I am enjoying an interesting book entitled “Crunchy Cons.” Whilst it is difficult to ascertain whether the author, Mr. Rod Dreher, is a Christian, (in the sense of having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ), it is clear that at least he isn’t absolutely close-minded to that leaning. Nevertheless, the subtitle of his book accurately explains the content. “How Birkenstocked Burkeans, gun-loving organic gardeners, evangelical free-range farmers, hip homeschooling mamas, right-wing nature lovers, and their diverse tribe of countercultural conservatives plan to save America (or at least the Republican Party).” Mr. Dreher’s writing is a bit choppy, and would have difficulty receiving a passing grade in high school due to his liberal use of colloquialisms, clichés, and slang in what is, in essence, a philosophical outlook on the economic and societal woes of the U.S. It is notable that though he doesn’t point to the Holy Scriptures for answers, his suggestions are biblically based. Perhaps, even he does not realise this. This is a must-read for those of us who feel like we are the only ones who answer to the above description, although, admittedly, I had not a clue what ‘Birkenstocks’ were ‘til I read the book. Mr. Dreher boldly and fearlessly puts into print what many of us already know about the downslide of American society, however, he is like most of us; he knows what needs to be done, but none of us, nor especially the government can implement the changes in the individual’s heart to restore America to her former greatness. So far, we’ve refrained from putting on the air conditioning, but if this unseasonably hot weather continues, we will no doubt succumb to the lure of cool comfort. My evening walks have turned into night-time walks since indeed the heat stays on, it seems, until the moon comes up. No worries, it is a treat to enjoy the still night punctuated with blips of yellow light from fireflies. Calving season is officially over tomorrow, though there are always a few cows with a bit longer gestation. We did have a rough go on these calves near our house with them picking up a clostridium disease borne in the soil, called blackleg. The name is misleading, since it is a digestive problem; the leg doesn’t actually turn black. There is no cure; the calves die. A colleague from South Africa dogmatically shares that the bulk of our health problems stem from an imbalance in pH. He is very likely correct, though, discovering what is causing the imbalance is the mystery that can change every year. A very good research project would be to find out what, exactly, triggers the onset of blackleg. We haven’t had any case of it for nearly 10 years, and it is not in our cows/calves in northern pastures. The 106th Old Settler’s Reunion held in Linneus is past now. The children and I worked in the community centre on Friday this year, then Dallas and Nathan helped Allen work the hamburger stand until nearly 11p. They were pretty tired out. Once everyone had showers and were nodded off to sleep, the radio announced a first responder call. So Allen was up and out again and didn’t get to sleep until nearly 2a. We still had to get up early next morning for chores etc. I buzzed to the store for a big bag of candy and other errands, whilst the children and Allen helped get the Linneus fire truck ready for the Old Settler’s parade at noon. Directly after the parade, we drove to Fulton to celebrate the upcoming marriage of the son of one of Allen’s good friends. Not to bed until nearly midnight again, then Nathan couldn’t sleep and the animals outside were restless, so I got maybe 3 hours sleep that night. I’m really getting too old for this kind of schedule; maybe this week will be more restful. Have a safe 4th of July, celebrating with friends and family, but remembering the sacrifices that so many men and women made for the freedoms we enjoy. Honour God above all.