Saturday, January 30, 2010

The gift of life, I remain amazed

1/30/10 Saturday
Yesterday was great. I stayed sharp and energetic the whole day long, most unusual. The fellowship at the coffee house was uplifting as we heard from the couple who’ve come to Midland to open a branch of the International House of Prayer (IHOP is the initials and they have nothing to do with pancakes)
I learned a lot about the organization and am quite impressed. Like missionaries they raise support for themselves and unlike churches the organization does not pay salaries and donations go to ministry efforts at various places. At least that’s the understanding I have now. I sometimes misinterpret what I hear so am seldom certain of things.

After the meeting I drove to the little old lady’s house after calling to make sure she was home. She was and was happy to have me come by. We talked about the financial mess she’s in and I told her about the attorney firm I’d contacted on her behalf. She dug out the box that contains all the information she has about it so I can bring it home, make copies of everything, and then send it to the attorney along with the notes I took about it all. With that done I went out and fixed her garage door. The piece of wood we bought isn’t quite the right size but will work. Mrs. G. (the sweet little old lady) just called me a few minutes ago. She had gotten a letter from Met Life telling her that she owes taxes on the money they say they accidently put in her account and illegally removed part of and are now demanding the rest of back. It keeps getting more convoluted.

Cherie and I are in house cleaning mode today. I got her to ask me to do some things that are painful for her to do. Asking for help is something that’s hard for Cherie to do. I went through the boxes that the second wife had given me. They contained paperwork that dated back to when Cherie and I were married the first time along with some records of when I married the second one. There are so many blanks in my memories of these times that there were several surprises. I found the prospectus and financial records of a company I’d started and totally forgotten about called “The Edge”. I was quite impressed with myself as I read what I’d written almost thirty years ago. Then I found notes, tests, and books from Christ for the Nations Bible College, where I first met and fell in love with Cherie. The tests were from Ron Wahlrobe’s classes I’d taken. All of this really brings home what a miracle my life is. How amazing it is that we are back together, that God has restored so much that had been destroyed. It is these things that help greatly as I seek the God I had served and believed in. What a wonder it all is to me now, a wonder that I still live after being officially declared dead, a wonder that so much has been brought back that had been lost. I am grateful for life and even more grateful for the kind of life it’s turning out to be. I am blessed and deserve it less than so many others I know. Thank you God.

Here’s something I found that I’d scribbled on a piece of paper while in Bible college, probably around 1979.

Trials and tribulations?
So many of us say we are having a hard time, they say “the devil is attacking, ect. But yet it is just our luxuries being threatened.
Our preconceived ideas, our notions of what the Christian walk should be. But God desires a people of faith, trust, dedication, and love. A people willing to take up the cross, to endure suffering. To know and realize that on earth and spiritually we are involved in a serious thing, a war, a battle, to carry the standard of Jesus and to snatch from the hand of Satan the souls Jesus died for.
What is death but to live with Jesus.
And life but to be full of the Spirit.

So in this I can see who I used to be. A person who vanished long ago and perhaps can once again be. I am wiser but not as smart now, though I work steadily to become that person I can be proud of, to honor the gift my life is, to take advantage of this grace I’ve been given. At the HeBrew meeting I once again told the story of this miracle and saw anew the impact it has on others.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Surprised and gratified

You can see how the sand quickly covers items I had just dug out a day before.

1/29/10 Friday
I was surprised and gratified at the personal emails I got in response to the “I can do all things…” blog post I made yesterday. It reminded me that I am not alone in these things, that there are millions of brain injury survivors and even more others who have disabilities and must live and deal with the ignorance and judgment of those who choose not to see and understand their issues. What I noticed in their emails is it wasn’t my whining that they commented on but my resolve to move forward and succeed despite and in spite of what others think. It’s encouraging to me that somehow, through the depressions, disappointments, and struggles I have I somehow provide inspiration to others. Thank God for that. It’s all a wonder to me.

