Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Intrepid Hunter ~ Nov 28, 2012

Meet our neighbor "Mister" a dark shadow with golden eyes. Much to our delight he likes hunting for gophers in our south forty.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Cosmic Cowgirl ~ Nov 23, 2012

She rides the great wide open
On a steed of love's devotion
It could be in the Rockies today
Or a beach along the ocean

Martini in hand, friends at her side
Perhaps tonight it's a musical ride
Tom, Ray Wylie, Thad or Fred
By campfire, small barn or train instead

We shared the venues, road trips and scenes
The decadent desserts at Roxy's
With sliced almonds and whipped cream

Emandal Farm

Trisha crossed all our paths in different ways
Leaving none of us the same
Her truth was simple
Her philosophy never changed

Follow your heart
Jump in with both feet
Say what you mean
And follow your dreams

The posse remains ever true
You're always at our side
For laughter and lift me ups
And of course the occasional
Kicks in the butt

Life goes on
We add years and miles
And no doubt we'd all give anything
For just another smile

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tombstone Road Trip ~ Off with a Bang ~ Nov 3, 2012

The first stop on our road trip to Tombstone, AZ was the annual BABE (Bay Area Bead Extravaganza) show in Oakland. I wasn't going to go this year, but decided to at the last minute since we had to drive right by there on Hwy 580 to get to Interstate 5 (read Justification Shuffle). We had reservations at a hotel in Bakersfield for our first night out, so we had plenty of time to get there before dark ~ or so we thought.

Just north of Novato, we hear a loud bang that shook car. WTF? There were no objects in sight and it didn't seem to affect drivability so we continued to Oakland for lunch and a little bead therapy. I found this amazing borosilicate glass bead set, by Colorado artist Harold Cooney. I was so drawn to the colors, Rod just pulled out the cash and said do it. He's fun to shop with.

When we left the Marriott with the windows down we started hearing some grinding and rasping. We're about to take off on a 2,200 mile road trip so our friend Common Sense says "Okay it's time to take the Jeep home". Once there Rod grabbed the rear driver side wheel and pushed and pulled, nothing, but on the right side it clanked and had about an inch of play. Considering the axles were just replaced I didn't know what to think except that going to the bead show was a good move ~ justified.

I wasn't going to bother my mechanic until we returned so we just did a Hail Mary and threw everything in the Honda CRV. Because my Jeep is a big loud V-8 our neighbor heard us come home and wondered what was up. Andrea is always amazed that this kind of adversity never seems to phase us. Our take is that "it is what it is and there's no sense in getting upset." My only concern was getting to Bakersfield after dark, she looked at me and smiled "but that's the best way to see it" and sent us on our way.

No way we were to face Oakland again so we took Hwy 37 and went out through Martinez to 680 to 580 to I5. I can see why our friends like I5 when headed south. It's wide open country, with far fewer idiots than most freeways closer to civilization. When we stopped for a late lunch, we found out that Kern County produces 76% of the state's oil and is 3rd in all counties in US in agricultural production. Who knew? We made to Bakersfield in good time: great room, comfy bed and a freshly made to order breakfast at the hotel in the morning. Deep breath, we're on vacation.

Sunday Morning Along Hwy 58

Sunday morning we made a left off of I5 and head east on Hwy 58, to I40 and Laughlin, NV. We'll spend a couple of days there to try and locate my grandfather's gold mine near Lake Mojave.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Oh Well Part Deux ~ Nov 2, 2012

When Drake and Tim returned to work Monday, they found that a portion of the hole had collapsed so they had to re-drill a section, but we're at 240" as promised and we have water. By early afternoon the solid and perforated 5" PVC casing was installed and the hole back filled up to the 50 ft level with Monterey sand. A sanitary seal was then installed, to keep groundwater out of the well. The remaining section of hole was back filled with a cement and bentonite mix to ground level.

Once that was done they mixed and poured a small pad to protect the well head, the old fashioned way ~ with manpower.

The pump, pressure tank and plumbing will be installed November 26th. Since we wanted to keep the old well functioning we'll have to upgrade the wiring which now comes from the house. It's not in conduit and this would mean trenching across the road, the PGE gas line and our septic line to the leach field. Not what we'd call an option. It was decided the more economical way to go is to bring electricity from the PGE pole at far edge of our property (nearer the well) and run the line underground to the well head. We're waiting for a quote which will no doubt show up while we're gone.

Watching them jockey this rig and the drill rig around the sloped pasture,  fenced garden areas, compost piles, leach field and trees was worth the price of admission on Monday. Timing is everything, it started raining Tuesday.

What is really interesting is that our old well, which has been shutting down nightly due to the draw from the back flush of the filter system, has not shut down since two days after they started drilling. Maybe they shook the troll loose?

Well (pun intended) we're off tomorrow for a ten day adventure to Arizona. We're looking forward to seeing some new territory, doing some star gazing in the great wide open and looking into a little family history.