Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Chief and I spent the gorgeous, bluebird sky day deep in the Ozark woods ensuring that a pristine dry chert woodland was receiving the care it truly deserves. My awesome boss is a big man, he's Gary Cooper from High Noon, slightly hunched shoulders, but a strong presence. He requires a lot of calories and a ridiculous amount of coffee during the day. At the recommendation from field staff, we left the wooded tract and settled down at The Circle J, a roadside trailer-like structure that overlooks the park.

Upon entry, noticing all the deer antlers, white geese with blue kercheifs around their necks, and rural ephemera, I imagined that I would that I would have to settle for a salad dominated by iceberg lettuce. Instead, I ordered the grilled cheese sandwich, wheat bread, no butter ("but it ain't gonna taste any good that way!" my server told me) and the cauliflower chowder (I was promised: no chicken stock). It was great. It was a terrific lunch. We accomplished a lot, to boot. At the end of our meeting, I went to the register to pay the waitress for the meal which was so large that I couldn't finish. "$2.89." No, I argued, I had the soup, the sandwich and water. "$2.89." As I collected my jaw off the ground and gave her my American Express card, I remembered that I was, indeed, in the Ozarks.

While good food is really cheap down here, I thought land prices would be, literally, through the roof. What with timber prices so high, and development for subdivisions a priority throughout the Ozarks, one would think that land would be expensive here. 160 acres of Current River-front property, oak hickory woodlands, no structures, for $75,000. 87 acres of pristine property that borders a state park, $119,000. Food is cheap, petrol is cheap ($2.69/gal.), land is cheap. I hope no one finds out about this...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Gahlee! those prices are unheard of.2.69/gallon?! i remember driving thru there and it was the cheapest gas i had seen on that particular trip.89cents/gallon.everywhere else was 115.i like the names people have there....brother, chief...corn.anb