Roll your window down

Published 10:12 am Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I know. You are riding along in your temperature-controlled vehicle that keeps it somewhere between 72 and 73 degrees. The windows seal up perfectly, the tires emit no roar, sound-deafening insulation is in the dash, under the floorboards and in the doors. It is so quiet you don’t even know you are moving. The seat is adjusted at just the right height and depth, the steering wheel tilted at the most advantageous angle and the radio with its surround-sound speakers is rolling out crystal clear notes.

Now here is what I want you do.

Roll the window down.

That’s right, just before you get to that freshly dug field of peanuts, roll the window down. And while you are at it, forget that $50 haircut and stick your head out. Now inhale deeply. Let it roll down your throat and curl around in your lungs. Let it tantalize your taste buds. That’s peanuts, baby. Homegrown, lip-smacking, just-dug goobers, filling the autumn air with their intoxicating aroma, shouting to the world that harvest season has arrived.

Let me tell you what you are smelling. That aroma is the end result of planning, planting, spraying, cultivating and spreading. It’s fretting, worrying, praying, studying, hoping, scraping, worrying (did I say that?), rejoicing and reflection. Laying out there between the rows is a busted bearing that broke off the disc, a broken chain that came off the planter, an indentation where the tractor tire went flat and drops of sweat scattered about. It is the ground that gave all it had to the peanut plant that did all it could.

And now it is done. Finished. Over. That aroma is its way of telling you the journey is complete. It is a free gift to any that would pass by, whispering into the wind “enjoy.”

But you need to roll your window down.

REX ALPHIN of Walters is a farmer, businessman, author, county supervisor and contributing columnist for The Tidewater News. His email address is