Pardon this brief interruption from Storytime, whilst I tell of a brief sojourn into a Red state.
I spent a fun and strange weekend with Lovely Lady Leslie in Freeman, Missouri at the new and spacious home of Leslie's aunt and uncle. It is roughly a 9 1/2 hour drive to their front door. With Rocky in tow, we drove towards our destination. Needing fuel on the way down this past Friday night, we stopped in Lamoni, Iowa, home of Graceland University. I should have known that even the slightest reference to Elvis would lead to something weird, but I truly had no idea as to the extent of it.
As I'm filling the tank with cheap ethanol fuel (thanks to a federal subsidy), two pickup trucks sat in front of me. The driver of the truck on the right, which had arrived second, got out of his truck and addressed the driver of the other truck.
"I've got somethin' fer ya", the man said to the other man. He reached into the back of his truck and grabbed a large dead raccoon by the arm. He handed it to the other man, who then threw it into the back of his own truck. I looked at Leslie, who was sitting in the front seat of the car, and it was all I could do not to explode in laughter. When I got back into the car after closing the gas cap, we decided that we would avoid the local Subway sandwich shop, which was the reason why we had chosen this exit.
Saturday started off on rather unfriendly terms. Leslie's cousin's two dogs, her aunt's two dogs and Rocky were running around the property. Suddenly, Tucker, Leslie's aunt's Sharpei-Husky mix, made a beeline for the new neighbor's property. A short time later, the neightbor called to say that she had shot Tucker. After a long morning for Leslie's Uncle Mike, riding with the neighbor to the local veterinarian, Tucker was ok, his wrinkled Sharpei skin around his neck deflecting the buckshot into his leg. Leslie and I couldn't help but feel like the harbingers of bad tidings until we knew Tucker made it through his ordeal a little scathed but for the most part healthy.
For the remainder of the weekend. I just relaxed while Leslie and her cousins and aunt went shopping. Her cousins, aunt and uncle are quality people. Continued good fortune to them all.
We returned yesterday (Monday) uneventfully. I'm now listening to "Nashville Skyline" by Bob Dylan and relaxing. Sleep well, World. I have a long way yet to go tonight.