Our Last Week Together

This is pieced together from my old blog, my notes and recollection of what was happening during our last week together May 8th through May 15th 2006.

Monday May 8th

It’s finals week. I spent the morning and evening studying for exams and working on my senior seminar paper.

The afternoon was spent working on the farm. My dad and I cleaned out the wash house. The cellar of the wash house has canned food from the 40’s in there. So we had to go through all the cans and throw out a lot of rotten food. Yuk! Then we had to clean the cellar out to make room for a bunch of other cans and glass containers. It took most of the day but we got it done.

My dad got the weed eater to work. It quit working last summer. It’s one of those nice expensive ones that runs on gas so it better start working again! All it needed was a new spark plug. We weed wacked around the house and steps and then I took the pressure sprayer and sprayed off the vinyl siding.

We also were in contact with the gas company about putting in an alternate road up to the farm. The gas company had approached us about placing another easement on our property. My dad spoke with a neighbor who lives next to the Eagle’s about purchasing an easement through her property. Those two easements combined would provide an alternate route to the farm. The gas company said they could begin the easement in the next few days barring any rain.

We decided to put in the alternate route to the farm for a number of reasons. All of them involving Dale Eagle. The first reason is that we were running an alpaca business. Our goal was to build barns to board other people’s animals and a store to sell products made from alpaca fleece. We couldn’t  have prospective clients get stopped and harassed by a foul mouthed old man. The second reason which is the most important was that we realized that Dale was not going to stop harassing us. Since January when the peace bond was removed we had our property vandalized, our ducks poisoned and in March Dale followed my parents to the local Post Office and picked a fight with my dad. That didn’t go so well for Dale. But it was enough for my parents to realize that he wasn’t going to stop. He was going to continue to be a volatile neighbor. We just never thought he was capable of murder.  This is one of the things that continues to be heart breaking for me. Once we finalized and had in writing the new easement to the farm, we were going to send a certified letter to the Eagles letting them know we were putting in the alternate road. Sadly this letter never got sent.

Tuesday May 9th

I finished my senior seminar paper with the intention of turning it in the next day. The topic is “Is Islam and Democracy compatible: A Case Study on Iraq.” I still have the paper if anyone wants to read it. I would just like to point out that what I wrote in my paper has come to pass. The middle class that left Iraq hasn’t returned and the country still continues to be riddled with sectarian violence.

My mom was working as a receptionist at a relative’s hair salon. I stopped by to visit my mom for lunch. My dad came by also. When he got there he asked if I would go back to the farm to hang out. He said that as he was leaving the farm he saw Dale and Judy out in their garden. As my dad drove down the road Dale stared him down. It really creeped my dad out. I went back to the farm until my dad got back from having lunch with my mom.

I really didn’t do much that day except for working on the paper and going to the gym. It was in the high seventies and sunny. I worked out and then took a break by hanging out with a friend at the gym. I went up to the Bridgeport High School afterward. I ran some 40 meter sprints first. Then I went on the football field and ran some 100 yard sprints and some ladders. Ladders are when you run 10 yards and back peddle 5. You continue to do this until you reach the other end zone. Bridgeport H.S. football field is artificial turf. It’s pretty cool to run on and it really takes the pressure off my calves.

Wednesday May 10th

I got up in the morning and turned in my term paper. I was pretty relieved to get that monkey off my back.

I spent a majority of today studying for my Spanish exam. I’m proud of myself because I have had this fear of learning Spanish. I always feel overwhelmed and behind whenever I take Spanish and I just drop it. Well, I did pretty darn good this semester. I must say that this is yet another academic obstacle that I have overcome.

This was the most profound day of our last week together. I learned something about my dad that I never knew. Today was the last section of the membership class at our church. The class consisted of me, my mom and dad and Pastor Seth sharing our testimony about how we became Christians. We went around the room and gave our testimonies. My dad went last.

My dad told the story of how when he was five years old my biological grandmother left him on the front porch and ran away never to be seen again. My dad grew up in church but never forgave my grandmother for that. It wasn’t until he was in his 30’s after a sequence of events that led us to church that my dad finally forgave his mother and was able to receive God’s forgiveness through Jesus Christ. This was my dad’s story of forgiveness. I never knew. I can look back on this now and I am so thankful I heard him tell this story.

My mom sings on the worship team so when we were done with our meeting my dad and I stuck around and watched them practice.

Thursday May 11th

A Really Rainy Day…

I couldn’t sleep for the life of me last night. I kept waking up every other hour.  I officially got up around 6am and spent until 9am going over my notes for Spanish. I took my test at 10am and was done by 10:30. It was pretty easy. I know I missed some stuff but I’m sure I got a decent grade. I’m quite proud of myself. I’ll make sure to attack Spanish II with more vigor.

Funny thing is, when I got to college this morning it was 70 degrees and sunny. By the time I got home around 11am the dark clouds had rolled in and it poured something horrible. It hasn’t rained this hard in months. The temperature dropped into the high 50’s and it’s windy. So what do you do when the weather is this bad? TAKE A NAP!!!!! YAY!!!

So for the rest of my day I spend studying for my Marketing test tomorrow. I’m not looking forward to this test at all. It’ s one of those classes where no matter how much you study you still make a C in it. If it wasn’t for the group projects we have in class I don’t think I’d have a decent grade. It sucks to know that my GPA is going to drop a little bit over silly class like this.

Friday May 12th

As of 8:37 this morning I am officially done with Spring Semester 2006!!!!!

I am so glad this semester is over. I can say that it wasn’t the classes that bothered me but all the outside influences that got to me. Too much going on here on the farm and other stuff too. But I have all summer to take care of these things which is nice.

