Annie’s Rest at Gopher Mound on Harmony Road is home to 20 of us: Annie’s Shadow, a black mixed breed spaniel; Goldie, a mixed breed golden lab; Useless, a pure bred ornery large standard jackass; Mosby, the Grey Ghost, a gray and white feral tabby cat; eight chickens, three “heavy” hens, four “heavy” pullets and one boisterous bantam rooster; and eight goats, three yearling bucks, two yearling does and three “nannies’” experienced mothers and me.
Harmony Road tracks 17 miles of north-south section line platted for opening the Sac & Fox and Pawnee Reservations to homestead. The arbitrary line extends from county line to county line untainted by urban development. Harmony does sport one grammar school, Harmony School, that is in fact the reason for the road’s name. The Road is 13 miles of typical gravel road, 2 miles of Macadam in front of the school and 2 miles of imaginary line transiting the confluence of the creek and the river.
The gopher mound is not unique. Quite the contrary, the Euro-American homesteaders that settled this country a little over 100 years ago observed that gophers were ubiquitous on the prairie. That does not seem to have changed.
Annie was a malamute born in Barrow, Alaska. Her true name was Agniq, Inupiaq for “snow”. We met in a blizzard in Barrow and she was my best friend for eight years. She is buried in the dooryard under a slab of sandstone. When the time comes, I hope to join her there.
Christmas is an annual event that conjures memories, good or bad, for almost all of European descent. Mine are all good: children excited to arise to gifts; grandparents thrilled by the children’s excitement; the delightfully good humor of persons otherwise unknown but sharing the season’s goodwill. So I thought that I should start this blog with a profoundly sincere wish for happiness and peace for all my fellow travelers.
I do not actually have a plan for this blog after today, but I will try to find useful to say. I have struck gold for the moment. As hackneyed as it is : my deepest wishes for a MERRY CHRISTMAS!