After a two year delay because of Covid, it was on again, the 112th Annual Festival. It was smaller than the past, but I was frankly just glad that it was happening again. Some things never change in this tiny corner of the state, except to get worse. Unlike in the fashionable parts of the state, there are lots of adobe houses here that are melting back into the earth.

And the decay is not limited to houses. Years ago, at a bend in the road, an old, rusted Model T sat half buried in the dust, returning to the elements. And at some point, some years ago, it finally disappeared altogether. But this one continues to uphold the tradition of abandoned cars, really it’s a lot of work to tow them away, and to where? (Also, I love to photograph this scene and hope it never changes).

At my Uncle’s place this water wagon has been sitting there for a long time. And it will probably be unmoved for a considerable time more.

And you may have wondered, where do I derive my surprising knowledge of tractors? Why this is because of my uncle. He just about always has a story or two about tractor engineering to amaze me with. This tractor is something he bought as a toy, and it had often been in the parade for the festival. It’s currently working at becoming part of the landscape.

And what is a festival without the venerable tradition of a parade? This year I drove my uncle in his 1979 Lincoln Town car, which is another one of his toys. I had previously ridden in the parade as stoker on his steam thresher when I was a young woman (and I was pretty quick study on the job of stoker, so it didn’t blow up.)

So I don’t have any pictures of this year’s parade, but we were sitting here waiting for the start time, with the other folks.

Anyone who wants to can be in the parade. There is no charge to participate unless one is a politician. They used to charge $100 per car, but now they have upped it to $150 for them. The same political party has been in charge of the county since 1930, but a couple of people showed up to try and sway the voters to change. Perhaps. Every politician threw out candy for the kids, and then there was the annual free feast in the park to close the festival. This may have been the last time I shall go, but as long as there are a few people left in the village, the celebration will continue. I hope.

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