August 2013 Robidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
Just another travel day. That means a short potty walk for Patches and then a worrisome day for her. She is traveling better and does spend more time sitting in the navigators chair watching for rocks and animals but is still nervous. When we get to our new camp she is wore out and ready for a long nap.
A much shorter day for the both of us with a total of only 177 miles. The route: WY10, WY 230, N. 3rd St (US287), Grand Ave (US30) (in Laramie, WY), I-80* (6 miles), WY210 (Happy Jack Rd), W. 24th St, Warren Av, Yellowstone Rd (in Cheyenne, WY), US85, WY151, NE88, NE71, County Rd 21 (Gering Exit off NE71), Kimball Av/10th St, M St & 5 Rocks Rd (in Gering, NE).
*Google Maps gives a way to avoid the Interstate but when it became a dirt road I turned around and got on I-80. I took Vista Dr to E. Skyline Rd but it then turned to dirt before I reached Government Gully Rd. Maybe someone with a 4x4 will give that route a try someday and tell me about it.
In Laramie I turned north at the Junction of WY230 and N. 3rd St and went a couple blocks to Safeway to fill up with gas. It was good news that the price was only 2 ¢ more than what I paid in Gunnison after the discount. It was also good news that with all the climbing that I did yesterday I got over 9.5 mpg on that tank of gas.
From there I could drive to Shari's restaurant without leaving the adjoining parking lots. The service was very slow but I got a spinach omelet that was garnished with diced tomato, avocado, green onions, olives and feta plus it comes with two slices of toast and hash browns.
I highly recommend taking WY210 from Laramie to Cheyenne rather than the Interstate. It is very scenic and a good two lane road that had some construction that made me wait about 10 minutes for a pilot car. When they finish the construction on that segment most of it will have a 65 mph speed limit so there will be very little increase in driving time.
I knew I was not going to like the weather here very much and I don't. It was 88° with 40% humidity when I got into town and stopped at Fresh Food, the main market in Gering. I had the A/C running in Desperado's cab since about 10:00 so when I got out and walked into the store it felt like I had been wrapped in a wet wool blanket. As soon as I got into my space here at the Park I got the house A/C started and it did not cycle off at all for the first 2 hours trying to bring the interior temperature down to 78 with the expected high today to be 93.
I have no shade trees and those sites that do are not getting much shade from the small trees that are near them. It looks like the Park has only been here a few years so there are no mature trees to offer any shade. I do have a pretty good view out my windshield of Scotts Bluff National Monument which is only 2.5 miles to the Visitors Center. I also drove across the Oregon Trail twice when I went to Fresh Food and then back south to the RV Park. It is certainly within walking distance so I may see if there is any part of it in town that Patches and I can walk.
I spent over 1/2 hour yesterday and over an hour today trying to get the link in my map icon for Woods Landing Resort to bring up the web posting for 31 July. Can not get it to do it, don't know why other than the month of July is a big file and Yahoo quits searching for the tag and times out. I'm not going to mess with it any more, I don't think it is anything that I have done or can do.
2 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA138 August 2, 1925
The high yesterday was 96° which is to be expected but I didn't like it much. The forecast is for a similar high today and then cooling down into the mid-80s tomorrow. The low of 57° this morning made for pleasant walking to Fresh Foods where I got a cup of coffee.
I may be going there for coffee almost every morning. The distance is about 1.5-2.0 miles depending on what route I select which is good because I will not be doing much distance in the afternoon heat.
After I posted to my web site entry yesterday I got caught up with my Daily blog reads. Then spent a little time catching up on two days News which had not changed much since last Wednesday. I'm now back into my usual routine of reading those two categories in the early morning during breakfast.
Today I'll get some more work done on the Will Rogers weekly article links for September. Will also get started of reading my Monthly blog again so that I don't fall too far behind. Generally speaking, back into my routine before moving again in a couple of weeks.
The Bureau of Labor has released their non-farm job numbers for July, an increase of 162,000. This is being reported as disappointing because it is less than the experts were forecasting. The months of May and June were also revised downward so the good news of the past two months was not so good. The media is very happy about the drop in Unemployment Rate to 7.4% however.
If you look at the Household Data for July the number of Employed has maintained a favorable trend with an increase of 227,000 with and increase of 160,000 in June, 319,000 increase in May and 293,000 increase in April.
The number of Unemployed dropped by 263,000 which contributed about half of the drop in the Unemployment Rate. The other half of the change came from the Not in the Labor Force moving up by 240,000 with the Participation Rate decreasing by 0.1% to 63.4%.
The trend has also continued in the growth of part-time jobs rather than full-time. In July, the household survey reported that part-time jobs increased by 174,000 to 28,233,000 - another all time record high.
There was some additional bad news in the monthly Bureau report. The average earnings fell by 2 cents to $23.98 an hour, while the average workweek decreased 0.1 hour to 34.4 hours. Obviously this can not help increase consumer spending and GDP even if Consumer Confidence is up because of the Wealth Effect.
3 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The high yesterday was ONLY reached 87°. This morning felt worse with the temperature at 68-70, the humidity at 90- 85% and clouds down on top of Scotts Bluff. It sprinkled just a little bit around 9:00 and then a breeze picked up which made it feel so much better. If the breeze continues and the high temperature stays below the forecast 79° it won't be too bad of a day. Patches can take this high humidity much better than I can but her tongue starts to drag when the temperature goes over 80.
The positive thing about the move out of Gunnison is that I was getting tired of the Park staff driving, and people walking, thru the site next to me. That kind of thing doesn't bother me for a short time but it then becomes a bigger and bigger irritant. Here I have twice the space that most RV Parks offer. My time here will also make me really appreciate Custer where the 10 day forecast is for highs in the 66-75 range with the nights back down in the 40s rather than the 60s.
Patches and I went to Fresh Foods for coffee again this morning. I had the coffee she just went along for the walk. It was about 6:30 as I sat on a bench out front and sweated, not a breath of air moving and the humidity just terrible.
I had breakfast when we got home and had the A/C fan running to try and keep some air moving inside Desperado with the stove on. By the time I finished eating it had finally cooled down enough that I could start cooking a pot of Frey's Special Chili. That is now sitting in the Thermal Cooker until 'linner' time when I'll have some of it on top of a tamale that I picked up at City Market before leaving Gunnison.
The breeze has made for very pleasant reading while on the couch. The cloudy gray day has prompted Patches to stay up there with me and share more than normal. On sunny days she will spend a few hours on one of the seats in the cab were she can sun bath.
4 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The high yesterday was 71° and that happened early in the morning while we were doing our walk. After the wind started to blow it cooled down and the rest of the day was overcast and gray but cool.
This morning the low was 60° and we had a breeze again so the morning walk was very nice. Lots of dew on everything. The overcast had broken up and it is forecast to reach 93° so this afternoon could be not so nice. The rest of the 10 day forecast is predicting high temperatures in the 80s so the wind and humidity will be the deciding factor with regard to comfort. The forecast for Custer continues to offer cooler weather.
I had coffee at the Log Cabin restaurant this morning rather than Fresh Foods. It seems that Fresh Foods does not open until 7:00 on Sunday and we were there at about 6:20. The Log Cabin opens at 5:00 every day and looks like my kind of place. I'll have breakfast there a couple of times before I leave here and will stop for coffee every Sunday.
Became current reading my Monthly blogs. Not quite finished getting the Will Rogers weekly article links for September prepared. I do hope to have that taken care of by the time I leave here.
5 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The high yesterday was 94° and that happened during our afternoon walk. It was a hot one although I kept it fairly short. This morning it was 62-64° with a slight wind when we first started out which felt good. That feeling didn't last long when the wind quit.
