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Friday, April 1, 2011

How Green is My Valley?…

Just plum pink

Eight years ago this June I had surgery to save the vision in my right eye. Without the surgery, the doctor told me, I most certainly would lose the sight in that eye. I’ll spare any further details except, I’m happy to relate, thanks to my wonderful surgeon I still have vision in both eyes. But given my past ocular issues—genetic, in part, I was told—I’m constantly monitoring the vision in my right eye: thus my preoccupation with searching the roadsides for four-leaf clovers. I figure as long as I continue to find four leafers among the myriads of their three-leaf cousins, my visual acuity is not--at least at present--in jeopardy. And besides, I might find a coin or two like the dime I mentioned in a couple posts back.

So today I’m tramping out in the drizzle, eyes downcast, scouring the roadside clover patches for spring good luck. Keeping my gaze earthward, by the way, also keeps the heavy mist off my glasses. But you do run the risk of missing out on whatever more exciting Valley news might be taking place beyond your limited field of vision.

I’m on the homeward leg of my walk when I notice a red tab sticking out of the muddy cornfield by the road sign that warns “sharp right turn ahead.” Last summer at the base of the signpost and behind it, someone had placed a geo-caching box. Whenever I passed the post, I always checked to see if the small plastic container was still there. Perhaps that’s why the red tab caught my attention.Valley litter “Something leftover from the geo-cache box,” I thought. Also, Werkhovens had recently injected that part of the field with manure pond effluence. Those spouting rakes, perhaps, had drug whatever it was to the surface?

I yanked on the red tab and pulled a plastic zip-loc bag from the mud. “Litter,” I thought, “centuries it will take for this bag to bio-degrade. Well, I’ll be a good citizen, take the bag along with me, and dispose of it properly—a little spring cleaning in the Valley.”

I examine the bag and discover it’s not empty. That flash of red has led me to a roll of green! Now this is something! My environmentally-sensitive friend Nancy L once found a five-spot roadside just south of Swiss Hall. Looks like I’ve one-upped her many times over!Money bag At this point my pulse is racing. I remember two or three years ago the Monroe branch of Key Bank was robbed. Some of the money was never recovered. The getaway car was an SUV stolen from one of the bank tellers. The next day the vehicle was found abandoned on the Lower Loop Road. Is this roll of bills part of the stolen loot? Or is it drug-related? Someone’s business profits from peddlin’ another type of green, ditched in a hurry to avoid the law? Lately I’ve noticed some tagging in the Valley (tagging?? In our Valley??). Gang activity. Drug activity. Aren’t they one and the same?Valley tagging







I slide the red tab, open the mud-soiled bag, and retrieve a bundle of cash. The top bill is a twenty, I notice. The drizzle has turned to rain, so I hurry home to examine my find under drier conditions.

Back at the house I discover my new found green is ever so much better than a four-leaf clover or a fistful of ‘em! One at a time I peel off the bills and lay them out on the cleanly wiped zip-loc bag: first, five 20s and two 50s and then I slap down the inner skins…one, two, three, four…a total of thirteen Ben Franklins!  Who says daily exercise is a waste of time!Valley Loot But nothing is ever simple, is it? “Finders, keepers,” I think. Then there’s the thing with the bank, that lost money…. My discovery? Not quite the same as finding one thin dime by the side of the road. And I believe I’ve mentioned my good citizenship somewhere in this post. I suppose the right thing to do is to call the authorities, the County Sheriffs’ Department or the Monroe Police. Hummm…yet again, it’s April--the fifteenth is coming up and there are property taxes at the end of the month, too,… I’m inclined to do the right thing, though. But I’ll do it tomorrow. Tomorrow will be soon enough. Tomorrow I’ll call….

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  1. Terry - good one - in the pictures the soil and weeds looks too freshly disturbed and the zip-lock bag looks too clean to have been in the ground more than 5 minutes for a photo op - nice try - Im no April fool.

  2. Drat! Foiled again! Yeah, I thought about the freshly roiled up dirt during the setup, but I was standing out in the pouring rain looking like a pre-April Fool, so I did the best I could. I have another year to try to fool those Beebes.

  3. And to think...I only found two hypodermic needles. You got me dad!!