On Thursday, I arranged to meet a job shadower at the Wayne County Fairgrounds at 7:30 a.m.

It was a little earlier than I usually start, and as a college student, I imagine it was a little early for her, as well.

I had a good reason, though. I thought we could make it out to Crawford County before the rains came, to shoot some pictures of fieldwork at a family grain farm we’re featuring in our upcoming progress edition.

But as it turned out, I awoke to thunder and lightning and heavy rain soon followed.

I still met with the student, who is studying agricultural communications at Ohio State University’s Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster.

Different plans

But we changed our plans to do something different. Or, perhaps, more of the same.

It’s been a rainy mess all spring and we’ve written about it in at least three of our most recent editions.

If you’re a farmer, you don’t need me to tell you that it’s bad. You know already, and I’m sure you’re sick right now.

Felt guilty

As my job shadower and I traveled around Wayne County on Thursday, I felt kind of bad to even be writing about the wetness … again.

We took pictures of wet fields along the roadway, and of some produce vendors at the Kidron Auction who were experiencing a smaller crowd because of all the rain.

Mostly, we were trying to find a new way to tell the “wet” story and find new people to interview. The wet weather actually affects a lot more people and ag-related industries than I had realized.

We had some good conversations with auction staff, hay farmers and some produce marketers, who all shared their stories and how their business has been affected.

I half-jokingly said to my job shadower, “somebody’s gonna get mad and say to us, ‘how the heck do you think it’s affecting us?’”

Fortunately, no one got that gruff. But I was prepared to accept it if they did.

By the end of the day, we turned a canceled trip to western Ohio into something productive. And as a result, there will be some version of another wet story in this week’s paper.

The way it is

I can’t apologize for all the “wet” coverage. It’s kind of the biggest thing right now. And as a newspaper, we have to cover what’s happening. But I also understand people’s frustrations. I’ve been getting pretty upset myself.

I guess the only thing we can do is hope and pray it ends soon.

Harsh words and anger may be a good way to vent your emotions. I’ve muttered a few things myself most of this past week. But my huffing and puffing hasn’t dried it out any.

It will come eventually, everybody keeps saying.

Let’s just hope it’s sooner rather than later so we can get some planting done, and some more encouraging things in this newspaper.

Here are a few of the images we captured:

Chris Kick lives in Wooster, Ohio. An American FFA Degree recipient, he holds a bachelor’s in creative writing from Ashland University. He spends his free time on his grandparents’ farms in Wayne and Holmes counties.
Chris Kick
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