By Bill Anderson
We’re getting used to Winter. The cold temperatures and 4”-6” inch snowfall that caused a lot of excitement back on October 10 would barely raise an eyebrow these days. The mercury climbed back up into the mid-40’s on Wednesday & Thursday, November 14 & 15, but hit the skids on Friday and has been bumping along in the single digits for morning lows since then. Monday morning’s wind chill reading of -13 did have some of the locals looking for the gloves they had put away at the end of April, and even inspired a few to don a cap. The rain, sleet & snow that arrived on Friday, November 16, brought with it some Slick roads and hazardous driving conditions. Mayor Narum got the worst of it cleared off the City’s streets on Saturday morning, but one hapless driver on ND Highway #11 lost control of his eastbound vehicle while going around the curve on the south side of the Crappie Crossing Slough about 1½ mile east of the intersection with ND Highway #32. The gray mini-van went through the ice amid the cattails on the south side of the highway, proving that 4” of ice is not enough to bear the weight of a vehicle. The mini-van was partially submerged, but reports are that the driver was uninjured. All’s well that ends well.
Joel Susag headed up to Fargo on Friday, November 16, with his brother, Ivan. Ivan & Joel picked up Ivan’s horse trailer and 2 horses at Ivan’s farmstead near Fargo and then started south for Ivan’s winter homestead in Arizona. Joel plans to be at the home of his sister, Sandy, for Thanksgiving, and to return home via Allegiant Airlines on Thursday, November 29. Joel wants to get out of the desert and back to North Dakota before he becomes accustomed to the warm weather and loses his northern prairie toughness.
This community was saddened on Sunday, November 18, when it was learned that an old friend and good neighbor, Allen W. Nelson, had died, suddenly and unexpectedly, at his farm home 5 miles south of Rutland. The exact cause of death was not known as of Monday, November 19, but it was believed to have occurred as the result of an accident. Allen was a lifelong member of this community, a graduate of Havana High School, U.S. Army veteran of the Vietnam era, and a lifetime farmer/rancher with his parents, brother and nephews. Funeral arrangements with Price Funeral Chapel of Britton SD are pending as of this writing, and there will be additional information about the life of Allen Nelson in this column next week.
Paul Anderson was in Minneapolis over the weekend of Saturday & Sunday, November 17 & 18, where he attended a baby shower that was held for his first grandchild, a much-anticipated youngster who is scheduled to arrive sometime after the beginning of the New Year. The expectant parents are Paul’s daughter, Katie, and her husband, Josh Elfering, of Seattle WA. The baby shower was put on by friends of the Elferings from their college days at the University of Minnesota and from a decade of employment prior to moving to Chicago where Katie was employed by Apple, and then to Seattle, where she works for Micro-Soft. Josh is a research micro-biologist who works from anywhere that has a computer hookup. The Elferings are planning to be at Paul’s home in Rutland for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Meanwhile, on the national scene, Americans are getting ready for Thanksgiving Day, a national holiday devoted to giving thanks to Almighty Providence for all of the blessings, benefits, opportunities and challenges that have been bestowed upon us during the past year, and to which we can look forward during the next. In America, we often complain because of the more than 300 channels on our cable system there isn’t one worth watching; or, because the price of gasoline has only gone down to $2.49, instead of .49; or, because we have too much to eat; or, about many more conditions that the rest of the world looks at with envy. As recent events from south of our borders, and from around the world, have shown, there are those who have never suffered with our complaints who would sacrifice everything and risk life itself for the opportunity to endure poverty in this country rather than remain in the violence and oppression that has threatened to devour their lives and families. Maybe we should welcome a few of them to our communities to help shoulder the burden of the excessive wealth that weighs us down and threatens to crush our American spirit. The founders of the world’s great religions have advised us to share our burdens and our blessings with others, and this Thanksgiving Day, that advice is one of the blessings for which we can be thankful.
Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. It’s a short column this week because of the early deadline made necessary by Thanksgiving Day being on Thursday, but that just means that next week’s column will probably be a little longer. For additional information about what’s going on in the little city that can, check out the community’s internet web site at www.rutlandnd.com, and take a look at the Rutland Facebook page while you’re checking things out, too. Remember to patronize your local Post Office during the upcoming Christmas season, and don’t forget to keep the pressure on the U. S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to SAVE OUR POST OFFICE! Later.