Today I plan on attending the gathering of fellow believers at the HeBrew Coffee House at noon today. After that I intend on visiting the sweet little old lady I help. There I need to interview and gather information to send to the attorney in Houston who expressed interest in her case. As I described what happened he told me that it had all the red flags of predatory practices used by unscrupulous agents against the elderly. His firm specializes in taking on this kind of stuff. I also will take our vacuum cleaner and vacuum her carpets as I am unable to fix hers till the part she ordered comes in. That will take a couple of weeks. Then I will repair her garage door.

Till then I will work on preparing to pull mesquite trees out of the ground by digging around them so the cable Nate gave me for that purpose can grasp them at the root crowns. Over the years sand builds up around their bases so those crowns are a foot or three deep. All the rain we had will help greatly as long as I get to it before things dry out. Otherwise I will have to soak the ground. This is important to get done as these trees are springing up all over the place and besides the two inch long spikes that will easily flatten a tractor tire they are often right in the middle of garden plots and pathways.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I can do all things through...

1/28/10 Thursday
It rained hard this morning. I went online and googled Met Life, fraud and came up with lots of hits. Called a law firm that showed up regarding the sweet little old lady’s problem and it sparked immediate interest. So I’ll be gathering information and sending it to the lawyer for free evaluation. Hope it gets her help. I’ll sit down with her tomorrow and write down the details she told me before but I can’t remember. The lawyer asked questions I know I was told the answer to but was unable to recall. Makes me feel stupid but reminds me (like I need a reminder) that this TBI is still there after nine years. I’m much better but will never be as sharp as I was. Actually, now that I think about it, I haven’t been as sharp as I was since 1981 when I fell out of a tree, broke my neck and back, and sustained the brain injury that led to Cherie and I getting divorced. When I later built my companies I had a secretary who served as my memory and thus helped me keep up. I was and am still sharp when it comes to business but always had a problem with my memory.

That brings up something I’ve wanted to write about for some time. That is in regard to what is called a “disability”. I’ve experienced and seen many things in connection to this brain injury. There is a judgement at the core of many peoples responses to me that hurts and creates a wall that prevents any depth of relationship. I've watched as people bank on my forgetting and seen my thoughts discounted as those of someone who's "not right in the head".

So here’s the deal, "I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me", is a scripture I cling to, but the fact is I can do much more with a little help to keep me directed and on a correct path. Stephen Hawking, the world famous physicist, has ALS. You can read about it on his website at His “disability” didn’t become apparent till he was 21 years old and through the years steadily worsened. If it wasn’t for the family and comrades who help him do basic things like get out of bed you would have never heard of him and he would not have the impact on science and the world he has today. If someone, totally ignorant of who he is and what he’s done, just ran into him in some waiting room you can bet that his initial judgement of this guy trapped in a wheelchair and unable to talk wouldn’t be terribly high. They might think “This guys a retard” or something to that effect. But because of the help, recognition, and understanding of those around him Stephen has been enabled to accomplish what he has.

Now I don’t pretend to be anything approaching Stephen, but I know that with a little help and support I can change the world, at least the world around me. Yet I feel a little isolated. Not from some who have been very loving and supportive but there are others, who keep me at an arms length and seem afraid to get close. What I do know is that I can make people uncomfortable. Whether it’s the lack of a smile, or the scowling countenance on my face, or that I say things that might not be appropriate, I can never be sure, but there’s something there. What I know is what I see. What I also know is that I can do little by myself but much with the help of others. Ecclesiastes 4 starting at verse 9 says "Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: 10. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity on the man who falls and has no one to help him up! 11. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12. Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A wonderfully warm day

Monday's sunset

1/27/10 Wednesday
It’s going to be wonderfully warm today with the high predicted to be 65 and this morning it is fifty degrees out. That means I can get out and going without fighting the cold. The Toledo area once again made the news as we watched a story about two woman in Oregon, Ohio being chased by the police. The passenger had taken control of the car as she and the driver, who kept trying to escape as the car was moving. The car wrecked and sadly the one on the drivers side was killed. By this time they had driven back to the East side of Toledo, where I’m from.

