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Val Strate

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Everything posted by Val Strate

  1. For the Muses... You know who you are Wild Horses by The Rolling Stones Childhood living is easy to do The things you wanted I bought them for you Graceless lady you know who I am You know I can't let you slide through my hands Wild horses, couldn't drag me away Wild wild horses couldn't drag me away I watched you suffer a dull aching pain Now you decided to show me the same No sweeping exits or off stage lines Could make me feel bitter or treat you unkind Wild horses, couldn't drag me away Wild wild horses couldn't drag me away I know I've dreamed you a sin and a lie I have my freedom but I don't have much time Faith has been broken tears must be cried Let's do some living after we die Wild horses, couldn't drag me away Wild wild horses we'll ride them someday Wild horses, couldn't drag me away Wild wild horses we'll ride them someday
  2. Have I been summoned? Yes I'm around... Barely, or you could say 'Bearly' *giggles* sorry nature pun. I will try to keep tabs and be here.
  3. I know when I wrote with Valerie it was like music, the story would flow from my heart and my mind. Many times when she was writing with another muse in an emotionally charged moment my body would sometimes shake. Sometimes I would cry at some of the scenes wrote. When music was combined with writing, it felt like art, like painting in my mind. My point is... it's been so long since I wrote like that. There was a time I could write such emotion on my own and it's not that I can't do it anymore, I'm sure I can. It's just that, I haven't made time for such writing and now I find a lot of my emotions are reserved for my life. I find myself reserving emotions for my husband, my parents, people at church and my job, and honestly it can be overwhelming. To release into a muse may not work the same way it did when I was a student in college. I feel like I have to have a different angle to work with Valerie, but I haven't found what that was, and I miss the intensity of writing that I use to have when I was writing in college. Lately, I have pondered that angle. I have even made an attempt to re-direct with Valerie and write with "Pines and Principals". I often wonder if that is a vain attempt or if I can keep going. I do have thoughts to progress the story; I just haven't 'connected all the dots' yet. Muses are speaking now whether I can listen and can produce is another thing.
  4. A few days ago as I was driving down the local highway in the company vehicle, a similar sound floated on the radio waves and the tune from the local classic rock station sent a pang in my sentimental heart. The song that played was called "Wild Horses" and was performed by the band "The Rolling Stones". I felt my lip quiver and I could have cried but I knew I needed to keep my composure because I was picking up two of my "clients" in about a half hour and confidence is of the essence in my line of work. For it was about five years ago, I was sitting in a tiny dorm room, curled in a blanket and typing the Romance of a muse whom I adore. I could only dream of her life, and so I did in fan fiction. I met brilliant writers in Hnet and had been writing along side them about five years before that moment. We wrote, we composed masterpieces of computer written adventures that lived in our heads and were expressed with the tales and myths we wrote of the world of Hazzard and all who lived there. Some of the fables that were expressed were so soul filled that they needed background music as we wrote. One such song that was used with my muse and another was that very song, "Wild Horses". I could feel the muse that was buried inside my mind cry with tears. She ached for the love of her craft and for the fellow muses and their talents. I hope to return to writing but the life that I currently live has little time for my muse. However there is time for her, someday.
