Lake Poinsett Nostalgia

Photo Challenge

What kinds of experiences stir emotions for the past within you?

Lake Poinsett Nostalgia

The word that was suggested for the one-word prompt recently was nostalgia. It was a photo challenge, but the photos I’m using here are not current. The beautiful lake named Lake Poinsett in northeastern South Dakota is where I will take you on my nostalgia trip. I was born in 1940 and grew up witnessing many changes at the lake. With this post, I hope to take a short trip back down memory lane and recall different things about Lake Poinsett. It has seen dramatic changes in usage, population, residences, year around homes, food, drink, bait and tackle places and a multitude of water level changes.

We lived on a farm less than a mile south of the lake, our parents were Frank and Frances Olson. A lot of time was spent either fishing or swimming in our lives. Our great uncle Simon Hoel built a stone house on the hill just east of the park in 1885, part of it still stands. My grandfather Andrew Olson helped him farm the land.


There was virgin prairie grass for a mile along the south shore of the lake. Simon and my grandfather cut hay from it for forty years. There is a beautiful state park on that land today, trees and campgrounds everywhere.

There were few original trees, mostly growing along the shoreline. A wagon trail can still be seen in places, it went to the east boundary fence and on for another mile to the Hendrickson farm, what is now Runia’s farm. There were no homes or cabins on any of that land.

Just to the west of the State Park property, there was a very lively, noisy dance hall named Smith’s place. It flourished  in the late 1800s and early 1900s. It was a very lively dance hall, where many big name bands played as they traveled through this area. We knew Charlie Smith the owner and his family very well. Their daughter babysit the three Olson boys on occasion.Karlton, Harlan, and Leland. My brother Harlan was a banker, writer, and collector of artifacts who helped start the Museum at the state park entrance. Harlan loved every minute of it, even the many volunteer hours. He passed away on March 8, 2016. I can see him searching for artifacts on old Heavenly terrain now. I would imagine there are some very nice artifacts to be found near those streets of gold.

Smith’s dance hall and the property was all sold to the Methodist Church, they may have become the first church to have a beer license. The original dance hall building still stands on that stretch of shoreline. Today it is used as a dining hall, that says something for old-time construction.

It was then purchased by Russ Weiland and his wife who operated it for many years. Russ was possibly the original Evinrude Johnson dealer in this part of the country. His daughter and son-in-law relocated Weiland Marine, which is now on Highway 81. The original dance hall building still


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Arlington Beach, the next place west was run by a lady named Ann Oburn. This picture is of the Lake Poinsett water slide in the 1920’s. I think it was located at Arlington Beach, as far as I can tell from looking at the Hills and the trees in the background. I will be glad to edit this story and change the location if it is wrong. Ann Oburn had a few rental cabins, cafe and bait house. West from there were only two or three houses until you got to the little hill top farm with the goats. There were only two cabins between there and Mundt’s Resort. They had several small cabins that they rented out. There was a farm between Mundt’s resort and what is now Pier 81.

There was another dance hall on Highway 81 just north of the corner by the Poinsett Cemetery, next to Ann Engal’s Place.  Ernie Edwards moved a building to the lake and started Edwards resort, possibly in the late 40s early 50s. Then on the west side of the lake there was a resort called Sportsmans Lodge, it burned down. A very long large building with a restaurant, I believe they also had cabins and rooms in the lodge that they rented out.What is now Lakeview Resort was a small resort opened by Ole Mikelmier. It later became Fish Haven, home of the famous Carp Sandwich, then Lakeview point there were two homes north of there.

The Grape Farm and no homes until the first one was built right on the point in the 1950s. From there North to Saarinen’s the state purchase part of the shoreline and later sold Lots to private owners. From Saarainen’s Point North there were a few homes because it was close to the highway.

Nitteberg’s Resort was just east of the Stonebridge. That road washed out west of the bridge in the spring of 1969 as flood waters came in from the river and Dry Lake. Nitteberg’s must have had a couple dozen summer cabins that they rented out. They also had some carnival rides in the summer months and afternoon roller skating in the dance hall. The dance hall was built over the lake at one time, but ice damage made them move it back to shore. It was a family run business.The brothers John and Clair maintained most jukeboxes, pinball and other game machines in a large area.

