The road to dignity is long.
And so are the roads on our farm which need to be maintained! We probably have 4 miles of laneways to keep operable. The most important variable to effective roadways is drainage. Our farm is low-lying in many places, so drainage doesn't come naturally. In spots such as this newly poured gravel, there is no drainage-ditch to access. Instead we put down "geotextile cloth" to support the gravel, which keeps it from continually disappearing into underlying mud.
Laneways in good repair enable us to navigate around the farm readily, and complete our business. When in poor repair, movement slows down, damage is incurred to vehicles, and the cost of doing business rises. It makes one appreciate the challenges developing countries face with poor road systems. It is hard to market goods when producers are not provided ready passage to marketplaces.
In like manner, pathways provided by the internet have recently become indispensable, perhaps more so even than the physical highway system. This is hard to fathom, but the "access" created by the internet is unmatched in history. People in remote locations now have access to communication, education, and commerce, in magnitudes previously unavailable.
Numerous remote locations are still without full service from both roads or internet, however, creating competitive disadvantage. Our farm is one such location, as are many rural neighborhoods throughout Appalachia. Hopefully, some day soon, our politicians will find the courage to pass an infrastructure bill, creating even more opportunity for those who seek it.
Most worthwhile roads in life are long. The journey to success and dignity requires drainage, support, surface, vision, and time. This includes the great challenges of: marriage, child rearing, starting businesses, and developing careers. The journey never seems to come to an end, as we are always creating new dimensions of ourselves, with every bend in the way.
It is interesting to note most straight roads undulate, subtly and rather beautifully, conceding that "straight ahead" does not exist in nature. Nor does it exist in our personal journey, despite how hard we try.
Similarly, our country is travelling down a long and remarkable roadway. It seems, however, recently we are running into over-sized potholes. But those can be fixed, with proper drainage, support, resurfacing, and faith.
One large pothole that breaks a lot of axles, and thereby invites drainage, is the concept that a single race can be supreme. Supremacy does not exist in nature. The only thing that reigns supreme in nature is connection, among all species. When connection is broken, instability quickly follows. The mighty grizzly bear is weak without small berries... Sustainable biological systems depend on diversity of species above all. And sustainable human systems do as well. Nature provides a time-tested model for behavior, which we humans would be wise to emulate. Our dignity depends on it. Fortunately, the road is long, and dignity awaits those who persevere.
These are sirloin of beef kabobs. They are great for quick grilling or stir-fry. We have plenty of one-pound packages available, while momentarily being out of tenderloin, ribeyes, and strip steaks.
This weekend Susan and I are heading to the mountains of Tennessee to listen to "American" music. Beth & Bob will be at Findlay Market on Saturday and will cover for us at Hyde Park on Sunday. The "slider shack" at HP will be in full force on Sunday, as well, thanks to Emma, Alex, and Sebastien.
With gratitude that the long road brings dignity for us all,
Drausin & Susan