Dunk the Commissioner

Terri Ryan said how glad she is to see Highway C being resurfaced. It will make her trip to school safer and more pleasant. Enrollment for our Skyline R2 School will begin this week. School will be starting soon and the results of the summer’s exciting construction projects there will be revealed. The road work will be ongoing for a while and will be a quality-of-life enhancement for the whole community. Highway V has recently had some quality attention. Again, those handsome gentlemen at the Douglas County Road Maintenance Shed Number 2 in Drury are to be commended for the fine work they do keeping our beautiful country lanes in such fine shape. When Commissioner Brad Loveless sat in the dunking booth at the Vanzant Picnic, the issue of the amazing potholes on V Highway were brought to his attention. He was a good sport about it, and there is no reason to believe that the long line of picnic goers ready to dunk him, splish splash, had anything to do with the subsequent road repair.

A mess o’ Champion black-eyed peas in the making.

Pete Seeger said, “If it can’t be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, refinished, resold, recycled or composted, then it should be restricted, redesigned, or removed from production.” In this part of the country, the nearest recycling center for plastic, glass, cans, and paper, seems to be the City of West Plains Solid Waste Transfer Station (417-255-2330). They accept residential and commercial solid waste, non-hazardous industrial waste, and compostable waste and have a place to bring your recyclables. West Plains Recycling, Inc. is a different place. They recycle metal, as do similar businesses closer to our area. Trying to do the right thing can get complicated and confusing and sometimes the internet does not help. Sometimes a good neighbor is not much help either, providing a person with incomplete or inaccurate information without meaning to. The City of West Plains folks are friendly and helpful.


Black-eyed Pea Flowers

Mary Elizabeth may like goober peas, but she does not like black-eyed peas. Many people do not like them. But they grow well in poor soil and, if you like them, are good fresh cooked with onions, new potatoes, and bacon fat. They can be canned for an easy meal in the wintertime or dried to share with kinfolks through the mail. That way the family can all have the same peas in different places together on New Year’s Day. Uncle Al said that we will eat at least that well all year. They feature prominently in a dish called Texas caviar.

Gardens are being lush and productive this year, when Covid is keeping would be admirers away. Felix the Farmer and his Papa shared tomato plants back in June which have become enormous and are making an abundance of beautiful fruit. Felix completed swimming lessons in July, so he was ready for the family trip to Vera Cruz. That glorious spot has a history of fun and relaxation for generations of friends and families who take a break from their garden and kitchen chores. Canning jar lids are still in short supply locally and the ones available through the internet may not come with the same degree of confidence that canners are accustomed to with the Ball and Kerr brands. The kitchen is another one of the best places for fun and optimism in Champion—Looking on the Bright Side!