When you went east from Nittebergs, there were only one or two houses, the one right below the hill was named ‘The Mouse Turd Inn’. The resort on top of the hill was known as Jim Bagley’s place. They also had a café, fishing equipment, and bait. The name was changed to the Hilltop Resort later when owned by Louie Moralies and his family.

Just down the hill east from the hilltop resort, there were three or four homes before you got to Hammers pasture and to the outlet of Lake Poinsett, that led to Starks Bridge where gates were installed. There have been several fish winterkill years when oxygen in the lake got so low most of the fish died. There has been dead fish in windrows around the lake. The worst spring brought out the National Guard with front-end loaders, trucks and lots of shovels.

The Bakke farm and Cemetery took up most of the east shore. Two home were on the hill overlooking Prestrude’s Landing. Goulds opened a beer and bait place there in the late forties but it didn’t last. The next mile of shoreline was only recently developed by the Hansen family. Going south from the Hansen development to Hendricksons  or Runia’s there was two cabins.

This has been a rather selfish nostalgic trip around Lake Poinsett. I’m really to young to have nostalgia for the water slide or for the swimming attire. So actually I feel a lot younger by taking this trip back just a few years before my time. I thought I would like to share these memories of Lake Poinsett while I’m still able to share them.The changes at Lake Poinsett are hard to imagine, if you didn’t witness them. The number of very large homes today must reflect great prosperity in the country?

At night the lake was darker than pitch, this was in 1945, before REA, no all night lights, no lights period. We played cards with light from a kerosens lamp. The country nights were a whole lot darker, the small glow in the sky to the west, was Lake Norden’s lights, to the east was Estelline. You could barely make out a tiny glow for Brookings, that was a long ways off. Nights were a bonus for ghosts and goblins in those days.  Can you imagine going back to live in those times?

Simon and Torsten
NOVEMBER 15, 2016 / LELAND OLSON HOEL / EDITbeach-bunnies

Swimming attire has gone from one extreme to another throughout the centuries. In classical antiquity swimming and bathing were done naked. The swimming suits here from the 1920’s seem a wee bit extreme, under exposed skin I would say. Now close to 100 years later we saw, peered, our way through the teeny polka dot bikini era, we are almost back to swimming in the nude again.

What goes around comes around, with nostalgia or Murphy’s Law.

My Winter of Discontent



Share an image evocative of the weather or represent the current “season of your life” in metaphor.

For those of us who reside on a area of the globe where there are four weather seasons. We should feel very blessed and fortunate. Living where there are four seasons we have the appreciation of springtime when all new life starts fresh, everything is growing. Then we move into the summer months when the temperatures increase and life becomes even more active in all the animals and plants. Fall arrives and the life span of many things draws to a close. Harvesting is done, garden produce is canned or stored in preparation for the long, cold winter months that are coming. If the winter season arrives and you are not prepared, it can be a tough long period of time waiting for the arrival of a new warm  spring season.

Preparation for winter is something that has to be done by both people and animals, domestic and wild. A winter supply of feed must be made ready for domestic animals.Critters like the muskrat and squirrel store up food to get them through the long winter months when food becomes harder to find. If the snow gets deep many animals simply starve to death because they can’t find what they need to survive on.

Man and natures creatures must all prepare for winter long before it arrives. Wild animal understand preparation for winter is a serious undertaking that might mean survival. Preparation for life’s winter means getting ready for the end of life as we know it. Thoughts of where will you spend eternity are pondered and hopefully decided.

Man also must prepare himself and his family for the winter months when the temperatures are freezing and the snow covers everything with a heavy white blanket and a coating of ice. The person who doesn’t have his fire wood gathered in preparation for winter, usually only does it once. You do not want to be digging in the snow banks trying to find fire wood in the cold of winter. It is much easier to have the firewood stacked in a neat pile near the house long before winter arrives.

You will be sure to have your house ready for winters frigid blasts too. Storm windows on, seal cracks around windows and doors. You will be much warmer and more comfortable when the wind attempts to make a snowdrift under your door. Garden produce should have all been harvested, canned in jars or stored in a root cellar, to sustain you during the long winter months. These are all ideas of things you do in preparation for winter on the South Dakota Prairies.. Preparations for winter that I just described here are for someone like myself, living in the last generation. We don’t want to go back to those days, but stuff happens.

