1 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
Alright! The big Class A left early this morning. I had good WIFI from about 7:00 - 8:00 then lost a connection but it came back to 'normal' at 9:00 when I saw it leave. Verizon did connect for a short time but was very slow and then I lost a connection. More people left the Park and by 10:00 I was getting as good a connection and speed from Verizon as I ever can get.
A great day to be in Torry. People are leaving and some great weather has moved in. Not a cloud in the sky, mid 60s by 10:00am and a 5-7mph breeze. The 10 day forecast is now for more of the same: Clear, highs to be upper 70s or lower 80s, lows to be upper 40s or lower 50s with zero chance of rain - I bet the wind blows however. If the forecast happens it will make up for the first week that I was here.
Patches and I did our afternoon walk to Robbers Roost where the very small Farmers Market takes place on Saturday. This time I picked up a couple small chunks of homemade feta cheese. No weights shown just a price marked on each small plastic bag of cheese. It is probably best that I don't know what the price per pound was; it would ruin my enjoyment of the cheese.
It is so good on some of the homemade whole wheat bread that I picked up the prior Saturday. That bread kept just fine in the freezer and I could not tell any difference in the taste as a result of it being frozen and then thawed. I'll be taking a loaf or two or three with me when I leave here.
Bergdahl release arrangement could threaten the safety of Americans, Republicans say by Karen Tumulty for The Washington Post is another story about King Obama. He is the law. There is nothing that he can not do and no law passed by Congress can prohibit him from doing whatever he wants. Well done King!
If the fears of House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard P. McKeon and James M. Inhofe come to pass then King Obama may be able to empty the Guantanamo prison by the time he leaves office simply by exchanging 5 prisoners for every American the Taliban can capture. In this trade all five were among the Taliban’s top commanders in U.S. custody and are revered in jihadist circles. Two of the five have been wanted by the UN for war crimes and all five of them are deemed to be “high” risks to the U.S. and its allies.
Amid jubilation Saturday over the release of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl from captivity by the Taliban, senior Republicans on Capitol Hill said they were troubled by the means by which it was accomplished, which was a deal to release five Afghan detainees from the military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Top Republicans on the Senate and House armed services committees went so far as to accuse President Obama of having broken the law, which requires the administration to notify Congress before any transfers from Guantanamo are carried out.
“Trading five senior Taliban leaders from detention in Guantanamo Bay for Bergdahl’s release may have consequences for the rest of our forces and all Americans. Our terrorist adversaries now have a strong incentive to capture Americans. That incentive will put our forces in Afghanistan and around the world at even greater risk,” House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard P. McKeon (R-Calif.) and the ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, James M. Inhofe (Okla.), said in a joint statement.
Lawmakers were not notified of the Guantanamo detainees’ transfer until after it occurred. The law requires the defense secretary to notify relevant congressional committees at least 30 days before making any transfers of prisoners, to explain the reason and to provide assurances that those released would not be in a position to reengage in activities that could threaten the United States or its interests.
A senior administration official, agreeing to speak on the condition of anonymity to explain the timing of the congressional notification, acknowledged that the law was not followed. When he signed the law last year, Obama issued a signing statement contending that the notification requirement was an unconstitutional infringement on his powers as commander in chief and that he therefore could override it.
2 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
Another day for not doing much. Although what little bit I did I was mostly successful in doing. I'll tell about my failure first. I prepared an HTML Table to be posted on another bloggers WordPress page. Did just enough of the Table to create the width and enough coding to see if WordPress could read the code and present the Table. The good news was the coding could be read but the Table was too wide for the designated text area so it covered up the sidebar. This could be fixed by defining the width but I have learned as much as I need to know at this point and the other blogger has no interest in a Table Project at this time.
One of my successes was in getting my holding tanks dumped. The fresh water idiot light went from completely full to 1/4 remaining yesterday and the holding tank lights have indicated full for the past few days. I was hoping that I would not have to dump until next weekend but that was not going to happen so I got it done today. I may do it again before I leave then again I may not.
The other success was finishing my Monthly blog reads. I am also making fair progress on the ones that I'm reading from their beginning. But, it is about time I started working on Will Rogers links again. The 'work' of a retired fulltimer is never done. HA
3 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
Today was grocery shopping day once again. Before doing that Patches and I did our usual morning walk. Then it was off to Loa but we soon stopped in Bicknell where I had breakfast at the Sunglow Restaurant. This is the home of the Pickle Pie and the Pinto Bean Pie neither of them did I try but people come from near and far to have one or both.
What I had was their Breakfast Burrito but not wrapped. What I got was scrambled eggs and diced ham with a generous serving on so-so hash browns and the flour tortilla on the side. Their coffee is only marginally better than what is served by the Country Café in Loa. Be advised, Utah is not a state that is known for their quality coffee although it was good, not outstanding, at the Capital Inn in Torrey.
Continued on to Royal's in Loa where the aisles were stacked with groceries that had not been put on the shelves yet. Tuesday and Friday are their delivery days so the shelves are rather bare those mornings until they get restocked. I did get everything that I wanted with some help from the stockers that opened boxes that were in the aisles.
