Hello Friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Logging Dog”. If you’reinterested in a copy please use the contact instructions at the bottom of the page.

Somewhere in the distant past the forest echoes with the voice of the foreman mingled with either the whine of chainsaw motor or the thump of axes being driven into the boles. The crackle of limbs breaking and thunderous crash echoes through the mountains as a giant falls to the earth. The tree lands with the precision of a master archer’s winning bullseye. The lumber will go to mill where it will become part of School, home, church or any number of beloved objects made from wood. Worn out by the heavy labor the lumberjacks begin to gather their tools leaving the undergrowth to mature for the next fifty years or so. When done properly the harvest will actually improve the overall health and diversity of the forests and for now the last mature tree has been taken. And beneath the broken limbs and scattered leaves there are artifacts left behind.

Fast forward a few decades and you’ll see my father improving a trail that cuts through the back of property. He spots something in spoil cast aside by blade of his tractor. The short section of heavy chain has a spike on one end that’s designed to be driven into a log like an anchor. The artifact is called a logging dog and it’s used to drag logs to landing where they are loaded into the truck. It was a valuable tool for whoever left it behind but now it’s a treasured conversation piece in my Dad’s collection. It makes me wonder why we are drawn to things like warped and weathered wood or rusty chunks of metal. Sometimes it’s a lost item like the logging dog or the axe head that I found in the same area several years before he found the chain. Other times it’s a discarded item like an antique soda bottle that a camper no longer needed. Such things as old canning jars and antique medicine bottles have a value on the open market. There was a time when a young man person could excavate a makeshift dump and carry out a little spending money in the form of unbroken glass and rusted iron. Recently I rediscovered a rusted item that I pulled out of the creek. The photos I posted on a Facebook Forum are below.

While not as artistic as I like to post the “mystery object” has conjured up guesses of everything from lost confederate treasures to counter weighs for a barn door. ( I believe that counter weight theory is in lead)

Whatever it is it has the same appeal as the logging dog. It’s a connection to the past. It was a part of someone’s everyday life and witness to history.

I enjoy keeping my eyes open when I’m nearby old job sites and forgotten places. Nice finds like antique blue mason jars are going to be a pretty rare find these days and most of stuff I spot aren’t really worth picking up except to dispose of it properly but occasionally I find something unique enough to at least try to figure out what it was when it was new.

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Very Old Things And The Secrets They Hold.

What is it that we love about very old things? I like nothing more than stumbling upon an old well weathered piece of wood or a rusty hunk of iron. Last night I talked about God’s perspective of time and how time carries us along as it flows. Tonight I’m thinking about our perspective. As time pulls us ever closer towards a destiny we cannot see clearly we can only measure the progress by looking back. Those things were once shiny and new now serve as landmarks. The old rusted trucks, crumbling stone and this old barn are like anchors that help us navigate the raging river of time. It’s even better if there’s a personal connection with the object. I have to wonder if anyone ever passes this barn and relives a special moment? Was there a first kiss that happened here? Was this the place where a spark grew into true love and then into a family? Was this the place where a parent answered a child’s important questions about life’s mysteries while doing the daily chores? Did a grandparent tell stories about when the parent was a kid? Do these stories still echo across the river of time? Yes. I think that they do. These very old things are the sentinels of memories that are still being made today.

About Time In God’s Eyes

This thing all things devours:
Birds, beasts, trees, flowers;
Gnaws iron, bites steel;
Grinds hard stones to meal;
Slays king, ruins town,
And beats high mountain down.
– Gollum’s Time Riddle, J.R.R Tolkien

About tonight’s image. The truck is part of another old drilling rig. This one is in Victor, West Virginia. It’s been in this spot for as long as I can remember. I have watched it erode away from the effects of time and I suppose it was that observation that inspired tonight’s post.

I have been thinking a great deal about the passage of time and the true nature of eternity. I’m not sure that Gollum had it right. We perceive time from the perspective of a mortal. This means that we see the flow of time from the inside of the flow. We’re carried along with the current like a cork on the river with little or no control over the speed or direction of travel. We see only the river with its peaks and valleys. But God sees time from the outside. He sees where the flow starts and where it it ends. He knows our exact position at what we perceive as any given moment. He knows where the current will carry us. In God’s eyes, there is no difference between yesterday, today and tomorrow. Sometimes when we’re praying and searching for an answer we wonder why God hasn’t answered or why he allows suffering to go on for so long. I think that the truth is that he’s already acted on our behalf but the flow of time hasn’t carried us there yet. And, that if he had acted in the wrong spot the flow of time would have carried us away from his provision. It’s all a matter of perspective.

Mysterious Mountains, Ancient Walls and New Eyes

As I look at peaks and ridges of my Appalachian Mountains I have an overwhelming urge to go explore each of them. Somewhere in this group of hills and valleys is the hidden remains of an ancient empire. Long ago a stone wall was built here that stretched out for miles. The big mystery to me is what were they protecting themselves from? There’s legends of giants in the mountains. I have always had this fantasy of finding a hidden cave entrance and stepping inside to find ancient treasures and stone artworks. At one point we would walk along and find lithics. Stone age tools and points that made life possible turn up here often. The worked stone comes from all over North America. It was often used as a barter when tribes traded with each other.

There’s also the story of a scuttled brass cannon from the “War of Northern Aggression “. (American Civil War) as well as rumors of Confederate gold.

More than likely one might find old overgrown farms. When I was a kid we could find old mason jars on almost any given day of exploration. It was probably left behind by a family who canned their garden produce but in my eyes it was always an abandoned moonshine still. Not all treasures are golden. Sometimes they are rusty tin, glass or ceramic.

Whatever is out there it’s bound to be interesting. There’s a story in everything we leave behind. Old walls, broken glass or rusty barbed wire it doesn’t matter. It’s all about the lives that filled these mountains and the stories that they left behind.