I've been driving across the Utah Idaho border a lot this summer.
I have fond memories of going up to Idaho as a kid. I remember thinking this drive lasted FOREVER. I always wanted to be the first one to spy the Cache Valley cheese sign as we came to the end of Sardine Canyon. We would play car games, license plate alphabet, slug bug,....plus one of my favorites, Cows and Cemeteries. We would stop at the cheese factory and get squeaky cheese curd...yum!
I also remember the big deal my dad would make about blowing out the yucky Utah air and breathing in the good Idaho air, just as we crossed the border and saw the sign that welcomed us to Idaho. He always said the air in Idaho was sweeter. I thought it kind of smelled like manure, but I went along with it.
Idaho was definitely fun and filled with love and adventures.
My dad was raised just outside of Preston, Idaho, in a little town called Fairview. While my dad's mom and brother were alive, we went up to the family homestead a lot. I learned to ride a horse up there. I would ride on the back of my cousin's horse while we rounded up cows to be milked. One time, the horse I was on, Peppy, slipped it's back legs into a ditch. I didn't hang on tight and slid off the back. I was laying in the ditch , while the horse's back legs stuggled to get it's footing. I got my foot crushed.
My dad rode over and looked at me crying in the ditch and said, "Get up, or the horse will step on your other foot."
He was tough.
So was I.
I got up and my Uncle Jay gave me a Cow cane to hobble around on. It's one of my cherished possessions still to this day.
It was good to go to Idaho and reconnect with family and relax, recharge and reunite.
I milked a cow, fed pigs and chickens. I learned to make blossom dolls and watched a cat have kittens. We (Marcie and cousins, Nora and Julie and I) would run around like farm maniacs for a week. Then we would have tears and sadness as we drove back into "civilization" in Utah and have to breathe sub-standard air..... again.
This lasted until I was only 7-8 years old......just a few years, but my memories are clear.
My uncle Jay died in a freak farm equipment accident, and then everything changed...
But my dad has never stopped breathing in the Sweet Idaho Air and encouraging us all to do the same.
I was thinking about this as I walked into my parent's home on Sunday night. We, my little family, love our weekly Sunday night visits to grandma and grandpa's. We get hugs and kisses and review our lives and what's happening the next week. We always discuss what we learned about in church, or what the speakers shared. It's good to sit around and be with each other. It's good to connect and recharge as we gear up for the next 7 days.
As I stood on the thresh hold of my parents back door, I found my self thinking about Idaho and my dad.... I began blowing out all of the yucky day to day earth air and walking into my parent's home and breathing in the sweet air of unconditional love.