Thursday, Feb 02, 2023

Category: Standing on the Eastep

Happy Halloween

Darkness fell that Halloween eve as the Richardardson family arrived to clean the school. Leaves were tracked everywhere inside the school making it a long tedious task before they would be finished.

The moon waning down from fullness still shone brightly in the school yard. A long high howl hung in the air. Both Jenny and Dave looked to one another but figured it was one of the many coyotes that inhabit the valley. They hurried inside and began their work.

Lately, that same howl was haunting the neighborhood regularly every night. Dogs from the school all the way to the post office were on edge, barking and howling each time it reverberated through the night.

Neighbors of the school weren’t totally sure what they were hearing. Lusks feared it may be a wolf that crossed the valley five years earlier. Rex Curry was taking no chances and walked his deck nightly with a loaded gun before retiring for the night.

Even stranger, was the fact the Estep’s dog , Rocky, had disappeared a week earlier while they were on vacation. Shancey Lusk was taking care of him and searched high and low. All she and Estep ever found was a pile of black fur matted with what they assumed to be blood. Estep figured he may have been a midnight snack for a hungry cougar coming down to the creek for water. Sure Rocky was still fleet of foot but due to age had become stone deaf, making him easy prey.

Exhausted from working two jobs, Dave told Jenny to gather the girls to head for home. He only needed to take these old brooms out to the shed, and they could be on their way. Everyone headed for the shed.

The moon flung shadows over the yard as another howl peirced the darkness. Dave moved toward the shed key inhand. Quickly he inserted the key and turned the bolt. The door creaked open revealing a pair of large red eyes, gleaming in the darkness. White foam seemed to drip from the creature’s muzzle. Jenny screamed, jumping back and thrusting the children behind her.

The beast burst out of the opening toward them grazing Dave as he passed. All they saw was a white streak lunging out toward the road. The Richardsons swiftly fled in terror, luckily unscathed.

Next morning Estep was greeted at the door by his dog , Rocky. The dog extremely thin appeared fine. However, his hair had turned gray as if frighteced by a ghost. Once again the goblins will get you if you don’t watch out!!!!!!!!!!

Power Down

It happens. It’s gone and there is no retrieval until the “powers that be” give it back. Friday night, April 27, it happened again. We didn’t fall into complete darkness this time and were even spared immediate biting cold seeping under the floor boards.

However, since no remnant of an outhouse survives in my neighborhood the call of don’t flush goes out. If you need a drink there’s water in the fridge. If we get desperate there are jugs of water in the basement. And if we get extremely desperate, there’s a creek across the street, a wood stove downstairs, and canned food in the cupboard. If all else fails I’ll go to town or even move into the trailer for the night, which would require some work and luck, hoping the batteries are charged and there’s propane in the tanks.

For right now we will just find the flashlights and candles, even if their main function is a pleasing scent. Oil lamps heavy with dust begin to glow only long enough to set up a gas lantern so one can actually read or save yourself from stumbling around in the dark.

Nobody wants to go to bed. Its not even 9 o’clock! We can’t do anything. It all takes electricity. We’re doomed. Inspiration – we can watch a movie on the laptop. Three people snuggle up on the couch. Snuggle, not really. First it was a battle over screen placement so every self-centered person has the best view. Then one eight year old needed to sit on the other side of Grandpa and finally he needs to sit in the middle and hold the laptop while secretly adjusting the buttons on the side, because he’s seen this video . No electricity is supposed to be an adventure, not spent staring into a laptop screen.

About an hour into the movie the laptop died. Now what? Ten p.m. was nearing so we gave up and went to bed. It’s a fact my life depends on the power of the plug, the outlet, and the line. I can’t wait until next time which will be in about three weeks but probably sooner.

Students do Service

The morning of April 22, 2011 found a hoard of scrambling children descending into the barrow pits along Arbon Valley Highway. This industrious crew picked up liter located between the school and the U.S. Post Office on both sides of the highway. Even the dumpster site was spruced up of all debris. Thanks go out to Robin Claunch, Debbie Curry, and Cheri Evans for a great lesson in Civics given to the Arbon Valley students. Students participating were:Katie Ward, Shaylyn Ward, Mariah Christensen, Ethan Ward, Lawrence Campbell, Kooper Ward, Troy Kendal, Garret Williams, Cooper Evens, Mattie Ward, Lilly Weston, Makenna Hart, Grayson Williams, and Emma Kendal.

Scratch for Schools

On October 19, 2010, teachers Robin Claunch and Debbie Curry, along with school board clerk Cheri Evans, attended the annual Scratch for Schools held at Idaho State University in Pocatello. Schools from all over Southeastern Idaho were there to try to earn money for their schools by scratching Idaho State Lottery tickets. Arbon can be proud of this trio for scratching their way to victory and earning $529.00 for the elementary school. Debbie Curry reported, “The money will probably be spent on field trips for the students.”

‘Tis the Season to be Thankful


opefully, as we all prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving, with are minds on Christmas, may we all pause and peruse the last year and think about the small things we take for granted.

Be grateful you’re stuck in the snow – we need the moisture. On Thursday and several days after give thanks to the farmers and ranchers who keep our nation and many others well fed. Think about what it takes to get food from the field to the shelf in the store. No farms – no food.

Don’t always complain about the government. Step up and run for office. Your corner of the city, county, or state isn’t the only fishbowl in the world and your the biggest barracuda that should be listened to. Consider others.

Contemplate what you presently enjoy. We have good roads, – not just potholes. They could be dirt. Watch out and slow down for road construction. I know its been two years of trying to exit into town and get into Wal Mart. I’ve been one of the chief complainers. However, it sure is great now that its almost finished.

Send a thank you out to the military. I’m proud of my 21 year old nephew who has the courage and patriotism to protect our country and fight for freedom, while many only want to give lip service to the cause.

Show gratitude to a teacher and be their partner in education. They’re not all bad. Parents are the first teachers and models for their children. Be a good one. Do your part.

Applaud your neighbors. I appreciate the ones of the next generation who can help us old folks lift machinery, move furniture, and save me (a novice) from trying to catch horses and cows. It’s good to know somebody cares enough to give my strange relatives the third degree about hanging out in my yard, when I’m not at home. When traveling on the roads, we all need to thank our neighbors for taking time to save us from snow drifts, breakdowns, and the big bill of calling a wrecker. I appreciate knowing someone will always be coming along to save me from the side of the road and go out of their way to deliver me home.

Happy Thanksgiving from Standing on the Eastep