  5. I have recently had a very unfortunate event happen to me. I was a victim of crime. This event has happened to me before and I realize that I need to be more careful, maybe it's a warning from the powers that be that I need to be more careful and less trusting of the world. However... with that being said, I currently work in a line of work that I have to deal with budding criminal minds every day. I have to help them complete their court ordered obligations so they can begin the rehabilitation processes. Now, after being a victim today of crime... I am reminded how different I am from criminal minds and how much the same I am. I want justice to be served, at any cost. I am rational about all this but inside, I am pissed and want to vomit at the very thought that I could be working with individuals that could have done the same type of crime that I am a victim of. I feel anger and violation that leaves me feeling embarrassed, stupid, exposed, and naive. I hate the feeling and it's happened before. Unfortunately... I know it very will happen at some point in my life again. I hate that possibility and wish I could do everything in my power from it happening again. I didn't grow up on the wrong side of the tracks and I don't give a crap if someone else who did and feels they have the right to victimize me, or feel that they can just do what they want to because they were raised wrong. I don't give a crap if the world is ugly. I know for a fact, it's not all that way all the time! Why? Because I LIVED IT! I did live in a world of "Mayberry or Hazzard County" I lived in a world that even though you get lemons sometimes there is always lemonade. Not a world where people have no respect and have the right to make a conscious decision to commit a crime and have no regard for their victim. You know what, sociopaths like that can be disposed of... I don't care how, but it's sad that they have to exist in this world. If you have no respect for your fellow man and feel the world owes you everything, you can take a hike and get the heck out of town because you don't belong in "Mayberry or Hazzard County", and if you want what 'we' "Mayberry or Hazzard County" have, they you sure are not going to get it by trying to take it from us. Oh, sure, we're suppose to be understanding. We're suppose to do things that can protect ourselves and our property from your diabolical habits. After all, you can't help yourself, you're a criminal! All of the good, honest, honorable, hardworking, self-respecting people should bend to your life because you just can't help but commit crime. Who cares if you cause heartache, pain, suffering, hey the world owes you right, and that sucker shouldn't have been there in the first place. They had it coming... WRONG! What gives you the right to think that way? What gives you the right to make a black and white world gray? You can justify your actions to yourself all day long but in the end... YOU ARE WRONG! We all are. We all are sinners to some degree. The difference between you and me is the fact that I try to respect others, I try to live in "Mayberry or Hazzard County", and I put myself through hardships in order to obtain reward. I have privilege because I earned it! I learned the difference between right and wrong, and I played the game by the rules and I'm finally winning at it. It takes honor, guts and bravery to live life with respect and to not be a coward and do the evil thing, or the thing that is wrong but you make it right in your mind. I also know people who have less than I and live in the world I do and have way more than YOU, and I'm not talking about material wealth. People tell me to start seeing gray in the world; no it's about time that the world started to go back to black and white. Now yes, I know that the world is gray, but if I see the world your way, 'gray', I will lose my world of black and white, which you have already stepped on and attempted to destroy. Now for everyone out there who wonders who I am talking to...? It's the criminal mind out there. I just want all those who think that way... I am really starting to have a hate for you. Yes, it's a strong word but after what I have been through with the criminal world, I have that right. Sincerely, Valerie M. Strate
  6. Daisy stopped and paused mentally examining him for the moment. The sound of his voice echoed the foreignness of his presence here but to look at this young fellow he blended right in. Cooter’s voice came back into her mind and she suddenly could feel her gut wrench, “Boy, where exactly are ya from?†Joel bit down on the French fry that he held in his fingers as his eyes widened at her question. He slowly chewed on it as if time was dragging to a screeching hault at any moment. He swallowed then wiped his hands off on a napkin and cupped his hand over his mouth as he spoke till the food was gone from his palette. He knew this question would be coming. Something told him it would happen after Daisy hung up the phone, “I’m from Ohio, my folks farm is ‘bout an hour from Nellsonville.†“And what ya doin’ all the way down here?!†Daisy asked now changing her stance and crossing her arms. The hazel eyes now hardened slightly and the young man swallowed slightly before he spoke, thinking about his words carefully, “I’ve been hired to do a job here, then I’m headin’ back home.†“What kind of job?†Daisy asked sharply. She knew, the logger knew, that she knew and was trying to pin him down. Joel’s jaw locked for a moment and he just stared. Suddenly he realized more eyes were on him and Daisy. Joel consciously made his movements measured. Sliding his hand across his thigh where his napkin was placed, he pulled it away and wiped his face and tossed it on the counter, “Ya know, I always thought the South was suppose to be friendly to anyone but apparently you folks got a bug up your tails. “ The young cowboy pulled out his wallet and took out ten and placed it on the counter, “Keep the change.†“Whoa, whoa, ya ain’t answered my questioned!†Daisy snapped picking up the ten and putting it under the counter then rushing around the bar to confront the young man as he was walking away. Joel stared at her and could now see similarities in the young woman, something about her manner and that phone call made him now see the blond that punched him in the jaw. The redhead could feel himself boil slowly, “There is nothing to answer… You know who I am and what happened. You already have your opinion and now I’m not welcome here. So if you don’t mind ma’am, I’m going someplace where I can rest and maybe find something to eat in peace.†Daisy’s face fell, confusion now ragged in her, “Now just wait a cotton pickin’ minute!†“Ma’am please… just let me go; your family did this to me because of my hot temper… I don’t want to get into anymore with you.†Joel said as he gently touched the small gash by his eye that he cleaned up earlier before coming to the Nest. Daisy could now see the wound more clearly that she looked at him more directly. His eye was starting to swell just slightly. A part of her wanted him out of her face, a part wanted him to stay and tell her more, a part was just confused and wanted to scream; so she did none of it and just stared at the red-haired man as he replaced his hat and walked past her out the door.
