Posted by Ruby Johnson
Jeff Turner is an IT project manager by trade and a resident of Fort Worth, Texas. He has published one book, "Notes to Stephanie: Middle Age Love Letters and Life Stories", almost completed a second book, and has plans for two more plus a cookbook. In addition, he is a talented photographer, and frequentlly shows his photographs on the Red Bubble website. Jeff is good at talking, good at writing, and good at doing. Enjoy his photograph and excerpt from his upcoming "Notes to Stephanie: Days Remembered". His website is http://www.ilypants.net/.
It is a place that looks like it is locked away in a time decades ago. There, the prairie rolls up and down across fields with hardly a tree. If you look west you see only a couple of houses where ranch hands live. It's possible to think you are hundreds of miles away from any city or town, a place populated more by cattle and horses than people.
On a bright winter day with some high clouds streaming above, you could just as easily have been in Wyoming or Montana half a continent away. But you weren’t, you were just a few minutes from downtown Fort Worth and the sea of houses spreading always from its center.
These images from prior visits were in my mind when we went there one Sunday afternoon. It was on one of those pretty winter days I enjoy so much. We drove there in the pickup and had a six pack of cold beer tucked away.
I pulled the truck over at the top of my favorite rise on the blacktop road alongside the railroad track. With the windows open we sat there sipping a beer. as the wind gently whispered over the fields. There was no one around. No radio, no TV, no people, just the fields, the sky, the clouds, and us.
We enjoyed some time there talking but also just looked in silence at the scene that could have been from a western movie with John Wayne. We were part of a pastoral scene from another time. Cattle were slowing grazing in the pasture beneath the blue and white speckled sky with not a living person in sight.
We melded into the surroundings and were part of what was there in front of our eyes. We were no more important than a strand of barbed wire, a blade of grass, or a lone mesquite tree up on one of the rolling hills. For a short time, until we drove back home, it seemed as if we were part of Winscot Road.
Places like that teach us something. They show us that we are part of something bigger than ourselves and that many things we hold dear are not permanent. What remains after we leave this life is the earth, the sky, and the creatures that dwell here, all oblivious to the cars, TVs, and shopping malls that loom so large in people’s lives.
So while we can be part of a place like Winscot Road from time to time we are just visitors on its stage, which is more lasting than us or our possessions. We are just actors playing a small, short part in time’s long play. And finally the fading spotlight on our own existence is lost in the brightness of eternity as others go down life’s long path to places like Winscot Road and fade into its rolling plains as we did that day.