Hikers, Kinfolk and Willie Nelson

Dark gray clouds are rolling in over Frog Pond Holler this morning. The air is cool and gently stirring, the sort of day that makes me wish I had a porch swing where I could sit and watch the storms roll in like I did when I was younger, when I could see the horizon from where I sat.

There's been a steady stream of hikers going by the house on their way to town. Yesterday I spotted a small tent settlement in the vacant lot behind the dollar store and numerous old snaggle toothed men in front of the ice cream shop with bandannas fashioned into doo-rags atop their scruffy heads. Truth be told, they're probably big city business men, doctors and other respected professionals the rest of the year, clean cut and dressed in fine suits. Something about Frog Pond Holler brings out the Willie Nelson in people.

The Cubicle Asylum has been an odd place to be the past few weeks. People are leaving for greener pastures in droves. We can't get nor keep people to work. Lulu, Thelma, Louise and I have all decided we're going to have to learn to weld, drive fork trucks and program the lasers if we're going to be able to stay open. Then on Friday we found out that one of our employees has an inoperable brain tumor and has refused any treatments. He's been there since the plant opened, one of the kindest, most likable people you'd ever meet. Tomorrow he turns 51.

In a small town, everyone knows everyone, knows your family and all the details of your life. Sometimes it's an aggravation, but when tragedy strikes it can be a comfort as well. Both of this man's sons also work at the plant, we all know his whole family. I'm distantly related to him on my dad's side, but then, I'm distantly related to everyone in a 100 mile radius on that side. I'm descended from what seems to be a long line of indiscriminate, immensely fertile, prolific breeders... with a lot of spare time on their hands.

Ya'll enjoy your weekend. I'm off to scrub some things, slap a little Nair here and there, maybe wash a pooch or two.

Ya'll be blessed.