Getting back in the game

The last couple of weeks it’s been difficult for me to produce a daily Ubi Libertas Blog post, to write something worth reading. It’s been an eventful stretch, what with our refrigerator travails and all. Once we got that handled — the new fridge is chillin’ and freezin’ like a boss, by the way — we devoted our attention to friends for a couple of days, and I simply didn’t set aside the time to blog.

And then there’s the sheer exhaustion. By the end of yesterday’s 300-mile drive, from a campsite near the Metroplex to our friends’ home in central Texas, I was having a hard time holding Ernie at a respectable speed. Traffic, construction zones and unfamiliar routes challenged me. My eyes struggled to focus.

I was paying the price for having failed to take time to detach, get to a quiet place and rest.

So last night after dinner, I excused myself early, retired to the bus and crashed hard. I didn’t stir for ten hours.

It helped. I still need a shower and an easier pace for a day or so. Neither should present a problem.

Deb and I had a ball over two days spent with friends at a public campground on the fringes of Dallas-Ft. Worth. The setting was more secluded and quieter than its proximity to urban madness would suggest.

We sighted egrets, herons, gulls and a number of curious Mallards. Fish, probably smallmouth bass, slapped the water behind our site, and the nighttime songs of the frogs were mesmerizing. A raccoon left tracks on our picnic table. Unbeknownst to Deb, while we were dumping the tanks a skunk waddled past just a few feet behind her.

Our friends were gracious and helpful. Thursday evening we enjoyed a true glamping feast.

Yesterday morning we packed up, said our goodbyes and left for an extended stay in the Texas Hill Country. Our route, almost all of it on Interstates and other four-lane highways, took us south toward San Antonio and included a fuel stop at one of those famous Buc-ee’s travel centers — the place was a total Charlie Foxtrot, and we didn’t linger long.

By late afternoon we’d reached our destination on a ridge above Bandera, where our friends have built a modest homestead among the junipers. We sat on the deck for a long while before setting up camp, enjoying the view and relaxing in the cool breeze.

Hummingbirds visited the feeders off the deck. Mexican eagles (crested caracaras) soared overhead. Whitetails came to feed on deer corn our hosts put out for them, and later a large group of spotted axis deer (chital) emerged from the woods.

Ernie is planted on a rocky spot in front of the residence (a glimpse of the setting in the header image). It’s a “buddy site” with a 30A electric pedestal, a fresh-water hydrant and a sewer hookup, so (other than having to mind our electrical load) it’s just like staying at a full-hookup campground. And they have wi-fi.

It’s called “moochdocking.” It’ll work just fine.

Around sunset, our friends took us on a tour of the rugged “neighborhood” in their four-wheel-drives. The highlight: in a glade among the trees, we caught sight of an enormous chital buck.

We’re happy to be here. We intend to slow down, re-charge and enjoy. I think the next several days will be big fun.

Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.

#WiseUp #LibertyOrDeath

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