Anyway, it’s going to be a great day weather wise. My usual frustration at not getting things done that need to get done is present. As momentum builds regarding building this farm the urgency to complete tasks does as well, so I must get better at being organized.

Tuesday is my regular day to visit the sweet little old lady and I was able to accomplish that after I poop scooped Janie’s yard. We talked for a while about things going on in her life and I took her to Lowe’s to buy a piece of wood she needs to repair her garage door. I’ll be fixing that sometime this week. I brought her vacuum cleaner home as it’s plugged and not working. It’s the same kind Cherie has so I’m familiar with it, having similar problems with hers. The shop wanted $65 bucks just to clean it so I told her I’d take care of it. I need to go online and investigate if there are a number of elderly people who have been taken advantage of by Met Life like she had. Their representative was rude and aggressive, trying to bully her into dropping the matter. He refuses to talk with her with me or anyone else present, just wants to isolate her from any advisors. That tells me a lot in and of itself. If any of y’all have experience in these matters drop me a note. I’ll take all the advice I can get.

Finally got the mud flaps on the truck so I can take it in to get inspected and licensed now. Going online I learned that trucks of that type sell for anywhere from nine to twelve thousand dollars. If I can get seven for it I break even on everything I bought while up in Ohio and Michigan. That will provide cash needed to build a chicken house and many other things needed to create this farm. A big part of that would be hiring some help around here.

Geeze, it’s 9:00 already. Time to get moving, again. I already unloaded the rest of the wood from Cherie’s truck and did a few other things.
Got the truck inspected and plates. Cost over $400 for it all to get done. Right now I'm fighting another headache. It drives me nuts to run out of energy so fast after doing so little. They tell me this kind of fatigue is common with brain injuries but after nine years? Right now my ears are ringing, never a good sign.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Blessed to be alive

1/25/10 Monday
I’m up and moving well. It was certainly cold this morning so I got a fire going. Am washing dishes but took a break to let the back settle down. Unloaded firewood from Cherie’s truck that we had picked up yesterday. Only got half of it because she had to get to work. I was remarkably lucid yesterday and hope to be as clear headed today. The slowdown I had saturday was a stark reminder that I still suffer the effects of the brain injury I endured nine years ago. And it reminds me how blessed I am to be alive today. I plan on being busy so this is all I’ll write for now.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Does wet sand blow?

1/23/10 Saturday
Went out and checked stuff. Must have done a good job securing things cause there wasn’t too much gone or blown around. Of course I’ll learn more later as I work around the place. We went to Midland this afternoon. I had gone earlier too buy tractor parts and mud flaps. This time we needed to go because the water station in Stanton wasn’t working and we were out of water. Besides that I didn’t go in to poop scoop yesterday so needed to catch up on that. Just before we left I had a bad slowdown and a headache to accompany it. We went to Chili’s for lunch and the noise was an overpowering cacophony that made it almost unbearable. I was in a hurry to leave for sure. Now we’re back home and Cherie closed the drapes to darken the bedroom. The wind is howling again. We had the idea that the rain meant sand won’t be blowing but that’s obviously not true. We could see it blowing miles away. I’m going to lay here and hope for sleep till this headache goes away.

Friday, January 22, 2010

The wind's gonna blow

1/22/10 Friday
Yesterday we picked up the disc I bought from the rancher we know from the farmers market. My memory was that it was smaller than the other disc we also bought from Skyler and had loaded on the truck without problems. Unfortunately my memory isn’t always reliable. Skyler tried as best he could to load it without causing any damage as I directed him, but that wasn’t to be. It bent the side of the truck despite our best efforts. It’s unfortunate but that’s the way it goes sometimes. This isn’t the first time I damaged the truck, bent the other side out with the old man’s bobcat last year as I loaded manure on it. I hope the people who gave us the truck don’t get upset because we aren’t taking care of it as well as they think we should. I worry about that kind of stuff probably more than I should but do anyway. This kind of paranoia has been there since I woke from the coma but I have a better handle on it now. Still I always wonder who I offended or what people think of me.