The modern man living in the city has far less worries about winter preparation. Just close the window and turn the thermostat up or down depending on what his comfort zone is. He also has to depend on trips to the market to get what he needs as far as food supplies.

As we enter the winter of our lives, our tired old bodies are just about ready for that final harvest. How do we plan for that? I really don’t think it would be wise to try and plan for that inevitable time. Don’t just sit and wait for it. You want to continue to exercise your body to keep your strength up. Try to stay active mentally, so you stay alert and stay as healthy as you can. The body starts to slow down, pain makes you tired all the time. You must press on and make the most of each new day.

We actually spend most of our lives planning for winter, hoping to get through the winter, because it tests our resolve. The knowledge that spring is coming, with abundant new life gives hope. The first meadow lark sitting on a fence post, sent there to sing just for you, is a reward of spring. Is this the last winter of my life? Will I see another spring? I do not want to know, just relax, look out the window, or at the computer screen and make the most of this winter’s days.

Family Dinner Out

If one of your late ancestors were to come back from the dead and join you for dinner, what things about your family would this person find the most shocking?

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Modern Families

Somebody in our family got the idea a while back that it would be just great, if we all got together and had dinner out as a family. Of course the first question that came up, where to eat? Some wanted to go to McDonald’s, others wanted Chinese buffet. We had a few younger ones voted for Italian. One grandson with the oriental wife wanted Japanese sushi. I shouted, “this is getting us nowhere, we are all going to go to Ralph’s Gizzard Kitchen and pull a few tables together and enjoy a family dinner.”

We all finally got seated at Ralph’s Place. I ask,  “how about ordering.” Each one wants to order from the menu by themselves. Immediately I shouted, “No way José, this is not going to work, it will drain my bank account.” We can all have the special and I will pick up the check. If each one wants to order separately we will go Dutch. No one wanted the special, as I thought, with a breath of relief. Orders finally were all placed, waitresses started bringing out all the different meals.

Everyone was relaxing and enjoying their meals when we heard some police car siren’s out in front. Pretty soon a policeman walked in the door with this big old fellow, who looked like a lumberjack. He asked, “Is somebody here named Leland Olson.” That’s me, I replied.” The policeman says, “This old geezer was wandering around on the middle of the street looking for a restaurant called Ralph’s Gizzard Kitchen. Nobody in town seemed to know where it was.” Who ever picked this place to eat must not get out of the house much! So anyway, “This fellow claims to be the great-grandfather of Leland Olson. He got the message to meet everyone here for a family dinner.”

I jumped up and gave my great-grandpa a big old hug, you look great, you died in 1914. I started banging a glass with my spoon. Can I have everyone’s attention, “This is great-grandpa Ole Hoel, he came all the way from Canada to have dinner with us.” Sit down and join us. So, “how have things been going with you grandpa, what would you like to eat?” Salted herring and lutefisk are out of season right now. They have excellent walleye fillets, I heard you always liked fish, we all did. Grandpa said, “That will be just fine, “but I don’t seem to have the appetite I had working in the woods all day.”

I asked, “How long can you stay” They said, ‘until dinner is over’ “I thought maybe you could come out to the house and stay awhile.” ‘Well that is not part of the deal.’ I’m here to just have dinner with you and your family, to see what you all look and act like.’ “Frankly, I am shocked, It looks like you all have a lot of confusion and bad manners.” “You should all be eating at one table at your home.” ‘Grandpa things change.’ He says, “Don’t know why things got to change that much, only been a 100 years or so since I left here.”

So I asked him, “If you’re leaving after dinner, I hope you’re not walking all the way back to Rocky Mountain House, Alberta.” No way, “Walk that far, you nuts? I did it once in 1905! “I will be returned to Canada the same way I got here. Something beamed me up, I didn’t have my Derby hat so they beamed me back down, got my hat, they beamed me up again and it brought me here. I hope they get it right going back.”

Thanks for supper, it was nice to meet your family. Leland, What did you say you do? Blogging? Never heard of it, “Now logging, I know a lot about log………

Bye, bye, great-grandpa, I love you.

Blog or Bust


Today’s assignment: write and publish a “who I am and why I’m here” post on your blog.

My first assignment posted at Blogging University, Blogging 101, is introduce myself to the world.