My next 'scheduled' grocery trip was to be next Monday but the stockers advised me that the best days to get what I was looking for are Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. So next Saturday will be my last trip into Loa to get groceries and fill up with gas at a station that is 6¢ less than all other stations that I have seen.
I then spent another hour in Loa for something that had not been on the list of things to do. When I left home this morning the outside tire on the right rear dully looked a little low. When I came out of Royal's it looked a lot low so I went back inside and asked where I could get a flat fixed. I was advised to go to the shop behind the Texaco station on the north end of town and it was there that I found that the valve stem was leaking. Replaced it and since most of the work was already done I had the inside tire valve stem replaced also. Good people, good work at a good price - if you need vehicle service when in the area go see them!
Got started a little late on making up the pot for my 'linner' main course but have one meal left from last week so no harm done. I made a revision to the Green Chicken & Beans that I made about a month ago for this week that I am calling Chicken Aztec (no good reason, just needed to call it something). This is diced/browned chicken breast, 40oz Pace Salsa, 28os white beans, 8oz diced jalapeño, 8oz diced green chile, a diced yellow onion, a couple dabs of powdered cayenne and 1/2oz dark baking chocolate. To be served over pre-cooked barley with wheat bread.
The only other thing of note was the sighting of a small bison herd, or more correctly a beefalo herd since almost all bison now have cattle DNA also, along the road near the entrance to The Lodge at Red River Ranch. Rooms can be had at The Lodge starting as low as $160/night with a two night minimum. I have rented RV spaces for a month for less but pictures of the rooms do look nice.
I did finish another book today, which I'll review in a day or two, and started on another one. I'm sure hoping that my next RV Park has an exchange library or the town library will trade with me. I don't think I have enough remaining unread books to get me through one more month. I also gave up on one of the blogs that I was reading from its beginning but have added two more to replace it.
4 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
Changing my mailing address has been relatively easy with most of the people/businesses that I have mail contact. I suspected that my broker would be the more difficult so saved them for last. I sent an email requesting that my address be changed, most others I was able to change online. Received a reply yesterday that had an Attachment, a Letter of Authorization to Change Address, that I should print, sign and either Fax or mail back.
I responded to that email by telling them it was going to take me some time. I do not own a printer and could not open the Attachment because I did not have software that could read .DOC format. I was able to find a online converter that gave me a file in .TXT format that I could read it and I was able to save the .DOC to my laptop so that I could then send it to someone else as an Attachment.
I was able to do that this morning. I contacted a UPS Store in Farmington, NM and they said they could print the Attachment. I will go to the Store on 11 June as I pass through Farmington, sign the Letter and mail it back to the broker from the Store. Not a quick turn around but quicker than if the broker had tried to mail me the Letter for my signature.
I reviewed Absolute Power on 18 December 2013 and then the first of his King & Maxwell Series Split Second on 23 March 2014. I thought Absolute Power was the better of the two and now think it was the best of the three that I have read. I liked the characters King & Maxwell and liked Reggie in this book but Shaw never grew on me. I don't know if this was done intentionally by the author or not but I didn't like Shaw. The first sentence in the review by Publishers Weekly is probably a good summary. I will look for more books by Baldacci but have lowered my expectations.
Bestseller Baldacci's sequel to The Whole Truth (2008) lacks the creative plotting and masterful handling of suspense that marked his earlier thrillers. Evan Waller, outwardly a respectable Canadian businessman but secretly a human trafficker who sells children into prostitution, has expanded into arranging nuclear weapons deals with Islamic fundamentalists. Shaw, the lead of The Whole Truth, sets out to stop Evan, as does Regina Reggie Campion, a British femme fatale, who works for a clandestine group that tracks down and executes war criminals. Reggie and Shaw, both of whom intend to make their move while Evan is on vacation in Provence, cross paths while maintaining their cover stories. Shaw becomes attracted to Reggie, even as he fears that Evan, who's in fact a sadistic Ukrainian who served the Soviets, will abduct her. Crucial developments come across as contrived rather than clever. The ultimate resolution will surprise few. - Publishers Weekly
Wesley Pruden wrote Feeling a boot in the backside for JewishWorldReview.com where he discusses the recent elections for delegates to the European Parliament. The Lame Stream Media in the United States has ignored the results of the election because they do fit the agenda that they wish for this country. If one did not know better they would think that James Cameron was talking about the Tea Party. This quote is only the first three paragraphs of a good article.
Looking for omens abroad for clues to what might be ahead in America is a fool's errand. But omens there may well be in the astonishing results of last week's election of delegates to the European Parliament. People everywhere are fed up. There was a genuine revolt of the peasants across Europe, and some of the hardest heads, those most oblivious to the anger at the transformation of the continent, say they learned a lesson.
Candidates skeptical of the European Union — "Euroskeptics," they're called — won the biggest share of the vote in France, where the National Front campaigned on a slogan of "politics of the French for the French."