The clouds rolling in from the northwest looked like they were carrying rain and they dropped down lower and lower until they covered the top of Scotts Bluff again but never did rain although there is a 40% chance today. Expecting a high of 88 today and it has been dead calm for most of the day so the fan or A/C has been on since we got back from our walk.
I finished Term Limits by Vince Flynn yesterday, his first novel and the only one not in his Mitch Rapp Series. It was originally self published and received one reviewers scorn as being an underwhelming techno-thriller. Not a great book but it was entertaining. I will try his Mitch Rapp Series if I ever come across them. There are 13 of them and that will be all, he died at the age of 47 from prostrate cancer.
The excerpt below is from the blog post of August 5, 2013 by Paul Craig Roberts a very vocal, perhaps rabid, critic of President Obama's policies. I think he is correct that this latest 'terrorist threat' clearly shows we have lost the war to al Qaeda. They can close down US embassies with phone calls made in the 'clear' that simply threaten violence. But then again, this 'threat' may be just more Washington propaganda to frighten the American people into giving up more freedom in exchange for safety.
In some magical way, closing the embassies for the week-end, and apparently now also for this week, has saved the embassies from destruction by al Qaeda. I am surprised that Washington did not set off bombs in the embassies in order to prove the value of the NSA’s illegal and unconstitutional spying.
Give a minute’s thought to the idiocy of the government’s claim. Washington has been at war with al Qaeda for more than a decade and claims to have killed its top leaders, including Osama bin Laden. Yet, al Qaeda is stronger than ever--indeed, so strong that it not only fights in Syria, with Washington’s help, against Assad, but also fights the US in Afghanistan, causes ongoing destruction in Iraq, and has the capability to attack US embassies all across the Middle East and North Africa.
If Washington’s story is correct, clearly Washington has lost the war. The NSA spying is useless. Al Qaeda has become such a threat that Americans are safe nowhere despite the decade long wars and universal surveillance.
6 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The high yesterday was 89° a degree over the forecast and calm winds. I had the fan or A/C on the entire day. This morning it was 60-62° with a slight breeze which felt good. The breeze has continued and it will feel nice until it stops or it gets near the expected high of 86.
High thin clouds today with not much chance of rain. The humidity has gone down some which has also made it a lot more comfortable. The 10 day forecast for Custer remains in the 66 - 77 range with lows in the 40s, I'm looking forward to them both.
I walked past a church mission 'roach coach', a catering truck used to feed the homeless, parked in the Gering Convention & Visitors parking lot a couple days ago that had a sign on it advertising The Daily Grind. This was the name of an espresso coffee shop in Gering that I had read about that had closed its original location back in May and moved to the northwest corner of the building that Fresh Foods also occupies. However, there was no coffee shop at that location.
Yesterday when I was sitting outside Fresh Foods I saw a lighted sign in the truck window and there were doors open. So, this morning I stopped there and found that it was the temporary home of The Daily Grind. Enjoyed a latte and some informative conversation with the owner of the coffee shop that will soon be in that location next to Fresh Foods.
President Obama is going to give another one of his Economic Series speeches today in Phoenix, AZ. The text released to the press says that the thrust of the speech will be housing and he will lay out a proposal to overhaul the mortgage finance system and urge Congress to phase out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
I have brought this to your attention in a past posting but thought I would do it again today. Why is he giving the speech at Desert Vista High School in Phoenix? Are high schools students the only audience that he can still get to applaud his shopworn speeches? During his first term he liked to use colleges and universities as his speech venue but is now using high schools, will he be addressing middle school students by the end of his second term?
7 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The high yesterday was 85° which again had me running the fan or A/C most of the day. This morning the low was down below 60 for the first time since I have been here, the humidity was very high but that is what it is. The average humidity has been over 50% and late yesterday a thunderstorm came in from the northwest adding to it. Scotts Bluff got an official 0.47" of rain whereas I got a trace and some strong winds. It did help to cool down earlier than it would have taken without the storm so it was not a bad thing.
I had three Class C RVs come into the Park yesterday that are all rentals. Two of them are families traveling together that both have identical rentals from Camping World. The third one is a rental from Road Bear RV. All three of them look to be about the same size as my Desperado but they are on Ford E350 Chassis. I don't know what the cost to rent one of those rigs would be for one or two weeks but I know I could not afford to do it. Perhaps it is as cheap as car and hotel/motel vacationing but I could not afford that either.
The big News today is that President Obama has canceled his meeting with President Putin. The media is doing their best to paint President Putin as the bad guy because he granted Snowden temporary asylum but the cancellation has been coming for a long time. Kim Zigfeld wrote Obama's Reset Collapses for The American Thinker on July 15, 2013 which says the following in part.
Has any U.S. foreign policy ever failed as spectacularly as Barack Obama's "reset" policy towards Russia? How is it possible that the policy's architect, Michael McFaul, still has his job as U.S. Ambassador to Moscow? In the Edward Snowden saga, we see Obama's "reset" laid absolutely bare, and even Obama himself seems to clearly know it...
If Snowden causes the U.S. to finally wake up to the dangers Russia presents, then his defection will be well worth its cost. The sad fact is that during the past five years Obama and McFaul have given more aid and comfort to American enemies than Snowden ever dreamed of doing, or could. By turning a blind eye and offering unilateral concessions, they have helped Putin consolidate his malignant regime and set the clock back decades on democracy and American values in Russia.
For me there is a total disconnect in how the media is trying to 'spin' the cancellation with Putin and what President said on the Jay Leno show last night. When asked about the Snowden disclosures the President said the following which is a boldface lie but the media will not call him on it; domestic spying by NSA was the reason for Snowden's whistleblowing.
We don't have a domestic spying program. What we do have are some mechanisms where we can track a phone number or an e-mail address that we know is connected to some sort of terrorist threat. And that information is useful.
8 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The high yesterday was 83° with winds in the afternoon that gusted up to 35mph and high overcast. That made for a very nice afternoon walk. A lot of radiation fog again this morning where the dew point was slightly below the air temperature. Whereas Scotts Bluff was obscured in the past by lowering clouds this morning it was hidden by rising fog.
We did a slightly shorter morning walk because today was shopping day. Feed Patches her breakfast and then went to The Log Cabin to have mine. I had their Denver Omelet which came with hash browns and toast. The omelet and hash browns were only fair and I will not do that again. The toast was acceptable, at least they provided two slices, but the choices reminded me that I was now in the mid-west.
I have written before that Bulgaria is the country that has a motto "It is good enough" vividly demonstrated by their having only two kinds of cheese. Well, the mid-west is like that when it comes to bread choices in their restaurants. They have white and wheat - two choices and it is good enough. I had forgotten this from my previous visits.
There was a beautiful Itasca Reyo Motorhome come into the Park for just one night yesterday. It is built on a Mercedes chassis, diesel engine and 25' long. Just for the heck of it I did a Google Search and found a new 2013 model that was 'On Sale' for a little over $105,000. Nothing I could afford but there was some feeling of envy.
James Howard Kunstler has been writing for years that the suburbs, which American car culture made possible, are not sustainable and will one day decline. He now has another author that has written a book that supports his position.
American Dream Is Moving Out of the Suburbs and Could Leave Home Values Behind by Lauren Lyster for The Daily Ticker.
Housing is back in the national spotlight, with the housing recovery a dominant narrative and focus for the broader economic recovery. So one might imagine this housing rebound taking place in suburbs all across the country – the middle class communities so emblematic of the "American Dream" of home ownership.
