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Hartselle Enquirer

Inflation hurts everybody 

By Clif Knight 

The cost of living in south Alabama is just as high as it is in Morgan County, Geanell and I discovered as we spent a week vacationing on the white sand beaches of Gulf Shores and Fort Morgan this past week. 

The money we spent for regular grade gas was $120 to get there and back in a 4-cylinder car driving at about the speed limit.  

The cost to drive the same distance in the same car this time last year was $80.  

The cost for food was also driven by the onslaught of inflation. We spent $20 each for an order of fried shrimp and fried catfish. The same meals cost $12 each last year.  

To offset the high cost of transportation, we planned for cheaper meals that were prepared and served at the beach cottage. Spaghetti with meat sauce replaced barbecue, and chicken and rice was a substitute for grilled hamburgers. Reuben sandwiches and dips filled in between meals.  

Despite the added expense, the trip was an enjoyable one. It was a once- or twice-a-year opportunity for Geanell and four of her six first cousins, spouses and friends to get together and spend quality time reminiscing, playing cards and sharing each other’s company.  

The seven-hour trip was made more pleasant than usual by the shift from winter to spring. The fresh green appearance of the foliage was eye-catching, and we enjoyed the blooming plants in Gulf Shores.  

However, there was a lack of planted cropland. You couldn’t help but be surprised by not seeing corn and other crops growing in the large fields. I’m wondering if the absence of crops is a result of the high cost of fertilizer this spring.  

Returning home, I’m reminded of a ton of work that needs to be done around the house. The yard looks like a field with all the weeds outgrowing the grass. The garden looks more like a small lake.  

Time’s a-wasting for growers of produce for a farmers’ market. Dry weather and lots of sunshine are what we need to catch up.