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So Cold The Guineas Froze To The Tree Limbs

It just hasn’t been the southern summer we usually have in Georgia.

According to the NOAA, the weather stations at Peachtree City, Plains, Atlanta-Dekalb Airport, and Watkinsville (just to mention a few), have only recorded eight days this year with 90 degree-plus temperatures. Several stations in North Georgia have not recorded any temps above the big 90.

Unfortunately, however, our brothers and sisters who dwell south of the fall line have not fared so well. Macon recorded 26 days, Baxley came in with 29, and Albany hit 48 days of sizzle.

If you don’t believe the part of the state that begins just 30 miles south of Jones Crossroads is different, you might want to reconsider. The fall line keeps more than gnats out.

I shared these amazing statistics with Mr. Ralph while we sat in the doorway of the store on Sunday. We were enjoying a light breeze with a hint of September in it and looking at a blue sky deserving artistic expression.


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“The only bad thing about the summer is that the rain was the kiss of death for growing tomatoes,” I said. “The fruit just filled up with water and fell off the vine.”

“It makes me wonder what kind of winter we’re going to have,” said Mr. Ralph. “We need some good cold weather though — the kind that makes a guinea’s feet stick to tree limbs.”

“What?” I shrieked. “that sounds horrible.”

“Well, it happened,” answered Mr. Ralph. “We had a really tall tree out in the yard near the horse barn, and the guineas started roosting in it rather than going in the barn at night. It was in January I think, and very cold. It started raining sometime in the night and then it turned to sleet and freezing rain. I got up early like I always did to feed the horses and went outside to discover everything was covered in ice — even the guineas. They were all up in that tall tree squawking up a storm, flapping their wings, and not going anywhere. Their feet were frozen to the limbs.”

“Oh my goodness. What did you do?” I asked.

“Nothing I could do,” answered Mr. Ralph. “They just had to sit there until the temperature rose and their feet thawed out. I think one of them might have pulled away a little too soon and little too hard though. He hopped around like his feet hurt for a few weeks.”

I laughed at Mr. Ralph’s descriptive narrative and looked out at the freshly cut hay fields across the road. I’ve never seen the pastures this green in August nor do I remember feeling a breeze this glorious before late September or early October.

“Do you think this a sign we’re going to have an early fall and a cold winter? Is this an indication that the wheel will turn, as you say, and sales will jump through the roof?” I asked my antique/retail mentor.

“Not but one thing that makes sales go through the roof,” replied Mr. Ralph with a twinkle in his blue eyes which rivaled the color of the sky.

“What’s that?” I asked eagerly.

“Folks wanting what you got and buying it.”

#antiques #growingtomatoes #jonescrossroads #weather

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While working for Grimes Publications, I had the opportunity to interview so many incredible people – one of whom was Pine Mountain, Ga., resident and business owner, the late Mr. Al Boyd. He was part