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View from the Cab: Bump? Hold my beer

A Rough Road sign shown near Lexington in McLean County last week / CIFN photo.

A sign spotted along a county highway the other day pretty much sums up 2020.

The sign simply read “rough road.” Better yet, I saw another sign which indicated a bump was ahead. If you want to talk about bumps in the road, just look at this year. The ag industry already experienced a very challenging 2019 but then 2020 came along and said “hold my beer.”

As if things weren’t bad enough with trade uncertainty and low commodity prices, this virus came pretty much out of nowhere. We have seen some small attempts at a market rally during the past several weeks but I’m still waiting for that big June price rebound we heard about earlier this year.

To add insult to injury, a handful of growers near the Livingston and McLean county line experienced a flooding rain in a short amount of time last week. These were the same growers that had drought-like conditions in their fields for the prior few weeks. Farms just a few miles away hardly received anything. This is the perfect example of the unpredictability we are facing this season.

Since it is a crazy year already, why not have a lonely bear walking through Illinois? The bear has gained quite a bit of social media attention since it was noticed in Iowa making its way east for several days. This prompted warnings from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to leave the animal alone and don’t get too close if trying to take photos and look at it.

Dust from the Sahara in Central Illinois? It happened last week, too. You know I can’t make this stuff up. Once it lifted into the Midwest, the result was haziness, a red sun and poorer air quality for allergy and asthma sufferers. What’s next – murder hornets making their way here from the west? Oh wait, we already heard that one before.

You can get your mind off all of these 2020 troubles by taking in a Fourth of July celebration. Make the trip to Chenoa for the annual parade which steps off at 2 p.m. and the fireworks at dusk. The family and I will be there broadcasting the parade live on the Central Illinois Farm Network Facebook page. It will be the perfect way to celebrate our country’s independence.

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