cruise. Even the hottest days start to break around nine or so. My favorite thing to do would be driving my bicycle into town to see what was going on. The standard for excitement in a small town is pretty low so anything from a stray dog running loose on up was pretty remarkable.
Big excitement would be my friends grouped at the post office listening to a boom box. I think most people know the term boom box but for those who don’t it was a monster radio, cassette player combination with big speakers. It was driven by expensive “D” batteries and gobbled them up pretty quickly. A boom box was simply mobile entertainment and quite a crowd draw. Anyway, a few friends would typically be sitting on the steps of the old Post Office listening to Meat Loaf or Boston so I would drive up and talk for a bit. I knew I had to get back to the farm however it was nice to see some friends during the summer. An evening bike ride that ended with “Paradise by the dashboard lights,” just as it was getting cool outside is a nice memory. I’m glad I got to make it.
Winter time was even better for a night-time drive. Once started, the John Deere 300 would take me anywhere I needed to be and there was something so beautiful about the light of the moon on crusty snow that it still makes me feel good. I felt like it was all for me and all I had to do was get that sled started and I could claim it. I would eventually get to Viking and visit friends at basketball practice. I was allowed to sit and watch, and they would come over to talk afterwards. I even gave some snowmobile rides before everyone got back on the bus and headed home. I even restored the 300 and tried a few rides to recapture a little moonlight magic however the memories were better than any reality I could create.
It’s morning at our house and I’ve done a few things. The coffee pot is empty and I have access to a vehicle, with air conditioning, and know where I can get coffee and maybe see friends. Seems like the perfect time for a little drive.