But in fact, in 2011 -- for the first time in 100 years -- the rate of growth of the suburban population was actually lower than the rate of growth of the urban population.
That’s just one fact journalist Leigh Gallagher cites in her new book "The End of the Suburbs: Where the American Dream is Moving." In the book, the assistant managing editor of Fortune magazine argues the suburbs – at least as we know them – are ending.
9 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA139 August 9, 1925
We had a good storm come through around 9:45 last night and dumped 0.40" of rain in about 30 minutes. This was after a high yesterday of 81° with a low this morning of just a little under 60. No fog this morning and only very high scattered clouds. Bad news in the forecast for this weekend through Monday - high temperatures in the low 90s. The forecast for August 18th is even worse with an expected high of 100 but the good news is I will not be here, I'll be in Custer were it is expected to be 82.
We went to The Daily Grind again this morning. Had a chance to ask the owner if he knew anything about the local agriculture. There is a bean field across the road north of the RV Park that I walked around a couple of days ago. The beans were slightly more mature than what I would expect to see for fresh green beans and when I open a pod my guess was that they were Great Northern. The owner confirmed my guess.
I then got a bunch of other information that was new to me. This part of Nebraska accounts for the majority of the U.S. Great Northern crop and are second in the nation for pinto beans. The Nebraska Dry Bean Growers Association is located in Gering, and the University of Nebraska - Lincoln Panhandle Research and Extension Center is at Scottsbluff where they do bean research. They do know beans around here!
I took some of the things I bought yesterday at Fresh Foods and made up a pot of modified Southwest Pork Tenderloin for the Thermal Cooker. The biggest modification was the use of chicken rather than pork tenderloin. This creation was built using a can of chicken broth, diced chicken breast, jalapeno, poblano and onion with a couple of teaspoons of powdered cayenne. That cooked all day and night then today I brought it to a boil again and added some rice and let it cook in the Cooker until 'linner' time. This will be used to make burritos for at least 3 'linners' this week.
I'm sure that the President's comments about Russia's anti-gay laws was made mostly to elicit support (ie money) from American gays and had very little to do with Russia. Barack Obama's Surprising Lack of Patience for Russia's Anti-Gay Laws by Mark Adomanis for Forbes says the following then goes on to point out that the President may have put his foot in it - again. The Russians are sure to use his comments to point out his hypocrisy of condemning them but giving Muslim countries a pass on how they treat homosexuality.
Barack Obama made headlines the other day when he harshly criticized Russia’s laws against gay propaganda on the Jay Leno show. In a tone that, at least for him, amounted to righteous indignation Obama said the following:
I have no patience for countries that try to treat gays or lesbians or transgender persons in ways that intimidate them or are harmful to them…One of the things I think is very important for me to speak out on is making sure that people are treated fairly and justly because that’s what we stand for, and I believe that that’s a precept that’s not unique to America. That’s just something that should apply everywhere.
Here’s the problem: Obama actions, and the actions of his government, conclusively show that he has virtually limitless patience for countries that mistreat gays. In case anyone forgot, we’re very close military and political allies with Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the UAE, and numerous other countries in which homosexuality is not only illegal but it sometimes punished with the death penalty. Gays in Saudi Arabia are banned from schools, thrown in jail, and even whipped simply for the crime of being gay. Despite this, the United States sells the Saudis tens of billions of dollars worth of high-tech weapons and, among other things, is working with them to overthrow Bashar al-Asad. Much the same can be said about the other Gulf Monarchies, which have been close US allies for decades and which violently repress not only “gay propaganda” but any expressions of homosexuality whatsoever.
10 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
We had had rain again last night. It came a little bit earlier, was not much of a storm and left 0.04" of rain over a period of a couple hours. It got up to a high of 85° yesterday with a low this morning staying a little under 60. The bad news forecast for this weekend through Monday and for August 18th has been revised downward to the upper 80s. This is good!
I had a courtesy call around noon today by the Park Host. One, or more, of the other RVers in the Park had told him that they have not seen any activity around my rig and they were worried. He just stopped by to see if I was still alive.
This is one of the reasons, not the most important, that I prefer to stay in RV Parks rather than off in isolation. It may still take some time but my body will be found sooner and maybe Patches will survive and then be taken care off.
I got some more work done on the Will Rogers weekly article links but have not yet finished getting September ready. Also read some Monthly blogs so as to not get way behind. I have also been reading another blog from the beginning that may become part of the Monthly when I get current - I'm now in 2008.
11 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
We got another rain shower just before sundown that left 0.07" in just over 15 minutes. The high yesterday was 87° with a low this morning back above 60.
I think that higher low temperature was a result of a high overcast that has stayed with us most of the day. Maybe it will hold down the high temperature for today. The Custer forecast is still promising highs near 80 with lows in the mid-50s for the first 5 days that I'll be there.
I have made up a new salad that I'm eating for the third day now. I can eat the same salad for days on end but then reach the point where I need to change. The latest is 3 oz fresh spinach, 2 oz artichoke hearts, 1 oz each almonds and pecans, 1 oz blue cheese and 1/2 of a thinly sliced apple. The dressing is just store bought pesto and lemon juice. Pretty tasty for being healthy and good for me.
I now have the Will Rogers weekly article links ready for September. I might be current with my reading of Monthly blogs by the end of today or tomorrow for sure. Then there is the very long novel that I have been reading while on the couch - about 1/2 way through the 850 pages.
12 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
My guess that the overcast yesterday would hold down the high temperature for the day proved correct, we only got up to a high of 81°. The low this morning dipped back down below 60 once more. A very calm, hazy day today that the experts think will reach a high of 90. I don't think so.
We have done walks these past two days that have totaled over 5 miles each with the afternoon portion being about 1.5 miles. Both days Patches has found a shady spot with grass and has laid down then stretched out full length and soaked up the coolness from the grass. I have let her stay there as long as she wants but can now tell that she is ready to go again when she does a good roll in the grass.
I'm not getting overly restless about moving on but I am ready. Today I prepared my route 3x5 cards with route notes and stops for gas, breakfast, groceries and maybe make an bath appointment for patches. I usually will drive 1-2 hours in the morning of moving day before stopping for breakfast. I couldn't find anyplace along my route this time that met that criteria so will be stopping in Scottsbluff.
13 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The weather guessers have revised the forecast each day for the past 3 days raising it to 90° each time. They missed it again yesterday when the high only made it to 83 so they have finally thrown in the towel and are calling for a high of 84 today. They have also raised the chances of rain to 50% for today and tonight. The Custer forecast for the first week that I'll be there is for highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s. YES!
I had my last morning coffee at Fresh Foods this morning. I will go back there one more time for groceries but I'm now counting down my last coffee stops.
President Obama crammed his ObamaCare law through Congress but now does not want any of its provisions to take effect until after the 2014 elections. The legality of delaying the provisions of the law are a separate issue entirely but the President has taken the position that he can enforce, or not, any law. He knows that ObamaCare is going to be an issue during 2014 and he must protect Democrat candidates at all cost if he expects to take control of the House.
That will be his last chance to 'transform' America unless he suspend elections in 2016 and declares himself President for Life. That possibility exists and could become a probability if the economy were to implode sometime in 2016. It would be even more of a probability if the Democrats were to control the House and Senate when the implosion happens the people begin to riot. The suspension would be done for the 'good of the people' and 'national security' of course and there are 51% of said people that would go along with it.
First, there was the delay of Obamacare’s Medicare cuts until after the election. Then there was the delay of the law’s employer mandate. Then there was the announcement, buried in the Federal Register, that the administration would delay enforcement of a number of key eligibility requirements for the law’s health insurance subsidies, relying on the “honor system” instead. Now comes word that another costly provision of the health law—its caps on out-of-pocket insurance costs—will be delayed for one more year.
