Howdy Friends! They’d been in the barn a while. Grandpop and the lad. I could see that as soon as I walked in out of the rain, by the size of the hay bale stack the flat bed wagon. It was a cinch. Rainy days like this one, it was a sure bet you’d find Grandpop, and whoever had come to visit, would be in the barn. It seemed the barn was a magnet on rainy days.

“Howdy son,” Grandpop called out, and leaned up against the wagon’s end. “Had enough of city for the week?” He chuckled.

“Oh, I don’t know, maybe city had enough of me.” I answered. “Movin’ hay?”

Grandpop laughed a good one. “Don’t even take city smarts to figure that one out.” Then he latched onto another bale and tossed it up to the lad on the wagon. “The hay ain’t movin’ itself.” After a thought he added. “Of course, maybe if I had any smarts I’d figure a way for the hay to move itself.”

I grabbed a bale, thought about tossing it up to the boy on the wagon, but sat on it instead. I leaned back against the wall, sort of making a show about settling in.

“Son,” Grandpop said, “Meet, Hank.”

I nodded Hank’s way.

“My real name is Frederic. Your Grandpop calls me Hank.” He told me.

“Well by golly, don’t this young fella just look like a Hank?” Grandpop beamed. So did the boy.

I jumped up, paced a time or two. Made a big deal about studying Hank’s appearance. “Thinkin’ it over, you two just might have something there, Hank.” After another thoughtful pause I told Grandpop, “Could be that old frayed hat of yours makes the difference.”

Hank let go a young lad’s spirited giggle. “Might be better if Grandpop told my mom, though.”

We all got a chuckle out of that one.

“That brings us right back around to what we were discussin’ when you strolled in, Son.”

“What was that?” I asked.

Grandpop settled into a sit of his own on the hay stack. He grabbed a stem and chewed, waiting for a horse to stop nickering. “It seems ol’ Hank here got himself in a patch a trouble at school the other day.”

I had to keep from grinning. “You did huh?” I asked wearing my most concerned look. “How’d you manage that?”

“I’m not real sure.” Hank said, wearing an honestly concerned look.

“We sorta covered a bit of that already. Didn’t we Hank?” Grandpop prodded.

“Yeah. But it seemed lik a good idea.” He paused. “At least it didn’t seem like a really bad idea.”

“What idea was that?” My interest peaked.

“Well, I was ….” Hank started.

Grandpop interrupted, “We got that ironed out already. But there is a lesson in the happenings.”


Grandpop got up, tossed another bale to Hank. “Sometimes ya gotta trust your gut.”

I was about to jump in and explain how that could work when Grandpop finished.

“That’s the funny thing about decisions. You don’t have to talk yourself into the right ones.

We finished staking the hay together. The rain never quit.

~ Gitty Up, Dutch.


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