Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Neighbor Neil

Do you have good neighbors? We have the best we ever had here west of the fantastic Martinsville Mall. I am being facitious of course but it's really true.

Martinsville had a post office, two gas station type general stores and a few churches and houses. All with a population of a few hundred people. Those little stores keep us in business and save us tons of money travelling for stuff.

I met neighbor Neil soon after we bought this farm in 2004. This farm lies really well, close to town and city but out in the country and the rumors were it would go for development.

We had three farm deals fall through as God said wait a little bit more, I have one for you and it was this farm. Neighbor Neil, Darrel, Ralph and Donna and the Ertel's came with the deal. We never knew that then.

We are out going folks so we soon met our neighbors. They were more than cordial to us. They really were happy this farm didn't get a bunch of houses dumped on it. The soil is just too good to build houses on and I don't think I could do it even if I was desperate. People do funny things in desperate times.

Neighbor Neil's line abuts with ours and there were a few straggly fence row trees there eating up sunshine and keeping the soil too wet for crops so I asked him if I could them down. He said sure, do you want some more?

We cut them down and the crops grow better but you kinda lose that tree feeling, shade in summer, windbreak in winter. Both are gone so now the snowplow is running many times a day to keep our hill clean and safe. There are so many trees around here, good for the environment but so are annual crops.

My best pictures of one field and this farm stead is from nighbor Neil's and my property line.

All my water drains through Neil's property so I wanted to make sure we were on the same page for that too. We got talking and we were both school board chairmen. He talked about how he wanted Martinsville to merge with Blanchester where I was and I talked about how I wanted Martinsville farm kids in my ag program. We hit it right off.

It never happened of course but we can still tell you how it would be if we had our ideas fulfilled! Neither one of us are shy on that point.

I just got off the phone with him and enjoyed another good belly laugh. Isn't that great to have with your next door neighbor? Neighbor Darrell can do the same thing to me. Laugh so hard for minutes on end your stomach hurts.

We really need that in America. I hope it never dies.

Thank you neighbor Neil.

Ed Winkle

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