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Save the wave

June 16, 2016 - Clayton Rye
I enjoy driving two-lane roads and county blacktops, in particular. Those county blacktops are lesser-traveled roads and everyone drives around the speed limit. The reduced traffic and slower speed makes it possible to see the driver and frequently there is a wave as we pass. We don’t know each other and we still wave. I enjoy waving at people and it does help if I know them, but it’s not a requirement. I’d like to think this is common here in the Midwest or what is known as fly-over country. We go about our daily lives getting the things done that need doing, but still have time to acknowledge someone with a wave of the hand. Then there are different kinds of waves. My wave is a hand at the top of the steering wheel with two fingers extended. Someone I know well gets both hands at the top of the steering wheel and all my fingers extended. My uncle’s wave was a hand in the air with two fingers and a nod of the head. I believe my dad’s wave was similar along with most of our neighbors. It must have been generational as I haven’t seen a wave like that in a long time. Harold, my school bus driver, had the biggest wave. His right hand would go from left to right as if he was wiping the windshield. You couldn’t miss it. When working in a field, having someone who waved as they went by so I could wave back was a welcome break in those long hours. I made sure my whole arm was extended so my hand was in daylight. Then I extended all my fingers and rotated my hand back and forth. I wanted to make sure they saw me wave, whether I was initiating the wave or waving in return. Living on a gravel road, we don’t meet many vehicles so a wave is always required because there is a high probability it is one of our neighbors. Many of our trips take us past the ethanol plant where there is a lot of traffic and most of the semi-trucks I do not know. I still wave to all of them as a way of being friendly and get a wave in return. I like to wave to my fellow agriculturists because there seems to be fewer of us with each passing year. We are members of an exclusive club that is able to do what we enjoy thanks to our tenacity and some good breaks. I want to encourage anyone reading this to wave when you get the chance. It doesn’t cost anything, has no calories, probably good for your blood pressure and everyone likes an acknowledgement. And if you are flying over fly-over country, wave to me and I will wave back.

Rye is a Farm News staff writer and farmer from Hanlontown. Reach him by e-mail at crye@wctatel.net.

 
 

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