Monday, June 09, 2008

Too much heat

6/5/08 Thursday
Yesterday we went to see the lady at the Texas rehabilitation office in Big Spring. I was surprised to find that she really has a handle on the issues I face with the brain injury. It was real encouraging. We need to put together a business plan now for the farm. They will use it to provide help to accomplish these goals. It sounds exciting but I have a hard time putting too much hope in it. There is a part of me that waits for it all to fall apart because some minor detail doesn’t line up with the governments rules. It has been my experience in the past. But there is hope and that keeps me going. I had a hard time keeping up with all the things she was saying but that’s why I make sure Cherie is there for stuff like this. She helps fill in the voids my injury causes. Together we can do most anything. One of the things I said we could use help with is finding the funding that is available through so many sources and filling out the paperwork to access it. We were told about ten thousand dollars in grant money that is available through a branch of the Farm Services Administration for drip feed irrigation earlier this year but never followed through on it. This is the kind of stuff I get confused about and not following through is a constant and serious problem we have.

It looks like we will finally get a break from the hundred degree heat. I can’t remember how many days in a row it was triple digits but I am sure it was at least seven. Today will be 101 degrees but after that it will be in the mid to high nineties. I suppose that could be considered “cool” temperatures, relatively speaking. The soaker hoses we invested in pretty much saved many of our crops. I picked up some more soaker hoses at the landfill when I took our garbage out there the other day. Some of it is damaged but I can piece together lots of usable sections.

Cherie is at a day long seminar connected to the website we purchased last week. I don’t remember if I wrote about that. There is so much I haven’t been recording here lately. Part of that is due to how drained I am at the end of these hot days. Hell, I’m drained by noon lately.

So this website thing started with a sales flier that was an invitation to a “conference” regarding making money on the internet. We knew it would be a ninety minute sales pitch but it came with a free meal and business organizer so “what the hell” it’s a free meal. We already purchased a domain name and website but have yet to create the site. A website is a vital part of the business plan I’ve been working on. Despite telling ourselves we wouldn’t buy anything it looked like a real good deal so we purchased the site. Mostly because it is already set up with a shopping cart and PayPal so folks can order products. These things cost extra on the Go daddy site we have already gotten and when it’s all said and done the math works. This site is cheaper. Unfortunately, when Cherie later looked into this company she found there have been lots of problems and even several lawsuits with them. They are called “Stores”. Now there were good reports along with the bad so it may be ok.

I know the seminar Cherie is at is designed to sell us more stuff to go along with the site, things like tools to get us to show up at the top of the list for Google searches but think Cherie is able to resist the sales pitches. At least I hope so. I was to go with her but there is so much to do here I opted out.

We found a good deal on a shade cloth for Steve and Janie’s kennel so drove to Odessa and got it for them. With these temperatures it is dangerous for her dogs to be out in the sun. That made it important to us as Steve and Janie have been such a tremendous help. It feels good to give back a little. Wish we could do more. So we stopped by their house with it to see how well it would fit. Fits real good.

Janie and I worked to get it up at least temporarily and when she went into the garage to find tie wraps we heard a subdued “meow”. “NO WAY” were the first words out of Janie’s mouth. Sure enough, a cat had wandered into the garage at some point and gotten trapped when the door was closed. I had noticed it wasn’t closed all the way a day of five ago so that’s probably when the cat got in. It’s a beautiful dark grey cat that was obviously used to human contact from the way it took to Janie’s embrace. The cat probably escaped from it’s home and has been on the street for quite a while. The poor thing was just skin and bones, in real poor shape from that standpoint. Janie is allergic to cats and their two hunting dogs would probably make short work if it so keeping it wasn’t an option. We have been thinking of getting a cat or two to keep the rodents down so decided to adopt it. First thing will be to get it to a vet and have it checked out. I would also like to try and find the owners to return it, but odds are against that succeeding. Cherie dropped it off at Janie’s this morning and Janie will take it to her vet.

We decided to get the satellite internet hookup that was offered to members of the Farm Bureau. The invoice came a couple of days ago but we don’t have to pay it till they come and install the satellite dish. Don’t know when that will be. As much as we would like to have it yesterday I hope it will be a few weeks from now. This month is when my birthday is so that means things like vehicle registration are due so it cramps the budget somewhat. Still we look forward to once again having that powerful tool at our fingertips. There are so many times I need to look up things like how to plant or care for crops and can’t until I drive to Midland. The journey there and back now costs ten dollars with the price of gas going up. Fill ups on the truck now cost over a hundred dollars. Besides that, when I do go to Steve and Janie’s, where I go online, I often forget what I wanted to look at and just have time to post on the blog and check my email.

I’ve got lots to do but wanted to at least put these notes down. It will be a very windy day along with hot so protecting the plants is on top of the list. Despite aiming to mow lots of rye for mulch over the last few days none got mowed. Hopefully that will change today. It is frustrating to constantly not do what I intend to. But this has been a busy week with the website conference and yesterday’s meeting with the rehab lady. Plus we went to Odessa to get the sunscreen cloth. Time to get out into the wind and heat and get things done.

The gophers took out another potato plant. That makes four now and I’m sure they are not done. Fact is they won’t quit till they are dead and in the meantime I’m sure the well fed things are making lots of babies. The poison doesn’t seem to be very effective. I think I’m going to have to bite the bullet and spend some money to make something I can pump propane into their tunnels with and blow them up. They are just killing me. I’ll start creating barriers that go at least two feet into the ground around the garden beds. I’ll start when I’m able to and I don’t know when that might be. In the meantime I’ll keep collecting pieces of sheetmetal and steel roofing from the landfill to use for this. Perhaps someday we will have the funds to rent a trencher that can dig the trenches I can insert the sheetmetal in. Digging it by hand isn’t really feasible. It would kill me.

It’s eleven now and I’m in for my first real break. I’ve come in a few times to get something to drink but this time I’ll lay down and give my back a rest. My fears about the greenhouse being able to survive this West Texas wind have been confirmed. Last night was the first real wind we’ve had since I got it put together. Several panels have broken and blown out and an aluminum brace broke. And this isn’t even a bad wind, maybe thirty miles per hour or so. It might be worse, I don’t know. It’s a shame it’s coming apart. I’ll see what I can do to make it survive. We don’t need it for this season but it will help us get a jump start on next year.

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