We have been “mooch docking” on the ranch in Whitney since my last entry.
I had never heard the term before until Hans used it. It is when you borrow power and/or water off of someone’s residence.
The ranch is an ideal place to mooch dock because my brother installed a 30 amp power hookup and there is a very convenient source of water. There is even a septic tank that we could dump our black waste into, but it requires a lot of maneuvering. However, Lofer’s Bend Park, only 4 miles away, has a dump site for $2.
We have an almost perfect situation except for the hook up being next to the junk pile adjacent to my late Dad’s shop. You need a tetanus shot just to step out the door, but it is fun to look over the junk pile while enjoying my coffee in the morning and play find the kitty.
Can you find Sissy Cat in this picture? How about the portable heater? The fireplace grate? The bike tire? The old high-FI TV antenna? Picture finds are good for your brain!
Another fun game we have enjoyed down home on the ranch is playing “find the newest calf”.
We were on our way to the river in my brother’s ATV to fish when we found this little guy who was so new that he could barely walk yet. He was just a few hours old!
Hans found country life agreeable with him even if it was not agreeable with his allergies. He fell in love with the “gravel bar” on the river which is the fishing hole here these days.
Thanks to my Mother’s innovative storage design when she and her sister designed her house back in the early 1970’s, I was able to fit everything that we were not able to take with us in our trailer into my childhood bedroom and the closet. I estimate that I managed to store about 1500 to 2000 pounds of “stuff” in that room. I guess we will find out the next time we are able to visit a CAT scale.
We were also able to clean and UV-protect our trailer, reorganize and optimize our storage areas and install a Tire Minder.Hans worked hard in the hot sun to get our trailer ship-shape for the start of our adventures.
We also took time to pick some peaches and connect with friends and family.The slow pace of country life was a big change for me. It was nice at first, but after a week, I began to get restless. I felt that there was someplace we needed to be.
There was no where we needed to be. I was just creating this in my mind. I had purposely scheduled no work or any definite plans for June or July in order to fully immerse ourselves in this new way of living.
Motion is such a natural state for me after being a flight attendant for 24 years, that it is my comfort zone. I thrive on new places, people and a constantly changing routine.
I never have days that are not packed with plans I have made for us. I literally never sit still. This motion that drives me forward has served me well for years enabling me to be very productive in how I work and to visit 38 (no place for Bermuda on this map) countries and every continent except for Antarctica (bucket list). If I am not running from one place to another, something feels wrong.
Because I am trying a new way of being and living, I decided that this restlessness that was irritating me like the ant bites on my feet that no amount of scratching could alleviate, must be challenged.
So we stayed in place on the ranch for a little longer.and enjoyed more fresh eggs from my sis-in-law’s chickens!
As a result, I took my brother’s ATV and explored places on the ranch that I had not ventured to since 1987 on my horse. Beauty was still around every corner on this pretty place nestled into the encircled arm of the Brazos River on one side. But there was a wild side, too.
It was jolting to drive into what I remembered as pristine fields where my Dad baled hay and see them returned to their natural state. The tangled neurons in Dad’s brain, due to the Alzheimer’s disease that ultimately took him, precipitated the tangles of overgrowth these fields had become. It felt like the landscape of a nightmare.
I ran into a hole that I didn’t see because the pasture was so overgrown and almost rolled the ATV. The bull nettle (aka Satan’s Dandelion) that whacked me on the knee as the ATV tipped quickly brought me back to reality.
If you have never been stung by bull nettle, then you are living a blessed life, my friend. I’m sure it was probably used to torture one’s enemies back in pioneer days. I raced back to our home sweet trailer and made a paste of baking soda and water to put on my bull nettle stings. It did absolutely nothing!
I think I am way too “city-fied” to survive for long on the ranch anymore, but it was so nice to spend time there and reconnect with my roots and show Hans more of my ancestral home.