See the round hose reel peaking out from the sand?
We had quite a wind two days ago and they’re predicting fifty MPH winds today with gusts up to eighty in some areas. I noticed this peeking out from the sand yesterday and remembered there are lots of soaker hoses here that the wind covered over with sand. This is why I built the racks, to hold things off the ground and prevent them from getting lost in the ever shifting sands. I thought these before and after pictures would illustrate that well. While the wind covers things up it also exposes stuff too. There is lots of broken glass that is now laying on top of the ground.

Friday is a poop scoop day so I’ll be running to Midland today. At some point I need to find a place that sells mud flaps for the truck so I can get it inspected and titled, along with the trailer. I suspect there’s some kind of time limit to do that stuff so need to get on it. Tractor Supply didn’t carry mud flaps so I’ll have to look around.

Time’s a’wastin so got to go.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Almost the end of January?

1/20/10 Wednesday
Geese, it’s hard to believe we’re most of the way through January already. Seems like it was yesterday the new year started. I’ve got lots to do to prepare for planting and in fact there are some seeds I could have started by now but I haven’t gotten the seed starting apparatus put together yet. I need to contact the ministry that prepares those getting out of prison to live in the free world about hiring some of the guys to help me out here. I need to do it while we still have funds left from my inheritance. Moving fence panels and other heavy stuff by myself hurts too much but it’s got to be done so I take a pain pill and keep going. By the end of the day I’m not moving too fast and must take breaks to let the pain subside. Nothing new about that, it’s the way it’s been for as long as we’ve been here. Today at 10:30 there is a USDA meeting in Stanton regarding conservation programs. I plan on attending as our land is under the CRP conservation program and the more I know the better I can plan for the future.

By the way, I need to mention that the Stelera internet hook up is working very well, the best service we’ve had since we moved here. We’re actually outside their advertised coverage area but it’s working fine despite that. Their tower sometimes has a hard time receiving our signal back, for instance when I click on the next email I wish to read, but other than that it’s fantastic.

The wind is blowing so hard I'm unable to work outside, except perhaps in the garage with the door closed. It's sandstorm time and I can barely see across the street. That's ok, there's plenty to do inside. This morning I went to a meeting for the USDA conservation programs. It was informative and I was able to make contacts with some who will be involved with building the farm business. Things are moving along and falling into place nicely despite my shortcomings.

"Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, own the vision, & relentlessly drive it to completion." Jack Welch

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


This morning's sunrise

1/19/10 Tuesday
I haven’t been keeping up with this journal and there is so much that has happened. Calvin and his friend, Louie, stopped and at our urging spent the night here on their way to Arizona. We wanted to make sure they got some sleep. They didn’t get out of here till late morning because we fixed a tire and did some other stuff. I think it was about 1:00 when my phone rang. I had a hard time understanding what he said but I could make out the “Sheriff of Reeve’s county” part. That got my attention. Seems that Calvin got pulled over in Pecos on the lame excuse that he was following too close behind the vehicle that had just slammed on the brakes when they saw the police car. There was a small amount of marijuana found so the sheriff pulled his gun and screamed at them to “Hit the dirt”. Anyway, Calvin claimed the weed and was arrested and they impounded the van. Louie was stuck in Pecos with only a few clothes they let him take out of the van. Right after the sheriff called I got a frantic call from Suzie, who had received a call from Calvin in jail. She was crying and hysterical and I did my best to reassure her. I jumped into my truck, drove to Midland where I picked up Cherie’s truck. Mine only has two gears (first and 3rd) that work on the automatic transmission so I didn’t want to take it for the 110 mile drive to Pecos. I also grabbed a checkbook and some cash in case I could bail him out.

