Water in Far Field

Central Texas in the last week had rain.  My Far Field (shown in photograph above) shows a marshy area on the south section of the field.  The rains this week have broken the record for the wettest November in the Fort Worth area.

I walked and viewed the marshy area yesterday, parking my F-250 along State Highway 108 because the road into Far Field lacked gravel or cliche for pavement.  The temperature was 44 degrees F., wind calm, and sky cloudy.  Crows inevitably cawed, killdeers pipped, and some type of finch perched and chirped in the pecan tree above me.  I had intended to cut down a tree that was blocking the gate, but the low temperature and wetness forced me back into the pickup, my axe never unloaded from the cabin.

I retired from teaching college in June of this year, having either been in college or teaching for fifty-five years.  Shortly after retirement, I sold the front part of the farm, including the house, barns, stables and arena, keeping the Far Field of 29.151 acres.  Moving into Fort Worth, some sixty miles to the east, I took an apartment that is adjacent to the Trinity River.  Since in the apartment, I have seen owls, falcons, hawks, Sandhill Cranes, and numerous species of waterfowl that fly along the river, turning as a flock at the bends of the river.  Wild turkeys inhabit a ranch across the river from where I live and I have seen a seven-member troop of them walk up into the homes and yards when it rained heavily last week.

My Far Field qualified for agricultural use.  It consists of native grasses and various inserts of Johnson grass and other “invasive” species.  The field is still wet today and will remain so for a couple of weeks.  To what use shall I put the field?  Cattle grazing, crops for wildlife?  I am not sure, but the decision  “to do” something with the soil has raised some philosophical questions about my behavior towards the land.  For now, the field is wet, the crows and hawks perch on the only tree in the field.  Nestled in the field grasses and burrowing into the earth are skunks and voles.  So, leaving it alone for now is practical and respectful.




Filed under Flying Hat Ranch, Life in Balance

7 responses to “Water in Far Field

  1. Linda Ainsworth

    Hi Jack, my front yard in Louisiana looks much like your field! Just think how pretty it will be in the Spring. Linda

    Sent from my iPad


  2. That’s a great tree for the only tree!
    It’s a good thing you held on to that back field. I think allowing those who’ve lived there to continue on is a good choice. And, follow your Muse whenever a good idea strikes!

  3. Wow, Jack, sound s like you’ve been through some changes since I last checked in … so glad you have a place where wildlife can still be seen regularly, and glad you still have a piece of your ranch … it’s so good to have a piece of land to steward.

  4. I know you got some big time rain. But if it helped the Frogs beat Baylor, it was worth it! Justified the entire football season for TCU!

  5. Changes do come, don’t they? I am glad you kept part of the ranch, and I know that, however you utilize it, you’ll do it responsibly. I know what I would do, but my answer might not be yours and, besides, I tend not to advise.

    My greatest hope is that you’ll keep us updated over time. It’s good to see you again, and to know that you’re well into a new phase of life.

  6. Just found your post today, Jack. For some reason beyond me, it went into “social.” First, congratulations, on a sterling career as an educator and author. I’m sure your dedication made a positive difference in the lives of so many. I know it pained you to sell off part of your farm, but you did what you had to do and moved on with your life. The back acres are gorgeous and will thrive with your dedication. Happy Holidays!

  7. Although you’ve sold some of your beloved ranch it is comforting to know that you kept a part that you worked so hard to turn back into native habitat. And it is good to realize that you have situated yourself in a place where you can still behold the natural world. Good luck with your future endeavors. Life is constant change to which we adapt to and appreciate! Live on!

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