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Author: Subject: The Meadow of Sadness, a true story

A Peach Supreme





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  posted on 11/17/2011 at 09:18 PM
This happened to me this week, I describe as best I can, obviously there is subjective interpretation on my part, but this was an "experience" to say the least. I never said my life was normal, haha.



The Meadow of Sadness

I was in the back truck by myself, following the other rig with the power company guy and the local property owner of the land before this parcel we were now entering. He was showing us how the utility lines ran back to “the old chicken farm”. I was out to look at my part, the old phone lines, and the real need was the electric cable was dying with outages. Riding alone in silence I take in the area. The area we had just left, where the one fellow owned a nice forest retreat home, was in a clump of few acre parcels surrounding a large marsh wetlands in the middle of the woods, chalet style homes of people retiring nicely. This area is just south of a lake. A very private scenic back road place, with the Rockies to the north and east.

This back parcel was large acreage, and a winding, not really used in years two track drive meandered through the woods with no visible end goal in sight. I rode looking around. There was an odd feel to things. The road was not really used, not a driveway. No indicators of life ahead, no name sign, or anything. Just the woods. So a half mile back maybe, the truck ahead slows. To my left is a large livestock building, one hundred fifty feet long maybe. Grass growing up to the sides and entrances… no human walking to that place in many years. Just the beginning of nature wanting to take over.

To the right of that was a large rectangular, what? House? No, I believe it was a business building, again, no sign of life, nor evidence people being around for a long time. Both buildings were interesting, very heavy beam and square hewn log construction. All beefy and overbuilt and a lot of time, effort, and log work went into all that. Looked site sawmill type deal, from the trees cleared no doubt. The place had a very odd, frozen in time look. So the chicken building could have had a few for sure I thought as we drove around to the back pasture…. Lo and behold, two more of these large chicken buildings, same massive beam and log type, and they were not really together, so there was three separate buildings fanned out, must have been one noisy bunch of chickens with that big an operation. Same deserted for years look. The woods back there had a feel to them. Silence. No birds. No sound. A pale quiet. Yes, early winter seems like that at times, but this was one kind of odd place, with odd signs, and odd abandon and desertion obvious. So we finally all parked our trucks.

I got out, It seemed even stranger once I did. I felt like I was being watched. The local fellow then told the story of the place. For reasons of confidentiality I won’t say all. But the chicken farm had a story to back up it’s odd appearance. Two women moved to Montana it seems, in the eighties. Had some resources and a plan, and one huge dream I guess. Word is they got the bank to float a million bucks for the chicken farm and house. They actually got it going. It ran for a few months, before the county, neighbors, environmental types all waged war on the women. Lawsuits, wastewater requirements that cost huge money being required, and just a wall of obstacles did the women and their dream in. The bank lost humor with it, the papers were served after the chickens could no longer be sold, and the dream was lost.

I’m listening to all this and it all made sense. The Dream. That is what I saw there. The overdone log structures, it was part of the dream, the atmosphere was very important to these women. Spread out for visual appearance, A large meadow in the middle. It must have been a beautiful place, disregarding the racket of all those chickens.

So the gentleman continued with his recounting of events. He was there. He was a player, but that part needs unsaid. The women were served with eviction papers, it was over. I wondered if they were lovers. They were dear friends at the least. The place had a feel of a love invested. And it was over he said. So they went to the house, on the last day they could stay, and ended their lives. When he said that my skin crawled. It explained everything I was feeling. Something WAS really wrong out there. And he went on how they bulldozed the house down. Dug a big hole and buried it in it. That also seemed a very odd thing to do. Like they lynched mobbed them and had a burn in effigy party after.

I felt a sadness in that meadow, and an odd breeze in the treetops. They are still there, I thought. I walked out to my truck talking to that fellow, not wanting or needing to hear any more. I needed to leave. Halfway to my truck I sensed something and looked to my right. Five feet away down in the tall grass was a decent size buck, looked dead hours at most, perfectly healthy looking, now frozen, no visable injury, and as said, perfectly healthy looking. We both looked and said, “that is weird”. But it happens, so it can’t be looked at anything more than a little reminder on the way out from the Meadow of Sadness. They should block that road and never allow anyone back there. But someone with money will buy the land, bulldoze the rest down, and build a mansion in the woods to use four weeks of the year as a retreat from the bustle of “SoCal“. They will put it in the only logical place, the spot on the rise, with the view to the lake up north. It will be right where the other house was. They may lay in their beds there and have odd dreams and wonder why.




 

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Peach Master



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  posted on 11/17/2011 at 11:02 PM
Thank you for sharing.









You should publish what you wrote.

 

World Class Peach



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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 12:06 AM
True or not, brilliant.
 

Extreme Peach



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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 12:32 AM
Thanks.
 

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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 07:46 AM
Tony, that was beautifully written and very powerful to say the least. Ya got me with your description and vibe about the whole meadow.. I felt as if I were there , too. A Great sadness for when a dream ends.. so sad....

Thanks for sharing.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 08:35 AM
quote:
But someone with money will buy the land, bulldoze the rest down, and build a mansion in the woods to use four weeks of the year as a retreat from the bustle of “SoCal“. They will put it in the only logical place, the spot on the rise, with the view to the lake up north. It will be right where the other house was.