According to the Congressional Research Service, as of November 2011, the Obama administration had missed as many as one-third of the deadlines, specified by law, under the Affordable Care Act.
14 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The weather guessers almost got it right yesterday when we had a high of 83°. They did get the rain prediction correct but it came with much stronger wind gusts than were in the official report, it looked like we got more than the 0.08" that was reported also.
We did a shorter morning walk today. When we got home I unhooked from electric and drove to the Park dump location and did that with my black and gray water tanks. I added fresh water a couple of days ago so I'm ready for the road now.
Went to 'town' and had breakfast at The Log Cabin again. This time I had their Garlic Sausage and Eggs which was much better than the omelet that I had last time. They do not know how to scramble eggs however. I got this flat, rubbery looking substance on my plate that tasted like eggs but was only scrambled in a bowl certainly not on the grill.
Then stopped at Fresh Foods to pick up a couple of things to carry me over for the next couple of days. The most important was some gallon jugs of drinking water and a package of dog treats. Patches does not get a lot of treats but I was almost completely out and she does get a reward when she behaves well when meeting or passing another dog.
Windows has always had strange shutdown routines, jokes have been told for years about to shutdown Windows you click on the Start button. That is the way Windows 98 worked which was the only Windows OS that I ever used until Windows 8.
For a shutdown routine in Windows 8 they have outdone themselves in the default setup and turned it into a four step process. First you need to open the Charm Bar, then click on Settings, then Power and finally Shutdown. Fortunately, there is a 'fix' which I got around to doing yesterday after getting so fed up with the default shutdown. I now close the lid of my laptop and Windows 8 shuts down.
I didn't take many pictures before I gave my 35mm film camera away when I started a fulltime lifestyle and I'm still in that frame (pun intended) of mind. Then when I do take some pictures I put off looking at them and editing them before adding them to my daily posting. That is all to say that these pictures were taken in Gunnison, CO, my previous camp, and I never got around to putting them on my web site.
The brick tower, now in the Riverwalk Estates, was a chimney, I think. I don't know, and no one at the RV Park could tell me, what may have once adjoined it but if I were to guess I'd say probably a lumber mill perhaps in the early 1900s.
This 'house' is actually two guest rooms for visitors to Riverwalk Estates but they may be available for rent by anyone. The style is what I call Texas Ranch. This was a style that was very popular in the late 1800s, early 1900s in Texas and somewhat today for a retro look. The two front doors were for entry into the living rooms of the house with the second one leading directly into the kitchen.
Just a quick comment about the Oprah 'flap' in Switzerland. The store clerk claims that Oprah asked for the price of the bag. If this is true then the clerk acted in exactly the correct manner for a high priced 'trendy' store when she offered Oprah something cheaper. Oprah is rich, she knows that "If you need to ask the price of something then you can not afford it". Nothing racial about it!
15 August, 2013 Rubidoux RV Park (Gering, NE)
The 10 day forecast for Gering has high temperatures in the 90s every day except this next Sunday which is expected to be 100. I'm getting out of here just in time and am looking forward to a 10 day forecast of highs in the upper 70s or low 80s with this next Sunday to be 82.
Patches and I did our last walk to The Daily Grind this morning. If I ever get back here they may actually have moved into their new location just north of Fresh Foods. The owner is a very pleasant guy and speaks with more patience than I would have about the delay in getting into his new location. Stop if your in the area!
I finished Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, the 850 page novel I have been reading, that was the first in her Outlander Series. The novel is a combination romance novel (bodice ripper, but not enough to put me off), historical fiction with a detailed account of 18th century Scottish clan life and fantasy. I selected it primarily for its size but it was interesting enough that I'll give her another try if I find one of her books.
These two bucks crossed CO135 in front of me the last morning that I was walking back from the Espresso shop in Gunnison. They were then good enough to stop on the west side of the road and pose for me for a minute or two. These are a couple of very good examples of Rocky Mountain Mule Deer. My previous experience had always been with Desert Mule Deer so I knew these were Mule Deer but they looked 'different'. A little bit of Google Search research solved the mystery for me. Love the Internet!
I finished Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, the 850 page novel I have been reading, that was the first in her Outlander Series. The novel is a combination romance novel (bodice ripper, but not enough to put me off), historical fiction with a detailed account of 18th century Scottish clan life and fantasy. I selected it primarily for its size but it was interesting enough that I'll give her another try if I find one of her books.
This is from Central Planning Run Amuck a blog posting on August 13, 2013 by Monty Pelerin. It continues by discussing how the United States is on the same path as Argentina, the third richest country in the world in 1900.
To understand the path we are headed down and its implications, one need only look at history. The graveyard of history is filled with countries that “died” as a result of the policies they pursued and we pursue.
In the early 1940s Friedrich Hayek wrote a classic book, “The Road to Serfdom,” which warned both England and the US of their ultimate destinations as a result of bad policies. The path of which he warned against has not changed. 90 years later we are still on this path but much closer to its terminal point. Only the rate of speed has differed during this period, never the direction.
Once on this path it is almost impossible to get off. Politicians drive the direction and speed. They gain power and wealth the further down the road a country progresses. Few have intentions of changing direction. As a result, deterioration, once begun, becomes endemic to government.
Declines in standards of living, culture and personal responsibility are signs. The closer to the end that a country gets, the worse off its people and economy become and the more desperate its political class to keep things going. Anything in the way of their own welfare must be maintained, no matter how foolish or tyrannical the solutions.
The US passed the fail-safe point, probably fairly recently. There is no longer a meaningful Constitution and no way to restrain political adventuring and exploitation. The Rule of Law is under attack by this Administration and the Statists in Congress.
The demise could be slow, lasting even another 90 years. However, the financial irresponsibility of government likely means that is not possible. Total liabilities, including the unfunded social promises, are estimated by some to be in excess of $200 trillion dollars. The GDP of the entire world is only about $50 trillion people no longer have interest in funding government, especially wastrel ones like ours. Hayek’s road to serfdom is unlikely play out to the end he envisioned. It will be terminated by some massive financial and economic crisis that ends the country as we know it. Perhaps I am slighting Hayek as he was well aware of the dangers of debt, inflation and government out of control.
August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA140 August 16, 1925
There was heavy fog when we stepped outside this morning to do short potty walk. Visibility was maybe 100 yards even when we got on the road. Stopped in Scottsbluff for gas and then diverted to Shari's for breakfast from the direct route that I would have normally taken.
The fog had lifted to about 500' by the time I finished breakfast and I then drove into it again as I proceeded north. Visibility of 1/4 to 1/2 mile all the way to Crawford, NE before it finally cleared. That was just in time for me to see the Oglala National Grassland with cloud shadows moving across the rolling hills.
Anyone that says Nebraska is flat has never been in the northwest corner of the state. Lots of rolling hills with coulees separating them. Then east and west of Crawford there are some jagged 'hills' that could be called mountains after you have been crossing the flat plains and the rolling hills. Very pretty green grassland with lots of cattle - cowboy country or flyover country depending on how you look at it.
The route today was 181 miles: 5 Rock Rd, 21st St, Ave I (In Gering & Scottsbluff)1, NE71, SD71, SD4712, US18, SD89, US16 ALT & Golden Valley Rd.
1This was the route to Shari's: W 20th St, 11 the Ave, Circle Dr, Shari's, 14th Ave, US26/NE71.
