oil fields and corn wells

Today was Kansas. All of it, in all of it’s hot, flat, windy, dusty glory.

We hooked up with my parents, brother, and sister this morning in Olathe, KS – stocked up on required caffeinated beverages and took off down the road. We stayed on the Interstate for all of about 40 miles, and then hit the ol’ US Highway. My dad had it in mind to take the scenic route today, which is fine – we have no real time barriers, so sure, let’s experience the American Midwest.

My Grandma Burns lives in Ellinwood, KS, which is this tiny little hiccup in the middle of the country. We figured this was a good opportunity to see her, as well as my aunt, uncle, and cousin (along with her new baby boy). But first, we had to visit our oil well. Well, not our oil well… my Grandma on my mom’s side inherited a share of an oil well that was drilled back in the 1930’s, and by a share I mean .000009%, which is not a lot at all. I think she may get a check once a month amounting to about $25, so what the heck right? Now if you do the math on .00009% per quarter, it equals out to be $2,700, so the thing is pumping some oil. I don’t expect to become a millionaire via an inheritance on this thing though.

So we visited the oil well, and well, you know it was an oil well. Doing it’s drilling – pumping it’s oil. I mean, what do you say about an oil well? Next we were off to Grandma Burns’ house, and it was great to see my family again. I especially love my Uncle Rob – funny, funny guy. Uncle Rob taught me when I was little how to eat my mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving, by making a ‘lake’ with my potatoes, and filling it with gravy, the ‘water’, and then putting little kernels of sweet corn, which naturally were my ‘ducks’ swimming in their lake. Fun times huh? Anyways, the family was doing good, and we ate ice cream together, and then were on our way.

But dang, we got one of those true honest to goodness thunderstorms on our way out from Grandma’s. Huge clouds, big wind, heavy rain and lots of lightning. Drove through that for about an hour, then it cleared up and on the back side of the storm some of the most beautiful cloud formations I’ve ever see. The Midwest has the best clouds.

The rest of Kansas was pretty predictable. Lots of corn, lots of oil rigs. Cow pastures all over the place. And now it’s late at night and we’re heading out the west side of Kansas toward Pueblo, CO. We’ll sleep there for the night, and then take off for the beginning of our backpacking trip Sunday morning.

    • Anonymous
    • July 27th, 2008

    corn kernels for ducks?!



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