We’ve all heard the country song, Friends in Low Places and you may have even sang a line or two to of this if in a party type of mood. Well for me, I am finding as the years go by how much fun my friends in tractor places are. Many of the friends I have made over the years have actually been assignments that went beyond that and turned into a deep friendship. Others have been people we have met through the hobby that we clicked with. It is fun to find others that share your interests, form a bond with and create long-term friendships that last through the years.
No matter your hobby, this is probably something you too have done. I find when I interview collectors, whether you are talking tractors, toys, literature or something totally different that invariably when asked what their favorite thing about the hobby is they will say, “The people”.
Yesterday Keith and I attended the Penfield Historic Days show and I found that intertwining of friendship and hobby throughout the day. I sat for an hour in the golf cart chatting with my friend Annie Jansen that I met through The Graham Bradley Club. Annie and I hit it off and try our best depending on family and work obligations to meet and see something once every six weeks or so. We found we share a love of “seeing what is around the bend” and love to strike out and hit antique stores, museums, exhibits and historic homes. One of our biggest finds was an amazing Art Deco Catholic Church in Bloomington/Normal, Illinois. It not only filled the art side, but the spiritual one as well!
Keith and I had dinner with Chuck and Debbie Maxwell, a long standing tradition after the show. They were first an assignment through Red Power to write about their 2+2 tractor. Keith met Debbie at the auction and approached her about the story. Later we met up at an IH winter convention and we have all been solid friends since then. We meet up together and sometimes Debbie and I on our own. Kent and Jane Elliott were an assignment to write about their beautiful Minneapolis Moline UOPN, now we travel together to Florida most years and often share family celebrations. Dan Shima and his Patty are an extended part of our clan after meeting Dan years ago and writing about his EXTENSIVE MM collection. This is but a handful of the people we’ve met and love, the Doziers, the Elmores, the Freds and so on and so on!
The point is, take the time to make the conversations, share the hobby and beyond, you never know where it will lead you! You too will find friends in new places.