In Britain, the U.K. Independence Party — popularly known as UKIP — won more votes than either the Conservatives or the Labor Party. Prime Minister James Cameron, who once called UKIP "a bunch of fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists" and during this campaign accused the party of saying "appalling" and "deeply unpleasant things about immigration," seemed to have had a Damascus Road experience, or something close to it on Downing Street.
5 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
The only thing that happened today that was the slightest out of the norm was my receiving the package of forwarded mail from the Pahrump UPS Store. That address is now closed and I have received all the mail that I'm going to get there. The vast majority of what was forwarded to me was 'junk' mail. Much of that will start showing up at my Sierra Vista address because it is generated by the VFW.
Patches and I increased our walks a little last week from the prior one that I considered a rest week. We are now increasing this week a little more, trying to average 3 miles/day. That goal is going to be disrupted somewhat by the two travel days that are included in the week but we will do what we can do.
President Obama thought he had a sure winner by negotiating the release of Bergdahl but it has turned into a big loser for him. Everything that could go wrong has gone wrong. Bergdhal's fellow platoon members have all come forward to repudiate the spin the Susan Rice attempted. Almost no one outside of the Administration believes that turning the 5 high ranking Taliban loose was a good thing to do. The group that is the happiest is the Taliban and they are inspired to empty Guantanamo by trading additional kidnapped Americans. Behind the Scenes of Bowe Bergdahl’s Release by Aryn Baker for Time.com tells the story, this is only a portion.
Another senior Taliban commander who is close to the senior Taliban leadership based in Kandahar, Afghanistan and Quetta, Pakistan, and is close to the negotiations, describes scenes of intense jubilation among the Taliban leadership and their supporters. Candies and sweet pastries are being passed around, he says, speaking to TIME via telephone from the Kandahar area. Those close to the leadership and the detainees are feasting on “whole goats cooked in rice”—a special meal usually reserved for celebrations. “I cannot explain how our people are happy and excited over this unbelievable achievement.” (He too has been known to TIME for several years). “This is a historic moment for us. Today our enemy for the first time officially recognized our status.”
Asked whether the Taliban would be inspired by the exchange to kidnap others, he laughed. “Definitely,” he says. “It’s better to kidnap one person like Bergdahl than kidnapping hundreds of useless people. It has encouraged our people. Now everybody will work hard to capture such an important bird.”
6 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA182 June 6, 1926
I started doing a few housekeeping chores today. Got the floors and carpet vacuumed, toilet cleaned, bathroom sink cleaned and floor washed. That is about all I could do with the limited motivation that I have for housework. I'll continue doing a bit each day and will have chores done by the time I leave here - maybe.
A lot of time reading the News. Some time reading the blogs that I started from their beginning and some time on the couch with my new novel and Patches. Some work on the Will Rogers weekly article links. Rather a routine day for me such, as it is.
The Bureau of Labor released their non-farm job numbers for May today that showed an increase of 217,000 jobs. Yesterday Chuck Butler at The Daily Pfenning wrote "The ADP Employment Change report for May… It didn’t meet expectations of 215,000, only registering 179,000, but don’t worry… The BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) will deal with making certain the Jobs Jamboree number is at least 215,000, come Hell or High Water!".
How did they do it; the Current Employment Statistics (CES) Net Birth/Death Model adjustment added 205,000 jobs for the month. Note this is a "model" that is used to adjust the survey numbers each month to arrive at the number of jobs created for the month. Last month there was the huge leap of 288,000 jobs added which all the analyst claimed was pent up hiring after the sever winter; 234,000 of those were added by the (CES) Net Birth/Death Model adjustment. It works sort of like the Climate Change Models; what number do you want to see, we can give it to you and then support the number with our model.
If you look at the Household Data for May the number of Employed increased by 145,000 creating a no trend pattern over the past three months. The News media is spinning the May increase as being the point where all the jobs lost during the Great Recession have now been gained back and it is solid evidence that the recovery is moving Forward.
The all important Unemployment Rate is not so important this month because it remained unchanged at 6.3% with a 46,000 increase to Unemployed and a decrease of 9,000 in the Not in the Labor Force. Neither of those changes were large enough to move the Rate. Nor did it change the Participation Rate which remained at 62.8%, continuing to match the low set back in October and December.
The average earnings gained seven cents to $24.38 an hour, while the average workweek remained at 34.5 hours. All in all these are not employment numbers that I think point to a strong economy but the stock market has a different opinion and will continue to go up until it can't.
7 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
This morning was my last trip into Loa and stopped at the Sunglow Restaurant in Bucknell again for breakfast. This time I had the Denver Omelet with sourdough toast (they had sourdough). Of the three places that I have had breakfast in the three different towns I have to rank the Sunglow as number one. Compared to many other places that I have had breakfast it would not rank that high but for this area it is as good as I can find - for me.
The Royal's stockers recommendation to shop on Saturday was probably better than if I had waited until Monday but there were still items missing from the shelves. I was able to get one of the stockers today to go in the back and see if there was any kale available and did get a couple of bunches. No unsweetened bakers chocolate to be had, no small yellow potatoes (I discovered them here) that I have grown to love in my breakfast scrambles.
