We heard Remi stomping around upstairs so we scraped ourselves out of bed around 10am. Had some coffee played with our son, ate some pizza for lunch, had a nice visit with the mother in law.
Went outside to play with Remi some more. Gramma has a fetish for bird houses, and sidewalk chalk fits perfectly in bird houses. Remi ran around stealthily slipping sidewalk chalk into every bird house he could find. It wasnt until I saw him do this oh so stealthily that I realized half the chalk was gone. I spent the next hour trying to get the chalk out of the houses. Very little success, of the 19 missing pieces I retreived 2.
He played on grammas swing set and I pushed him on the big boy swing, he was lovin it. We swang and swang and swang, Phil went around to look at his face and said he was almost asleep.
We packed up and let Remi nap in the car on the way home. We decided to take the scenic root and scout for deer. Deer hunting season is almost upon us, he has his permit, and its another "earn a buck" year. Last year a record of like 49,000 white tail does were killed last season. This is good because they are highly over populated in our area. So they are doing it again this year. In order to fill your buck tag you have to kill a doe. So you get two tags for the price of one. Thats how most hunters see it, its awesome. To prevent what unfortunatly happened last year, on every permit there are location to donate your deer. Some hunters dont liek the earn a buck policy. There are some trollish trophy hunters that im not proud of, they would dump the doe in the ditch after it was tagged and leave it. To prevent this they have made certain that everyone with a permit knows exactly where to take unwanted deer meat.
Did you know that last year "Hunters For the Hungry" donated 188,702 pounds of Venison last year? In Nebraska we have something called the deer exchange. You donate the deer to a meat locker specified and whomever signs up (for free) pays for the butchering but the meat itself is free? Every state has some sort of program like this whether its a deer exchange or hunters for the hungry. So a lot more than just 190,000 pounds of deer meat is given to feed hungry people....to think some are against hunting redonkulous, thinking hunters are heartless bastards, I wonder how many starving people they fed? How bout, none.
Anywhoo, Phil and I drove around the beautiful countryside scouting deer. Such beautiful animals. Remi started waking up and we stopped to let him pee off the side of a bridge into a sparkling creek. So cute, I took pictures. Phil decided he had to pee too, he was really enjoying this pee, the kind where you through your head back and say "ahhhh". I was knealt down with Remi pointing at things below the bridge talking to him about the creek and the bridge while Phil was peeing, I saw from my peripherals an SUV waiting for us to move so he could cross the bridge. We didnt see or hear it roll up at all. I elbowed Phil and he jumped a foot in the air and almost pinched himself in the zipper he went so fast. I about busted a gut laughing. The driver decided to take another route...It was hilarious.
That would be our luck, driving around for hours and not seeing a single vehicle on the road, complete isolation and the moment someone whips it out to take a piss there is the only car for miles watching us. lmao
We let Remi run around on the sand roads at a beautiful intersection. So cute to watch him sprinting up a sandy minimum maintenance road screaming and laughing just really enjoying and seeing everything. Nothing warms my heart more than watching my little boy experience things for the first time.
He hadn't ever been there, we hadnt ever let him run around on his own in the middle of no where. The trees were beautiful yellow and red sparkling in the setting sun, creeks with rock beds surrounding us, a deserted intersection in an abandoned town my granmother grew up in.
Random stone walls still standing from building that once were hundreds of years ago. Then there is my son, a knew life, a fresh soul so innocent, enjoying these things that are so ancient so old, so experienced, things that at some point someone decided werent good enough anymore and abandoned them.
Middlebranch, is what its called, I dont think its on google or the internet, I doubt anyone would be able to find any info on it. It was a tiny town that barely existed when it was at its peak. There was a post office and about ten houses within a 2 mile radius of eachother. They all surrounded this 3 way intersection. A triangle in the middle of no where with a big oak tree growing from it, three roads intersecting around this tree. Roads that werent ever meant to be there. Roads people created themselves from use. Each of these roads has wooden bridges leading up to middlebranch. The creek winds around the entire place. Its in a valley, lots of beautiful trees.
The only reason I know where it is at or that it ever was is because my grandmother used to live there. She told me she lived there when she first came to the state, she was a newly wed with my grandpa and that was there first house, its the only house still standing in middle branch. I went through it the first time I visited this place. Its quite amazing how time makes me feel so insignificant. Standing in an abandoned home, thinking of my grandma as a teenager with her husband living in it. The broken well still in the yard, the foundation slipping off into the creek below, the wood burning stove still inside she used to cook on years and years of dust. Animal nests broken windows, a mattress with nothing but springs and holes and in general the rot that comes with time showing on this palce that my granma once knew as a new gem, freshly built.
I could see it all like it was new. Her and my grandpa living back then in this place, goign to the well for water, the outhouse to bathroom, the creek to fish in, the deer in the yard to hunt. The post office a mile away, the tree standing so big and great, the wooden sidewalks the limestone buildings, the old cars, the carriages.
It would be grande to experience something like that if only for a while.
The closest I get is going there now. Playing with my son in Middlebranch, the town that isnt anymore. Its only a few rusted abandoned cars with trees growing form the middle of them, like a work of art really. It doesnt look like garbage, it looks like someone put it there on purpose, as a reminder of how it used to be. The broken walls standing a few feet high, the foundation barely visible through the grass and weeds. The wooden bridges built back then still connect the outside world to Middlebranch. Flat, no railing, giant borads placed next to each other with gaps big enough for an arm to go through. Sturdy as can be.
I find something incredibly beautiful and human about watching my son enjoy Middlebranch.
I cant hardly put it into words, something about time, generations, family, history, nature, and good'ol Nebraska. it might be my own dilusions, I hope no one tells me otherwise, if they did I dont think i would believe them...I just dont believe places like the one im talking about exist anywhere else but here. I know for certain if they did, they would not make me feel this way.
I feel like I live in a Thomas Kinkade Painting. My life in a lot of ways is like a Thomas Kinkade Painting.
I wouldn't trade it for anything, I love my family, I love my son, I love my husband, I love Nebraska.
They dont call it "The Good Life" for nothing, someone didn't just make that up cause it sounded good.