…there’s not enough water in the Mississippi River for operation of a ferry boat from Dorena, Missouri to Hickman, Kentucky. That’s the truth. The Dorena-Hickman ferry has been shut down. The operators are getting hit in two ways. Their normal business of hauling vehicles back and forth to Kentucky is stopped. But their tourism traffic has been shut off, too. The ferry advertises itself as a tourist attraction for people who want to experience Ol’ Man River.
This in the same area where a big levee was blasted open to flood more than 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland so that Cairo, Illinois would not go under even more than it was just a year ago. Bust one year, dust the next. Mother Nature is a cockeyed wench. And “wench” is more a more complimentary word than many would use.
Our newsroom weather expert, Mike Lear, keeps in touch with his network of weather forecasters and observers and we run quite a few stories about what things are and what things are likely to be. Today we’re running a story with the state climatologist who says the next couple of months might be great for softball game schedules but pretty grim for those who try to coax the ground to give us food.
As an Illinois small farm-boy, son of Kansas dust bowl parents, I’ve heard stories of dryness for a long time and I’ve heard various colorful ways of describing how dry things are.
- It’s so dry that the fire hydrants are chasing the dogs.
- It’s so dry that when it snowed last winter, we just pushed the snow into a ditch and burned it.
- It’s so dry that when it rained the other day, we had some of the rain water analyzed and it was only 38% moisture.
- It’s so dry that when I went to the doctor and provided a sample, all I got was a cup full of dust.
It wouldn’t surprise us if some of the readers of these entries have heard other colorful descriptions of how dry things are. Feel free to add them to our short list. Just keep them clean. There’s a difference between dusty and dirty.