I also filled up with gas at a station that was 6¢ less than all others that I have seen. On top of that they offer a 5¢ discount if paid in cash. My research has caused me to plan my next gas stop in Shiprock, NM where gas is cheaper than any other place along my route and was 7-8¢ cheaper than here. Still more expensive than the national average but not too bad considering the isolation of the towns where I have been and where I am going.
I agree with Bill O'Rielly on rare occasions because he usually likes to take both side of every issue so he is always right and he doesn't overly offend anyone. His Memo of 3 June 2014, More trouble for the Obama administration because of the Taliban negotiation, happens to be one of the occasions when he has said something where I completely agree; maybe not the entire Memo but this segment.
So then the question becomes what is going on inside the Oval Office? Why are so many mistakes being made? Big mistakes. The VA scandal that broke wide last week was an acute embarrassment for the administration and now just a few days later we have this. It's almost beyond belief that an administration could be this dense.
So last night I talked with someone who knows the inside story of the Obama White House. I have to keep the person's identity secret but he told me that the President has come to the conclusion that his administration is not, not going to accomplish its goals.
He knows the economy is not going to turn around. He now knows Obamacare is not going to be popular. And he understands that his job approval rating will likely remain below 50 percent. Therefore, according to this guy, the President has concluded that public opinion really doesn't matter anymore. Thus, Mr. Obama is going to do what he wants to do and the consequences be damned. I believe that assessment is accurate.
David Limbaugh's It was probably never about Bergdahl
for Human Events
on 6 June 2014 probably expresses what is obvious to most people that have been following the Bergdahl swap story. I think his article just adds to what O'Rilley has said; here are some of his opinions.
The more we are learning about the deal the more it looks as though Obama didn’t have Bergdahl in mind at all in this exchange. He wasn’t primarily motivated to secure a soldier’s release at the “end of a war” as he claimed. The war is not over even in terms of our own involvement in Afghanistan, but it will likely never be over for the Islamists, whose lives are dedicated in perpetuity to killing infidels.
It is far likelier that Obama was first motivated to release these killers and then looked around for a plausible cover. I’m guessing he wanted to release them with or without getting Bergdahl, either because he was eager to further appease jihadi and the world’s Muslims or because he is hellbent on closing Gitmo and this release paves the way for that.
For Obama to have rushed into this exchange at all reveals his warped mindset, but to do it against the advice of senators, the Pentagon and certain White House aides makes it very likely that he had an ulterior motive that had nothing to do with Bergdahl.
8 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
The weather gurus continue to forecast clear skies but it sure looked overcast to me when when went for our morning walk. It has cleared since then probably due to the continuous winds with those 32mph gust that we had during our walk.
I checked my next RV Park reservations and found that I had the next two off by one day. I think when I made them I only counted May as having 30 days or when I made the reservation for Torrey I was told that their month was 30 days. Whatever. I sent a couple of emails telling the next two that I would arrive on the 10th not the 9th and arrive on the 11th not the 10th. I may have some others that I need to change also - living this way does get complicated at times.
I did some more housework this morning after our walk, I ate breakfast and had my required two cups of Arbuckles coffee. Vacuumed the living room carpet again as well as the kitchen floor. Then washed the kitchen floor and the dash. That was enough. I did my best at washing the windshield yesterday when I filled up with gas but know I need to try and get the streaks off of it, just not today.
Charles Krauthammer's Opinion Free him, then try him for The Washington Post closes with these paragraphs. I say - Right On! Everything is politics for President Obama and he misjudged this political move badly.
The swap itself remains, nonetheless, a very close call. I would fully respect a president who rejected the deal as simply too unbalanced. What is impossible to respect is a president who makes this heart-wrenching deal and then does a victory lap in the Rose Garden and has his senior officials declare it a cause for celebration. The ever dutiful, ever clueless Susan Rice hailed it as “an extraordinary day for America.”
Good God. This is no victory. This is a defeat, a concession to a miserable reality, a dirty deal, perhaps necessary as a matter of principle but to be carried out with regret, resignation, even revulsion.
The Rose Garden stunt wasn’t a messaging failure. It’s a category error. The president seems oblivious to the gravity, indeed the very nature, of what he has just done. Which is why a stunned and troubled people are asking themselves what kind of man they have twice chosen to lead them.
9 June 2014 Sand Creek RV Park (Torrey, UT)
The wind was as calm as it gets here this morning when we went for our walk. I finished breakfast and had my first cup of coffee and could see that the leaves were moving on the tree by my window. Thought it best to get up and get outside and do my chores before it picked up to its normal gale force.
The chores of which I speak were dumping holding tanks and taking on fresh water. The idiot light for my fresh water tank claimed it was full before I started adding water so I did not know when to quite but did so before I saw any running out the overflow. I think it is nearly full.
