Exploring the Countryside on my Sunday Morning

Since I wasn’t scheduled to play at St. Paul Lutheran this morning, and already having attended a Worship Service yesterday afternoon, I discovered I had an entire morning in which I could take off and go do whatever would come to mind, but first I had to head to office and get my Sunday morning contemplative session completed.

As I suspected, it became more of a chore to have myself settled enough to get some deep prayer completed, and what triggered that difficulty, was being reminded of this past week’s issue with a business owner and his two hirelings who went on the hate by posting shite about my office on Facebook, along with posting one star revues on Google which was completely un-called for.

This morning I thought to myself, “How would that business owner like it if a group of near-perfect strangers would start placing one star revues for his company on Google, and then watch to see how quickly his ratings would nosedive, and what I absolutely can’t get my brain wrapped around, is finding that the spouse of one of his workers placed a one star review using her maiden name which I’m sure was done on purpose. I believe it’s time for the owner of that company to have a little chat with is worker about his wife’s post on Google. For sure he must’ve said something to her about that incident, which likely incited her to charge into battle as a keyboard warrior. If that post doesn’t get deleted soon, I’ll likely have to reply to it, just so the general public knows a little more about why that fake review was posted. I fully believe it’s time for both sides to move on instead of holding fast to the past and possibly creating a few more future regrets. Before I do reply to that post, I’ll be placing one more call to that business owner in hopes he either answers or returns my call.

After getting my spiritual exercise completed, and as I was walking out, I looked outdoors and suddenly found myself inspired to get in my car and take a long drive around North Iowa. It was nearly half past eight when I left, and by the time I arrived back in the City, it was nearing eleven.

I would say this morning’s drive was one of the best, and mostly because of how bright our low-hanging sun was which created some memorable shadows. I made a number of stops to take some photos I thought would be worth sharing with all of you. The above photo is of Elk Creek Lutheran Church which I made a point to stop and visit with several women who were already there. I asked if Pastor Linda Johnson-Prestholt had arrived yet, and unfortunately she hadn’t, so I handed my business card to one of the ladies I was visiting with.

While in conversation with them, I mentioned my having sold Pastor Linda and her husband their acreage some years ago, and happy to find all’s been well with them. I did notice her husband having opened up an auction hall in Manly which seems to be doing very well. Having worked closely with them when they arrived in North Iowa, I dare say they are the nicest people you’d ever want to meet. I just recently found out that Pastor Linda now has the big job of looking after three other Lutheran churches besides the one she came here to minister which is Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Manly.

Before leaving, I informed the women that my grandparents attended Elk Creek Lutheran Church for a number of years which came as quite the surprise to them. I would say today’s visit was the first time I’d been inside for a very many years. It’s small, but really quite charming with their tall stained glass windows and vintage pews. I also took several photos of their graveyard, and to my surprise, one of the headstones read “Bergo”. I knew that the Bergo family was originally from either Worth or Winnebago County, but I didn’t know they were farmers in the Kensett area. I’ll have to post that headstone another day, and when I do, please note the language is in either Norwegian or Swedish. I personally don’t know those two languages well enough to tell the difference. Back before Southbridge Mall was built, Bergo’s Mini Mall was the “go to” place for shoppers back in the days before those big corporate stores set up shop in our town.

When I arrived back from exploring the countryside on my Sunday morning, I changed my clothes and decided to head back to work at getting those many black walnuts cracked. I made sure to be comfortably seated, along with all the tools I needed, just so I wouldn’t be wasting time by getting up and down to fetch something. I also made sure I had plenty of natural light, just so I didn’t feel detached from our shortened day of sunshine.

The intensity of getting them cracked, sure had me oblivious to the lapse in time, because when I got up to go and see what hour it was, I was shocked to find four hours had already passed. Oh well, I made another dent in that pile, along with having a good four hours of uninterrupted thought. I’ve always found it interesting at times when discovering how quickly time goes by when completely immersed in a project. Today’s queue to stop, was when my back was starting to pain me from being seated so long. I’m confident my next crack-a-thon will be going much faster because after many trials and errors, I’ve now got a working method established in getting them fully cracked before opening their shells and picking out their meat.

Without a doubt, the highlight of my day, were those moments spent inside Elk Creek Lutheran Church. Sometimes it’s good food for our souls when revisiting long-ago places and getting some re-connecting done of fond memories. Yes, I’d say there were some heartfelt thoughts of my grandparents that were resurrected while driving off.

Tonight’s One-liner is: Next to enjoying ourselves, the next greatest pleasure consists in preventing others from enjoying themselves, or, more generally, in the acquisition of power.

Joe Chodur

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