Saturday, October 02, 2021

Dreary Days and Old Timer Thoughts

 I thought we were going to have some sunshine today! I'm disappointed that the weather has turned on us, especially since there are festivities planned in many of our Vermont towns to celebrate the foliage season, including Autumn on the Green tomorrow.

I picked up turkey dinners in Cabot last evening. It was a bit chaotic at first until they got organized, but I was one of the first to arrive at the pickup station and within a few minutes, I had my dinners and was on my way home. And what great dinners they were! And so much food - all for $10. I actually bought an extra one to keep in my freezer for some night when I needed a pick-me-up. I ate every bit of mine last night but after seeing how much food there was, I decided this morning I would avoid that "over-stuffed" feeling make that extra meal into two very adequate dinners. I have several containers from frozen dinners I've purchased in the past, and those hold just the right amount of food for a meal. Now I have two frozen turkey dinners to look forward to. 

I heard good reports about the activities that were going on in Cabot yesterday. Lots of people had enjoyed visiting the Art Barn at the historic Dr. Wiswell home just beyond the gymnasium on Main Street. That will be open today and tomorrow, so if you are looking for something to do on a cold, rainy day, that might be a good choice. It is in the carriage barn of that beautiful Victorian home on Main Street in Cabot. There are plenty of signs to direct you.

I was chatting with an old friend yesterday about his family connections here in Cabot. He  has lived all his life (over 90 years) in Walden, and went to Cabot High School when I was a student there. He asked about some of my neighbors that are gone now, but who had retired here from "away." I found myself indicating various locations by names most people have forgotten, but he remembered. Some of the families he hadn't known well, but others were actually well known to him - or even relatives. We realized that there are few people left who remember those old names - or that the land where new houses have popped up in recent years was once well-tended, productive farm land. There are no active dairy farms between me and Route 215 - or for several miles in any direction from here, as far as I know. There are still dairy farms in the East Cabot, West Hill and perhaps Lower Cabot sections of town - and probably some mini-farms where people are raising a few chickens, pigs or goats, but no large dairy herds. There are probably some others, but I'm not familiar with them.

Families are still intertwined somewhat, but there are more people arriving here from other states every year, putting down roots and some are even trying their hand at raising a few animals or crops. It's good to see the land being used again and homes appearing near the foundations of neighborhood buildings that have long since disappeared.

There are few left of the Maynard, Gamble, Foster, Barnett, Harrington and Stone families who lived on Cabot Plain in the 1930s when I was growing up there. But I remember them as part of a thriving farm neighborhood; and their children that I went to school with were my friends and playmates. I hope the children who will grow up in the new homes being established here now have similar fond memories, but they won't have the close relationships I had from attending a one-room school that was the center of our community, or the advantage of being in the same school room with kids of all ages. Times have certainly changed, but like they say, "Everything old is new again," so perhaps one day one-room schools bonding smaller communities together may be the new trend in education in Vermont. Probably not, but from my perspective, and that of my old friend, it might just be the answer to a lot of the problems we face these days.

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