  7. Oh wow! Thank you so much guys! I guess I definately need to pop in here more. I do love the dukes still and have the full box set at home. My husband and I love watching the DVDs on the few nights that we do have time together. I tell you, bliss for a Duke fan is marrying a Duke fan. Thank you so much for this honnor. I have wrote duke fan fiction, specializing in Enos fiction. I find writing calming and exciting. Thank you so much for the congrads everyone. I'm sorry I haven't been around as much but I hope to return and continue my writing.
  8. Oh boy, first cars! My first car was a 1989 charcoal Chevy Capric Classic. It was a boat of a car, and built like a tank. I had it for only a week after my driver's test and I ended up putting it in an 18 foot drainage ditch after going home from a 4-H meeting. It was late and another car was coming at me down a narrow country road and I over compensated and put the car down in the ditch. I had my seat belt on but was trapped in the ditch and water was just starting to leak in. I probably could have climbed through the window but my folks told me to remain still in a wreck and try to get help, (that's an oximooran right there if I ever heard one). So trapped in the ditch in the late hours of the evening, I simply screamed for help until the nearest farmhouse resident came and shined a flash light down in the ditch and found me. They told me to wait there and 911 was on the way. I was then helped out of the car by a friendly fireman and examined by EMT's. The only thing the emergency room found wrong with me was a case of new driver bruised pride and some black and blue marks that showed up a day or two later. I was told because I wore my seat belt, I was alive and not eject out the window and possibly under my car. Yes, seat belts save lives and that's not the first time I can thank a seat belt for saving me, and it won't be the last. So remember your seat belt! Buckle up for safety Buddy Roe!
  9. That is long overdue, however Captain, I'm pleased to salute you on Fan o' the Month! All the woodland creatures of Hazzard forest give you their best! You give great comentary and are an excellent debater. Congrads! Val
  10. Soon Joel was pulling into a gravel lot in front of the roadhouse. He noticed the hand painted sign with the wild pig. Something told the young man that he would be able to find local Southern hospitality and a hot, home-style meal. Joel got out of his truck and walked to the door, the air was hot and muggy and the noisy from inside could be hear vibrating through the door. It was Friday and getting close to the supper hour, the parking lot was packed and Joel hoped he was right on his instincts. Daisy was busy bussing tables and taking checks when she glanced up from a pile of dishes in one hand and a fist of money in the other to notice the long tall cowboy with the white Stetson walk into the Nest. Daisy smiled and called to the young stranger as he caught her glance, “I’ll be with ya in a sec but just come on in and make yerself at home sugar!†Joel hesitated but moved slowing inside more with his thumbs in his belt loops. He found a stool at the bar and took a seat. Daisy came back around the bar and wiped the spot in front of him down with a towel, “What can I get ya sugar?†The waitress was definitely friendly and attractive, he blushed slightly then smiled, “Well, I could go for some good Southern barbeque and the best cole slaw you got.†Daisy grinned and picked up the northern accent right away, “Ya a long way from home ain’t ya sug?†“Yes ma’amâ€, Joel smiled politely and removed his hat to sit on his knee, exposing the soft red wavy locks of hair. His hazel eyes grew soft and gentle, gaining a green hue to them. The young man watched Daisy move and she could tell his eyes were on her; however she didn’t seem to mind. He gave off a harmless and gentle vibe to her. She picked up a menu and handed it to him, “Here this might help ya… And ya said ya want slaw... Any taters to go with that sug?†“If you got French fries, I’ll take’em.†Joel answered looking over the menu then closing it, “With a pulled pork sandwich.†“K, ya want pulled pork, French fries, slaw and anything to wash that down?†Daisy asked as she scratched the order on her note pad. “A cold sweet tea would be fantastic.†“You got it! The tallest coldest sweet tea I can bring ya!