It’s National New England Clam Chowder Day, Farmers!
A few years ago, as part of a joint Christmas present, I booked a trip to Boston for my husband and I. We had never been there and as a die-hard Red Sox fan he had dreamed of seeing Fenway Park. Coincidentally, they were playing the Yankees the same week as a literary event that several of my favorite authors were attending.
We set off, staying in a lovely Airbnb in Winthrop, just above Belle Isle Inlet and across the Charles River to Boston proper. It was an adventure (they don’t drive the same as us in West By God) that turned into a memorial ride to Salem, Mass. on Friday the 13th, seeing the graves of these “supposedly” accused witches, and then at the Talk Books Author Event in Burlington.
Of course, the highlight was our visit to Fenway Park, including the Green Monster, followed by a very rainy Sox vs. Yankees game (the night after a fight broke out on the mound). We had the best time sitting on the third base side with real Bostonians drinking Sam Adams and heckling throughout the game.
While the atmosphere was humid and not my cup of tea (yuck yuck), these guys made sure we had a great time. When we tell the story of our rain-delayed victory, I always think how strange it was to see a salesman running up and down the rows of fans shouting, “Chowda here!” You might get a bowl of real New England clam chowder at the baseball game! To this day, it’s something I can’t get over. You just don’t think of it as typical stadium snack food. Unfortunately I didn’t participate, but I tasted enough lobster rolls (and delicious lobster and waffle dishes) that I should have turned red and grown claws by the time we left for the end of the week.
Around the city
What a slow week in town. Nothing like a little lull to dig a little deeper into what’s going on here based on the conversations we’ve all had over the past week. I asked a few questions that my fellow farmers might be able to answer.
In the Marion County Genealogy group on Facebook, a lady asked about a plane crash in Farmington circa 1958. Well, sure, that made me feel right away! A small blurb was mentioned in the Hinton newspaper stating that 33-year-old Howard N. Johnston, a native of Canton, Ohio, died when his single-engine craft crashed and burned on a hill at about two miles south of Farmington. Does anyone remember this incident?
It happened over Labor Day weekend. If you do, write to me and let me know! I would like to share. Speaking of sharing, a very nice gentleman came to see me at the office and even brought me a little piece of Farmington history.
I should have asked him if he wanted me to say his name and I apologize, but he brought me a blank check from the Bank of Farmington. It is in pristine condition and now resides with my other perfectly preserved Farmington memorabilia. I’ve shared a photo of it on social media if you’d like to head over to Farmington’s Facebook page to take a look. I really appreciate it (and no, not because I have something Fred Priester doesn’t have in his extensive collection) thank him for taking the time to come and give me a little piece of my hometown.
A very happy birthday to Debbi and Brad Jones at Rachel celebrating this Thursday. If you were waiting, you missed a slice of Nook pizza yesterday. The girls ran out shortly after lunchtime, but Marsha said they would make enough dough to accommodate everyone the next time it was the daily special. Today she has homemade meatloaf with mashed potatoes, green beans and rolls for $12 and if you want to add a side salad you can add an extra $3 to your total. It will also be open for breakfast tomorrow from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and you can dine in or take out.
Do you remember when the county superintendent would give you an elementary reading circle certificate at the end of the year from the state of W.Va. showing how many books you read during the school year? I am happy to report that as a freshman at Farmington Elementary, I read 60 books during the school year from September to May. Coincidentally, my goal on Goodreads.com this year is 50 pounds from January 1 through December 31. Let’s see if I can do it! I’m a little behind at the moment, having only read six books since the beginning of the year, but I hope to catch up this weekend.
The February 1991 primary school report card reported many accomplishments. Angie Koon, Shelly Mason and Sabrina Malone entered the Young Writer Contest. Sabrina’s story, “Small Adventure” has been submitted at the county level. Tiffany Haught and Clinton Dobbins represented us at the County Spelling Bee. Brian Roach, Melissa Filius, Angie Koon, Julia Toothman, Sabrina Malone, Chastity Evans, Jimmie Hayes, Clinton Dobbins, Tiffany Haught and Kristina Smith represented the fourth year at the Social Studies Fair. Brian, Melissa, Sabrina and Chasity all went county level. A reminder for those who don’t know. Farmington Elementary had only one classroom each grade, K-4. That’s a lot of accomplishment for a class of only 20+ students. Mr. Carpenter was a damn good teacher.
Our ladies Huskies enter the second round of sections and will play tonight at 7 p.m. Let’s Go Huskies! Congratulations to the Hess brothers. Brody Hess and Noah Hess both made it to this week’s regional wrestling match in their respective weight classes and are now state-bound. NMHS has taken an extra step to ensure a safe environment for all students. In an effort to report bullying, harassment, and also as a tool to anonymously report student concerns, a lockable drop box is now located outside the main doors. Students, parents and guardians can use the box and it will be checked by an administrator every morning. This could be a good way to inform teachers about violence in the home, children in need, hunger or lack of proper care, as well as issues with depression and other mental health issues. .
Happy birthday to Ryan Elliott, Sandy Malone, Mandi Wolfe, Rachel Kittle, Brandon Fleeman, Harry Steptoe Jr., Carly Jones, Randy Elliott, Sandy Malone, Michael Devault Jr, Miranda Darrah Clark, Andy Arbogast, Beatrice Nichole, Bob Hearn, Ida Macias and Kimberly Leezer Himes.
Ash Wednesday Mass will be held March 2 at 5:30 p.m. at St. Peter’s Catholic Church and again at 7 p.m. at St. Patrick’s in Mannington. Every Thursday during Lent there will be a devotional luncheon at St. Patrick’s Parish Hall. This coming week, March 3, you can join them at noon for devotions, fellowship, and soup and crackers provided by First Baptist. Stations of the Cross will also take place every Friday during Lent in both parishes beginning March 4 at 4 p.m. in St. Patrick and 5:30 p.m. in St. Peter. Finally, in this season and always, a reminder of five times to make the sign of the cross: during personal prayer as an invocation to the Holy Trinity, when passing through a church to honor the Blessed Sacrament present inside , when you hear a siren to heal those in danger of death, passing a cemetery as a prayer for holy souls, and when you see an accident as protection for those in peril.
My heart is sad today at the events in Ukraine. I know a lot of people don’t think it’s a problem for us at W.Va., but it’s a global hurt that we will feel all over the world. Mothers should not feel the need to pin their children’s blood type on their clothes before sending them to school in the morning, lest they be injured in an attack. It’s always the innocent that hurts. Let’s use this weekend to be grateful to be at peace, to pray that we remain so, and to remember that mountaineers are always free by the grace of God. You can reach me in the office Monday mornings from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., by email at [email protected] and by phone at 304-367-2527.