Hello World, “My name is Leland Olson, I’m 75 years old so some of you know me well.” I am, “Really glad to be here, or anywhere in this world.” I decided a half a dozen years ago to make an attempt at writing, not realizing it at the time that it was called blogging. I love life, humor has always been a great friend of mine.

My reason for deciding to blog was my deteriorating physical condition. It has continued to get worse, now I am almost a full-time blogger. Don’t get out much anymore. Life is playing out in slow motion for me. My life experiences have been extremely varied. I have had many different types of jobs. I found writing about my life experiences has supplied my writing with plenty of fuel so far. I will probably attempt several different writing venues, one thing I have learned, “Truth is much stranger than fiction.” My photographic skills have not surfaced yet, will have to work on that for photo blogs.

At one time I thought about having a private blog and decided against it. I’ve come to realize if I can share my life experiences with others and if even one person is helped by something I have written. I will feel it has been a worthwhile adventure. I am a 50+ year survivor of a severe spinal cord injury. That alone gives me plenty to write about. There are other people out there who have suffered from spinal cord injury, if they want to share notes on how their lives have gone. I will be very happy to share my life experiences with them. Spinal cord injury is a very nasty thing that usually affects each individual in different ways, but always leaves disabling consequences.

I started blogging at WordPress in September of 2015 so I’m a newbie here. I have found WordPress provides excellent tools that are fairly easy to learn, I have had some problem with a few areas but there are lots of help forums to fall back on. I do think anyone choosing to blog at WordPress has found a very good place to call home. If I am still blogging here a year from now I hope to be reaching a lot more people around the world. I know doubt will try to test the waters and experiment with different areas of writing. I have made a few attempts at some fiction and found it to be challenging. Humor should remain funny. I may leave that alone.

Blogging U.

Problems Associated With Growing Old


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Laughter is one prescription that we can all afford. Tears of pain can be hard to overcome if the body is diseased as we grow older, but laughter sure helps. When most people start to grow old they usually wish they would’ve taken better care of their bodies when they were younger. We seem to be stuck with the physical consequences of those wild oat sowing, and those cane raising years. Thankfully some good memories can be conjured up from those early years. Much about growing old is only in our minds. We have to learn to keep our minds and bodies active as we get older. We can either dwell on that troubled old body or grin and bear it, just don’t look in the mirror too long.

Worry will never become a problem solver, not even in those senior years when we have a lot more time for it. We usually don’t consider old age troubles, until we get close to writing our last chapter in life’s book. We might as will try to make it one of the best chapters, by thinking about the good things. High sugar levels in the blood will not sweeten a sour disposition. Try telling that to someone eating a cookie, who can clearly see the light at the end of the tunnel, even through the cataracts on those old eyes.

As we get older, sharing information about our bodies, even the most private doesn’t seem to bother us. I had a cousin who started talking louder as she was losing her hearing. One day while having lunch in the local cafe she confided to a friend about how dry her vagina was. Everyone in the restaurant got the information about her discomfort, even the cook and the dishwasher back in the kitchen. When you said hello to her you would be careful not to ask, “how are you today” unless you planned on spending a lot of time listening to her reply.

Dear cousin Flo has gone home to be with the Lord but she left many memories with us. One morning she announced, “I LOST MY HEARING AID.” They could not find that hearing aid anywhere in her small apartment. She said, “I HAD IT WHEN I WENT TO BED”. Later at coffee she said, “OH MY, I thought my cat coughed up a hairball last night on my pillow and I flushed it down the toilet”. It must have been my hearing aid!

My life plan never included getting old, the idea was to stay my young, happy, carefree self until I died. I would always eat what I wanted; bacon, eggs, Sugar Pops and Fruit Loops I could never imagine bran cereal or prunes in my diet. Most digestive systems develop plans of their own, no more regular like a clock, in any time zone.

Then the old ticker develops problems. Hey Doc, what do you mean no salt? My grandfather lived to be ninety six without heart trouble and he covered everything was salt. Doc says, ‘he sure was lucky’ you have high blood pressure. Now about your new diet, no salt, carbohydrates, saturated fat, sugar, caffeine, etc. I decided to get a haircut last week, when I got in the Barber’s chair he said, “Looks like maybe your only going to need one more clean shirt.” You cut the old doctor’s hair, didn’t you?  “They aren’t supposed to talk about their patients.”