†Daisy answered then disappeared into the kitchen. Joel watched her then turned around on his stool and looked out at the patrons at the establishment, as he took in the local culture. As he was starting to get lost in the moment of relaxation, the phone behind the bar rang and it caused him to turn around. Daisy quickly came out of the kitchen and picked up the receiver, “Hello, Boar’s Nest, Daisy speakin’?†The waitress paused and listened to what was being said on the other line. Her face started to go into an expression of shock, “Well, is Enos ok?!†Another pause and Joel started to watch her closer. Daisy twirled the phone cord between her fingers nervously, “Well that guy got some nerve! How much is bail?†Bail? Obviously, this waitress knew some folks that were in trouble, probably legal trouble which now caused Joel to take more interest. Daisy bit her lower lip as she gazed at the ground, “You tell Uncle Jesse to sit tight and I’ll… But Cooter! Fine! But if I see that fella I’m gonna give him a piece of my mind! Causing trouble in traffic then startin’ a fight with the boys!... I don’t care if Bo started it Cooter. No pushy Yankee is gonna cause trouble for my family!... I will not!... Cooter!†With that Daisy frowned and looked at the phone in disgust and hug up. Joel suddenly put two and two together and realized this waitress probably had connections with the boys he encountered before. He took a deep breath then decided to play things cool. The waitress then disappeared into the kitchen and came back with Joel’s meal and drink. She sat the items down before him, “There sug, you just enjoy yourself and if ya need anything just holler.†“Thank you.†Joel answered then took a sip of ice tea, “Actually there is… can you tell me how to get to the Hazzard Hotel?â€
  11. i1976, I've always loved your portals of Daisy and Enos. You are not a fool. Brian is right and the fact that you keep on with your creativity makes you a true artist. You give something you love, your own look and style. I love your style. I know my own is different but that's the beauty of being a fanfic writer and an artist. You develope a style which is a sense of giving the world a peice of yourself. I love your work and would love to see more.
  12. Oh Roger, I'm rolling on the floor laughing at all the pics and feeling younger and younger by the moment. I love the pictures, flapjacks, flash, buzzards, buzzsaws, pony and Judas Priest, all of it. It's enough to make a 30 something go to 3! Ya'll are great friends for pick me ups. Yeah, Roger, I'm around but I'm in short supply these days. I wish I come around more. I know I need to write. It would help me go back to that youthfulness and get rid of stress. Thanks guys.
  13. For all of those who have been around here a while and maybe some new folks that can shed light on this dilema... Why is it, I feel old? Does anyone look in the mirror and go, Gaaaahhhh! in the morning and say, 'Where did the time go?'. I talk to people younger than me all the time and they tell me they love the Dukes but can't tell me a thing about the show. Yes the Dukes of Hazzard is Iconic we all know and are greatful, but as a fan of the orginial, do you ever get that longing, mid-life crisis feeling of 'I wish I could see John and Tom as Bo and Luke again!'. I guess I came up with a solution answer to my own question, 'Pop in a DVD'. But then when it's over you have that Napoleon Dynamite voice, saying, 'Gosh! I am so old..." Just a reflection here in the perverbial pond of life... Tossing a pebble in to see the ripples it may create or will it sink into the bottom of the pond without hardly a sound? Maybe I'm having "Cabin Writer's Fever".... Who knows... Hooo.... hooo! Rosco P. Coltrane... That's Who! *laughs* I crack myself up... into tiny peices. Ooo one fell on the floor. Opps, made a mess.
  14. I'd love to attend the 17th however the 'Strate' family is having their annual Christmas party at 4pm EST and I don't know when that will end. Could be 6pm but it could be 8pm. So I may not be able to attend. On the 20th, I am out on patrol till 7pm EST and have to come home to supper. So the earliest I could come on is again, 8pm EST. See a pattern? I'd love to attend and see everyone but I don't think folks will be sticking around till that late if you start at 6pm. Just a suggestion but some of us second shifters can't make that.