That wasn’t going to happen, the JP wouldn’t be in till the following morning. I found Louie in Pecos and he told me about what happened. I think they got pulled over because of having out of state license plates. Come to find out that deputy has quite a reputation in the area, not necessarily a good one. I went into the jail to get details and an understanding of what we were looking at. Texas is one of the few states that has not decriminalized marijuana possession and it was a class B misdemeanor. I found out when court was and took Louie back home with me.

The next morning I got Louie up at 5:30 and we hit the road at 6:00 to get there by 8:00. We got there a little before and the doors were locked so we sat and waited. At 8:00 the doors were unlocked so we went in. No one seemed to know when court would be or who would be presiding at first. Seems that the regular judge is on vacation in Brazil and the JP was at the high school for a truancy program. They called him up and learned he’d be there shortly. In the meantime I met the sheriff and others, who were generally real friendly and helpful. The sheriff made sure we had coffee, showing us where it was as he inquired as to why we were there. The JP comes out and says “Are you Bob? Why don’t you come in here”. It was the same room where we got coffee and walking in I see Calvin in an orange jail jump suit. It was good that we saw this one as he was pretty down to earth and practical about the whole situation. It had been explained to him that they had been traveling to rescue the kid in Arizona so he understood there was no serious criminal activity going on here and was sympathetic to Calvin’s plight. He talked to me a bit to get a better understanding who I was and how I got involved. I explained that Suzie was the daughter of my former secretary, who had been killed by a heroin addict, and that when that happened they pretty much became family to me. Because I am a Texas resident and own land he was able to release Calvin under my responsibility so we didn’t even have to post bail. It’s good because the regular judge wouldn’t be back for a month or something so Calvin would have had a high bond that we couldn’t pay and stuck in jail.

Meantime Devon, the kid in Arizona, managed to get a ticket and on a bus to Midland. So he’s on the way here instead of Calvin having to proceed there and get him.

So it worked out. They were going to stay a few days and work off the over six hundred dollars we’ve spent so far but I cut them loose early and called it even. Calvin needs to get home and take care of his family and the rest just needed to go home. They did help me build these stands, or whatever they are called, to use for stacking wood and items off the ground and then to move a lot of wood away from the house.

The morning I went to Pecos for court was the same morning we were scheduled to meet with the state agency people about getting the farm business going. This was a vital meeting and my chance to meet with the folks involved, but people come first, especially friends. Cherie went to the meeting without me and we are glad she did. It was a great meeting and Cherie came out of it relieved, inspired, and enthusiastic. One of the first things they told her was that it was important that they change the original paperwork on me. It erroneously stated that I was looking for a job and was unemployed. They understand, perhaps from looking at the blog in addition to what our new caseworker told them, that I indeed have a job and work fulltime. The job is building this farm with what I have. What an exoneration that was, especially after hearing of someone saying that I need to “Get a real Job”. The insinuations of laziness and of me being a mooch bothered Cherie greatly and don’t make me feel great either. It’s the kind of judgment that, once it’s in place, colors how they interpret every action I take. Plus there is an apparent lack of faith in my ability to accomplish anything that is evident there as well. This just spurs me to work harder to make this farm happen. I will be someone, I will achieve.

That being said I need to get out to work. It’s already nearing the end of January and there is lots to do to prepare for planting. I sure could have used the help from all three of that crew from Toledo but that’s how it is. Now it’s back to just me doing the best I can. It’s always a decision, to choose which of many tasks I’ll do. I’m continuing to clear out stuff from around the house and stack it on the racks.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Yesterday was a lost day

