The Farmer's Wife: Remembering Mike.. and trees


Today would have been Mike's birthday.  I'm surprised how many people remembered. 

Yesterday, a granddaughter came with a couple mini bundt cakes.  They all take me back to the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding.  The groom's mother brings one to dinner at the parents of the bride-to-be.  That dear lady accepts kind of gingerly and goes to the house saying “bundt cake”. I'm pretty sure she had not seen one before, and at that point, not really sure she would eat one!

Mike was a natural born tree planter. He would get them from the NRD, plant them with help, the kids, water them faithfully, and they grew. At the Farm House, NRD provided a bunch of Blue Spruce, and he spent hours west of the house, again, watering. He had many feet of garden hose. And some local kids  weeding. Today, they are beautiful.

When we moved here, there was a whole row of pine trees to the north. The first one died, and it looked bad. They finally cut it down and replaced it with one three feet tall. It was right behind us and we could really feel it the next winter; our deck doors are on that side of  our house. So far, two more are replaced, and the fourth one looks very bad.

I've had a maple tree installed at the church, right by the school playground. It will have a plaque saying, in memory of Mike Meierhenry, life long tree planter.  

Well, I didn't mean to write a treatise on trees, I didn't know what the day's subject would be. It gets hard to come up with something. We octogenarians do not lead exciting lives!

When the subject of trees comes up, I think of a quarter section I grew up on, there was a huge shelter belt planted by the WPA. When the renter bought it, they were bull dozed out. A couple years ago, I-80 was closed in the western part of the state due to blowing dust. No trees. Did we not learn something during the Depression? History often repeats itself.

My mother's father would go to the Blue River to fish and bring home saplings to plant. I remember a bunch of trees behind the house.

Speaking of the lack of social activity, I did get taken to lunch yesterday. A second cousin and his wife took me to lunch at the Village Inn. And the conversation turned to genealogy. I  probably have a hundred second cousins. My Dad had fifty first cousins. Families were big in those days.

His wife is an high school classmate. Many years ago, they were working with trees and one fell on her back. She was immediately paralyzed, starting in the thoracic area. They have a van with a ramp inside and room for her to back out and then go forward down the ramp,it's amazing. So is the power chair she's in. They  don't miss much. Most public buildings are accessible. When Mike was in college, there was nothing like that. A good thing the major damage was the left arm, but I've learned what it's like to have one arm that is useless; no fun.

And that is all she wrote.  I'm even a few minutes late - noon on Tuesday is the deadline.