The Reilly Springs community has continued to suffer through another hot week without any rain. All you have to do is drive down any road in the community and you’ll see the devastation of the drought. Pastures are “burnt up” and many of the farm ponds are either dry or have dangerously low water levels.
In response to the drought conditions, Hopkins County Judge Chris Brown issued a burn ban for the county on Tuesday, warning residents to be extremely cautious and to aid in making sure that wildfires do not get started.
I had a nice visit with Vera Harrington Tuesday night. She had been busy cleaning a rent house in Sulphur Springs and dropped by my office for a visit. She related that Mitzi and Elizabeth had been Reilly Springs visitors on Sunday, and reported and enjoyable visit.
Vera’s granddaughter Caroline left for Palo Duro Canyon this week with her Destination Imagination Team. Being the avid horseman that she is, I’m sure that Caroline is soaking up all of the culture in that part of the state.
“I’ve never seen so many grasshoppers,” said Vera. “If we could only figure out something to do with them, we’d soon be rich. But they’ve just about eaten up everything. I’m looking at my pipe fences, just knowing that before long, they’ll have them eaten up.”
I also heard from the members of the Fisher family who are in Memphis, Tenn., at a Dairy Farmers of America meeting. “It’s hot. Really, really hot,” were Marilee’s words, as she reported back. “The Peabody Motel is extremely nice, but we still haven’t eaten any really good barbecue to beat what we get at home.”
Marilee and Vanessa were hoping to tour Graceland today and were still in search of that “out of this world” barbecue. You know how Marilee can be when she’s on a mission.
Meanwhile, Blake and Kendra are holding down the fort back in Reilly Springs.
I visited with Sandi Wallace Tuesday as she and her staff were conducting a catering an event in Sulphur Springs. She reported that their entire family were headed to Lindale Tuesday night for Hunter’s baseball playoff game. Give her a call to find out the results.
Meanwhile, Sandi indicated that she had really had a wonderful reception in the city of Commerce with her new Plain and Fancy Shoppe in that city. “The people are extremely complimentary and supportive, and we’re having a wonderful time getting know everyone over there,” reported Sandi.
Danny and Shannon Lawrence are in Nicaragua this week with the First Baptist Church Mission Team. Danny is doing dental work in that area, and Jacy Lawrence came from Muleshoe to accompany them as Danny’s dental assistant. They plan on returning to Hopkins County on Saturday.
Jan and David Lawrence were guests in Hopkins County over the weekend to provide a send-off and were scheduled to keep Hallie for the week. However, Jan experienced some severe back pain and was headed to the doctor this week. You know it’s severe when she can’t spoil the grandkids.
I attended the Hopkins County Genealogical Society’s “Lock-In” on Saturday for a little while and enjoyed seeing a number of people, some of whom were researching families in Reilly Springs. Look forward to an eventual book about the Reilly Springs Cemetery and the people buried there that is being compiled by a member of the Phillips Family. The book will have many obituaries, pictures and other data on our ancestors buried in Reilly Springs.
I had a real nice visit with Christine and Mack Jennings, on Sunday afternoon as we discussed several topics about Reilly Springs. Christine shared a number of family stories with me and told me some things about this community and my family. She related that she remembered when State Highway 154 was built and could remember traveling to Sulphur Springs when the road was dirt. She also allowed that her father, T.O. Jenkins, had a contract to pasture the mules that helped to build Highway 154.
“They were big mules in order to pull the ‘fresnos’ that moved the dirt and rock, up and down the road,” remembered Christine. “We lived where the Kenney family lives on Highway 154, and the road crew would bring the mules in at lunch to get water while they sat beneath the shade trees and ate their own lunches. Then, they’d bring them back at the end of the day and pasture them in our ‘night’ pasture, where they were fed and watered and allowed to rest for the night. The big mules pulled the rollers to pack the roadway, too.”
Christine’s mother was a sister to my Granddad, and she told of the many times that the Jenkins, Dan McDonald and Phil McDonald families would gather together.
“It took a yard full of chickens to feed all of us when we got together,” remembered Christine. “I can remember how excited we got, when we’d look up across the pasture and see the cousins coming toward the house. It meant a day of fun and excitement with plenty of playmates.”
Christine also related that she remembered when my great-grandfather, Luther McDonald, passed away.
“It was weather about like it is now, on August 25, 1925, and I can remember being at his house south of Reilly Springs, and he apparently died of what we thought was appendicitis,” Christine. “He was the first close relative that I can remember passing away in my life.”
Until next week, continue to attempt to stay cool, and look toward the autumn season when we should eventually get some nice weather. Remember our troops who defend our freedoms, and ask for them an extra measure of safety and a return trip home. Pray for love in our hearts, harmony in our community, and peace in our land. God bless Reilly Springs, Hopkins County and America.
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