1/13/10 Wednesday
Yesterday was a lost day. It wasn’t seizures, slowdowns, or pain that caused me to lose the day, it was this new Stelera internet connection. When we got it Monday things were fantastic with information downloading and uploading at speeds we have never seen before out here. When I tried to go online yesterday morning I was able to look at one of the nine emails I had before it stopped working all together. So I called Lance, the rep, to tell him about it. He put me in touch with a tech guy who instructed me to take the router back and trade it in for another one. I did so but it still didn’t work. So Lance said he would come to the house and work on it. It was two hours before he could get here and when he arrived it was a puzzle he couldn’t solve. Tuesday is one of the days I go to Midland and this one had a lot of items on the schedule. It’s a poop scoop day and the day I visit with the little old lady I help out. When 4:00 rolled by I called her to let her know I was running late and might not make it. She gave me an update on how things are proceeding with her financial debacle with Met Life and Wells Fargo. They are still trying to figure out who messed up and who’s to blame for it. Meantime Lance was still trying to figure out what was wrong with their system. The last word on it was that they will send someone to look at the tower to see if that’s where the problem lays. Lance was here till after 5:00 and I had no choice but to stay here and babysit. The timing is real bad as I have much to do to prepare for our meeting with the State Friday and part of that requires I go online. I still can’t go online this morning and yesterday Cherie returned the Verizon equipment so even that slow option is not available. She will download and print the email sent by the consultants, that spells out what they needed, from her work. It seems like there are forces out there making this as hard as possible, putting out roadblocks and obstacles to keep us from our goal of building a business out of this farm.

Here’s an update on another situation we’re involved with. Last week I got a call from Suzie in Toledo. A boy they know, who had dated their daughter for a while, was stranded in Socorro New Mexico. He had driven to Arizona to pick up some relatives and others and bring them back to Toledo. The motor had blown on the truck and they needed money for food, lodging, and hopefully to fix the truck so they could continue back to Toledo. Cherie and I decided to send him $200 we had been saving for something else after I talked to the boy myself to wade through all the confusion I was hearing. I was considering taking the truck and trailer there and towing it here, where they could work on it, but that fell through. Seems that someone from Tucson, Arizona, came and got the whole group (there were six of them including a nine year old girl) and took them back to Arizona.

I learned more details from Suzie later and it’s not a good situation at all. When Devon, the kid who’d driven all that way to get this crew, bought food for the nine year old, who’d not eaten in two or three days, the father got angry and started a fight. Now I know that the father is addicted to pain killers and part of the group is a lesbian couple who probably have drug issues as well. Seems that they robbed Devon of the money I sent along with his clothes and phone charger. The lesbians found a ride to Toledo with someone through Craig’s list and the man with the daughter also found a way back to Toledo leaving Devon stranded in Arizona.

So now Calvin (Suzie’s other half) is driving to Arizona to rescue Devon despite not having the funds to do so. I let them know that if they come by here I will pay them to do some work around the farm and thus enable them to make it home. What bothers me the most is the thought of that little nine year old girl. What kind of abuse is she going through with a drug addicted father who got upset when someone bought her a hamburger. Devon is 18 and this is all an education for him about life so he will survive but that little girl is another issue. I just want to reach out and smack the dad upside the head to wake him up but even if I could odds are it wouldn’t change things. There are thousands of children growing up in similar situations on the East side of Toledo, and all across America for that matter. And the poor economy just makes things worse.

It is our desire to at least make a way out for Suzie, Calvin, and their children. To perhaps find them work here in the Permian basin where they can escape the sin and degradation that surrounds them in Toledo. A man, who says he is a prophet, told me I will become a patriarch to some and the farm will be a place of refuge. When I was told this it sounded comfortable and I can see nothing wrong about it. Actually I already knew it.
Finally, they got it fixed. There was something messed up at the tower so now that it’s repaired we have internet access. Praise the Lord.

Calvin called. They just made it to Texas so should arrive here in five or six hours. That's a guess cause I can't remember how long it takes to get here. We'll find some work for them to do and make sure they have a good meal before sending them on to Arizona.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Got a call from Calvin and Suzie yesterday. A family they know is broken down in Socorro New Mexico. They were returning to Toledo from Tuscon Arizona when the motor blew. There are six of them including a 9 year old girl. They had only enough money to pay for gas and food on the trip home and had to spend that to get the truck, a 2002 chevy 4X4, towed to a hotel. They don't have enough even to stay in the hotel tonight. We are sending them money we'd saved for other things and are trying to find ways to help them. Put the word out to church people we know in case someone feels like helping. In this tough economy many are scratching just to survive. I will do what I can to help and may make the nine or ten hour drive with my big truck and trailer to help. Perhaps find a used motor and put it in.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Fridgid weather arrived

