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Rural Georgia…Rural America???

Rural Georgia..gonna get a little philosophical here….just giving you all fair warning…but go ahead, try it, you’ll like it…

This driving around rural Georgia led me to wonder about this state I lived in for over 10 years and never fully appreciated for its diversity.

Seems for all my years in Atlanta, I had spent more time going in and out of Hartsfield Airport flying over all this cool stuff.

Kind of like George Clooney in “Up in the Air”, I was that typical road warrior with the Platinum and Million Miler Status ( had it on two major airlines when I retired no less!) that some folks thought was neat. Simply meant I spent way too much of my life on an airplane.

I remembered a similar existence in NYC. On one flight back into LGA ( La Guardia-you get to know the airport alphabet soup after a few years) I remembered looking out the window and realizing the leaves were in their colorful Fall glory—trouble is I was in shock to see this –where had the year gone-what happened?? Geez, I was missing so much riding up here in the clouds.

So it only took me another 25 years to remedy things…

Hey, at least I was trying to remedy it ☺

So now sitting in my RV, the geeky and inquisitive side of me wondered about just how important all this rural/agricultural stuff was to a state like GA. After all, I wrote earlier I was in “authentic rural” Georgia–Cordele, GA…watermelon capital of the world-and, of course, there’s a Watermelon Queen— I was loving seeing all this stuff.

From the experts at GA agriculture:

Climate & Soil
• A humid subtropical climate with mild winters and hot moist summers is characteristic of most of Georgia. This, combined with a variety of soil types from the coast to the mountains, makes it an ideal place to produce a diverse variety of crops and livestock.
• Monthly average temperatures range from a high of 92.2°F to a low of 32.6°F.
• Geographically, Georgia can be divided into eight soil provinces or major land resource areas.

Crops
• Georgia produces almost half of the peanuts produced in the U.S. each year.

• Georgia was the first colony to produce cotton commercially, first planting it near Savannah in 1734.

Georgia ranks third nationally in cotton production.

• Although Georgia is called the Peach State, it actually ranks third in United States peach production behind California and South Carolina.

• In 1986, Georgia passed legislation giving Vidalia onions, known by many as the sweetest onion in the world, legal status and defining the 20-county production area.

The Vidalia onion was named Georgia’s official state vegetable in 1990.

• Vegetable production has increased significantly in Georgia. Georgia’s top five vegetables are onions, watermelon,(and I am sitting in the watermelon capital!!) tomatoes, sweet corn and bell peppers.

General
• One of out of seven Georgians works in agriculture, forestry or a related sector.
• Agriculture contributes about 12%, annually to Georgia’s economic output.
• More than 65% of Georgia is in forestland. Forestry is a $16.7 billion per year industry in Georgia.
• Georgia’s top ten commodities in order of their rank are broilers, cotton, eggs, timber, peanuts, horses, beef, greenhouse products for ornamental horticulture, dairy, and container plants from nurseries.
• Georgia ranks first in the U.S. in the production of peanuts and pecans.—

Now to some none of this might seem too interesting, and I respect that (yeh right-guess you don’t know me too well – this IS interesting stuff!)

But this was sobering…

After all, this city boy (Boston, Philadelphia, New York City, Dallas and Atlanta) who had become an avid outdoorsman still didn’t appreciate all of these things and about the importance of all these agricultural economics. For all my fishing, hunting, hiking and photography trips I was too often simply “passing through” before needing to get back to the “real world”—maybe the “real” world was right there all along and I failed to see enough of it.

OK—so this is one of those “philosophical” blog posts…but I think that is part of this journey…to slow down and do a little reflection from time to time…

And, don’t forget I did blog earlier I might write something “unexpected” – so this is one of those posts. Fact is, I am pretty glad I am finally remedying things…

This journey is perhaps long overdue…

Glad to have my feet solidly on the ground…no more seeing things from 36,000 feet…

See you down the road…not in an airport

2 Comments Post a comment
  1. suzanne #

    great writitng

    April 28, 2012
    • Stephen #

      Thanks for taking a look…glad you like…appreciate the feedback.

      April 28, 2012

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