Playing on my phone setting in the passenger seat as Grandpa drove, I heard Grandpa say, “That truck says he’s turning…” His tone was hopeful and dubious at the same time causing me to look up from the nothingburger images on the phone screen to see the big box truck ahead of us with its right turn signal on. Going 60 miles an hour, we followed the truck for a sixteenth of a mile (about 4 seconds) then Grandpa continued his commentary, “and he’s turning just like he said he would.” I heard satisfaction in Grandpa’s tone as the truck did what he expected it to do, confirming his belief in having hope the driver was signaling true intent.
I said, “Yep, he kept his word.”
My mind turned to the rules of the road we all accept as a condition of having the privilege of using the roads; the driver’s test we all take; driving on the right side of the road. I wondered about the old timers, teamsters with mules and horses using pack trains to transfer goods over skinny trails and narrow passes. What were their rules of the road? There were lots of mule and horse trains back then, wagons too. The environment was populated enough there had to be times when teamsters got in each other’s way. What would happen if two pack trains met each other on a narrow mountain pass, one going up, one coming down? Teamsters shared the roads as they transported goods; the goods got where they needed to be; from those two facts I conclude the teamsters got along while traveling. To get goods from Point A to Point B without excessive conflict there had to be ‘common’ protocols teamsters followed. I know the teamsters had rules of the road because I remember Grandpa’s dad tell me which pack train had the right of way on a narrow mountain pass but for the life of me, I couldn’t remember what he said. So, I pulled out my phone to see what I could find.
I found out that for steep single lane mountain roads for motor vehicles the downhill driver yields to the up-hill driver. Why? Because usually vehicles backing up have better control going up-hill rather than going down-hill. But what about those huge trucks that look like a train with two box cars or pickup trucks pulling trailers? Or cars pulling horses in trailers? Wow, what a mind tangent that was! The protocol is for the downhill facing driver to back up until the road widens enough for the uphill vehicle to pass. I continued to look for information on mule and pack horse trains. Was it the same? (I couldn’t find anything on my magical handheld device so I’m still wondering.)
Being that was a dead-end mental tangent, my mind got tired and circled back to the truck driver signaling true intent. I decided when we’re traveling 60 miles an hour and only have 4 seconds to respond I’m exceedingly grateful for truthful drivers who signal exactly what they are about to do.
When there’s only 4 seconds to decide what’s for dinner may I recommend:
60 Second Pizza
4-8 English muffins, flour tortillas, or slices of bread (some form of bread)
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce.
Sprinkling of Italian herbs (optional)
4-8 thin slices mozzarella, cheddar, or American cheese
Lay the English muffins, the tortillas, or the bread on a microwave safe plate. Spoon the tomato sauce over the bread, muffin, or tortilla. If using them, sprinkle with herbs then lay a thin slice of cheese over the tomato sauce. Put in the microwave and cook until the cheese bubbles, around 60 seconds. Note: These can also be put in the oven under the broiler. Spaghetti or pizza sauce can be used instead of plain tomato sauce. For a different taste sensation use Mexican herbs instead of Italian herbs. Any bread works, biscuits, pita, hamburger buns, hotdog buns, whatever is available.
In 2000 Michele Priddy left the work force to become a stay-at-home mother and wife. Being a one-income family in today’s society meant she had to learn to budget quickly. Food became a priority early because she wanted the children to have the best nutrition, she could offer them even on a budget. She also taught cooking classes on how to stretch the food dollar with simple ingredients at various churches in her community. Michelle has put her kitchen strategies and recipes in booklets, her church newsletter and in her hometown newspaper, The Goldendale Sentinel. We hope you will enjoy her strategies, stories, and recipes. You can contact the Leavenworth Echo at Reporter@leavenworthecho.com or 509-548-5286 if you have any questions or comments for Michelle.
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