Saturday, April 25, 2015

8100 feet in the Springtime Rockies...

One day you're shirtsleeve in a soft sunset grilling supper... watching the sunlight playing on the timber...

...and the next you're running the generator before sunrise to keep the batteries up while Mr. Coffee struggles to keep your insides warmed up and motivated.

Camped here above Mancos at something over 8000 feet... I'm just above the snow line I think for a lot of the surrounding area... leave it to the guy who runs south in terror every fall... to get back into this junk pretty much Every spring... I think they call that sort of activity insanity... don't they?

I used to know patience. I could compete with the patience of a clam... now? Not so much. Patience is a con. The only thing that happens when you exercise patience is you do whatever you were going to do... Later.

Trouble with that of course is... you're older, poorer, more tired, the opportunity has faded...and there's all that precious time wasted... sitting and waiting!

The reasons NOT to wait are nigh on to unending... the reasons supporting waiting... are... hmmm... let's see... hmmm... I can't really think of one!

Hell... if you're waiting to cross the street and a bus is coming? Out run that smokin' bastard!

You're born. You live for a while, and you die. Of what use is caution and worryin' about tomorrow? You could get whacked by some dirtbag just driving down the interstate. Happened to a gal just the other day north of Denver. That happens and of what use was all that cautious waiting?

Nope. Grab that bull by the horns, chew on his ear and kick him in the ass with your foot to get him moving. Waiting is for clocks and rocks. People are supposed to go out and DO things... even if they're wrong! Just friggin' DO IT.

The best stories come from the gyrations created by overcoming whatever it is you're confronted by. Life is about quality and that excitement you feel when the adrenaline of scaring yourself half to death gets your blood racing! Get out there and get to confronting and scaring yourself!

Going to be a busy summer I think... I've got books working... as usual the diversions and distractions keep tripping my progress there ;) and, my daughter's family is moving back to Missouri... I've volunteered to get in the way as they try to get their house on the market in Denver.

So, not sure which but likely Tuesday or Wednesday I'll bump up toward Denver to start my obstructing.

Then... they're actually foolish enough to want me to participate in the construction of a house back there in Missouri... not so sure how that'll all shake out... or how well this westerner can tolerate being that far east for any significant piece of time... but time will tell.

I've got some other irons of my own heating up in the fire... Irons I believe are pretty interesting... but that's gonna have to wait until some more i's are dotted and t's crossed to expose to the slings and arrows of the electrono-sphere. ha ha ha ha... Did I actually say__Wait? Ha ha ha...

Spinning Circles and Doing... right or wrong
I'm still__

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Some Time__In the Dark of Night__The meadow vanished!

It's there somewhere. I haven't moved again. :-/

Yeah... One more time. The Weatherman predicted 0% chance of precipitation... and ZERO % chance of SNOW...

So... the pup needs out at Oh-Dark-Thirty, and this is what I find when I open the door...

Yeah... that looks about like what I'd take 0% of precip and 0% snow to be...

Now today he's claiming FAR WARMER THAN YESTERDAY... 

Um... No... you ain't snookerin' me a second time in twelve hours you water logged gumball!

I wasn't plannin' on leaving for some few days... but if I was__unlike some__ I'd  be delayed a few days until the ground hardens up when this melts off__ so as not to cut this meadow to ribbons in the leaving.

It's tryin' here and there to let the sun back out...

And true to form that pup thinks snow is great fun... so much that if I make the mistake of lettin' him off lead... that lil' sucker is a misery to catch back up. He's gonna have to remain on the end of something for a bit. At ten weeks old he has yet to learn that come here ya spinnin' banshee is not a command to run in circles, juuuuust out of reach!

Mostly I believe this is gonna be a couple days of cabin fevered writing... or trailer fevered maybe...

Good thing I got that propane yesterday. All my brain cells ain't dead yet...


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

BUSTED! When You Get Lazy Bad Things Happen...

... and usually at bad times__ Like late in the afternoon, on Sunday, when you're out in the middle of Nowhere  in New Mexico...

*On the road to Chaco Canyon*

Two or three years ago I cracked the outside leg of the rear spring hanger on the right rear spring. Got it somewhere a welder could get to me and got it repaired before it had a chance to fail.

I caught it because I've always been in the habit of running my eyes over the rig just about any time I stop. Fuel. Camp. Groceries... if I'm walking around the rig I'm kinda checkin' her out, looking for such as will cause trouble if I don't fix it up quick.

