How's the weather in your part of the world?

July 12, river runs dry.

Actually not, it’s ‘just’ gone subsurface. No local monsoons to sustain it and since the vast snow fields of old, (up in them thar mountains), are all gone things just aren’t the same. I lived in this same area for a half dozen years some thirty years ago and spent a lot of time out on the fields, mostly building T-post fen, but also helping with harvesting hay, and some irrigation ditch tending, spreading water over land, that was cool. Back then there were more ranchers and good help was appreciated and needed, Once it got out I did good work, and didn’t complain, I found work on a few different properties over those years. Nowadays, young willing men around here, can’t find anything like that anymore. Few ranchers and farmers left are hanging on and making due, no money to hire anyone, little need for it anymore either.

Long way of saying that back then I was out in the weather all day long. I learned to pay attention and watch those clouds and that weather unfold because it mattered to me. Back then for certain periods in the afternoon you could count on those building clouds, building up until they dumped. I mean dumped, a 25 yard would drench ya like a bucket of water being poured over you. Oh and stringing steel wire makes one really pay attention to potential lightening. {sree, I know this from living it, not reading about it. Oh and it sure beat me spending yet another five years of my life trapped within another splendid kitchen/restaurant, with the repetition of all same old perks and vices. I mean, like, hasn’t ever gotten repetition and tiring all that gourmand fancy pants stuff? ;-)p But I digress. }

“Gully Washers” which is exactly what they are, I’ve watched the waves come through, with all the stuff being carried along creating more of a scrubadubdub for said gully, but that’s another story.) Beautiful blue sky in the morning, a few clouds here and there, depending on the day before, sometimes you could also notice mists of evaporating water rising. By afternoon it was more clouds than blue sky, then the winds pick up, then it hits. Sometimes gentle, but often not. In any event, it rained and good and everywhere for a little while. Then the clouds ran out of water and the rains disappeared, sun came with hours to spare before another incredible sunset.

This in turn meant I would simply go back to the truck, or find a place to hunker down under your poncho and sit it out. Then get back to pounding T-posts and stretching wire - and thinking about how that moisture came out of this green landscape adding to the moisture blowing in from the west and getting dumped right back down onto our landscape. With huge (though shrinking) snow fields feeding river and atmosphere.

Ain’t like that anymore. The cloud action still happens, but they simply don’t have the moisture. Gully washers happen, but they are shorter, and smaller, localized. There was some hope that “they” (ditch company) would let the river run all year" but the Colorado River Compact forces them to divert our river into a larger neighboring river so it can be sent to New Mexico. Apparently, the gates been closed and no more water. Landscape is drier, so it’s not adding near as much evaporation to the afternoon clouds and less. be blown in from the coasts. Folds within folds of cumulative harmonic complexity.

I visited the river before I left for AZ, and saw a school of tadpoles swimming around, it’s crazy how fast they are ready come to back. But alas, they need to hide again or do whatever they do to manage it until the next time water offers hope. Such is nature, such is life. Same old cycles really do come back. But, also the water is going somewhere else. It’s sad and scary. But so much is scary these days, ain’t they?

We can still count on those afternoon clouds showing up, but not the rain, that’s definitely been an increasing crap shot, with dice loading in the wrong direction for our complex human society, before long I have the feeling we won’t even be able to count on the clouds developing. No Guy, I don’t say this because it what I want it, it’s where the facts lead intelligent conclusions based on the evidence at hand. Of course, you need curious and willing to look at all the evidence at hand and learn. You also need to be skeptical of your own assumptions, and rethink every once in a while.

Mistakes Are For Learning.

July 1, 2020. Pretty much the same spot.


Forecasters keep predicting rain, but it always seems to miss us. Or if we do get something, it isn’t much at all. Then it becomes really humid and muggy again.

I make a sort of pilgrimage by this place, that ironically is rather close to where I’ve lived past nine years. A pilgrimage to another time, another life, a world full of different potential, but isn’t that true for all our chapters.

It’s also the location of the majority of my fence building, hay harvesting, welder’s helper, I did work at other ranches, but this one was the special one, I was starting to become a part of it and its future.

Chris Kendal, Oklahoma born and bred, but he went much further. Very smart hardworking successful welder, turned builder/real estate dude and born a couple days before me. Life long Rodeo participant, and enthusiast, and now money was no longer an object, and this was his life long dream. 640 acres, now vacation retreat, later retirement home and more, with horses, some cattle, I helped him as he built/welded an arena out of drill steel. Head gate, chutes, squeeze chute and all that stuff, only thing missing was the bleachers.

Got to experience subdividing a huge field, helping “tame the land,” the way it’s been for so long out here. There’s way more beyond this image. Yes that long one, every post I pounded and that’s a fraction of the full extent. Taming the land in a symbolic sort of way. The views were for ever and I did some wonderful musing between pounding them posts. With his four wheeler and custom build spool holder, pulling the wire was down right fun. Sure as hell beats having a pipe and being your own spool holder and walking the line backwards. Did plenty of that at other ranches.

The paddocks are off in the left distance.

Then in a moment, my pal Chris, was gone. Car crash 1991 and that was that.

That’s the point of living everyday, always striving to take it all in, enjoy the pageant while it’s happening, because then it’s gone.

