6:40 am: As I munched my banana from some exotic land, my little wall neighbor worked for his breakfast right outside my window. As I read last evening’s Pro Jo article about “---small agricultural fairs struggling to stay open”, a shaking of leaves caught my attention. Huh! What’s he up to (should I apologize for my gender bias---). Up and down the branches; quickly, hurry, reminding me of Alice’s White Rabbit, “I’m late, I’m late”.
Back on the lowest branch he found what he’d apparently been after, a fair sized apple. He straddled it, worried it, twisted, turned and generally beat on it until it fell. Ah! It fell at the base of the tree, behind the wall, out of my view. Darn!
I left my banana to go take a look, crept as quietly as I could. Yes! He didn’t hear me; there he is, tucked safely into the tiger lilies. Oops! a squeak/scold/leap, all in a blink, into the wall. I felt a little pang of guilt, believe it or not, but I had to see the whole breakfast routine unfolding just outside my window.
Back to my banana and the “fair” article. Past President of the Middlefield, MA fair is quoted saying, “You beat yourself up year after year, and it reaches a point when you ask yourself what we’re doing this for.” “It’s mostly about tradition. But it gets to be a real soul search.”
FPS is currently researching the history of Old Home Days for a book that will be ready for OHD in 2008. Thanks to Earl Hopkins for loaning the original journals of the Old Home Association, started in 1904. Tradition is alive in our hands as we read them.