The other chore was to wash down the windshield and cab side windows. They are better but the side windows have a lot of dog nose prints and slobbers on the inside. That can wait, Patches will just do it again during the next couple days of travel. I am ready to roll tomorrow!
It was then time for my second cup of coffee. It was also time to think about getting another shipment of Arbuckels sent to my next camp. I will ask the Park office when I check in if I can use their address to have it delivered, if not then I'll check with the Post Office about General Delivery. I need to do something, not enough left for another month that is for sure.
I may not have an Internet connection tomorrow. When I contacted the RV Park on Saturday I received no reply, tried again yesterday and had an email fail, tried again and received a reply that their WIFI had been down. Verizon coverage looks like it will be about the same as here; maybe useful and maybe not. Both WIFI and Verizon were dodgy here during the weekend but I have come to expect that. More people, less broadband means poor connection.
The Bergdahl story is one that keeps on giving at least to those that have served in the military and those of like mind. Why Team Obama Was Blindsided by the Bergdahl Backlash by Ralph Peters for National Review Online explains why the Administration went off the track so badly. These are the opening paragraphs in an article that makes points that the President should have known before he appeared in the Rose Garden with Pa Taliban (as Peters calls Dad Bergdahl)
Congratulations, Mr. President! And identical congrats to your sorcerer’s apprentice, National Security Adviser Susan Rice. By trying to sell him as an American hero, you’ve turned a deserter already despised by soldiers in the know into quite possibly the most-hated individual soldier in the history of our military.
I have never witnessed such outrage from our troops.
Exhibit A: Ms. Rice. In one of the most tone-deaf statements in White House history (we’re making a lot of history here), the national-security adviser, on a Sunday talk show, described Bergdahl as having served “with honor and distinction.” Those serving in uniform and those of us who served previously were already stirred up, but that jaw-dropper drove us into jihad mode.
But pity Ms. Rice. Like the president she serves, she’s a victim of her class. Nobody in the inner circle of Team Obama has served in uniform. It shows. That bit about serving with “honor and distinction” is the sort of perfunctory catch-phrase politicians briefly don as electoral armor. (“At this point in your speech, ma’am, devote one sentence to how much you honor the troops.”)
I actually believe that Ms. Rice was kind of sincere, in her spectacularly oblivious way. In the best Manchurian Candidate manner, she said what she had been programmed to say by her political culture, then she was blindsided by the firestorm she ignited by scratching two flinty words together. At least she didn’t blame Bergdahl’s desertion on a video.
The president, too, appears stunned. He has so little understanding of (or interest in) the values and traditions of our troops that he and his advisers really believed that those in uniform would erupt into public joy at the news of Bergdahl’s release — as D.C. frat kids did when Osama bin Laden’s death was trumpeted.
June 2014 Cadillac Ranch RV Park (Bluff, UT)
We were up a little earlier this morning and did our last walk through Torrey. I didn't check what time it was when we left but think it was about 6:30. Arrived in Hanksville about 7:30 and got sausage patty, eggs over easy with hash browns and sourdough toast. I was still in Utah and their coffee was still made to Utah standards - not so good. The 'place' in Hanksville seems to be Blondie's which is not much of a place but it is what it is. They charge tourist prices because that is their customer base and probably see few of them during the winter.
Today I was following my bicycle route of 19 June 1991 to Hites Crossing which was 106 miles. This is what I had to say in my Journal "Today we had and easy time of it for about the first 50 miles to Hanksville but then turned south to a gradual uphill and into a headwind. Then when we thought it couldn't get worse it got hotter and there were two steep climbs at the end of the day."
I could see why I wrote that as I drove it this morning. The first 50 miles were a lot of down hill then it becomes the killer that I describe. I am reasonably sure that I stopped at Hog Springs Rest Area, which is at about the 90 mile mark, to rest and drink some of my tepid water. If at that time a 'sag wagon' had come by I would have called it a day as many others did.
I remembered almost nothing about the area that I rode through from Hites Crossing to US191 where I turned south today rather than north to Blanding when on my bicycle. That day was 78 miles and I had only this to say "A lot of uphill again today with 3 big climbs in the last 10 miles. My feet are very sore because of the amount of climbing that we have done."
I drove 189 miles today, or 5 miles more than what it took me two days to ride by bicycle, and arrived here at 11:15. The route: UT24, UT95 & US191.
I lost 2,500' of altitude during the day and it is HOT. When I got here it was 84° and the forecast high is expected to be 95°. A good place for me to stop overnight with regard to distance traveled today and what I will do tomorrow but - it is HOT.
It is about a mile round trip to the Twin Rock Café from the Park. I know it is going to be hot but I think Patches and I can do it with a rest at the 1/2 way point. The goal is to get a Navajo Pizza that they make using Indian Fry Bread for the crust. People come from far and wide to Bluff, UT just to say that they have had a Navajo Pizza from the Twin Rock Café. I will try it and give you a review tomorrow.