My wife asked again this morning, “Did you take your pills?” I say no and start out for that pill container with all the different compartments for each day of the week. I always get side tracked on the way to my pill box, it is about 20 feet away from my La-Z-Boy recliner. An older person can have many distractions on a long walk like that. Some days that pill trip is repeated several times and I still miss my pills. I wonder if it’s really natures way of telling me I don’t need all those pills.

I never thought I would be leaving notes for myself to remember appointments, calls to make, chores to do, etc. Now I have post-it notes all over the place, sort of like little wallpaper sheets. My hearing is still fine, one thing that I can’t understand is why my wife keeps talking lower and lower all the time. The only time I can hear her real good is when she says,”DID YOU TAKE YOUR PILLS?”

Old Computers Or Dead Mules

I have always been the one in the family to call when something needed fixing. I was blessed or (cursed) with the ability to take stuff apart and put it back together and not have a lot of parts left over, the thing usually worked afterwards too. If you’re born a tinker, it just comes natural to get stuff back in running condition, obsessed may be the correct term.

When the first computers came out I was very fascinated with how they worked and knew absolutely nothing about them. I took a home study computer repair course and joined The Computer Book Club. The following picture shows my little workshop, I had it set up in our front porch. The one wall was full of computer repair manuals from the first computers on. I had even purchased several books about writing computer code, that maxed out my mind’s memory storage capacity very quickly. My little workshop looked a bit cluttered, because it was. I knew where everything was at though. The best thing I got out of my computer repairing years was the exercise required to lift them up on the desk to work on them and then hauling them out to warehouse number one, our old chicken coup.

Lee computers
I picked up my first computer at a surplus sale at one of our colleges. It was one of the first IBM’s with the 8 bit processor no hard drive, two 5.25 inch floppy drives, the RAM was measured in kilobytes instead of megabytes. I continued to collect many older computers and got them in running condition, then stored them out at our little acreage. Why? I thought they would ever have any kind of value is a mystery to me??? Kind of like investing in dead mules! The computers didn’t stink up the place, must by why I choose them. There really will never be any demand for old PC’s except for precious scrap metal. I spent several years at this and found it to be quite rewarding and challenging. I finally started to slow down as the new technology was traveling at a much faster pace than my mind could process. The last computers I work on were the early Pentiums.

We had to sell all of our stuff and move into an apartment two years ago. That sale was probably the saddest day of my life, most of these old working computers weren’t ever bid on. They went into a huge recycling dumpster. There is a link below to the Old Computer Museum. It lists part of my old collection. I sure was proud of it even if it had no value. I guess everything that we do isn’t always done for money. What kind of a nerd gets fulfilment out of tinkering with old computers raises many questions? I expect someone in a white coat will be asking me to put square pegs in round holes soon.

The compter is the only invention of man that has continued to come down in price as it increased in the capabilities of what it can do. Today a wrist watch can process more information and handle more applications than a desktop computer did five years ago. Some of my old tower computers cost over $60,000 in the 1980’s when they were purchased new by our county government. They had 486 CPU’s and 8 MB of Ram, 220 Megabyte hard drive.There is no comparison, awesome in every sense of the word, that really goes beyond what we call awesome today. This link below will take you to a place where you can read about artificial intelligence.

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Lake Poinsett, South Dakota, USA

















Fishing was usually good.


Our old cabin

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Amber fish

Amber’s alligator !







24 lb. Northern Pike


36.5 lb. Carp


The Olson boys L/R Leland, Karlton, Harlan


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2011 was another year of high water level, wind damage.




Why I Started This Blog



My Archery Deer in 2003

I have always been the active, outdoors type, two years ago my health forced me to move into a small apartment and travel in super low gear using a walker. My active outdoor life ended, over, done, no more! I want to share my outdoor life here. My wife and I are now each others caregivers. We might remind you of “Waiting For God”, like in that old English sitcom. I started this blog to keep my mind active, reliving old memories. The urge to write is hard to explain. I have been blessed with a long life at 75 and want to share events from my life.

I quit high school in 1957 and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. I completed jet aircraft mechanic school at Amarillo Air Force Base, Texas in 1958. I was sent to Misawa, A B, Japan in 1960, for two years. I did two months temporary duty in Thailand and became crew chief on RF-101 C number 56-080. I got out of the Air Force in 1962. I went back on highway construction and worked many jobs, from truck driver to Asphalt paving machine operator.