Now I start the process of scanning all my notes and putting them on disk. I do this so I can keep my notes for future reference and I don’t have a large pile of papers and tests in a file cabinet. I don’t return my books for money either. If I’m going to get ten bucks for a one hundred and fifty dollar book, then I’ll just keep it, thank you very much!

I’m still in that “I have to study” phase right now. I haven’t actually started relaxing yet. I hope to do that once the summer movie season starts. I love me some summer movies.

My parents left for an alpaca show out of state. They didn’t take any alpacas with them this time. This was more a networking trip. They also were looking to purchase a shearing board. It’s expensive to have alpacas sheared. Learning to shear and having the tools to do it would cut down on costs and maybe help making some money on the side.

Saturday May 13th

We have new additions to the family!!!

Today I went into the Hilton (the duck barn) and found three baby ducks. I brought them in and put them in our incubator so they will be safe. We lost a lot of ducks (Dale poisoned them) this past winter and it’s good to have three new ones. I do believe there will not be another duck like Godzilla though. He was my favorite.

Today was my first official day of vacation. I went to bed early and woke up around 10am. I guess I was tired. I spend most of my day washing clothes, doing dishes and scanning my notes still. It frees up so much room too. My other projects are to put all VHS tapes on to DVD. I should have time to do that this week. I have so many tapes though.

My parents got back late from the Alpaca show this weekend and I was home alone all day with the animals. Things went well and they are getting used to me. Montana even let me pet him for a little while. I guess if you feed them then they’re friends for life.

Sunday May 14th

Happy Mother’s Day!!!!

Except for the rain it has been a good Mother’s day so far…

We went to church this morning and of course had a great time worshiping God. Everyone seemed a bit out of it but once we starting singing then everyone kind of woke up. After services we passed out flowers to all the moms, and boy do we have a lot of them. Of course after services we all had to stand in the back and talk about My Name Is Earl and The Office. It’s becoming a Sunday ritual.

After services we grabbed a quick bite to eat at Arby’s. I gave my mom the cards from me and my dad. She liked them a lot. My dad went mushy card and I went funny card. It was a good mix. We’re going to make my mom dinner today too.

I went to the gym to do some work out work through. It’s kind of like a practice workout. I have some new exercises to do and I wanted to make sure I did them correctly before I start full swing tomorrow morning. Everything felt good. I just wanted to make sure I got the concentration down.

The coolest thing I did was go to East/West field in Fairmont. It’s the local High School’s field and it’s awesome. It’s inside this old stone walled stadium. It reminds me of George Daniel Field in Lorain and Lakewood Stadium. The track was redone so it’s ripe for the sprinting!!! It has a certain energy to the place that makes you want to excel. I like that. What’s even cooler is that my dad played football in that stadium. My dad used to do a road run around the area. I plan on doing a similar run but from East/West Stadium to the Fairmont State campus. I haven’t timed it but I need a good road run that will push me. This has hills and everything so I thing I have found a challenging route.

Tonight I’m going to relax and enjoy my evening.  Got to go to bed early so I can work out. Then I will spend the rest of my day helping my dad. We’re going to put in the new water line. We have to rent a ditch witch so we can dig the ditches. Plus we’re going to reroute the creeks on the farm so that they don’t flood or erode the hillside. I have to contact a cable company to see about getting broadband up on the farm. We can run the wire with the water line which will give us access. Right now we just have dial-up and it is horrible to run a business on.

We already had a water line that connected to city water. This water line was put in with the help of Dale Eagle in the spring of 2004. We decided to put in a new water line that ran across another neighbor’s property. Our goal was to have absolutely nothing connected to Dale Eagle’s property. That way he couldn’t continue to use the water line or right of way against us.

Monday May 15th

My shins hurt. That means only one thing…shin splints are returning. I figured this would happen. It’s been a while since I’ve done this much of a workload on my legs. I remember getting these in high school and it was quite painful. The only way to get rid of them is to run it out. So guess who’s going to be going through some intense pain for the next couple weeks?

I found out my final grades this semester. I got all A’s and one B. The B was in Spanish. So, I made Dean’s list but not President’s list. I’m a bit upset with myself because I think I should have pushed myself harder in Spanish. I would like to be elated over my grades but deep in my heart of hearts I know that Spanish grade should have been an A.

I helped mow the lawn today. I mowed the area where we keep the ducks and geese. Tomorrow if it doesn’t rain I plan on getting the weed eater and trimming around the fences and the Hilton. That’s if it doesn’t rain.

Our wonderful neighbor decided to be cute today. We went to leave for dinner and there was a tree branch laid across the drive. We had to get out and move it. It’s been quiet since the fight in March. Today was the first time Dale Eagle has done anything to even acknowledge we exist.

It had been quiet. In the past Dale would display a pattern. The pattern was two to three weeks of quiet and then suddenly he would flip you off and swear at you while you drove down the road. That or the occasional ride his four wheeler 10 feet onto our property in which we would call the police and he would be arrested for trespassing. Wash, rinse and repeat.

My parents were freaked out by the branch. To them the branch was the beginning of a summer of Dale’s antics.  I was livid. I wanted to celebrate my grades and I wasn’t about to let the crazy old man at the end of the road discourage us from celebrating. We left and went to my favorite local Mexican restaurant. We had a great dinner and then we came home.

That evening we tried relaxing while watching television. They were visibly rattled by the branch. I reassured them that once we put in the new waterline and road things will get better. That seemed to help.

We hugged each other and went to bed. This would be our last night together.