Ricky Harpole 3/11/14

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Harpole: wishes fulfilled, goats gainfully employed clearing land

By Ricky Harpole

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Y’all know about the price of gas and taxes and I hope for your sake you only will have to speculate on the expenditures of sweat involved in well digging. I was forced to accumulate some billy goats to eat their way to the homestead and widen the trail. 

Later I was forced to drag up a pair of mature semi-feral hogs to eat the rattlesnakes denned up on the premises. 

If you think about it and chew on the circumstances there is a way to make mother nature work for you. Know as a given fact that no backwoods retreat is complete without a watchdog. The meaner the better. 

Caroline is three quarters purebred German police and one quarter wolf. She a combination burglar alarm and a “teeth on” invasion deterrent. Her mother and father had a combined body weight of three hundred pounds. Her only fault is when she takes what ain’t nailed down and drags it into my front yard for the convenience for me to trip over. Fortunately since the arrival of the goats, a significant proportion of the flotsam and jetsam is consumed by that crew immediately upon deposit. 

It all seems to balance. The dog/wolf feeds the goats, the goats mow the grass when the hogs eat the snakes I will put them into retirement in a special pen commonly referred to a smoke house.

I still believe in fairy tales – legends of buried treasure – sermons (good or bad if delivered in the right spirit) and old whiskey. There are certain things I don’t believe in. They are the joys of changing domiciles , restoring old barns that you intend to live in forever, that you will be patching, nailing, sawing on and cussin’ at into eternity.

Since childhood, I longed for a place of my own in the deep dark woods where I could avoid provocation by society in general. A place where I could turn loose my dogs, ride wild horses, turn loose my firearm without any due worry about causing harm, hunt and fish at my leisure and tell my lies at my convenience and play loud music. Well, you have to appreciate the Fairy God Mother who grants wishes and the sermons that come from those who care. 

To make a short story longer, all of my wishes were granted, but it was a mixed blessing. The cabin is mine and is all I wished for, but there ain’t no public services regarding electricity, water service and I was forced to dig a well and hock my soul in the form of taxes and greedy gas consuming generators and I will keep the goats and maybe go into the land clearing business.

Back to the wild,

Ricky Harpole