Snapshots of Summer

The Rural Reality Channel
The Rural Reality Channel

I stole this from my daughter’s facebook page. I was at the Floyd Town Jubilee when our neighbor came to mow the pasture for hay–not something the grand daughters get to see from their suburban back yard high on the ridge overlooking Rapid City, SD.

So Abby and Taryn got front row seats near the stage. Ah, breathe in the fragrance of meadow: Smellivision with a gentle breeze in the shade. Life is good.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. This trip was the first that I had made to Floyd in the summertime. I was intrigued with the haying and how it is accomplished. First, it is cut and then left for a few days to dry somewhat. Then, another machine comes along and makes windrows of it. I never did see how square bales and round bales are made, but I was fascinated to see the various methods used to hold the round bales together – netting and also a plastic fabric secured with string of some sort. I had a wonderful visit!