- almost 12,000 acres up for sale; 10 counties
- Divide County: county with greatest amount of acreage up for sale -- almost 3,000 acres
- Stark County: county with second greatest amount of acreage -- a little over 2,000 ares
- major players in Divide County: Baytex, CLR, Crescent Point Energy, Newfield, Samson, and SM Energy
This is a very small amount of land up for lease; in February, almost 70,000 acres were sold. Average bonus paid in February: $1,200. Highest bonus: $21,000/acre; paid by Wildcat Oil and Gas out of Bismarck, ND; 0.2 acres inside the city limits of Stanley, ND.
A Note to the GranddaughtersSee "Library."
It all works out, the law of averages.
I started a very aggressive reading program in 2004. I think I've mentioned that before. The Air Force sent me to a remote assignment at a time when the last thing I wanted to do was to travel. I was tired of being away from home. Actually, I was more tired of traveling. I used the opportunity to start recreational reading again, a habit I had been forced to give up thirty years earlier. There wasn't much else to do. I remember taking a photograph of a stack of books about three feet tall, my library for the four months I was "there." I recall re-reading Giants in the Earth by Rolvaag.
That started an obsession with reading. I hate to buy books at full price, so I frequent used book stores. No matter where I go I visit the local libraries and the local bookstores.
This past weekend we spent several days in Cape Cod, between Chatham, at the elbow, and Provincetown, at the fist. I mention that because I think one of the best bookstores I have ever found is the Yellow Umbrella Bookstore in Chatham. This was our second time there, and the primary reason for wanting to return to Chatham was to visit this bookstore. It is not a used bookstore; they do have used books for discount prices, but in general one can expect to pay full price.
I worry about bookstores becoming a thing of the past because of Amazon. I love to browse. It's not easy to browse for books on Amazon. I think the majority of my purchases have come from browsing.
I don't care for Borders or Barnes and Noble. Every time I walk in I feel overwhelmed. I don't know where to begin. I feel that I have to wade through tons of books I have no interest in to find a book I might enjoy.
But Yellow Umbrella Bookstore has done all that for me. The store, I suppose, is about 20 feet of store front, and maybe 60 feet deep, a small, a very small store. Bookshelves on two opposite facing walls, and a bookshelf down the center of the store, and that's it. And it's exactly the books that interest me. It's as if Yellow Umbrella has already done the hard work: found the best ten percent of the books that a Borders or a Barnes and Noble has to offer and that's where I start.
So, I found three wonderful books, two hard covers and a soft cover: The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, by Siddhartha Mukherjee, a Pulitzer Prize winning book, c. 2010; On Rare Birds, by Anita Albus, translated from the German, c. 2011; and, Horseshoe Crabs and Velvet Worms, by Richard Fortey, c. 2011. I was not at all familiar with two of the three. The Fortey book was reviewed in both the Boston Globe and the Wall Street Journal, and that's probably why I ended up spotting it in the first place. It bothered me, only slightly, to pay full price, knowing I could save significantly by going through Amazon, but I also want to support these small stores.
But it all evens out, the prices I pay for books. At Provincetown, May found a great used bookstore, the kind where I start sneezing when I walk in due to the mold and mildew. There, for $5.00 I found Leon Edel's editing of Henry James notebooks and journals. There's a long story to my interest in Henry James, and maybe I'll talk about it here some day, but not tonight. Suffice it to say, his The Beast in the Jungle still haunts me.
I asked the owner of the bookstore -- I'm sure the bookstore had a name, but I don't recall seeing it. There was a rough "BookStore" sign and a similar "Open" sign at the end of a long narrow wooden board walk. It must have been a 20-yard walk down that narrow walkway to get to the old bookstore. Oh, yeah, I asked the owner of the bookstore what he liked to read, and by the end of the visit I had bought a $2.00 soft cover copy of Emile Zola's Theresa Ranquin. If the rest of the book holds my attention like the first chapter, I'm going to really enjoy it.
The owner mentioned that he pretty much only reads "dead authors" -- same with me. We both had a similar reason: we have only so much time to read, and we want to make sure that what we read has stood the test of time. About the only exception are several of Tim O'Brien's books (If I Die in a Combat Zone; The Things They Carried; and, Going After Cacciato). Tim O'Brien is a contemporary; we both got lottery numbers for the Vietnam War. He was a bit older and went; by the time I graduated from college, things were pretty much winding down. Regardless, I ended up in the Air Force later on.
So, that brings you up to date with my current reading list. I am re-reading The Celts by Gerhard Herm which I've been carrying around with me now for the past several weeks. Interestingly enough, a section in Mukherjee's cancer biography crossed paths with a section in The Celts. That happens a lot, where I come across something in one book which proves useful in understanding something in another book, and both books have nothing in common, not even the genre.