My job experiences changed radically after getting my back broke in 1964, I stared the ‘School of Hard Knocks.’  Did farm labor, commercial fishing through the ice, day labor, car-wash, door-to-door vacuum cleaner sales, apprentice offset press operator, insurance agent for American Republic and Mutual of Omaha, over the road refrigerated truck driver and tanker transport driver all through the 70’s.

I have always enjoyed golf, hunting, fishing, trapping, gardening and almost anything outside. As my body started slowing down I repaired computers, starting with the Apple 1, IBM 8088, 8086, up through the 286; 386; 486 and all the early Pentiums.

My goal with this blog is mainly sharing my life story with a spinal cord injury. I have been truly blessed. I also plan to share other stories that I have written, “truth is stranger than fiction.” I have some stories that are still slowly percolating on the back burner of my mind. Hopefully I can share my understanding and information with others about spinal cord injury and living the best life possible after that injury. Clicking on the following URL’s will take you to my spinal cord injury stories.

This will take you to the story about my car accident.

This will take you to the spinalcordinjuryzone.


Organize Chaos ?



Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

Organize Chaos ?
You cannot organize chaos!

No matter how hard you try,
it is like spit in the other eye.

The utensils all put in a designated place,
a week later it is the usual hunt and chase.

The shears are placed in the sewing kit,
the next time needed, one more fit.

Cereal left open on the counter top,
no more Snap Crackle or Pop.

The milk set out all day,
we could make cottage cheese that way.

The bread bag again was left open,
no more bread pudding, I’m hope’in.

The bathroom light burned like an eternal flame,
a new motion sensor ended that game.

It’s very hard to organize the refrigerator real well,
when things in lower compartments have such a bad smell.

The dishes in the sink will all need to soak,
getting them all into the bathtub is no joke.

We know it is time to clear off the kitchen table,
things are falling off only three sides, your still able.

It is hard to sweep the kitchen floor,
rug isn’t in front of the sink no more.

You could take the garbage out,
all day long, without a doubt.

Frying pans always burning,
has our ceiling paint turning.

Chaos is just too easy for me,
so I will just let it be.

Prickle or Zap

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

Prickle or Zap

Have you ever hunted deer where you had a chance to watch a great big buck coming towards you? He walks a few steps then he stops. His sharp senses are checking everything, he might seem like he is stareing straight at you, it will seem like a long time. Nothing spooked him, then he walks some more, slowly getting closer. The hair on the back of your neck seems to prickle, your skin has a tingling sensation, you can feel and hear your pulse in your ears.

The monster buck continues to come closer, just before he gets in range, he makes a turn. Something told him not to continue to the trail running under your tree stand. Probably why he got so darn big. The prickle on the back of your neck stops, the hair lays back down, pulse slows and the tingling sensation is gone, until the next time.

I have hunted deer with a bow and arrow and also with a rifle for many years. I must say I prefer archery hunting. We usually hunted when there was snow on the ground. You have a way to track a deer if you happen to not hit him in a vital spot with your arrow. The idea is to wait for a close shot and not have to track the deer. Tracking can be very hard without snow, my brother and I have tracked a deer for a full day when there was no snow on the ground. A blood trail is very hard to follow on leaves, especially if they’re deep wet leaves.

One Fall the archery season had been open for close to two weeks, but we still had no snow on the ground, it was an exceptionally warm Fall with thunderstorms and everything but I still wanted to hunt. I was situated up in my tree stand early one morning, long before first light, waiting by a well traveled deer trail. I could hear thunder off in the distance and there was a lot of sharp lightning. The storm kept getting closer. I thought about walking to my pickup which was about a quarter of a mile away, then I thought this storm will pass in a hurry, I’ll just sit it out in my tree with my rain jacket on.

I didn’t have to wait long for the storm to get there, there was lightning hitting in several places in the trees where I was at. Suddenly, I could smell sulfur, almost taste it. The skin on my neck started to prickle big time, as the hair stood up, it seems like the hair on my head stood up raising my hat even. Lightning struck the tree next to mine, the boom was incredible, it shook everything.

My ears were ringing, it almost knocked me out of the tree stand, I laughed at safety belts once, it was a good thing I had one on.

