Friday, September 07, 2007

The Bean Field


Across the street from where I grew up there was a vast field. It was called Carlough’s Field, but it was better known as the Bean Filed. From what I understand Carlough had grown beans in that field back in the in the 1930s. Other than his name being associated with the field; I have no idea who Carlough was. He didn't live on the farm.

This, by the way is a photo of me when I was four years old with a small portion of the Bean Field in the background. I am pictured with Lynn, my oldest brother’s girlfriend. Both my brother and Lynn are no longer alive.

My earliest memories of the Bean Field were of it just being a field. Every year someone would come by with a tractor and cut the grass. I don't recall the grass ever being baled. When the grass was tall one could easily get lost in the field. I can recall just laying in the grass and spending hours looking at clouds floating over head.

The Bean Field was my source of entertainment and discovery from age 4 to my mid teens. When I was seven someone did some soil and gravel mining in the back part on the hill. This action exposed a water spring and made a pond. It also exposed a wonderland of fossils.

There were all sorts of natural things to discover there, be it pollywogs, dragon flies, or foxes and rabbits. It was also a great place for a kid to dig in the dirt and study rocks.

A few years later a developer built a strip mall with an A&P grocery store on about ten acres on the North end, but fortunately most of the bean field was still intact. Then a few years later they built a Savings and Loan bank on an acre right across from the photo above. Next a cinder block strip mall structure was built behind the bank that was never finished and stood until I left twenty years ago. That structure has since been destroyed; however the bean field is all gone now. There are now, as I understand it roads and condominiums all through the Bean Field and all the woods in the hills behind the field are now developed as well.

It is sad to think that there are no longer any wild areas for young children who live there to explore and discover like I did. Nature to them is a manicured lawn with maybe a bird feeder if they are lucky.

I feel lucky to be living here, however much of the natural areas around where I now live have been clear cut, paved over and built upon. Had I grown up here I would probably be saddened just as much as I am saddened about where I used to live.

10 Comments:

Blogger Auntie said...

I spotted that grin and knew right away that is was you!

7:54 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

Such a cute little boy your were!
And what a wonderful place to explore while growing up. We used to have fields, barns, horses, etc. nearby - all sorts of marvelous things to be surrounded by as a child. It's all houses and stores now.
Kids today have to walk (or be driven to!) a park to discover nature.

10:59 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Beth, that was the last time I was ever cute, but thanks.

4:28 PM  
Blogger Auntie said...

Beth, Guy always says this about his youth!

He is still adorable, curmudgeonly, but adorable.

5:46 PM  
Blogger Astorianna said...

I feel fortunate to live here, too, at the moment. But the way this place is going to hell in a condo, or about to be towered over by lng tanks, the quality of life will soon suck. And be unaffordable.

And I thought this would be where I'd stay for the rest of my life.

That concept looks less and less likely with every corrupt and misbegotten move the powers that be in this town make.

Greed is always the spoiler, isn't it?

9:23 PM  
Anonymous gearhead said...

All of us here in Oregon will have a say in how Oregon will look in the future, through the passage of Measure 49.
Please Check this out:

http://yeson49.com/

Then Vote YES!

Pass it on!

9:27 PM  
Blogger Mike S said...

I don't know what Gearhead's Prop is, but Y'All better puttin' up a buncha roadblocks to development as we have before it's too late. Every kid should have a 'bean field', even if it's just an empty lot in the city:)

3:29 AM  
Blogger Mom of Three said...

OMG it's Opie!

10:25 PM  
Blogger RobbKidd said...

Just to update, I guess once you left the expanded the A+P shopping mall, built all the way up the hill with one side McMansions, and the other side Condo's- That was where I was living for a while, and it was the only way I could afford to stay in town any longer. Thanks for your story, I vaguely remember from my childhood with the military encampment there, but as I emerged into childhood they used that field for a Carnival for a few years. I try to explain it to people of what it used to be there and that can happen anywhere if were not careful.I guess the saying "you can't go home again" is quite true.

8:08 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

MO3, shut up...LOL

Robb, ahhh, the carnival story is yet to come. I have other bean field stories as well. One coming up in November.

8:23 AM  

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