  15. Daney, I will keep you in my prayers. I hope you find comfort and peace. Val
  16. Thank you i1976 for the compliment. It's hard getting back in the grove but I'm trying. I am glad to have fellow Hneters who love Enos. I'm glad to see pendragon writing again too. She's one heck of a writer. Thank you for your gesture. Writers need support and to hear it from you, means a lot. Thank you. Val Strate
  17. Joel headed a little farther down the mountain till he came to a main road. As the wheels turned on the pavement making a low growl as speed increased, so did the boiling temper of the driver. Joel couldn’t believe the blatant disrespect people had for each other here and the law. Men older than him out joy riding and terrorizing the local law enforcement, it was proof that Joel needed to make his money and get back home. He toyed with the idea of possibly living in the south and leaving the Ohio foothills behind. Nelsonville was a hole, the armpit of Ohio. It was a college town filled with drugs, hippy liberals, and shady business. Joel wanted no part of it. Sure his family’s farm was an hour from that town but it was where he cut his teeth and became a man. The only good thing in his mind about that town was the college that helped him hones his wildlife and backwoods skills. The farm was essential gone now, bought up by land developers. All that was left there was mama’s house; she was a school teacher for the local district. Joel’s older brother was married to a girl in Kansas and farmed ground there. As for his daddy, the man rested in peace in the little church cemetery not far from the farm. He died doing what he enjoyed, being out logging trees. Joel still remembered the day; Mr. Steenson came to the door and delivered the news to Mama. She took it hard but managed to come out of it and raise two hard working young men. Joel and his brother held close to the lessons Mama taught them, which was more valuable than any material wealth that she couldn’t give them. Now all he had was his dog, his truck, the few clothes in his suit case, the logging tools he had from working logging. His money was getting thin. The contractor was lean on his payments to his employer. Something told Joel even though he wanted out of Nelsonville so bad, he shouldn’t have left Steenson’s logging company. Every job after those days had been worse and worse. As the stew of thoughts boiled within, he found his turn to the mill. Once he arrived and dropped the load of logs, he took the pay and folded the cash up into the envelope that Nat had given him for the company money. Joel was instructed to take a hundred out for himself and the rest into the envelope for Nat to disperse later to the rest of the men. Transactions were done in cash. It made Joel wonder why cash only? As he got back into the pickup, he noticed the sign on the sawmill said, “Hogg’s Saw Millâ€. It was now five o’clock and his work was done for the day. Now it was onto finding a place called Hazzard where he had a pre-paid room waiting for him. However, food would have to come before rest. Joel remembered passing a sign that said, ‘Boar’s Nest’ and it looked like a truck stop joint. The south was known to have good local BBQ joints and Joel was a sucker for spicy ribs. The boy had two hollow legs. That’s how his Mama explained where Joel put all his food since he barely gained a pound when he ate.
  18. As the F350 roared to life and away from the scene with driver fuming mad, Valerie rushed over to the group of men left standing there, “What the bleep was that!†Bo looked sheepish at the female Strate rubbing the back of his hand with his other, “You tell me. We were just bein’ us and this coppertop yank who thinks he’s a cowboy comes…†“Bo, we were in the wrong. We just happened to go around the curb cause Enos to wreck because the logging truck was there and…†Luke tried to reason with his younger cousin. “Enos wouldn’t have wrecked if that truck wasn’t there! It’s that guy’s fault not ours… Side’s no one comes up Iron Mountain to log less they’re crazy. You get much past this road and the sides start getting’ steeper and the ground get too loose and rocky to really manage logging.†Bo retorted. “Yeah, but he’s got a right to be on the road too Bo… but ya make a point. He must be really hard up for money, ignorant of the danger of Iron Mountain, or being paid a ton of money to get the logs off this mountain. “ Luke rubbed his chin in thought. “Look, I don’t know who did what… but Bo you don’t have any right to hit anybody. Enos is hurt and that Yank helped him out, Yankee logger or not.†Val protested. “Val ain’t ya the least bit curious as to who is paying this guy to log out Iron Mountain?†Luke quizzed her. As the dark haired woman’s mind spun with questions and concern she was redirected by Luke’s point, “Yes…but Enos is hurt and… Dang it!†she chewed her lower lip folded her arms in thought. Luke was right who was that fella and what business did he have up there, “That’s National Forest land, folks around Hazzard I know are trying to get too made into Wilderness Area, but their efforts are getting shot down all the time because of local…†Valerie suddenly bit her lip. Rosco started to glare at her with a hard blue gaze then stammered, “Jit-jit-nit! Awright ya noisy Dukes I’m gonna lock ya up for endangering an officer of the law, for wreckless operation of a vehicle, for interfering’ with county business, and her-rassin’ the tourists!†Luke looked at Bo then to Val, “Rosco what business besides Enos getting in an accident does the county have in this?†“Well, you’re interfering’ with the clearin’ of Iron Mountain.†“Val just said that’s National Forest land, what does the county want with national forest land and how’s that tie in with that redheaded northern bean pole logger?†Luke asked. “Jit-Jit-JEET! Luke Duke… now yer askin’ too many questions in front of the wrong authorities! Fer that I’m placing ya under arrest.†With that Rosco slapped the cuffs on Luke and Bo. Luke frowned and knew that the current situation wasn’t a good time to flee, with the General boxed in by the ambulance, Val’s truck and a sheriff’s car. “Comm’on Bo… Let’s go. Maybe Uncle Jesse can scrap something to get us out again.†Luke sighed as Rosco hauled the boys over to the back of his car and put them inside. “I’ll be talking to you boys soon. Don’t give up hope guys.†Val shouted to them as they were taken away. “Never do… See ya Val.†Luke smiled and waved to the dark haired Game Warden. Valerie stood alone for a moment and went back to the medics and her brother. The medics said they would take Enos to Tri-County for more testing but it looked like just a mild concussion. Val nodded and squeezed her brother’s hand as he smiled at her before they shut the doors. “Don’t worry Val. I’m gonna be fine. Head just hurts a little. I’ll be awright… Promise…†Enos smiled. “I know… You rest. I’ll see ya in a bit.†Val grinned back then let go and watched the ambulance take Enos away. Even more questions spun in the woman’s head now, and more concern flooded her mind. Rosco knew something that was certain. Who was that redheaded man and where the heck was he from and why? Why Iron Mountain? What did people want with it?