Why is this dream any different than the two women ? I'd wager the guy who told you the story was resentful of those women for being from out of state and having money, only wanting to start a business.
Your "SoCal" quip says so much as to how you feel regarding the same situation. I bought land here in Montana, built a home and began a business. I get so much grief from locals, especially once they find out I am from California. They assume, I am here to make money at thier own personal expense. what a load of crap. They have issue with Californians buying land and causing property tax to increase if proprty values rise, yet it is all good if the oil companies arrive and they can charge 1400 dollars a month rent for a shack they were about to condemn and the land they purchased for 65 grand ten years ago is now worth a 1/4 million bucks ?

By the way, nice story....is that going towards Roundup or towards Big Timber from Billings.

 

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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 10:56 AM
quote:
quote:
But someone with money will buy the land, bulldoze the rest down, and build a mansion in the woods to use four weeks of the year as a retreat from the bustle of “SoCal“. They will put it in the only logical place, the spot on the rise, with the view to the lake up north. It will be right where the other house was.



Why is this dream any different than the two women ? I'd wager the guy who told you the story was resentful of those women for being from out of state and having money, only wanting to start a business.
Your "SoCal" quip says so much as to how you feel regarding the same situation. I bought land here in Montana, built a home and began a business. I get so much grief from locals, especially once they find out I am from California. They assume, I am here to make money at thier own personal expense. what a load of crap. They have issue with Californians buying land and causing property tax to increase if proprty values rise, yet it is all good if the oil companies arrive and they can charge 1400 dollars a month rent for a shack they were about to condemn and the land they purchased for 65 grand ten years ago is now worth a 1/4 million bucks ?

By the way, nice story....is that going towards Roundup or towards Big Timber from Billings.


Hey there, thanks for reading. Alas, you are reading a little too much between the lines. I used "SoCal" because that is a term I have heard people use who have moved here. And folk come here, from many states actually, but California is probably the number one, so I used it as a typical example most common. And the "use four weeks a year" is what I see often, expensive homes that sit empty most of the year. "Retreats". Things are what they are and using examples doesn't mean opinion or mindset, please give me that. There is no judgement in me stating any of that. It just "is".

As for a discussion on the points you bring up, which are a valid discussion, if you want to start a thread to discuss this, I may pipe in. I would prefer this thread be a more literary one and not a political one. I am sorry you have had issues and you have good discussion points. I'm in NW Montana, the Flathead Valley, a unique environment in many ways.

anyhow thanks all for reading.

 

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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 11:09 AM
Wow and I somehow knew how the ending would be too - I agree they are still there in spirit - talk about strong ties to land indeed - wonder what really happened that their business failed - did they not do the math or was the demand no longer there - what a pity that they thought suicide was their only out - thanks so much for sharing

 

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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 12:43 PM
quote:
Hey there, thanks for reading. Alas, you are reading a little too much between the lines. I used "SoCal" because that is a term I have heard people use who have moved here. And folk come here, from many states actually, but California is probably the number one, so I used it as a typical example most common. And the "use four weeks a year" is what I see often, expensive homes that sit empty most of the year. "Retreats". Things are what they are and using examples doesn't mean opinion or mindset, please give me that. There is no judgement in me stating any of that. It just "is".

As for a discussion on the points you bring up, which are a valid discussion, if you want to start a thread to discuss this, I may pipe in. I would prefer this thread be a more literary one and not a political one. I am sorry you have had issues and you have good discussion points. I'm in NW Montana, the Flathead Valley, a unique environment in many ways.

anyhow thanks all for reading.


yeah, i was out-of-line
sorru for hitch hiking your thread

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 01:31 PM
Really interesting original story. You had me hooked. I knew how it was going to end, but had to read it anyway. Great description of emotions, mood and scenery. Those two women are still together somewhere.

Charlie - I liked reading about your experience too. It's real if it was real to you.

 

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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 03:29 PM
Bird, your written words here are exceptionally powerful.

Please be sure to make a copy of this. You captured this event so perfectly, and even better, somehow added an undeniable charm to this sad, so sad story.

Your words triggered memories and emotions in all of us who read them..This should be shared in an even larger arena than Peachland. imho.

Brought me back to a cold, sharp early morning, long before sunrise.

Kevin and I driving thru the deep woods of upper Michigan, in what felt like an enchanted moment in time, to the hospital to bring our first child into the world, late April 1977.

There on the side of the old country road, stood a doe with a pair of twin fawns.

That moment in time, was one of the happiest in my life...No matter what came before or came after..those ladies had their moment..Thank God for that. Thank you for re-living it for them, and being their voice.

 

World Class Peach



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  posted on 11/18/2011 at 03:37 PM
I liked the part about the two women being lovers.
 

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  posted on 11/19/2011 at 10:54 AM
Thanks for sharing that Tony. It should be published somehow. Wishing you love and peace.

Mitch

 

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A Peach Supreme



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  posted on 11/19/2011 at 11:04 AM
Mitch, thanks, and everyone else that got a kick out of it. As of yesterday, there actually is another chapter in this story, but that is for my book. What is here will be a part, tidied up a little and maybe expanded a little. I could expound on the bigger picture, but that might hurt future sales! I believe telling these womens story was somehow needed.

 

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  posted on 11/19/2011 at 11:09 AM
Tony..really nice...enjoyed this a lot...
 

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  posted on 11/19/2011 at 12:44 PM

Good story, well written. Real sad. tragic that they had to end their lives over it instead of salvaging what they could and moving on.

 
 


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