1/7/10 Thursday
The cold front blew in last night with a vengeance. I’d split and brought in plenty of firewood but it’s not keeping up with the cold well. Much of the firewood isn’t as dry and seasoned as it should be so doesn’t burn well. We’ve done what we could to protect the outside dogs from the cold. They’ve had an electric blanket set up to lay on for days now and we’ll cover them with blankets when they settle down. I had planned on moving their doghouse to the front of the house yesterday but between working on the sweet little old lady’s hot water heater for four hours and then for the old man after that it didn’t happen. Maybe I’ll get to it today. It’s a well built doghouse I made when Gretchen was pregnant last winter and is insulated. Whether they will use it or not is a question but the only way to find out is to move it and see.

I hope the new computer comes today as scheduled. The Verizon internet still works nominally and I’ll continue exploring options. Our thirty days to get out of the contract end on the twenty fifth so we’ll need to decide by then.

There is a lot to do in preparation for our meeting at the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services on the fifteenth and it’s just the start. Starting a business is a lot of work regardless and what we plan on doing is a fairly complex business model as it is. This will be a good day to work on that.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

I'm being a plumber today

1/6/10 Wednesday
I called the sweet little old lady yesterday before I went to visit and it’s a good thing I did. She was sick and heading to the doctors. Last night at about ten she called me up. The water line going to her hot water heater was leaking bad. She had her grandson over but he had no tools and didn’t know what to do. She asked me what she should do and I really couldn’t say because I wasn’t familiar with the house at all and had no idea where things like cut off valves were. So I got my clothes on, grabbed some tools, and headed out there. Once there I found that someone had done a poor job of southern engineering the hot water heater in, cutting an extension cord for the electric hookup. I was able to cut the electricity off and temporarily stop the leak but this morning I’m heading over there with my tools to hopefully finish the job. Our new computer is scheduled to be delivered today. I hope I don’t miss the Fed Ex guy and worry that he might not drop it off once he is greeted by the dogs. Can’t say I’d blame him, plus they may require my signature on the delivery.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Always lots to do

We had a freezing fog the other day that coated everything in white.

1/5/10 Tuesday
Always lots to do and today is no exception. It’s a poop scoop day but I would be running to Midland today anyway. Tuesday’s are the day I now visit the sweet little old lady I help out and on top of that I must drop off a packet of information at Janie’s so she can scan it and get it to her husband. It’s info regarding the power lines that are proposed to cross our property that we must fight in order to protect our plans for the business.

At some point I need to get the truck I bought in Michigan inspected and then registered and titled in Texas. Once all that’s done I will be able to put it on the market for sale. I would like to slap a coat of paint on it and make it look pretty but that might not happen. There’s some serious cold weather on the way that should get here Thursday so it’s important to make sure there is plenty of firewood inside.

Speaking of that I want to make note of something that happened yesterday. I was putting stuff in the burn barrel when I noticed two cars driving slowly by and pulling in the drive. After getting Rascal and Trixie in the house (because they don’t behave around strangers) I went to talk to the young man who got out of the light blue pickup. He told me a story about how their heater had died and asked if I would sell a few pieces of the firewood that’s stacked five foot high where everyone driving past can see. I explained that most of the wood is still wet and not good for burning but would give him a few pieces of what’s dry. He wanted to “give you a few bucks” for it but it was only a armload of wood so I told him he could have it for free. When they left I watched them go a mile down the road and pull over. Curious I got the binoculars out to see what was going on. They pulled something out of the silver suv and threw it on the side of the road and then took off. I hopped in the truck to see what it was and it was an old tire they dumped. That pissed me off. I had asked if they were from around here and they said they were from Midland but one guy said he used to live here. Now I wonder if they were out looking for things to steal and if they would have grabbed firewood if I hadn’t been there. It was unsettling.