  19. I know I am two days late on this, but I remember 9/11 well. I got up late that morning and skipped my first class of the day at the local community college. I figured I'd go to my afternoon classes after lunch. I was hungry and it was almost nine when I woke up. I did my normal day to day routine and went outside to feed and water cows, even though I was late getting to the barn. After filling the trough with water from the hose and dumping a coffee can of sweet feed into the bunk, I rushed back into the house. My father was out for some reason. I can't remember why. My mom was at work. She was working for a government contractor on a government research station area. I knew since my mom wasn't home that I could surf online without having her look over my shoulder. Funny, at 21 years of age and in college full time, with a forty to thirty hour week job, I still fell completely under my mother's thumb down to the print. Yet I dared every once in a blue moon to buck the system. One of my guilty pleasures was following the yahoo group, Hazzard County Sheriff's department. I logged on and found our AOL home page having a picture of the twin towers on them with smoke billowing out the side and a plane lodged into the windows. I first thought it was a joke or a trailer or ad for a new sick twisted Hollywood horror flick. I read the front page and felt a sick lump in my throat. I emailed my mother's work email and I remember asking her, "What is going on? The world trade center was just hit by a plane and flights are grounded. Is the world ending? What's going on mom? Love you daughter..." Funny thing irony is, the person you so want to rebel against and want to leave you alone any other day, is the one you run to for love, support, and protection in time of trial. 9-11, was the beginning of a changing era for me. Life was no longer carefree, innocent, and abundance. This tragedy marked the start of leaving my innocence and naive nature behind and becoming a woman. After I emailed my mother, I went to the television and ate a blow of chili while I watched the tower's collapse. I remember watching the news anchors talking about the buildings and not realizing the towers were collapsing. I remember shouting at the TV, "They're gonna fall! You idiot! They fell! THEY FELL!" As if my warnings could stop it... Later that day, my father came home and we worked on cattle fence. I knew he was just as upset as I. We didn't talk much about it that night. The next day we went to a radio station and donated some money. It was an hour drive for us to get there just to give some money toward a Red Cross fund that was started to head to ground zero from my local area. Even though I was a college kid supported heavily by my folks, I still felt the need to give. Today, I look at things much different than then. Ten years makes a person think, events shape the minds of people and leave scars on hearts. 9-11 shaped me, it shaped my husband even more and he's six years younger than I. Yes, Terrorists did make an impression on the youth of our nation. It made us realize that the 90’s were a gift, a time of false security. 9-11 woke my generation up so we all don't go completely soft. After 9-11 many of my friends, enlisted and went into the service. Many went overseas to fight terror, friends, classmates, loved ones. I would later in my life run into military vets that are the same age as me. I would later meet a young woman my age, torn by divorce, losing friends in her unit, and getting wounded all by the time she was 23. 9-11 has made me count my blessings. It made me realize how cold the world can get. I some days wish I would have gone out to fight against terror on the front lines, but then I realize... I wouldn't have the life I have today. Always remember... Remember 9-11 and remember those who died in freedoms name because they were free.