11 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
The Park owner/manager stopped by yesterday about 5:30pm to tell me that all the electricity in Bluff would be off starting at 10:00pm until 5:00am. The power company was replacing 9 power poles that had been damaged in a storm. I think the power went off a little before 10:00 but know that it was back on at 2:30am when I got up for one of my trips of the night
Patches and I were then up at 5:30 for a short potty walk and got on the road just a little before 6:00. Stopped in Shiprock, NM for gas and found the price to be even less than what I was expecting. It was 18¢ less than in Loa and 7-8¢ cheaper than in Farmington, NM.
I would have been 15 minutes early for my breakfast meeting with Kabloonie of Occupation of Independence at Sonya's Cooking USA Restaurant. Missed seeing the restaurant going east and almost missed seeing it again after turning around. Google Maps had it misplaced and I guessed wrong about where it should have been.
I got some good Corned Beef Hash with poached eggs on top, good hash browns, sourdough toast and some better coffee (I am in New Mexico and expected as much). A good breakfast and a good visit with Kabloonie that I have not seen in about 18 months. Patches was even more excited to see him again than I was, she went nuts as she always does when she gets to meet him again.
After breakfast we went for a walk along the Animas River. Patches was excited to see Coffee Girl again also but they had to have their little dust up and then all was well after they were both off leash. Patches then taught Coffee Girl how to get a drink from the river, something she has not done after repeated visits to the river during the past two months. Then Patches laid down in just a slight bit of water and a LOT of mud and rolled around a bit to take a mud bath. She is some dog!
I then went to the UPS Store where I thought I had sent the email attachment for them to print. They had never hear of me nor received the email and Attachment. I sent it to them again, this time using the email address that they gave me, and within minutes I had the Letter of Authorization signed and mailed to my broker and was back on the road. I went back online to see where I might have sent the original email and it looks like I sent it to Farmington, MO. I have sent them another email to apologize for my stupidity.
Arrived here at the Park about 2:15pm and got set up quickly and easily with a good Verizon signal. Have not tried the Park WIFI and may not if Verizon remains this good, I was expecting much less based on the Verizon Coverage Map. I don't have a river bank site but I do have a very pleasant view of the Rio Chama. That could disappear very quickly when a big Class A arrived and parks across the street but it is a nice view for now.
I think the high temperature in Bluff yesterday was 90-91 with the low this morning near 65 - it was HOT. It was 86 in Farmington when I left at 11:30 but felt hotter than that. A pleasant 83° when I arrived in Chama, with a slight breeze and scattered clouds, and that is the highest the weather guessers expect it to get during the next 10 days. Yes, cool once again at 7,871'.
I have a Postscript for today.
I didn't check my Shout Box until I had posted for the day and RVSue reminded me that I did not review the Navajo Pizza that I had yesterday from the Twin Rocks Café. I got their vegetarian and I got it to go. Both of those choices were probably not the best. It did not take me long to walk back to Desperado, but the Navajo Fry Bread does not hold up as well as regular pizza crust. I say eat it right away while it is hot. I think one of their pizza with meat on it would have been better with the fry bread but I'm just guessing. IF I am ever in Bluff again I will NOT get a Navajo Pizza, I have done that. Next time, if there is one, I will get a Navajo Taco and I will eat it there at the Café.
I also forgot to record the distance for today; that being 223 miles. The route was: US191, UT162/CO41, US160, US491, US64 & US64/US84.
12 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
I have settled into my usual daily habits quite easily after the past couple days of travel. Patches and I were out for our morning walk at about 6:00. It was cool but very calm; I don't have any weather history for this location so I'm guessing it was in the lower 40s.
I'll be using Alamosa, CO as a substitute location for such history; it is at about the same altitude so temperatures should be close to the same. They were reporting a high temperature of 82° yesterday with a low this morning of 39°. I think that is close enough for blogging purposes.
Patches does not care but our walking routes are going to be somewhat limited. My choices remind me of what I had available a year ago in June while I was at Angel Fire, NM. We will be doing a lot of out and back along US64/US84 with some out and back on roads that lead off from the highway.
I traded three books from the Park exchange library yesterday. There were not a lot of choices and I'll only trade some more if someone else does a trade while I am here and leaves something I want. What is left on the shelf right now is nothing that I want. I have enough unread books now to last me for the month that I am here and can only hope that the next Park that I am at has a bigger library.
Made up a pot of Frey's Special Chili today with a slight modification. I used chicken breasts this time rather than pork; the reason for that - it is what I had on hand. Everything else remained the same. I bet I will not be able to tell the difference.
I have been in email contact for a couple months with the Chama Humane Society representative here in Chama. They are the distributor of Canidae dog food in town through their retail store front but are only open for 4 hours in the middle of the day on Saturday. I sent her an email last night that said I was in town and anxious because I was almost totally out of dog food. She is going to meet me at the store this afternoon after 5:00 so Patches will have food. I cut this re-order much too close!
Vice President Joe Biden on the Larry King show 10 February 2010. The man has said some very stupid things in the past but they were usually gaffs. This was simply an ignorant assessment of the situation in Iraq that he was spinning for political purposes. He had no other reason for bringing Iraq into his answer other than it was something that The Administration wanted him to say at some point in the interview. In only 4 short years all that optimism has brought the complete opposite of what 'Ol Joe could see in Iraq's future.
