Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ozark Images: Visiting Uncle Woodrow's Farm

Yesterday and the day before, my wife, kids, and I visited the farm of my Uncle Woodrow and Aunt Pauline, and they put us right to work. In the image above, you see Sa-Rah with bowed head intent on knotting strips of plastic to a clothes hanger so that slippery coats can't slide off. Unsightly result:

But effective. Keeps those blasted coats on them dang hangers. Meanwhile, En-Uk and Cousin Martha have a job to do as well:

Checking Charlie the Wolf for ticks. A dirty job, but somebody really and truly has to do it. Later, En-Uk learns from Aunt Pauline why some chickens are in jail:

Because of snakes. Yes, really. And En-Uk is asking, "Can a chicken this big get swallowed by a snake?"

He listens attentively as Aunt Pauline explains about a snake that bit the head off one of these chickens only last week. I thought that only geeks in the circus did that, and all these chickens still appear to have their heads, but if Aunt Pauline says it happened, well . . . . Anyway, the chicken wire keeps the big snakes out and also protects against chicken hawks . . . not that any draft-dodging warmongers are lurking nearby. Still, one can never be too careful:

Flanked by two bodyguards (the guard to the right wielding an obvious weapon), En-Uk securely extracts a precious chicken from its protective custody and displays the bewildered beast for our roving camera -- manned (if that's the word for it) by my wife. Sun-Ae also gets me to pose with Uncle Woodrow and Aunt Pauline, and though I don't usually like posed photos, this one's kind of nice:

My uncle and aunt don't look eighty-three, do they? But they are. Anyway, lest one think that I avoided work, the photograph below proves me no shirker:

To be frank, I'm working only in the technical sense of the term: W = F x D. Practically speaking, my work is futile, for the grape press lacks any grapes! Good thing, too, or the juice would be spilling onto the floor since I have no bucket. You could say, of course, that I'm testing the contraption to ensure that the gears are all in working order. That would be a positive spin on my 'work'. And we do receive our earthly reward for such labor:

Mealtime with family. On the right, my two kids and I. To the left, Uncle Woodrow and 'Cousin' Bob's head. At the end, 'Cousin' Curren. The two 'cousins' are married to Martha and Velna, respectively. Martha appeared in the third photo from the top, the one of the tick-checkers. Velna escaped such an embarrassing pose. Incidentally, Curren -- specifically Curren Everett -- is "seeking election to Arkansas' State Senate in District 10," so all you folks in "Fulton, Sharp, Randolph, Izard, Stone and part of Independence County" get down to your courthouse, get registered for the November 2nd election, and cast a vote for Curren. If you ain't for Curren, though, no great need to get out and get registered.

Some readers may be wondering, "Where's a picture of Sun-Ae?" I did take a couple of photos, and was preparing to upload them to this blog post, but my wife objected to my poor photographical skills and stopped me from posting them.

Perhaps tomorrow . . .

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At 6:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You wear your hat at the table?

The farmer I buy eggs from keeps her chickens in the house to protect them from foxes, hawks, and other varmints.

Beautiful coloring on the hen En-Uk is holding up.

Fresh farm chicken tastes vastly superior to supermarket chicken. Did your family notice the difference? My youngest brother, whose dinner menu alternates between Kraft mac-n-cheese and Totinos frozen pizza, raved about the flavor the first time my mom baked a farmers' market chicken.


At 5:52 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Do I wear my cap at the table? No. Although I appear to be doing so, the cap is actually wearing me. I've lost all control over the damn thing . . .

We didn't eat any chicken at that particular meal, though we did enjoy some venison, which tasted like a very lean cut of grass-fed beef.

Jeffery Hodges

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