Well... it's painfully obvious now, that habit has apparently faded a mite...

*Broken RV Spring Hanger/Mounts*

I say obvious because you can see on that broken hanger that it had been cracked half way across for long enough to rust the cracked edge of the hanger...

I'd planned to just have the left side boxed in advance to prevent the same failure... it's priority just kept getting pushed back... bad choice.

Worse... this failure is right beside the dump pipe for the tanks... so I've been by there right regular... UGH! Just no decent excuses.

Yeah... so it's Sunday in the middle of nowhere and nightfall is comin' on fast. What would your expectation of finding a savior be? yup. Me too. My expectation was Nada. Honestly? I just knew I was looking forward to a night sitting in the middle of the road hoping I didn't get blasted by some sleepy driver who failed to see my hazard triangles and flashin' lights.

I tried tow outfits to get me off the road, nobody had a trailer big enough. Even if they had, it would have been cheaper to just light it up in place and let it burn...

On my third call (Luckily I had good signal!!!) I was talking to a tow guy and had an Idea. "Would you know of a mobile welder that might be around?"

"Well" says he; "There's Marvin up by Broomfield. You could call Marvin's truck and trailer repair. If he doesn't have the gear he might know a fella that does."

Well damn if Marvin doesn't have everything he needed and he'd come out straight away... of course he's an hour and a bit away. Ugh... I'm seeing $$$ flying away fast... Service call. The work it'self. Surcharge 'cause it's Sunday. EXTRA surcharge 'cause "You is in a real tight and I can put it to you hard!"

Yeah... I was feeling low__at the same time a lot of relief because somebody was a comin' to pull my sizzling bacon out of the fire.

Well... by the time Marvin got there the sun had long since set. It was dark, with the wind blowin' pretty stiff... and he set to work.

As soon as he started to work I was breathing easy. It was plain that the Chief stud duck of Marvin's truck and equipment repair knew what he was about. (There have been repairs in the past where this ol' buster got raped purty good and with no alternative options!)

We (He) jacked it up. Then he got some chain and boomers and pulled that axle back where it should be and got the separated pieces clamped together...

*RV Suspension repair ON the road*

With them in pretty good position he could tack them in place and then burn them together.

In a shop with all the materials and tools ready to go and lots of light (That pic above is with camera flash) Not, laying in the dirt, in the dark, in the wind, with cars passing around us in the ditch, a fella might make a prettier repair...

... but the welding, with the plating boxing the back side and over each break seam... it's stronger now than when it left the factory so I'm happy.

*Repaired hanger plated both sides and  boxed*
But then came that time when you figure you might's well just bend over...

"So Marvin... what do I owe you?" I asked... knowing I'd taken better than five hours counting the travel time out of the man's Sunday...

"Well..." he kinda mumbled a little bit..."I get $105 an hour for road repairs... but that's for big trucking companies... how about we call it $300? Does that work for you?"

"Oh HELL YES!" I told the man. I was expecting to hear a lot more than double that! I raced to gather the cash before he changed his mind! :-))

All things considered, I weighed the price of his job out to be a bargain. Would have been a lot cheaper if I'd have paid attention and happened to notice those cracks... long before they became breaks in the dark on a lonesome back road on the Reservation!

Lesson to take away... check your rigs over regularly. I mean check close for cracks in the hitches, suspension parts... frayed belts and hoses... wiring faults...

... and every once in a while... give that nut behind the wheel a good tightening!

So... I decided to blow off Chaco Canyon. Took that night as a bit of an omen. I turned around and spent the night in a wide spot back by the main road. In the morning I resupplied in Farmington figuring to just go spend a couple of weeks chillin' and writing at the Goosenecks in Utah...

Got here... to the Goosenecks late in the afternoon... to find that it was effectively GONE.

The State of Utah has somehow now taken over control of this BLM land. Where it had been Free Boondocking since your grandaddy was pestering HIS grandaddy... it will now cost you $10 a night to park amongst the dirt and rocks.

I don't mind 'em charging a fella when they've put in facilities... but there's Nada. And ya'll can't tell me there's a "Cost" for parking in the dirt, in the desert... a few hundred miles from pretty much any damn thing.

It's just another case of; "There's people out there in the world who aren't PAYING! That's immoral! That's not Patriotic! They can't just live! We got to make them PAY to breathe. Pay to exist. If they don't pay__They got no Right!"