2SD471 is about 25 miles long with 20 miles of it packed dirt covered with a thin layer of gravel. Very good surface today, maybe better than SD71, but I would not want to try it when it is wet.
I was going to stop at the Custer Country Market in Custer but there was no Desperado parking anywhere close to it. Went a couple blocks east and was able to get into a space being vacated by another RV at Dakotamart. They do not have much parking either and were packed with tourist. They do open at 6:00 am everyday of the week so I might be able to get there early in the morning, get a parking spot, get groceries and get out.
I also stopped at a dog groomers a few more blocks east of the market. Wanted to get an appointment for Patches to have a bath next Friday but finally settled for Monday the 26th.
These are a couple of obligatory tourist pictures of Dome Rock which marked the south side of the entrance to Mitchell Pass with Scotts Bluff on the north side - the Oregon Trail going between them and through the Pass. The RV Park that I stayed at was on 5 Rock Road (about 2 miles from Dome Rock) in Gering named for the five rocks within the Scotts Bluff Monument - Dome Rock, Crown Rock, Eagle Rock, Saddle Rock, and Sentinel Rock.
This is only a part of Government of the people, by the people, and for the people has perished in America written by Bookworm for Bookwormroom.com on August 5, 2013. The entire posting is well worth a read and I may be quoting more often from this blog.
Do we still have a government “of the people, by the people [and] for the people?” No. Our political and bureaucratic classes no longer believe that the people have anything to do with their continued existence (that is, they do not view themselves as parts of a government “by the people”); they do not believe that they have anything in common with the people whose lives they dictate (in other words, they are not part of a government “of the people”); and nothing they do benefits the people who are trapped in their web of laws and regulations (so that they are not part of a government “for the people”).
America has ceased to be a representative democracy and has, instead, become an oligarchy: We, the People, are controlled by a proportionately small number of people who claim all entitlement to themselves and who, through laws, lawlessness, and unbridled bureaucracy (with a bureaucracy made up of people entirely beholden to the oligarchy for their continued well-being), control every aspect of our lives. This oligarchy is separate from and unrelated to the constitutional, representative democracy Lincoln believed was the necessary underpinning for a nation “conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”
17 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
I have trouble remembering to add the Will Rogers weekly article link every Friday. But, have additional trouble when it also happens to be a moving day. I remembered it this morning for some reason and fixed the posting of yesterday.
The high temperature here yesterday was 79° although it felt hotter than that to me. I wasn't here yesterday morning so I missed the 49° low but had my windbreaker on this morning and was glad that I did for the 55° low. Some radiation fog rising from the wet spots in Golden Valley where we are camped. This is where Custer had his main camp during his expedition to the Black Hills in 1874. The small valley and this gulch were packed full of tents, horses, mules and wagons; now it is full of RVs and a few tents.
When we were coming back from our walk we saw a rafter of turkeys in the Park just a little down stream from the office. I was busy counting the 11 chicks and didn't count the adults but think there were 5. No chance of getting a picture they were spooked and moving to fast but I may get another chance before I leave. Saw a deer trotting across the meadow of the valley as I came in yesterday so there is wildlife about.
A couple of pictures of my walking companion, travel navigator and roommate. The picture on the left is what I see when I ask her to pose for a picture. The one on the right is what I see most of the time if she happens to be awake while on the couch.
I see that President Obama has called health insurance a fundamental “right”. Yet, he supports NSA surveillance on everyone proclaiming that they have no "right" to privacy. Let us assume that he is correct in his position on both of these issues. That means that he now has the power to determine what "rights" we the People of the United States are to have or are to be denied - he is now King!
18 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The high temperature here yesterday was 86° with a forecast of 84 today. This morning was a much more pleasant 54° with radiation fog rising from the wet spots in Golden Valley again. The sun was rather spectacular as it rose through the heavy water vapor but I didn't have a good picture taking vantage point.
We walked toward Custer on an extension of the Mickelson Bike Trail this morning, a 3 mile paved bike path that goes from Custer to Custer State Park. Saw two very nice White Tail bucks peacefully grazing on the Top Pin Archery range. They trotted off before I could get close enough for a decent picture of them in the early morning light. We then saw a doe on the other side of US16 Alt on our way back home but she was moving off into the trees.
Went up to Club House this morning to see what I could get in trade for 3 books that I had read. The selection is not very large but I got lucky and found a DeMille and a Hoag, two authors that I enjoy. The third book was traded for one by Sydney Sheldon that I am not sure of but I did recognize the name. This brings my library back to its full level of unread books.
Cooked up a pot of yet to be named 'stuff' for my 'linners' over the next few days. This will be eaten every other day alternating with salmon. The creation was made from turkey kielbasa, crushed tomato, great northern beans and tortellini with some spices to taste. It smelled good while cooking! HA
19 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The high temperature 78° yesterday compared to the predicted 84 but the weather guesser are sticking with 84 again today. This morning was much the same as it has been every morning that I have been here with a low of 55°. Not much change to come if the 10 day forecast can be believed.
The 'stuff' that I cooked up yesterday was pretty good eating. A friend, and reader, offered up the name "TurToBeLlini" for my concoction. I'll go with that name until something extremely clever pops into my head which is highly unlikely.
We walked along the Mickelson Trail extension toward the east this morning. Saw 4 deer at a distance that ran across US16 Alt and then behind a church with no photo opportunity. The eastern end of the Trail is just short of Custer State Park entrance which I have found out is now charging a $15 'license' fee to drive through it.
When I was here in 2005 there was no fee and I was planning on going east on US16 ALT when I left here. That plan has now been changed. I also saw a sign at the end of the Trail that there is now a fee of $3/day, or $15/year, to walk on the Trail. That is also new since 2005 when I road a short distance of the Trail with by tadpole trike bicycle. I can almost understand a charge for the 109 mile Mickelson Trail but this extension is no different than a sidewalk.
20 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The high temperature of 81° yesterday missed the predicted 84 but the weather guessers keep revising their next day forecast. They are calling for a high of 84 again today then 75 tomorrow and 77 on Thursday.
We walked a short distance along US16 Alt toward Custer this morning and then turned north on Americana Center Rd (or SD Hwy 345). There is a historical site marker at this intersection that says this is where gold was discovered by the Custer Expedition. Then about 1/4 mile along Americana Center Rd there is another historical marker that says here is were gold was discovered on July 27, 1874 by Horatio Nelson Ross and William McKay, the Mining Detachment of the Expedition.
I contacted Black Hills Pro Wash, a mobile RV washing service out of Rapid City, SD, while I was still in Gunnison. After a couple of emails they responded and gave me a price that I could live with so I told them I would contact them again when I got into my site here in Custer. I did so the day I arrived and then again when I did not hear from them. Got an email yesterday that said they would come by between 11:00 and 1:00 today and I replied that I would be here.
They did show up but it was at 2:00. Patches didn't like it much that there were three guys walking around her home but calmed down until they started in with the brushes. I convinced her that that was alright also and she then let them get on with the job of scrubbing Desperado down.
21 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
We just did a short potty walk to the Park dumpster and back, about 1/2 mile, before heading for town. There I found a place to park near Destination Dentistry and we did another walk around 'downtown' Custer. I was looking for a couple of restaurants that had been recommended and a laundromat that I had found using Google Search.
When we finished the reconnoitering I fed Patches her breakfast and went to the dentist office to fill out paperwork before my 7:30 appointment. A high tech office, you read through the usual health questionnaire but then fill it out by answering the questions and the staff enters the answers on a computer as you look at the form on a screen.
