Zeke finds a new destiny by waiting.
Zeke Pearson pulled up in his battered truck towing a horse trailer. He got out and examined the rippling field of wheat. He pushed back his feed cap and sighed.
“Not yit, but since I come all this way, I best stay until it is.”
From the back of the truck, he took a pup tent, blanket and a cooler. Unfolding a camp stool, Zeke sat outside the tent watching the field, as if doing so would hurry its ripening. The month of August was always hot, and iffen he still had his farm, he’d be relaxin’ on his porch with a beer and waitin’ too.
“Losin’ my last crop to locusts and hail; was the end. The bank took it all. I bin travelling ever since, looking for work. Didn’t happen.
“Then I heard tell of this harvestin’ contest! Decided to jump on it! I bin campin’ out anyway, so why not here?
“Iffen I win, I get a job as a farm hand on this spread. Bunk house, food, work clothes, the whole shebang plus salary!”
At first light every day, Zeke was up checking the crop. Day after day, he rubbed a stalk between his hands to see if the grain was ready to come off. Finally, first week of September, it was ready.
Harnessing his Clydesdale to the horse-drawn mower, Zeke began. As he cut swathes, people started gathering to watch. He worked from sunup to sundown for days. At last, he finished. Wiping the sweat from his face, he looked up to see a lady astride a palomino, smiling.
“Well sir, you’re the only contestant. Welcome to my farm. I’m Hattie Rebus. I got me a horse-drawn rake and thresher that you can finish this with.”
Zeke knew then he found his true place.