By Bill Anderson
Thanksgiving, at least Thanksgiving dinner, came a week early to the Rutland Seniors Center on Wednesday, November 17. Head cook Janet Kiefer prepared Thanksgiving dinner with turkey; dressing; mashed potatoes & gravy; green bean casserole; cranberries; lefse; and, pumpkin pie with whipped topping; for a total of 33 patrons, 24 who enjoyed their dinner together at the Seniors’ Center, and 9 who had their dinners delivered by “Meals On Wheels,” otherwise known as Roger Pearson & Hal Nelson. Janet and her husband, Cliff, headed south on Thursday, November 18, bound for Dallas TX to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with their son, Andy, and his family. Delores Lysne filled in for Janet in the Seniors’ Center kitchen on Thursday, November 18, and Diane Smith was in charge of dinner preparation on Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday, November 22, 23 & 24. Rutland’s Seniors are fortunate to have three such talented & capable chefs ready, willing and able to take charge in the kitchen and do the cooking the way their mothers taught them.
Aaron & Silvia Brooks of this community were called to Yuma AZ last week, where Silvia’s father, Alfredo Tastana, was seriously ill with covid-19. Mr. Tastana passed away on Thursday, November 18. According to Silvia, there will be a funeral service later this week at Yuma, followed by interment of her father’s remains at his home community in Mexico. Mr. & Mrs. Brooks expect to be back home in Rutland sometime next week. The Rutland community extends condolences to the family of Alfredo Tastana on the loss of the family’s patriarch. May he rest in peace.
Five of Rutland’s “Happy Warriors:” Mike Mahrer; Kyle Mahrer; Vaughan Rohrbach; Bill Hoflen; and, Jesse Brakke; accompanied by Steve Thorfinnson & Alwood Huckell of Fort Ransom; and, Ray Ohm of Hankinson; departed Rutland on Tuesday, November 16, bound for their hunting grounds in western Kentucky, where the whitetail deer are as plentiful as are cottontail rabbits in North Dakota. The group from Rutland has been hunting whitetails in western Kentucky, near the town of Clinton KY, for the past several years. The area has a combination of small farms and dense woods, ideal habitat for whitetail deer. The local residents consider the deer to be a nuisance and are happy to have hunters come in to harvest the surplus. The hunters expect to be back home by Wednesday, November 24.
Rutland native John Hoflen, now a resident of Bismarck, visited his old home town from Friday, November 19, to Monday, November 22. John was a guest of his brother, Robert, during his stay in Rutland. On Saturday, November 20, John and Robert accompanied their cousin, Kent Hoflen of Hankinson, to Fargo for an afternoon of target shooting with pistols at the indoor pistol range there. All 3 have had a great deal of experience with handguns, John as a member of the National Guard Pistol team, Rob as firearms instructor for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services Law Enforcement Division, and Kent as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps and in law enforcement. On Sunday, John and Rob spent several hours at Four Seasons Healthcare Center in Forman, visiting their cousin, Mavis (Hoflen) Wold, a resident there. Mavis had suffered a broken leg about a year ago, and is undergoing therapy at Four Seasons. Mavis is a dedicated and determined therapy patient, a fact that is no surprise to anyone who knows her.
The fate of the Rutland Post Office is still in limbo. Paul Anderson reports that a member of U.S. Representative Kelly Armstrong’s staff has informed him that the Congressman has been told by the U.S. Postal Service that they are in contact with the owner of the building and are discussing what needs to be done, but that there is no timeline for reopening the Post Office, so far. Paul has requested that the Congressman reach out to the USPS, again, to push for a definite date. The work crew promised for last week by the owner of the Post Office building failed to materialize. The latest information pried out of the Postal Service indicates that there are 12 specific issues with the building that must be addressed, and that the entire building, not just the portion occupied as a Post Office, must be repaired to the satisfaction of the Postal Service before a Post Office will be allowed to reopen at that location. The owner has now indicated that a work crew will be out to assess the condition of the building and the repairs that must be made sometime this week. A request has been made of the Postal Service, through Postmaster Jackie Lemna, that a Postal Service representative with some knowledge of the situation be sent to hold a public information meeting in Rutland to give postal patrons in this community some idea as to when they might expect service to be restored. Don’t hold your breath. If the U.S. Department of Defense is as secretive and tight-lipped as is the Postal Service, Americans certainly need not be concerned about Russian or Chinese espionage.
Andy Harris, accompanied by his mother, Joanne, departed Rutland on the morning of Tuesday, November 23, bound for West Branch, Iowa, and Thanksgiving dinner at the home of Andy’s sister and brother-in-law, Kathy & Rich Stout. Andy and Joanne expect to be back home in Rutland by the beginning of next week.
Meanwhile, on the national scene, President Biden has released 50 million barrels of oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve in an attempt to tamp down the price of gasoline, which is up considerably from what it was a year ago. The impact of 50 million barrels of oil on the price of gasoline is probably not going to be significant in the long run, but it may afford some short term relief. The easiest way to get prices back down to where they were in 2020 would be to do what we did in 2020: stay home; don’t go anywhere; and, stop driving. Well, we are Americans, and we don’t want to do that. The oil companies control the supply and the price right now, and they’re not going to give anyone a break until market forces or government action, or both, force them to do so. With some luck, the 50 million barrel release may give the market a jolt that does the job and allows supply to catch up with demand. Now, if Joe Biden was a Socialist, he would seize the oil companies and set the price to best advantage, but he’s an American, and doesn’t want to do that. On Thanksgiving Day, we can give thanks for all of our blessings, large and small, including a President who believes that America, Americans and American based oil companies can, should, and will do the right thing, eventually, after we’ve tried everything else.
Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. 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 at it, too. Remember to patronize your local Post Office, 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.