Home for Good, I’m Sure

“You help get his crop in, he helps get your crop in. Never a dime is exchanged.”

Produced by Rebecca Werner with interviews recorded by StoryCorps, a national nonprofit whose mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives. www.storycorps.org


Hold a Conversation

Can you imagine leading a conversation about this story? Where? With whom? What kinds of questions would you pose? (See How to use the questions for reflection for one approach.) Please email your questions to us or post them in the comment box for our consideration. If you use them in an actual discussion, let us know how the conversation went.


Transcript for Home for Good, I’m Sure

South of Division Road is home.  It’s still an agriculture atmosphere throughout southern Porter County.  That’s what’s really neat about it.  One stoplight in Kouts, no stoplights in Malden, but we’re also close enough to city that we can be there in ten minutes.  This is home.  This is where I’m from, this is where my family’s at, this is where I farm.  It’s where my friends are, and this is something that I can’t leave.  

Well, you know that I’ve been here six years now.  That’s when I met you.  Six years ago, we lived in a street in town in Jasper County, Indiana—in Rensselaer.  It’s amazing how I didn’t get to know my neighbors down there.  As soon as you come into a more of a rural/ag setting, I know almost every neighbor within a few miles versus right just next door down there when you don’t even know their name.  That’s on me, but you tend to want to know—and you’re closer with—people who come from your same background, or have your same views, and it’s definitely that way up here.  For the several years that I was in Francesville, Indiana, in a seed corn company, it was amazing how fathers and sons always went their separate ways.  They very rarely worked together.  And I really didn’t like that, and as I came up here I—it felt much more like home.  I can’t say that I could ever see going anywhere.  You know, with the home we’ve purchased now you and I just got done building along with some other family—more barns, this will be home for good, I’m sure.   

We have a close community up there where we live.  Close family.  We build things.  We build homes, we build barns, we all work together and help each other out.

And what’s funny is, all that’s done with never a drop of money being exchanged.  And you and your brother, I know, and now even me with a few acres—they’re all worked together.  Everyone owns different pieces of equipment, or especially you and your brother and the neighbor there, and you help get his crop in, he helps get your crop in.  Never a dime is exchanged.  It’s utterly amazing to me that that can happen in today’s world.  And that’s why it’s almost like taking a step back in time here.  There’s twelve cows out there, twelve steers, so as soon as they’re ready, everyone gets meat from those steers, so we all—you know, and never money is exchanged, and as soon as the 4-H season’s over, these hogs will go to slaughter so that we all have pork in our freezers.  And no money, again, will ever exchange hands.  And for no one to feel slighted, for no one to feel like it’s unfair—that’s a way to raise a family.