I had my x-rays with me from April of this year but the hygienist wanted some more. They had a machine that took a picture of your entire set of teeth all in one fell swoop. None of this putting anything inside your mouth. I looked it up on the Internet after I got home: Panoramic radiography, also called panoramic x-ray, is a two-dimensional (2-D) dental x-ray examination that captures the entire mouth in a single image, including the teeth, upper and lower jaws, surrounding structures and tissues.
The extra x-rays were offered at a very cheap price so I had it done. That was only the beginning of the sales job that the hygienist laid on me however. She devoted as much time trying to put the fear of impending death in me if I didn't have some teeth removed, a deep scaling done and the purchase of toothpaste and mouthwash as she did cleaning my teeth.
It was almost 9:00 by the time I got out of there. Patches was anxious to see me so I devoted a few minutes to her before going to Baker's Café for my breakfast. Had their Vegetable Omelet which was large and came with an equally large portion of hash browns. Good place for breakfast!
It was then laundry time at The Lost Sock. Tourist prices but about the only game in town and they were doing a good business. It was sprinkling slightly when I left the restaurant but was a light rain by the time I headed for home. It then came down hard soon after I got backed into my space once again so I waited a little while before hooking up to electric again.
The weather guessers got it right yesterday when the high reached 86°. It did it early in the day also so I had the A/C running from around noon. The cloud cover that moved in during the night kept this morning low to 60 and it may keep the high today to only the 75 predicted. The off and on rain has also held the high temperature down.
The entire posting Obama Is Now A Dangerous Liability? by Monty Pelerin on August 21, 2013 is worth reading. These two paragraph might be considered a summary of the article.
The key to Obama’s future is his shrinking poll numbers. If he can turn them around, the media and elected Democrats will run interference for him. If not, they will be like rats trampling each other in an effort to get off a sinking ship. Their futures extend beyond Obama’s political future. Once Obama becomes an embarrassment (and he is close to that point), he will be abandoned. At some point it becomes too costly to defend this liability.
The media and the Democrats used Obama. As he switched from the asset to the liability column, they will begin to abandon him. None of this behavior is based on principle or concern for the good of the country. His supporters backed him out of self-interest. They will abandon him for the same reason. They will not back a wounded man if it endangers their own careers.
22 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The weather guessers prediction was a little high yesterday. We only got up to 72° so they are forecasting a 73 for today. I think it will probably get warmer than that. The low this morning was 50° and I felt that it was colder. The official rain fall measurement yesterday was 0.06" with a clear sky this morning and only a 30% chance of thunderstorms for the day.
While I'm discussing the weather I thought this factoid about Global Warming might prove interesting. It does not really cover the Globe, it is from only United States data, and it is for a short time period. However, if the numbers were reversed you would have been seeing it in media headlines. For the period July 24 - August 19, 2013 there were 184 new record high temperatures and 823 new record low temperatures recorded for those days.
During that same period there were 483 new record high minimum temperatures and 2,076 new record low maximum temperatures. When the ratio of these high minimum and and low maximum temperatures were opposite to this there were articles written and media headlines claiming that this proved there was Global Warming. There is none of that with this recent data.
The Park was completely filled up when I got here and there were a few tent campers in the lower part of the Park. Those tents were all gone within a couple of days and I see more open RV spaces every day now when we go for our walk. The neighbor west of me pulled out this morning so I now have two open spaces to the west of me and one in front of me to the west. This afternoon there was a fifth wheel backed into the space vacated this morning but they apparently didn't like it and left again.
23 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA141 August 23, 1925
I was more wrong than the weather guessers about the high temperature yesterday. It only reached 74° or one degree above their forecast. I was right when I said it was going to be warmer than their forecast but will not take credit for one degree. It was a lot warmer this morning because of a low cloud cover that was down to the top of the mountain peaks around Custer. Has stayed overcast all day with a 40% chance of rain.
I didn't feel like doing much of a walk this morning so the short potty walk worked out well. I'm not sure that Patches was happy with it but maybe I can make it up to her this afternoon. That is maybe I can IF it is not raining.
We went to town again this morning to pick up groceries for the week. There was also a need to go into town to get a TracFone signal. In the mail that I had forwarded to me I received my new VISA Card and two prepaid debit cards that were rebates from Verizon and Staple. Those rebates came about from my new computer and AirCard purchases while I was in Albuquerque.
The VISA and one of the rebate cards required that I activate them. I tried to do the VISA activation on-line but Wells Fargo would not activate on-line although they have a form available that I completed. I then tried to use my TracFone and could not get a signal. It seems that every time I really, really want to use my cell phone I can not get a signal.
I also had a reservation deposit check that I wanted to mail while in town and I got that done also. I started contacting RV Parks yesterday where I expect to stop when I leave here on my way to Del Rio, TX where I plan to 'winter over'. When I say winter over that means I'll probably stay there for a couple of months - December and January. The Del Rio Park wanted a cash or check deposit to hold a space for me but was flexible about my arrival date which helps because I don't know what it will be at this point.
Stopped at The 7th Cavalry Café on the way home for breakfast - they serve a good meal, good portions. This is just across US16 Alt from where I turn onto Golden Valley Rd which makes it convenient but they do not open until 7:00 so it is not a coffee destination when we walk in the morning. I usually go past there at about 6:30 on the way home when we walk, but it is staying dark longer in the morning so we may be starting later.
The RVs continue to move out from around me. However, one did move in on my west side but not right next door. I have 4 open spaces in front of me now and over 1/2 the spaces west of me are open.
24 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
I didn't feel like doing much of a morning walk again today but once up and started I did do a 2 mile out and back. Patches was happy, she gave me a thankful howl when we got home. The short walks yesterday were not enough for her.
The RV migration continues from the upper gulch where I am parked. There are only 3 rigs left in the loop west of me. Closest neighbor on that side is 4 spaces away. I do have a next door neighbor on my east side but they are gone most of the time and when home they remain very quiet. Can not complain about the neighbors so far.
Finished another of Elizabeth George's mystery novels. This one was more her usual style In Pursuit of the Proper Sinner with Detective Inspector Lynley and Detective Chief Inspector Barbara Havers of New Scotland Yard. Although Barbara had been demoted to Detective Constable because of her actions in Deception on His Mind she continues on in her characteristic manner. Another good George book!
I rarely quote Rush Limbaugh but he has correctly assessed the two most recent black on white murders that have made world wide News. President Obama has not called anyone nor has he made a speech in the Rose Garden about the killings. The rodeo clown has already suffered more punishment than any of the 'alleged' killer probably will.
You know, if I had a father, he would look like "Shorty" Delbert Belton, and I had a son, he'd look like Chris Lane. Nobody's gonna say that. Obama has not called the parents of Chris Lane. I don't know if Obama has called anybody related to "Shorty" Delbert Belton, but these two were people killed by bored, thug-wannabe African-Americans. There still has been more outrage over a rodeo clown wearing an Obama mask than either of these two events combined.
Pat Buchanan understands the problem even if the President does not. This is from a column that ran at World Net Daily. Why are we not reading similar outrage on editorial pages and hearing it proclaimed on nightly TV News commentary? Where is Jackson, where is Sharpton, where is the NAACP and the Department of Justice? Why am I not reading that the 'alleged' killers are being charged with hate crimes?
Teenagers who can shoot and kill a man out of summertime boredom are moral barbarians, dead souls. But who created these monsters? Where did they come from? Surely one explanation lies in the fact that the old conscience-forming and character-forming institutions -- home, church, school and a moral and healthy culture fortifying basic truths -- have collapsed. And the community hardest hit is Black America.
