Something that Deb and I did on the way up our road this morning might give you a peek into how we approach this American Life. A small butterfly landed on the windshield wiper in front of Deb. I brought the truck to a stop. She began snapping pictures.
It was a Hackberry Emperor butterfly, Asterocampa celtis, a species that neither of us had ever seen. We were mesmerized but also encouraged — it means that we have hackberry trees on The Mountain.
We sat there until the striking little creature flew off.
Today we brought a respectable amount of cargo from the motorhome. I unloaded it, left Deb to manage the unpacking and ran up to the shed to grab tools and supplies for some work I had in mind — specifically, addressing the rig’s exterior lighting.
It wasn’t complicated at all, just a bit time-consuming. And I was right, by the way — none of the three lights on the awning side worked. The small light beside the steps doesn’t have a replaceable bulb, as it turns out, and we don’t care enough about it to buy a new one. The amber-lensed porch light (above the door) needed only a new single-filament #1156 bulb.
The same treatment also cured the large white light mounted high near the front. I learned last night that these are called “scare lights.” (There’s another just like it on the utility side of the fifth-wheel, and it works.) I don’t think they’re bright enough to scare anybody, but that’s the jargon.
I’ve ordered LED bulbs to replace all of these incandescents — brighter, less heat, 80% more efficient.
Last, I placed a pair of solar lanterns on our picnic table. If they look familiar, it’s because they’ve traveled ’round the country with us for over two years, gracing our outdoor table at campsites from the Texas Hill Country to the northern Rockies. It was time they came to The Mountain.
Our trailcam “Mountain One” inexplicably stopped transmitting photos around noon on Tuesday, so I gave it attention this afternoon — re-boot, sync, repeat. It took a few rounds, but it appears to be working again.
Now, according to the Stealth Cam app, Mountain One’s batteries are low. I’ll replace those (eight lithium AAs) tomorrow.
I haven’t spent a lot of time inside the RV — my work is outdoors, for the most part, and I’ve been disciplining myself to avoid air conditioning (while I’m on The Mountain) so I can acclimate to the summer heat. This afternoon, however, Deb asked me if I wanted to join her indoors for a late lunch, and I agreed.
It was wonderful — the cool air, the puffy recliner, the view of The Amphitheater. I spent only a half-hour in there, but man, I could get used to that.
As I finish this post, there’s a 750-pound load in the bed of the Silverado this evening — 44 concrete pavers, one square foot each. I picked them up at Home Depot after we returned from our day on The Mountain.
My first job tomorrow morning will be to place and level them to create a runway for the generator. The result will be worth the effort.
“Good whiskey never lets you lose your place.”Michael Martin Murphey, “Cherokee Fiddle”
A final word today — keep an eye on the Daniel Penny manslaughter case. The 24-year-old Penny now has been charged by a grand jury for defending himself and his fellow subway passengers from a violent lunatic.
Spoiler alert: Penny is white. The dead wacko was black. And homeless. And mentally ill.
You were born with the right to defend yourself. You know that. More and more these days, however, justifiable self-defense comes with a felony charge.
The anti-Liberty Left is all over this case. They think it’s the one they’ve been waiting for and, given the politics and rotted culture of the jurisdiction in which it’ll be tried, maybe it is. Pay attention.
Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.