BIDEN: Well, you've heard me say that for the last 10 years. I think it's the -- it's a big country. It has nuclear weapons that are able to be deployed. It has a real significant minority of radicalized population. It is -- it is not a completely functional democracy in the sense we think about it. And so it's -- it -- that's my greatest concern.
I am very optimistic about -- about Iraq. I mean, this could be one of the great achievements of this administration. You're going to see 90,000 American troops come marching home by the end of the summer. You're going to see a stable government in Iraq that is actually moving toward a representative government.
I spent -- I've been there 17 times now. I go about every two months -- three months. I know every one of the major players in all of the segments of that society. It's impressed me. I've been impressed how they have been deciding to use the political process rather than guns to settle their differences.
13 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA183 June 13, 1926
Patches and I went to pick up her Canidae dog food at 4:00 yesterday which I knew was far too early. What all that time allowed us to do is walk around 'downtown' Chama and past the rolling stock as well as the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic Railroad depot. There were two steam engines that still had steam up and we got to watch them shuttling the cars around in preparation for the departure this morning.
Stopped a couple times along the way. The first time for a couple dog lovers to show Patches some affection. The second time was for me to get a latte and sit for a few minutes to kill some time. Patches gathered some more admiring fans and some desperately needed attention. She acts like she is ignored and people pity her.
Picked up the three 24# bags of Canidae Pure Elements and got them at a great price. They are expensive and hard to find so I never ask about the price just say "get it for me". I saved at least $24 buying them here plus whatever sales tax might have been someplace else; The Humane society is non-profit so no sales tax. A real winner and just in time, I think I had 2 or maybe 3 meals left.
I am getting the kind of weather I love. The high yesterday was 78° with a low this morning of 43°. The mornings are clear and calm with a breeze and scattered clouds in the afternoon. It does not get much better than this!
I finished reading this book by Iris Johansen while I was in Bluff a couple days ago but have been busy, by my standards, since then and didn't get around to doing the review. This novel is more of a mystery/thriller like the first one of hers that I read, The Ugly Duckling reviewed on 7 October 2013. The second one of hers that I read was in the Eve Series The Face of Deception that I reviewed on 26 March 2014. This one is the third in a trilogy that uses Wind Dancer as the hook for the story. Would like to find the first two because I didn't find this one as bad as the Weekly review paints it. She does go a bit heavier with the romance in this one than the other two books that I have read; you need to select her books with care because she also writes historical romance novels.
Having delivered two entertaining historical Wind Dancer novels, Johansen ( Storm Winds ) concludes her trilogy with a disappointing contemporary romance that collapses under the weight of its pretensions. A storm has destroyed half of the famous rosebushes on Caitlin Vasaro's estate in the South of France and endangered her plans to launch a new perfume when Alex Karazov rolls up in his Lamborghini with a proposition Caitlin can't refuse. He'll bankroll the perfume startup for a percentage of the profits and control of the campaign. Blinded by her growing affection for her savior, Caitlin is slow to realize that Alex (late of the KGB and CIA) has his own agenda: he wants her family heirloom, the Wind Dancer--a gold statue of Pegasus now in the possession of American politician Jonathan Andreas--as bait for his arch enemy, former CIA agent Brian Ledford. Besides having had Alex's best friend murdered, Ledford has been stealing artworks and staging terrorist acts to destabilize Europe and aid its newest aspiring Napoleon. - Publishers Weekly.
President Obama was nowhere to be found, and we still do not know where he was, while the four Americans were killed in Benghazi. It now appears that he has raised the ante considerably with 200 lives at risk. Where is he this time? Will he let the ISIS decapitate the 200 as a blood offering and appeasement to show them that he does not oppose them? That would be in keeping with his support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt which like the ISIS is a Sunni Islamist religious, political, and social movement.
About 200 Americans under contract with the Department of Defense at Balad Air Force Base in Iraq are trapped by the al-Qaida-inspired jihadists who have seized control of two cities and are now threatening Baghdad, according to WND sources.
The sources, private contractors who have recently returned to the U.S. from Iraq, said Friday their former colleagues effectively have been abandoned by the U.S. military and are fighting for their lives against an army of jihadists surrounding the base who belong to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS.
The sources contend the U.S. military could provide the necessary air cover to protect C-130s or other air transport craft sufficient to make the evacuation, but so far officials have refused to get involved.
14 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
I had a Class A pull into the space across the street from me yesterday afternoon that I thought would block my view of the river. They stayed in the site for only a few minutes and decided that was not the space they wanted and pulled back out. It was not a huge Class A and where they had parked did not block my view so they could have stayed, but I'm just as happy that they are gone. Two other riverside spaces did fill up during the day which is probably going to be the pattern while I am here; fill up on Friday and leave on Sunday.