That was enough hunting for me for that day. I felt the need to go home and change clothes, hoping it was just from the rain and nothing more. That prickle job on my hair must have frayed some nerves too, it was finally dawning on me, I almost got zapped.

Willy-nilly Workshop




Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

Willy-nilly Workshop

My paternal grandfather was born in Norway in 1886, he was a very big man, a no-nonsense individual. His size 12-14 shoes came from the Mason Shoe Company. I think the shoe size depended on which ones were on sale at the time.
Willy-nilly or topsy-turvy had no place in his daily lifestyle. He and my grandmother farmed a small farm in South Dakota, USA all of their lives. They always had a huge garden and kept about 200 laying hens, raised their own beef and pork. They milked a few cows and separated the cream from the milk. They farmed with horses until the 1940’s.

Grandpa was a stickler for record keeping. He kept a ledger book and he also kept a diary. The Ledger book did not need the use of a calculator but He kept a record of their budgets. Weekly it might be less than $12.00 or $15.00, income from selling eggs, cream and butter. That income was spent at the grocery store, sometimes they just traded eggs for groceries. Gas and kerosene were used as little as possible.

Times were very hard for common folks in 1929. Grandpa had to sell some cattle to help pay the farm expenses at the bank. The Cattle didn’t bring a whole lot of money but He put it in the bank. The next day, Wall Street Crashed and the banks closed. Grandpa never had any faith in banks after that and lost some faith in his fellow man I do believe.
He felt the banks and Wall Street we’re playing fast and loose, willy-nilly, a helter Skelter attitude with the people’s money. Haphazard business deals and greed brought everything tumbling down. Today’s speculators might cause a repeat of the, Brother Can You Spare A Dime days.

On a lighter note grandpa had a very modest workshop on the side of the old granary, kind of a lean-to shop but it was out of the weather. Everything was where he wanted it in his little shop. There were used nails that had been straightened with care in old coffee cans next to a few new nails. There was old spark plugs in a few old rusty cans. What anyone wants with old spark plugs I never did figure out, but I save some. Old paint cans in one corner, not frozen, before latex paint. A huge wooden butter churn from when they sold a lot of butter. Window glass in a special location. A foot pedal powered grinding stone, a vice and hand operated drill press were fascinating, a kerosene barrel finished the inventory

The main thing was his precious hand tools, there where no power tools, we had no power. His tools, many of them brought from Norway we’re all laid out in their designated places. Grandpa did have nails driven into all the walls to hang items on, some tools hung on nails right above the workbench. There were many nails on all four walls, very convenient in the days before shelving units. I thought it was worth the trip to see the numerous hanging wall items.

One day grandpa must have taken too long a nap. My brother and I did a little exploring in his shop, the door was never locked, I believe it was Grandpa’s intention that it was off limits to kids. My brother and I trod on forbidden ground, the shops dirt floor and did a few projects of our own. We were off on a different part of the farm when Grandpa got done with his nap and walked out to his shop.

We could hear a lot of hollering in the Norwegian tongue and then the words, EVERYTHING IN HERE IS SCATTERED WILLY-NILLY, THE WHOLE PLACE IS TOPSY TURVY! Boys, where are you at?


Glaring Headlights

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Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

Glaring Headlights

I have become overly disgusted with glaring at exceedingly bright oncoming headlights. It is as if a total stranger is trying to detach my retinas. I have almost stopped driving at night, there is absolutely no reason for these space craft, super bright, blue arcing headlights. If a vehicle with these lights is tailgating you, it is like you are sitting in a x-ray room.

These lights continue to increase in production though, as people want a sporty car, or SUV, with lights bright enough to cross the Serengeti in Africa, in the dead of night.They could spot and blind every Lion on the plain.

I have concluded that the Taliban or ISIS are the people manufacturing the headlights for this country, because it certainly looks like  terrorist activity to me. These horrific headlights are turning quiet Sunday drivers into crazy people filled with road rage. This should not be happening.

These new glaring, bright headlights need to have some type of standards put on them. Lawmakers may not do this for the simple reason they drive people crazy, they should at least consider the safety issues as people are being killed from head-on collisions when they’re blinded at night.

This country has transportation problems galore, the whole country is not made up of multi-lane freeway systems. There are many more miles of two lane Highway, millions of people have to travel them every night, and every night some are dying in head on collisions.