Forecasters keep predicting rain, but it always seems to miss us.
It's the same over here. Yeah, they sure do like to keep us hoping. ;-)

clarification for sree

{ I mean, like, doesn’t it ever get repetitious and tiring, all that gourmand fancy pants stuff? ;-)p }

You write well and would serve the world better channeling your angst to churning up Steinbeck’s stuff like “Grapes of Wrath”.

Yeah, just need way more time for proof reading and editing.

@ your angst
You are tooo unawares to be any judge of that.

You don’t even know what honestly representing scientific facts is all about. xoxoxo

Oh and destroying Earth’s biosphere certainly deserves a lot of angst, fear.

Believe it or not, if that wilfull-ignorance-armor of yours ever cracks, you’re going to crap your pants at how bad we’ve allowed it to become.

In Central Alberta we’re getting lots of rain with thunderstorms in the evenings. Plenty of hail too.

A storm a few weeks ago was the 4th costliest natural disaster in Canadian history, with hail damage in Calgary at $1.2 billion. Last weekend there were hail storms to the north, south and east of our town, but we only got a bit of rain.

This is a very cool and damp summer, which is extra frustrating since camping and hiking and other outdoor activities are our only options due to travel restrictions from Covid. Let me tell you right now, hiking while being pelted with slushy wet snow is torture.

Ah the price of adventure.


But damned, why can’t that wind die down and that sun come out.


Hang in there. :slight_smile: On the bright side, those memories are never near as cold and wet and miserable as some of those moments are. :wink:

CC: "Ah the price of adventure.

Hang in there. On the bright side, those memories are never near as cold and wet and miserable as some of those moments are."

I always imagine myself as tougher than I am. No adventure is beyond my mental and physical strength… until reality sets in.

But you’re exactly right about the suffering making the memories sweeter and more vivid. Who remembers the vacation where everything went smoothly ? No one. Who talks and laughs about the holiday where you relaxed in idyllic conditions? Again, no one.

Unfortunately it’s hard to think about the great stories your creating when your hands are too cold to grip a zipper and wet clothes cling to your skin, restricting movement and weighing you down… and you’re only a half hour into a 7 hour hike up a mountain that offers progressively worse conditions as you climb it. My resolve dissolves embarrassingly fast in those situations.

The weather has been great the last week and will be for the next week. Sadly I have a wedding to go to next week and have promised my dad that I’d put a roof on his garage the following weekend (he’s 70 and both knees are artificial, so I can’t brush him off to take a walk). If I can get another hard hike in this year I’ll be happy.

Unfortunately it’s hard to think about the great stories your creating when your hands are too cold to grip a zipper and wet clothes cling to your skin, restricting movement and weighing you down… and you’re only a half hour into a 7 hour hike up a mountain that offers progressively worse conditions as you climb it. My resolve dissolves embarrassingly fast in those situations.
Tru dat.

Though you know at moments like that, (and I’ve been there when cold turns into pure pain), that I’ve found some psychological aid and comfort from a historical perspective. At least it’s never been as bad as being tossed from a cozy sleeper into the cold Atlantic in the middle of the night.

Or in mental head games such as thinking about those poor schleps in the German army marching on Moscow in the middle of a bad winter, or the early trappers and pioneers in America. But then I’ve had a fairly expansive mindscape to draw from, born of a primal need to experience life, and better understand the world and myself.

Good luck on the roof, wish I were around to lend a helping hand. Though all that’s been quite the trip too, now at 65 and the diminishing genuinely cranking in. Three - five hours of serious work seems all I’m up to and then a good nap is all I want. Heck if I get carried away and push myself too much, it takes a day or two to recover. So I’m learning to take it serious, since I hate the down days, though I do like the sleep more than ever. It sort of reassuring, maybe by the time it comes to dying, I’ll be good and ready to step into the permanent sleep.

Oh and have a good time with your pops!

There’s a lot of ‘personality’ that goes into the ability to visualize away pain and suffering. My personality is not the right type.

I’m not sure how, but my dad can live every day in constant pain and never show the slightest hint he’s uncomfortable. I remember when he broke two fingers and had a finger nail ripped off while milking cows in the morning, and he didn’t go to the hospital until milking was done and the cows and calves were all fed and bedded (that’s about three hours with two good hands available). He literally never complained once during the month it took to heal.

Another time he was hammering a nail and the head flew off and stuck in his eye right before he had to milk the cows. Again he did all the chores with a piece of metal sticking out of his eye before going to the doctor, and again he never complained the week he had a big patch on his eye. I could mention many more instances like these, and there are probably hundreds I don’t even know about.

Even after seeing and appreciating the mental strength he has, I can’t muster stoic attitude that would allow me to suffer and carry on without complaint. Stoicism is a trait I’d like to cultivate in myself, but it seems like my limit is inherently far lower than the limit of others.

And I always have a good time with my parents; my dad’s hilarious and my mom is likely the best cook who’s ever lived, so every meal is a banquet and there’s always cake, pie, cookies and home-made bread to snack on.

You made my mouth water, and I hear the good times. You’re a lucky guy enjoy them and every moment, I get the impression you’re living fairly rural too. It’s make for better society seems to me.

Don’t get me wrong I can’t visualize away pain, though I try, it’s limited. Still, I’ve got it so easy most the time, I figure I might as well taste a little tough times, specially if I find myself stuck in the shit. More in younger years, now I like nice an easy.