Morning Glory

I took this picture at 7:44 a.m. on Sunday, Oct. 17. It’s a nice picture.

Two minutes earlier, at 7:42 a.m., it was a great picture.

There were two spectacularly colored hot air balloons just about in the middle of the scene. The sunrise lit them brilliantly from below.

I slammed on the brakes of my Ford pickup, backed into somebody’s farm lane just outside Ephrata, in Lancaster County, and by the time I got to the field, those balloons were gone with the wind.

I don’t think I’d want to be booking along that fast 1,000 feet up with no motor, no wings and no parachute.

So anyway, all I got was this nice picture of a mostly harvested corn crop, with a bit of frost — the first I’ve seen in southeastern Pennsylvania this fall — on the stubble.

It’s kind of like the old fish story where you talk about the one that got away and all you came home with was the memory of a day in your waders with your rod and the water at your feet and the leaves floating by, but no hungry fish anywhere.

So, truth be told, the fisherman has his magical day even without a fish, and I had a few early sunrise moments that were magic even without balloons.

Made me think we should be thankful for all the magic life gives us, even in small doses.

Lancaster Farming


On Sept. 21, the USDA instituted a second round of funding, the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2, to ease at least some of the pain and fiscal stress the crisis has caused farmers, ranchers and growers. Read more