Dear Mr. Gash

Dear Mr. Gash,

You don’t know me, but we’ve talked a time or two. I live down the road from you a bit. I wake most mornings to the site of your longhorns grazing just a few hundred yards from my home. They’ve become a regular part to the view I’ve come to enjoy of the country life Eminence offers. This life has brought back memories of a life I left far behind as a child raised in central Kansas, constantly going to my grandpas, walking through the fields, riding the tractors, and enjoying the wide open spaces.

Ok, enough of that. As you can probably tell I don’t know how to start this letter. So I’ll stop, because I can get longwinded getting to my point.

You have something I want. Well, I don’t know if it’s “me” that wants it. Not that long ago it wasn’t even on my radar screen, even when it was on it was on my wife’s, in a way. Did God put it on her heart and I just didn’t listen? Was it a preview of things to come? I don’t know. And that doesn’t matter now, because God’s put me where I am, right now, to do what He has for me to do, right now.

I want to buy (rent, lease, buy on contract… I don’t know) the building you have for sale at the corner of SR 42 and SR 142 in Eminence. That one that’s been for sale for the entire 9-10 years I’ve lived her. The one that’s had graphitti come and go, the grass grow and get cut, the windows broken and be covered up with boards.

This one:

 

Ok, so I’ve got that out. It took me months to even say that, and then to write it down. Do I really believe this is something for me? Do I really want to “give up” some much (all?) of the “convenience” of my current career for something much less for-sure, for something crazy, and perhaps even foolish?

So why in the world would I want to do this? That’s me asking myself as much as I’d expect to be asked by you. I don’t know how many other people you’ve had interest in on this piece of property, what kind of state it’s in, or what you hope to get from it. If God is in this, it won’t matter.

I want to provide our community, and in particular, our school, with a place. A place to meet. A place to socialize. A place to be yourself. I see men crammed around a table at the gas station most mornings, talking, laughing, and being themselves.

What do I want to do with this? I’m not entirely sure. Some of these are hopes and dreams, other of them are what I believe are must-haves for our community, even if they’re vague.

A PLACE FOR YOUTH

From what I’ve heard, we have one of the smallest schools in the state. To have K-12 in a single school is practically unheard of in this day of consolidation and downsizing. Perhaps it won’t be that way forever, but it is now. A school full of country-raised kids, and also full of city kids transplanted to the country for who knows what reason. And what do they have to do after school? Sports. Home. Work. There’s all sort of places they can head. But how many of those places are there for them? Sure, we can try to “keep them busy” or “keep them out of trouble,” but are we really building anything into their lives?

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