Matfield Green - Our first years

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Here I am

Here I am at Wichita Mid-Continent Airport. Gate 5 is a familiar one. I'm a loyal American Airlines traveler. Somewhat for the miles, but mostly for the knowing what to expect. I'll stop in to Chicago to visit Lisa and Chris Clancy & sons and then on to Traverse City and finally to an old hotel near the shores of Lake Michigan in Bay View Michigan.

It was a lovely birthday. Bill and I joined about 300 people (most of them wearing cowboy hats making it more difficult that usual to spot Bill's head sticking up over the top of the crowd) at the Rogler Equipment Auction. This was the prelude to the land auction on October 19. The Rogler Trust, assisted by Auctineer Rick Griffin was selling everything from an old butter churn to a shiny blue tractor and three good looking pickup trucks. We stayed for just the first couple of hours as auctioneer and audience moved through three wagons of miscellany and then on to some old furniture, including several antique school desks, a beautiful tin bathtub and a big cast-iron caldron. Bill's number 67 was a many time winner as we became the proud owners of two rusted block & tackles, a hay saw, a 24" diameter grinding stone, a small wooden worktable with spindly metal legs and - treasure of treasures - a stack of maps and arial photographs of Matfield Green and surrounding dating back to 1938. $60 buys a lot.

There was some sadness - as Mary Rogler, a relative but not an heir, lost her bid for the butter churn to an antique dealer. We left before she had her chance to rescue her Uncle Wayne Rogler's saddle. I hope she got it.

Tom Burton, who has managed the ranch as long as anyone around here can remember seemed like he'd made his peace with the changes that have come and are coming. It's a major turning point for Matfield Green, seeing this ranch become something other than Rogler Ranch. And for most at the auction, we'd rather turn back than trust what is ahead.

At these auctions some local group always has a concession stand. Barbeque, chips, coffee are typical fare. And cake! We bought 4 pieces of homemade chocolate cake, brought it home and stuck a big candle in it. A happy Happy Birthday celebration.


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