It is really a sad thing to think about, we may not see any action on these headlights until some lawmakers family is wiped out in a head-on crash.

Glare definition- Wikipedia

“A glare is a facial expression showing disapproval, ( that’s me driving at night) fierceness and/or hostility. (that increases the longer I drive) Glaring, in some cultures is considered offensive.(better to glare, than get my hammer and smash their headlights out)” A glare may be induced by anger or frustration. (oh yes, that is for sure )

“Visually, a glaring person tends to have their eyes fixed and heavily focused on a subject (you have no choice, while under Blue Ray hypnosis) This can sometimes be considered synonymous to staring but, in most of the cases, staring is caused due to curiosity and lasts only for a short duration, whereas glaring is caused due to contempt and lasts for a relatively longer duration.”( yes, until the SOB goes past at least, sometimes longer)

“Never mind banning SUV’s. How about banning the ridiculous LED headlights that are proliferating like mini arc welders? OK, maybe that’s not a good analogy, but you get the   point.”
( “My sentiments exactly!) A arc welder coming straight at you. You are not only glaring you are mesmerized, unable to look off to the side of the road”

The Jiffy Plumber

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Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt

The Jiffy Plumber

Bob, the kitchen sink faucet is leaking. The water is dripping down into my tote box full of cleaning supplies, please fix it. Do you mean now, this is Sunday night? Yes,”I mean now, you will be at work tomorrow.” OK, I will have it fixed in a jiffy.

I will go get my tool bag, bring me one of the small sofa cushions. I will have to lay on my back and work with my arms and hands in the air to reach the pipe fitting, can’t lay on that hard sink cabinet. I will also need something for light, it is too dark to see the pipes good. Betty I can’t see anything up above, bring me that small table lamp, plug it in by the toaster. Great I can see real good now.

I will just turn this fitting about a half a turn and it should be just fine, Oh-oh that didn’t work, it seems to be leaking worse. I better tighten it just a little bit more,”oh crap.” Betty,” I just broke the pipe fitting, there’s water squirting all over the place. The water instantly busted the hot bulb in the lamp. BETTY, WHERE ARE YOU ? I’m in the bathroom. What are you doing there? You had to go?

GET OUT HERE, I’m being electrocuted! That lamp has me cornered like a Cobra, if I try to move the electricity from that broken bulb tries to bite me on the arm. Hurry up and get in here, pull the plugin out of the wall and pull that lamp out of here.

I can’t shut the water off, the dummy who put these faucets in didn’t put shut-off valves under the sink. Betty says, “You’re the dummy Dear, the one that put in the faucets” I’ve got to get downstairs quick and shut the water off, this is ridiculous. Why me all the time, Murphy’s Law rules my life.

He got the water shut off to the kitchen sink. We got water all over the floor down there even in the furnace room. Bob asks, “Why did you ever decide to carpet that other room?” Don’t blame me for carpeting mister fixer, you’re the master plumber around here. Now you have ruined a new sofa cushion too.

Bob says,”Well at least you have water in the bathroom.” Betty, “Joy oh joy isn’t that just great.” We’re going to live with this mess now until we get someone to come in and clean it up on Monday or later.”You and your Jiffy jobs drive me crazy, Mister Good Wrench.” Bob says,”That’s the auto mechanic.” I am your Roto Rooter Man. Shut it up Bob.

“How about some jiffy popcorn to help make things right?”


Neuropathic Pain

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I suffer from neuropathic pain in many areas of my body. My complete spinal cord has been damaged, since the original injury in 1964. Syringomyelia has hollowed out the full length of the spinal cord. I have tried different doses of Gabapentin without much results, I have to stay on it to see how I handle higher doses before I qualify for the next drug. I would like to hear from others who have neuropathic pain caused by Spinal Cord Injury.

This link for the Spinal Cord Injury Zone. Neuropathic pain

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

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“The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is an American motorcycle rally held annually in Sturgis, South Dakota, for ten days usually during the first full week of August. In 2015 the city of Sturgis officialy expanded the dates to have the Rally, start on the Friday before the first full week of August, to end on the second Sunday. It was begun in 1938 by a group of Indian Motorcycle riders and was originally held for stunts and races. Attendance has historically been around one half million people, reaching a high of over 700,000 in 2015, and generating around $800 million in revenue.” Rally

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The link below has many more pictures.