25 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
It got up to 84° yesterday which was not quite as high as the forecast. The additional good weather news is that the highest daily forecast for the next 10 days is 81. If the forecasts continue to be higher than the actual then maybe we can get back down into the 70s. The bad news, it was already 80° by 10:30 this morning.
I have also noticed that we have very little wind here. Maybe a slight breeze in the afternoons but the mornings are almost always dead calm. That makes it feel hotter inside Desperado so I have been running my A/C as much here as I have at other camps where the temperatures have been higher.
We did a little over 2 mile walk this morning. That seems much more to the liking of my walking companion. She has not been as restless this morning after we got home as she was when we did the short walks. The shorter afternoon walks are fine with her but she wants her longer one. Some of our afternoons have been through the forest on logging roads which may also include climbing and bush whacking. The best I can tell she likes that as well.
It was a do less than normal day for me today. I never do much but there are those days that I have to just back off and rest. I did get started on the preparation of October links for the Will Rogers weekly articles. But most of my day was on the couch with my new mystery which is a fast read, at this rate I'll be finished with it in a couple of days.
26 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
It was 83° yesterday or a couple of degrees higher than the forecast. The weather guessers have revised their guess for today by increasing it to 84 - so much for the 81 high during the next 10 days. I think they may be close for it was up to 80 by 11:30.
I took Patches for another hike in the forest yesterday afternoon in that heat. I was sweating rivers and she was panting by the time we got home. Visited a rock mining site that can be seen from US16 Alt about 1/2 mile west of the turn onto Golden Valley Rd. Rather extensive carving was done on the hills some 40 years ago it looks like. I'm guessing that most of the rock was used in road construction but they may have also found some rose quartz and other marketable minerals. Lots of mica flakes everywhere as well as mica embedded rock left in the tailings.
This morning we did a short potty walk. Then went to town where I had my breakfast at the Wrangler Café. I then parked at Doggy Do's Grooming where Patches had a bath appointment. We were very early so I got her leash and Patches started 'talking' to me and was VERY excited about going for another walk. We did a tour up and down the main commercial street which seemed to make her happy.
I stayed in Desperado and read my Daily blogs and my newest novel while she got her bath. The groomer said that she was such a good girl, no problem at all. She now smells and looks so pretty that there probably will be no living with her. Need to get her out and let her roll in the grass and dirt this afternoon. HA
I stayed up a little past my usual bed time last night to finish the book that I had been reading. As a new feature on this blog I'm going to try and add some book covers and reviews that I'll pick up from the Internet. I did not like this one as much as I did Vanish and my book cover was different from what I can find on the Web.
The Mephisto Club, the sixth in the Jane Rizzoli/Maura Isles series (after Vanish), contains Tess Gerritsen's trademark lurid writing, grisly medical/forensic details, and chilling suspense. This time, as a satanically driven killer tortures and dismembers his victims, an esoteric cult considers the existence of a gene for evil. It's not a tale for the faint of heart; metaphysical inquiries into demonology and evil are matched, page by page, by grisly details. The only major criticism comes from New York Times Book Review, which cited a total lack of credibility. Otherwise, The Mephisto Club should provide "hair-raising, demon-hunting good fun" (Los Angeles Times).
I got a new neighbor right next to me on the west side again. The loop that I said was emptying out added a lot yesterday so there were 7 rigs here last night. Only one of those left today so we still have a crowd compared to only a couple days ago.
27 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The high yesterday was 86° so the weather guessers have revised their guess for today and tomorrow to 86. No more 70s predicted until next week.
I got outside soon after breakfast and before it got very hot to dump my holding tanks and take on fresh water. I'm hoping that I can make it until near the time I leave here before I must dump again.
Our morning walks are very nice with the temperatures in the low 60s or upper 50s. It is the afternoon walks with the higher temperatures and very little wind while in the forest that are uncomfortable. Patches does not do well when it gets up into the 80s and I don't do so well either unless there is some breeze. The breeze does not cool her because she doesn't sweat but I sure do.
I think the crowd in this west loop of the Park is only building up again rather than going away. There were 10 rigs in here last night and I'm guessing that it is going to stay near full until after Labor Day.
Obama proceeds in Syria without popular support by Chris Stirewalt has written a good article about where 'leading from behind' has put President Obama. He is now trying to put together a coalition to support his war on Syria whereas if he had truly been leading the coalition would have been in place long ago. Candidate Obama was elected in 2008 partially because he painted himself as being the one that could get us out of Iraq, out of Afghanistan and make nice with the Islamist World. The Middle East is a much worse mess now than it was when he took office and he has the United States on the path to more war - maybe a very bad one.
What happens when American military action has neither public support nor congressional approval? Looks like we're getting ready to find out.
Americans did not much like President Obama's 2011 decision to intervene in the Libyan civil war, and the looming entry of American forces in Syria's conflict is shaping up to be even less popular. The consequences, especially with a president famously unwilling to put his own political clout on the line for national security policies, could be serious.
A Reuters poll last week found popular support for entering the Syrian war was 9 percent. When Obama orders what is now seen as an inevitable attack on government forces there, he will be initiating what will likely be the first-ever military campaign of the modern era launched without popular support.
That's tricky enough, but doing so when notions of congressional authorization are now considered passé and when Syria and its allies are promising painful reprisals, Obama's creep toward war looks even more perilous. American air strikes could be part of setting off a larger conflagration in the region. How willing would Americans be to support a larger war effort that began under such conditions? What if peacekeepers are needed?
28 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The high yesterday was again 86° and the weather guessers got it right. This has led them to leave their forecast for today at 86 and revise the next two days to that same level also. When they get it right they are going to stick with that number. My guess is that it will not be that hot today.
I think I told you some time ago that I gave away my French Press coffee maker and bought an Aeropress as a replacement. This post is a belated review of how I like it. In a word - WONDERFUL. The French Press was a pain to clean up after using and it required as much water to clean as to make coffee. The Aeropress is a snap to clean and uses virtually no additional water which is important for many RVers.
It also makes some of the best coffee, using a drip grind, that I have ever managed to produce. Since I have had it I have brewed up a pound of Arbuckles Ariosa - The Coffee That Won The West. This is the original Arbuckles or as they say on their web site: Since 1865, this iconic blend of the American frontier has been the choice of cowboys, cattle and oil barons, presidents and chuckwagon cooks. Accept no imitations. Insist on the original Arbuckles' "Ariosa" coffee!
This has been another lazy day for me. More couch time with my book and Patches. I did a little work on the October links for the Will Rogers weekly articles and read a few blogs from my Monthly list.
Why are we going to war in Syria? by Stephen M. Walt for Newsday is a good article about President Obama's latest saber rattling. I think what we are going to see is replay of Operation Infinite Reach. That was former President Clinton's cruise missile strikes in Afghanistan (which Osama bin Laden claimed killed a few camels) and Sudan (where he blew up an aspirin factory).
This did give the appearance that the President was resolute and it did temporarily distract the media from the Lewinsky scandal. A replay by President Obama may help dampen down all his scandals, although the media is doing their best to keep a lid on them, and it will show the world what a macho guy he is.
America's slow-motion entry into the Syrian bloodletting illustrates how hard it is for the United States to stay out of these nasty little wars, even when it is not obvious what using force will accomplish, when it is clear that doing a little now will create pressure to do more later, when there is little public support for getting in, and when it is hard to identify a clear or vital U.S. interest at stake.
More than anything else, Obama reminds me here of George Orwell in his famous essay "Shooting an Elephant."
Orwell recounts how, while serving as a colonial officer in Burma, he was forced to shoot a rogue elephant simply because the local residents expected an official of the British Empire to act this way, even when the animal appeared to pose no further danger. If he didn't go ahead and dispatch the poor beast, he feared that his prestige and credibility might be diminished.
