We don’t know what we don’t know

Tales from the O-NO Ranch
Mad Jack Hanks
Wellington, Colo.

Gentle readers, how many lessons do you figure you have learned in your life to date? Hummm….a bunch I betcha! I know that I have and still learn something every single day. To me that’s exciting. These lessons we learn should serve a purpose, right? Of course they should and I am sure that each and every one regardless of their impact makes a point to be observed. Like, maybe, all of these tree huggers that want our forest to be as nature intended and nature will take care of it’s own. Nature has. With all of the beetle killed trees laying around in our beautiful Colorado forests for years and not being logged or cleaned up or grazed, well look at us now. I heard on the news this very morning that the fire west of Estes Park is burning 6,000 acres an hour. Unbelievable! The town of Grand Lake is being evacuated and I understand their main resort lodge there is gone. Yep, Mother Nature will take care of her own but that doesn’t mean that we can’t assist her in the same way we would assist a heifer having a difficult birth. I would bet you those folks (tree huggers), will just blow off the fact that cattle should be cleaning up our forests when available and millions of downed trees should be harvested to avoid such a tragedy. No, they will have some sort of an excuse to satisfy their stubborn way of thinking. Remember, “excuses satisfy only those who make them.”

This year of 2020 has been such a “sucker punch” for so many and it seems there is no let up in sight. Our governor is considering another lockdown of sorts. It makes a feller plumb mad to see such behavior.

This year has taken two of my cowboy friends from years past. I reckon that is normal but ya hate to see them leave this place knowing I may be just a step or two behind, maybe not. How about you? My daughter’s neighbor of 26 years was lost in a horrible pileup at a red light. I think he was about 50 with a wife and three children. Happens all the time but it’s always worse when it’s someone you know. We learn from that, that life is complicated as we live in a world where we are not able to know the outcome of today or tomorrow.

I know that all folks here in Colorado are sick to the core and have heavy hearts for all of the homes, ranches, businesses and real estate these fires have taken. It’s almost like you just can’t believe what’s happening until you watch those huge plumes of smoke not so far away. There have been so many that have offered their pastures for folks that have none left. I again, learned that there are so many good hearts out there so willing to help in any way they can. God bless all of you!

I think for me, the main lesson is “we don’t know what we don’t know!” Life can be a crap shoot at times and we have to learn to roll with the punches. I guarantee you that you are stronger and tougher than you think! I learned that lesson years ago when I was “caregiver” for Martha, her mom and myself when we all had cancer. When it was said and done and they had passed, I realized what I had been through but I had lots of help from family, friends and the Lord when I let Him.

That dark horse may have already come your way or maybe just over the rise, just remember that you are special made and you have what it takes to accept the lessons from the past and those to come.

Stay tuned, check yer cinch on occasion, hug your kids, kiss your spouse, and pat yourself on the back, and I’ll c. y’all, all y’all.