That’s it for now.
Went to Midland and dropped off the packet. I called Cherie to see if there was anything I could do while there and she could tell I wasn’t feeling too good from my voice. “Are you alright?” she asked. I told her that I had a bad headache coming on and from the sound of my voice could tell that a slow down was on the way. It’s always frustrating when this happens but I’m so grateful it doesn’t happen as much as it used to. So after checking the mail I came home. It’s beautiful out so I will force myself to keep moving, I hope.

Monday, January 04, 2010

1/4/10 Monday
It’s Monday, the start of the first week of 2010, or at least the first Monday of the year. Things are going to get real busy around here, excitingly busy. There is much to do but I need to focus on the business plan and getting it all together now that the state is pitching in to help. I must run to Midland and buy dog food this morning because I forgot to yesterday and the dogs are totally out now, after I poured the last in their bowl last night. Cherie ordered some seeds last night but I need to dig through this laptop and find the information I downloaded long ago about what to plant when. All of that, several years worth of downloads and information gathering, became a jumbled mess when it was transferred to the new hard drive I had to buy for this laptop. (The third hard drive we’ve had, including the original one) We so much look forward to the Apple computer that’s on it’s way. Then there will be a central place where we can put and organize all of this information.

The Verizon internet seems to work ok but is a little slow. We’ve got thirty days to make up our minds if this is the way to go.

OK, I’ll rephrase that. I tried to download a new spyware program and after an hour and half it was still downloading so I took our trash to the landfill. When I got back I saw the message that the download was unsuccessful. So it’s not working very well.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

1/3/10 Sunday
It’s 3:00 this afternoon. Cherie got up and went to work cleaning house this morning and was so happy about it she decided to stay home and clean while I went to church. I was doing fine but developed a headache while at church and it’s gotten real bad now. It’s frustrating. There’s so much I need and want to do but this makes it hard. Having a hard time thinking things out through the fog of pain and my right leg is barely functional, making walking a chore. Cherie went into town to do laundry. I came in for a second to write this and lay down a little. Geese, closed my eyes for a second. I could go to sleep real easily right now but hate to waste this good weather and any time.
12/31/09 Thursday
We are coming to the end of another year. The year was a year of progress, in a way. I need to go back and read this journal to help me remember what the year was like. Then perhaps it would be good to write something about it. There are lots of key points, pivotal moments that changed things or deserve mentioning. I know we were on TV but can’t remember if that was this year or 2008. That’s why I have a journal. Meantime there’s things to do so no time to write. The new computer is on the way. I look forward to getting it. Preparing the office for it will take a lot of work as it needs to be reclaimed from the accumulation of clutter that always happens in an unused room. So that means we have to figure out places to put “things” that ended up there because we didn’t know where else to put them. What that means is that other low traffic areas will become the new homes of these “things”. “Things” are like a living creature in how they move, migrate if you will, through the house and property. There are seasonal “things” that only come out once a year and then there are “Things” you can’t get rid of because you may have a use for it later or know exactly what you plan on doing with it, when you get a “round to it”. I have “round to it’s” lurking everywhere here, all the things I haven’t gotten to.
12/29/09 Tuesday
Well, we officially aren’t online now. There’s no connection to the satellite anymore. It’s paid for but not there. This puts a cramp in things for sure. I wanted to research T-Mobile’s services as we shop around for a different internet service but can’t do that now. We’ve seen their ads on TV but don’t have a clue where to go to look deeper, other than the internet.

It’s snowing today. They predict one to four or five inches. We’ll take all the moisture we can get. I’ve had lots of headaches lately and there’s one I’m dealing with this morning. I plan on making a run to the landfill this morning. Worked on installing lights on the truck yesterday and may continue that today, depending on weather and how I feel. It’s a poop scoop day and Tuesday’s are when I go visit the sweet little old lady I minister to. I think tomorrow is when we meet with Wally to go over her finances and the mess some salesman talked her into that cost her tens of thousands of dollars.