Like Orwell, Obama seems to be sliding toward "doing something" because he feels he simply can't afford not to.
29 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The high yesterday was 83° so I won the guessing game. The official weather guessers have revised today's high to 88° which is far too hot. Unfortunately they may be right this time, it was already 85 at 9:30 this morning. The good news is they also revised tomorrow, down to 84 and then back into the 70s starting on Sunday.
I must have been anticipating the heat today, woke up not feeling like I needed to a long morning walk. Patches has accepted the short walk well so she may have been ready for a rest day also. If we get the expected high there will be a short walk this afternoon also.
The media is very excited about the 2.5% first estimate of 2nd Qtr GDP that was released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. They had the same reaction when the first estimate of 1st Qtr came out as being 2.5% which was revised to 2.4 with the second estimate which became 1.8% as a final number. I expect the same thing is going to happen with the 2 Qtr.
However, the 3rd Qtr is going to look much better because they have changed how GDP is measured. There will be dancing in the street when that first estimate is released and President Obama will be praising himself about how he has saved the United States economy and that of the world. There will be very little said about how the GDP was computed.
I didn't stay up past my bed time to do it but I did finish the book I was reading last night. I'm not certain if I have ever read another book by John W Houston but I don't think so. This was a quick read and entertaining but not all that well written. If I find another of his books I'll pick it up but not as my first choice.
The sequel to Balance of Power reads like a collaboration between Tom Clancy and John Grisham, which is hardly surprising, since Huston is a former naval aviator and a present-day lawyer. The book interweaves three plots: the court-martial of Admiral Ray Billings for disobeying the president's orders to ignore a congressional Letter of Marque and Reprisal, the attempted impeachment of President Manchester on the grounds of being unfit for office because of his pacifist Mennonite beliefs, and the deployment of SEALs to deal with further terrorist acts by the Indonesian who calls himself George Washington. The legal intrigues are much the strongest elements of the book, and Jim Dillon and Molly Vaughan, the champions of Admiral Billings, are much the most interesting characters in it. The overall effect, however, will surely keep Balance of Power readers turning pages and finishing the story with considerable satisfaction. Huston continues to be a most welcome newcomer to the ranks of thriller-scribblers. (Booklist Magazine)
30 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA142 August 30, 1925
The high yesterday was 86° so the official weather guessers were slightly high but that does keep them from revising today's high to 88°. The good news is they also revised tomorrow down again, now expecting 81 and then back mostly into the 70s starting on Sunday but then 90 on Tuesday (say what?).
We did a short potty walk this morning to the Park trash dumpster and back which was a good thing because it started to sprinkle. It continued to do so as we drove into town with our first stop at Dakotamart for groceries. It rained hard enough to wet down the parking lot while we were inside but the official report is that it did not rain. The sky had also cleared a lot by the time we came out.
I fed Patches her breakfast and then went to Baker's Bakery for mine. They had a Skillet Special that was good but it was not so Special when I added a side order of sourdough toast to the order. I would still recommend it as a good place to go for early breakfast here in Custer just expect to be paying tourist prices.
I then went to Custer Do It Best Hardware to pick up my repaired window screen. I had pushed on it accidentally and the retaining rubber gasket that held the screening in place disintegrated. This was while I was in Gunnison and I asked Boonie about it and he suggested that I could get it fixed at a hardware store. Many thanks to him for the suggestion and to the store here in Custer for the very inexpensive repair.
The last stop while in town was at the Lost Sock laundromat to do another load of wash. I needed to do my bedding last week but it would have made for too large a load so I waited until this week to do it plus what I threw in the to wash pile during this past week.
This is from Will Obama Doom Himself As A War Criminal by Paul Craig Roberts, his blog posting of August 30, 2013. We know that the President will act without the approval of Congress, he has nothing but contempt for that branch of the government, but will he act without a UN resolution or NATO approval, that is the question? I think he is arrogant enough to do it; after all the media has his back and they provided cover for former President Clinton when he bombed Iraq in 1998 with only questionable UN and NATO approval. I don't think he fears the World Court at the Hague; he believes the Europeans love him and would never charge him with War Crimes.
If Obama now strikes Syria, when he has no cover from the UN, or from NATO, or from the American people, or from Congress, having ignored the House and Senate, Obama will stand before the entire world, starkly, as a War Criminal. Unless the world is prepared to flush international law, arrest orders for the War Criminal will have to come from the Hague. Obama will have to be handed over and put on trial. He will have no more leg to stand on than did the Nazis.
31 August 2013 Custer's Gulch RV Park (Custer, SD)
The weather guessers got the high of 88° they were looking for yesterday. They keep revising what they think today is going to be and have now settled on 82. They also changed that 90 that they showed for Tuesday to a more reasonable 81 but they are expecting a 73 tomorrow (again I say what?).
We did a 2+ mile morning walk today and Patches was so happy with it that she gave me a nice Thank You Howl when we got home. She is becoming more and more vocal.
It started out in the afternoon when I was getting ready for our walks; it was like she was insistently saying "Come On, Hurry, Let's Go". In the past few months she has started to add Thank You Howls and Good To See You Howls when I return and she has been tied outside a coffee shop or restaurant.
All of my 'linners' this week will be coleslaw (made with yogurt, sliced almonds and diced pecans) and fish. The fish is some salmon that I baked last week that I'll re-heat (then cover with a yogurt, dill and caper sauce) or tuna sandwiches made with some fresh spinach.
I also made up a Thermal Cooker pot full of pozole this morning. Not too smart because the wind was dead calm and I heated up the inside of Desperado to the point that the A/C came on. I added the remaining habanero hot sauce that I had made to the pot and by sampling it have determined that I may have overdone it slightly. A cup of it will be added to the daily fare.
I'll tell you about my new hot sauce experiment tomorrow. I'm using store bought ground cayenne peppers, Frontier Co-op rated at 90,000 heat units on the Scoville scale, for this latest attempt. I found some ground cayenne while I was in Angel Fire and liked how it tasted when used in some of my cooking. I'll see how the hot sauce works out. I bought plenty of it - 2 pounds.
This is from an Editorial in The New York Times. They also point out the lack of legal justification or support by Congress and the UN for an attack by the US on Syria. They provide backhand support for the President by saying that Congress and the UN have abdicated their roles but can not provide cover for him unless he has a legal basis. I don't think he really cares, Louis XIV is quoted as saying "I am the state", President Obama believes "I am the law" just like he thinks the US Armed Forces are "My military".
As President Obama moves toward unilateral military action in response to a chemical weapons attack in Syria that killed more than 1,400 people, he is doing so without legal justification and without the backing of two key institutions, Congress and the United Nations Security Council. Both have abdicated their roles in dealing with this crisis.
Secretary of State John Kerry said forcefully on Friday that there was no doubt that the government of President Bashar al-Assad was behind the attack. Both he and President Obama made a largely moral case for a retaliatory response... But no administration official has formally asserted a legal basis — absent a vote of Congress or the Security Council — for military strikes.
There are many people that say Obama's presidency is former President Carter's second term. However, Jimmy has come out foursquare against President Obama acting unilaterally against Syria.
Former President Carter on Friday came out strongly against military action in Syria without the United Nations's blessing.
“Punitive action” without a mandate from the U.N. Security Council or “broad support from NATO and the Arab League” would be “illegal under international law and unlikely to alter the course of the war,” the Carter Center said in a statement. “It will only harden existing positions and postpone a sorely needed political process to put an end to the catastrophic violence.”