Sunday, December 29, 2013

Working Out Working Through the Winter...

Finally dealt with the electrical gremlin in the truck... I hope... and it didn't cost a dime. With nothing changed, and no total failures to reveal the bad parts I made another small search for phantom loads and found zilch. The alternator continues to produce volts and amps... just like it should... So... I finally surrendered to the simplest fix and replaced the pair of batteries.

Should have just done that passing through back in October. The good thing about buying good batteries or batteries from a good place, I guess, is if they do go bad there's a good warranty. Costco warrantied the batts 100%. All it cost was the time and diesel to run over there.

With the fresh batteries in place the only remaining "symptom"... just an oddly long runtime of the fuel pre-heat grid just stopped. So, apparently, procrastination paid off this time... sort of.

On the "future" front... still whittling on that. The next few months are going to be a task. We're here in Denver and the rig lays in a yard down in Wickenburg. Lots of different bits in play. If it were simple, it'd been long settled.

Our lil' store in Fort Collins is still in the black but lame and requiring some dedicated effort.  If it turns up its toes... game over. So, Heidi is staying here while I run back to the rig.

The possibility of draggin' the rig back here early to spend the summer is there... but... wintering in Colorado... in a worn old rig...

I've spent winters in rigs in this north country... It only works for winter lovers. This buster... is NOT... a winter lover. Been there done that. I've chopped ice to water cows and horses at 15 below. I've fought the drifts to get to the highway...  after fighting hours in the cold to get machinery started.

I've fought the biting cold to feed and pushed herds through near blizzards. Winter holds no mystery or attraction.

All the chores of summer take on a special "patina"... when you're sloggin' through snow drifts, cold and cabin fever after a week of storm...

Pile on there the beating "normal" living inflicts on wandering souls and I'm in deep kimchi. The thought of goin' back to sellin' hardware to the scuttling serfs of soh-sigh-uh-tee... rots my liver.

It's always been a problem. I don't fit normal. Never have. Goin' along to get along in a world that has an active distaste for "different", bunch quitters like me is a bloody chore. It's been a full time job with plenty of overtime since I was big enough to pull on my own boots. Truth is it has always turned my stomach and turns it now.

I used to be able, to some degree, to bow my head, smile and nod... and just move along. Kinda Cowboy Up and get it done. Oh, I kicked and rebelled... but in the end... toed the line like a good lil' cowboy.

That was a stupid thing to do. Might's well just buckled a collar 'round my neck and barked like a dog.

Thing is, the bucket that held that ability to smile and nod and toe that line has been drained. No telling where that boot toe is goin'... if somebody grabs my collar and starts pointin' at some damned line.

I'll brush up in some desert hole until March I guess, bangin' on the keyboard. I've plenty of my own work to get done, and that seems to have promise...

Just Get back to the rig. Pull my belt up another notch. Drop expenses and mileage to just about nuthin'... and work. Get through the skinny time of winter with two or three months of sleepin' and workin'... and see what the spring holds.

The road ain't run and it's a new year comin'.

Just workin' along


Unknown said...

Hi Brian;
"... wintering in Colorado... in a worn old rig..." I recall a straw/hay bale room, wall and skirting a couple of guys built around another worn old rig in the Colorado mountains, but those guys are 20+ years older now... Yep, wintering in cold country ain't near as shiny as it used to be, even when living in a house.


Spotted Dog Ranch: said...

Oh boy. Your post sure took me back to the same deal - breaking ice on stock tanks, driving through drifts up to the bumper, freezing toes...on and on. I grew up in W. Colorado and sure can identify with hating winter.

Hope you can get back out where it's warm sooner than soon.

Dennis said...

I wasn't a cowboy Brian but I've lived and worked for over 40 years in Iowa where winters can be pretty severe. They were sometimes a freakin' pain but doable, I believe, because we were young and tough (and dumb). Now I'm 65 and I just detest cold and winter. Age is a terrible thing but with it sometimes comes the means (and wisdom) to get-out-a-town and head South, which is what we are doing now. Stay warm.

Anonymous said...

It's a challenge for sure. Hope you find the formula for staying free on the trail. Would really miss your cowboy wisdom if you had to quit. Have a great new year.