‘Too hot in the sun, too cold in the shade’

I tinker. I fiddle. I can’t leave well enough alone. After publishing a post to Ubi Libertas Blog, invariably I’ll go back, re-read it and mess with it. Most of the time I’ll have quieted my editor’s instinct within a few hours, but I’ve been known to tweak a months-old post to get it just right.

Or better. Or something.

Occasionally I’ll catch a typo, which validates my practice of post-publication fiddling. And sometimes I notice a factual error, which I’m compelled to correct.

In yesterday’s post, “Elevation & latitude,” I was mistaken about our lowest elevations — a couple of spots in Arkansas actually are closer to sea level than one of our campsites in Texas. I made the changes and revised the text.

Small point? Maybe so. There’s a good chance that no one would’ve noticed. But unlike the current occupant of the Oval Office, I don’t “choose truth over facts.” I’d rather get it right than let it slide.

Facts matter.

So when you read one of my posts today, you might want to check back again tomorrow. Like Forrest’s mama always said, “Y’never know what you gonna get.”

Forty-two degrees. Crystal-blue skies. The smell of wood smoke in the still and heavy air. We don’t ask for much. but a day that begins like this puts a big ol’ stamp of approval on our love of this place and the decision to plant here for a while.

I was tempted to build a fire this morning, to walk over to the camp store, take a bundle of wood from the stack outside and leave an IOU. (Remember, this is Handshake Country.) When I stepped out into the chill and caught a whiff of someone else’s campfire, however, that scratched my itch. I breathed-in the aroma for a few minutes before returning to Ernie and my coffee.

My morning fire will happen another day.

It never really warmed up today. Deb kept moving her chair from the shade into the sun and back, remarking that she couldn’t seem to find a spot that was comfortable, no matter how she was dressed.

Our Texas friends rolled in shortly before noon and set up a few sites away. After they got situated we relaxed in the yard next to Ernie and shared beers, catching up on our respective cross-country travels since we last saw each other in June.

They’d been in Ohio recently and brought us a taste of my home state — Trail bologna and Amish cheese, cider and crisp apples produced right down the road from where I grew up. It gets no better.

We all had a late-day meal at the Neighborhood Diner in Harrison and ended the day, joined by our Canadian neighbors, with a crackling fire in the ring on our site.

The evening air was cold enough, even sitting next to the campfire, that I donned my Devils Tower stocking cap and an insulated vest. This was the moment I’d been waiting for — I poured myself a short glass of Maker’s Mark and lit a cigar.

Welcome, fall.

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

#WiseUp #LibertyOrDeath