  20. About ten years ago, I came bounding onto the HCSD, with my pigtails and ranger hat on. Today, I rarely make a peep, and many know why. I have a good reason for my silence however I have and will never truly leave. Recently this past June, I got married and I now live with my spouse. We are happy and had a beautiful wedding. All the while before I met him, I came here, to Hazzardnet. I met a wonderful group of friends. I wrote Dukes of Hazzard fanfic with many of them. We all became close. I still call many of those folks my friends and they have given me so much friendship and love over the years, even in the time that I started to pull away from the computer and started to see my now husband more. My friends stood by me and understood. I just want to say to all of you (you know who you are), thank you. Thank you for the words, the gifts and the support. I love you all and you will never truly leave me. Love, Your friendly Neighborhood Game Warden - Val Strate
  21. “Yeah… yeah… I-I-I’m awright…†The deputy stuttered out softly as he braced himself up from the car. As the pair was talking the orange Charger stopped by the guardrail and a blond man poked his head out the window and slid halfway out of the car, “Enos! Ya awright buddy?!†Joel looked up with scorn at the two men who where now coming out of the muscle car and over to the scene more, “He says he’s alright but I don’t trust that answer. I think this man needs to see a medic. He’s pretty shook up.†“Really sir. I-I-I’m awright…. Just a little…†Enos stuttered out again then dipped down slightly, catching himself. The redhead caught Enos by the arm and Bo jumped out of the car, while Luke radioed Tri-County. “Rosco, Cletus, or Val, ya’ll got your ears on. I need a medic from Tri-County to Curvy Pines Road, on the second curve along Iron Mountain.†Luke spoke into the mic. The color slowly washed from the deputy’s face and Enos dipped forward again into the arms of the young man in front of him. Joel caught the older man and held him up. Within, minutes more patrol cars came and a squad surrounded the scene on the mountainside road. Joel rendered the injured man over to the paramedics just as another sheriff and a woman dressed in ranger type uniform came running over. The sheriff came up to Joel and the two young men, and started to bark out accusations, “Awright! What trouble did you two Dukes cause for this young man and Enos here!†“Look Rosco, we were just havin’ a chase with Enos when we took a curve too sharp and we didn’t see the log truck and…†Luke started to explain when he was cut off by the cowboy dressed yank. “Sheriff sir, these men are reckless operators of a vehicle! They caused your deputy to run his car off the road and almost caused me to lose control of my rig! Do you have any idea what that could have cost me, my employer and the man who hired the company I work for! Hundreds of thousands! Not only that but you could have had a disaster on your hands all because these two hot shots, think it’s cool to race around mountains! Seriously, grow up! You two look older than I by a good five or six years and you’re still running around in muscle cars and probably chasing tail. Grow up and get a real job. “The redheaded logger snapped fiercely at the Duke Cousins. That’s when Bo came forward shaking his finger, “Now just wait a cotton pickin’ minute! Ya got no right talkin’ to Luke and me that way mister!†Even though the blond was taller by only a couple of inches the redhead stood his ground and snorted at the blond, “You want to make a plea for respect when you almost cost a lawman his life and nearly take out me, my rig and my dog! I’ll talk to you this way if I want to because you don’t deserve the air in which you’re using to pronounce those words with mister!†“That’s it!†Bo snapped coming at Joel with a right hook. The redhead reeled back from the punch then staged back on his feet and cupped his left eye which was slightly bleeding from a tear in the skin. The hazel eyes boiled and got a copper cast to them, as Joel gritted his teeth and clenched his fists. He sucked in a breath and glared at Bo. Swallowing hard, Joel looked over at Roscoe, “Sheriff, I want to press charges on this man. I’m also contacting my lawyer.†“Jit, jit!†Roscoe stammered as he watched the angered logger stamp off to his truck. The dark haired female Game Warden, Ms. Valerie Strate caught only the tail end of the altercation, as she stepped back from the ambulance which her brother was being treated in. The doors closed shut after she got out and just as she witnessed the red haired young man get his clock cleaned by Bo Duke. She sucked in a deep breath and watched in horror. What on earth would cause Bo to hit that man?! The last thing she saw was Joel’s promise to press charges on the Dukes and his storming back to his truck.
  22. You know what... Santa finally got all of it for me this year. Except for the Trans-Siberian Orchestra tickets! I would have to say... I'm truly blessed. God and Santa must really love me. I hope you all had a Merry Christmas this year and that it's filled with everything you wish for in life.
  23. Thank you Daney, but please don't draw attention to it. I just put it up online while I was doing it because I thought it would motivate me, not for acollades.
  24. Sorry about my statement. I shouldn't have posted it.
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