We've been away from the homestead for four weeks. We traveled for nearly two weeks, then it was rainy, then Mike wanted to bird hunt in the Valley. This morning we drove back to the farm in two rigs. Mike set out ahead of me in the big ol' Dodge Ram. I came behind in the Dakota – our newer old rig. Nellie was with Mike in the cab of the old pick-up. We wended our way over Clarkston Heights, down 15th, across Hwy 12, over Red Wolf Bridge, up Down River Road to Hwy 12 and 95. It takes 15 minutes just to get to the highway. It felt good to be on our way and things were going well. I was listening to Christmas music – and I began to think about all the things we were taking to the farm. I always take a lot of stuff and Mike never complains. He's like my mother in that regard – nothing is ever too much trouble. How lucky I am, I thought to myself. As I am wont to do, I began to mentally tick off the things we would need and the things we were taking. And suddenly, as I'm crossing the bridge at Arrow, I remembered I'd forgotten the cell phone. I said I would pick it up. I told Mike I would bring it. Then I toured the house and locked a few windows and walked right out without it. I knew we would need it and the sooner I went back for it the better. So, I passed Mike, and we pulled off the road at Cottonwood Creek. We are not gracious about each other's lapses. Discussion ensued.
"We'll just get along without it," Mike said. But, I reminded him, we have a service person coming on Friday. Yes, we would need the phone. So, we agreed that I would return to the town house for it while he drove on to the farm.
Reverse route -- Down Hwy 12, over the bridge at Arrow, more highway at 65 mph, onto Down River Road, over Red Wolf Bridge, across Hwy 12 on 15th, wend way over Clarkston Heights to our house on Chukar Lane. Grab cell phone and DO THAT ROUTE ONE MORE TIME TODAY.
Other than that, there were no difficulties. There's construction at the bridge in Orofino, and traffic narrows to two lanes. I'm sure this will ultimately constitute an improvement. When I arrived at the farmhouse, Mike was already here, of course, with a cheery fire in the fireplace. Nellie was so glad to see me! She gave me a hug and pestered me for five minutes. "She must have been worried about you," Mike commented.
It's lovely and mild here today. Our weather station reports a low of 28 on November 14 and a high of 67 on October 27. Everything seems in order EXCEPT for the mouse that got caught in the oven, apparently some time back. Mike took care of it and we agreed today would be a great day to let the oven self clean! KW
[Photos: Nellie watches as Mike takes his hunting gun and leaves her behind. The maple tree in the yard has lost all its leaves. What a contrast to our last day here, October 20. And this shot to the south is illustrative of fall bleakness but beautiful contrast in the sky.]