I'd have just turned away, but I was too tired and too cooked so I paid the tariff for a couple nights. Tomorrow I expect I'll move on and find a place where a man can still be; Just a man, free on the earth.

Still goin' down the road...

... Got a warm dry camp. Cold brew in the fridge.... and some worked for changes brewing in the future... so all's good.


Friday, April 10, 2015

A New Sidekick... Co-Pilot... Out of a Blue Clear Sky

The sure thing about life is that it never goes how you planned it out. not Ever.  If you think you're in control of it... can I share some of your drugs?

I try to sell the deal that I'm a hard sided, double tough, Cowboy Vet now-without-a-bike billy bad ass biker cowboy... yeah... don't tell nobody you know better ok?

Camp is too quiet... to lonesome... I met up with this lil' guy and that part of me that just breaks out, damn the wind and takes off of a sudden whispered; this is the way to go Cowboy... don't leave him behind...

So I didn't.

I expected trouble to start. It's some work to start a pup. I mean, a 9 week pup is like a lil' baby... right? Whoever heard of a pup like that being housebroken from the get go?

Well now you have. Tee Total house broke... all on his own from the first minute...

He's a a red tri Australian Shepherd and an ISDR dog; International Stock Dog Registry... which is where you find the Real Aussies... the dogs they were before the AKC turned 'em into all show and no go critters.

Hopefully he'll fix some of what's broke in this busters head... or at least soften it up some... we shall see.


Thursday, April 2, 2015

"The Greatest Challenge in Life..."

"... is discovering who you are. The second__ Is being happy with what you find."

Well... to quote a song; "Todavia estoy aqui." __ I am still here... and I'm still running against the wind...

What creates the biggest part of those challenges I think is the world we live in. It's a world that simply doesn't peacefully tolerate individuals going off seeking their dreams... Nope. The world wants obedient, productive serfs... it doesn't like bunch quitters messin' with its carefully constructed treadmill.

Not only does it  believe that it knows better... it believes it has some moral right to impose its dubious claims to greater knowledge and wisdom on that luckless individual.

It enlists those all around the bugger to obstruct, burden and obfuscate in such a way that he/she can get no traction. Just about the time they get some momentum built up in spite of the blockers; WHAP! Somebody sticks a foot out and trips 'em hard... but that's ok. Right? After all, it WAS... For Their Own Good... Right?

"Dreams are nice but you must accept reality. You must put your dreams aside and go to work to pay the bills and take care of your family."

Yeah? The way I look at it, to paraphrase good Ol' George Bush; "You're either with me or you're against me."

Remember that scene in Forest Gump? He was runnin' down the road out of Monument Valley? and of a sudden "IT" changed inside of him? He just stopped in the middle of the road with all them people behind him and said basically; "Ok... I'm done with this. Bye."

... and they all got upset with him; "What about us? What do we do now?" That's a little taste of how things are set up against a person... The thing is this; "They" weren't his responsibility and they ain't yours. What they do is their business and nobody Else's. What we do is ours.

I'm one for sure to just of a sudden realize I'm not happy doin' what I've been doin and just turn off a new way. It's torqued people off my whole dinged life. "You can't change up again! You've been doin' that for blah blah years! ... or ... you just started! You can't change!"

Why? What the hell does it matter what you do? as long as you're workin' to be happy? and who ever gave anybody the keys to the "kingdom" so to speak?

Get on board or get the hell out of the way is the way I see it. If you can't back a person it's neither your place or your Right to get in the way. "But they're making a mistake! I have to help them!"

Really? Get this real clear... Success... every. damned. success. Is built with bricks composed of mistakes... Every single success, every. single. one.  is a journey of going down as many dead ends as it takes to find the way that works.

Think about it. Every time you stop somebody from making one of their mistakes along the way you simply impede their ability to succeed. Get on board or zip it.

The only thing worse than a mistake is when nothing happens 'cause you're too afraid to jump.

Well... changes are in the wind... and I've blown out of that last camp...

*Stormy Weather Brewing*

*Arizona Boys club 'movin on' *



The big change around here... is this next photo... 

*The Last Night*

... The last sunset with the Raider in camp... I sent her to a new owner the other day... had to let it simmer and sink in before I spoke up about it at all.

Maybe it's a good choice... maybe not... time will tell... but it's the next step in the way I'm going and it's done.