It’s coming together

Early this morning we stopped at Miller Hardware in Yellville to pick up a galvanized-steel garbage can for storing bird seed and deer corn on The Mountain (in the shed). Later we drove up the subdivision road behind a neighbor, pulled up next to him and talked a bit.

While we were stopped, we saw a whitetail yearling a couple of hundred yards ahead of us on the road. The resident pit bull, Sparky, saw it, too, and gave chase. What ensued was something that none of us had ever witnessed — dog and deer chasing each other around the field, playing like a couple of kids, dashing and darting and each daring the other to feats of speed.

At the homesite, Deb and I threw ourselves into another sweltering day of making the fifth-wheel more like Home. The contractor who put in our septic system paid a visit, and we discussed a few finishing touches to the current layout — like burying the septic tank, bringing in a little more gravel and creating a parking pad off the south leg of the driveway. That’ll happen about ten days from now.

This afternoon Deb’s cousin rode up on his quad, bringing beer at the perfect time. We were ready for that kind of break.

Our generator stalled on us a few times today, and that had us puzzled. We chalked it up first to the heat, then to a grimy spark arrestor. The most likely culprit, though, was me — I was running it in “Eco Mode” to save gas, and on that setting it simply can’t handle the surge of the air conditioner’s compressor. Lesson learned.

We didn’t see any bears today. I’m including here the photo Deb’s cousin snapped yesterday of the cinnamon sow and black boar foraging next to his house.

These are gentle creatures, really, undeserving of hype and fear. Indians knew that, the people who settled this land knew that, and we know that. Knowledge, respect and a little common sense make it easy to share The Mountain with black bears and other critters who inhabited Ozarkansas long before we got here.

Now I want to pay tribute to a feature of my Silverado that makes this old man happy — the small steps on the ends of the rear bumper. Even though they lower the step-up height by only a few inches, that’s enough to make it a lot easier for me to hoist my aging frame into the bed and stow cargo, secure cargo and fetch cargo.

They’re pure genius.

Without those steps I’d be tempted to surrender to laziness. I might stay on the ground and do only what I can reach from the sides of the bed. Every time I use the steps I’m grateful to the engineer who designed them (probably a creaky old guy like me).

Deb and I didn’t take many pictures today — we were busy and, I’m glad to say, productive.

Rolling out toward the state highway late this afternoon, soaking up the scenery through the truck’s dusty windshield, we agreed that we love the way this is turning out. We can’t wait to be up there all the time, and we’re getting closer every day.

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

#WiseUp #LibertyOrDeath

#LetsGoBrandon #FJB