That same site was taken by a travel trailer, tow vehicle and boat after dark last night. The tow vehicle is a 4 door crew cab pickup that I swear had 20 or more doors last night; I heard at least that many slam shut. The travel trailer blocks some view of the river but it is the tow vehicle and the boat that obscure the rest. That is alright, they took the boat out this morning and I am sure they will be gone by Monday.
A do nothing kind of day. I did have some of Frey's Special Chili yesterday. It was good but not as good as when made with pork. No other deviations from the norm.
I got some more work done on the Will Rogers weekly article links for August. I also read some more of one blog that I am concentrating on getting current. The author of this blog has documented his 'thinking' about what RV to buy for about 23 months before he finally bought one. He entered into five purchases, and then backed out of all five, prior to finally buying a Class C. Reading it has made me want to grab him and give him a good shake and say "Buy something and get on the road and quit thinking about it, your driving me crazy".
Maybe the Americans that were trapped at Balad Air Force Base have been evacuated, no thanks to President Obama. He is still considering his options and the contractors probably would have died while he did so. The White House is conditioning 'any commitment of military resources or a military operation' on an agreement from Iraqi leaders to commit 'to pursue an inclusive, political agenda' with Sunni Islamists who are terrorizing their cities [As I understand this, the WH will provide military resources IF the Shia Iraq government surrenders].
I can not help but think that the 4 years that he lived in Indonesia with his Sunni Muslim step-father were not formative. His policies appear to favor Sunni over Shia which would be natural if he grew up in a Sunni household.
It may also explain why President Obama looks upon Sunni Saudi Arabia as an ally when there is plenty of evidence that they are funding terrorist. On the other hand he condemns Shia Iran for supporting terrorist. Ironic is it not that Iran is the one that is sending troops and military support to Iraq to prevent the fall of Baghdad while Obama sits on his hands considering his options.
A U.S. contractor in Iraq told WND the Iraqi Air Force has begun evacuations from Balad Air Force Base, where 200 American contractors were trapped by the al-Qaida-inspired jihadists who have seized control of two cities and are now threatening Baghdad.
A contractor with Sallyport Global who asked not to be named told WND through a Skype instant message that he was transported from Balad to Baghdad and was communicating from a C-130 preparing to take off to Dubai.
He said 300 in total have been evacuated from Balad, about 60 miles north of Baghdad, and another 100 are still awaiting airlift. He said the Iraqi Air Force is trying to evacuate everyone by midnight local time.
WND previously reported Friday that private contractors who have recently returned to the U.S. from Iraq said their former colleagues effectively had been abandoned by the U.S. military and were fighting for their lives against an army of jihadists surrounding the base who belong to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS.
15 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
The past 24 hours have been hell with a 'bad' tooth causing me a lot of pain, fever and chills. I started feeling it Friday night but it was not too bad. By 10:00 on Saturday I was in a lot of pain and what felt like a low fever. Started taking Ibuprofen on Saturday and felt better this morning but ached all over and when we went out for our walk I had the chills. Shortened up the walk and went back to bed until 9:00.
I think the tooth was abscessed. There is a LOT of tooth root exposed which allows gems to get down along the root. I have had this happen a couple times in the past and was told 5 years ago that the tooth will have to go. If I could have found a dentist on Saturday I would have been begging him to make it go away.
I spent as much time on the couch as I did sitting in my chair with the Internet. Some of that couch time was reading but a lot of it was dozing. I did read some more of the blog that I am catching up to current. It is a great example of indecisiveness and self delusion, we can talk ourselves into believing anything and this blog author is a master at doing so.
I may be able to talk myself into doing an afternoon walk but it is going to take a lot of talk and a lot of effort.
16 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
I did manage to do an afternoon walk yesterday. Even did a longer one to make up for the short morning. I felt better then and do now also but can still feel that the tooth is not right.
I went to Fina's Diner this morning for breakfast after our walk. I can walk there but did not want to tie Patches up outside and needed to get groceries today as well. I got their Huevos Rancheros (Red - this is NM ya know, where you always have to choose between red or green) with a sizable portion of hash browns and beans. The coffee was pretty good and the side of a flour tortilla came with one large one and one small. I'll go back, the only downside was the tourist prices.
My first stop after breakfast was Chama Valley Dental Care to have the tooth taken care of, most likely pulled. Their web site claimed that they opened at 8:00 which they did not. I was almost across the street from the Post Office and had a package tracking number that said that it was ready for pick up. So, that is what I did. Got my 5# of Arbuckles Coffee which made the day better if not good.
The market here, Lowe's, is a bit of a disappointment. It is not as well stocked as I remember the one in Angel Fire had been. No kale, no tofu, no chicken thighs and some chicken breast that were expensive and looked like they had been in the package for some time. They had some Greek yogurt but only in the small sizes and no vanilla or vanilla/honey. They had radishes but they looked terrible and I passed on them and picked up some Mexican gray squash to put in my salads. I can make do, but Royal's, in Loa, was a better market in a smaller town.
I went to the Park office and told then that I had picked up my package at the Post Office and inquired about Chama Valley Dental Care and the woman called their number and found that it had been disconnected. She then told me about a dental clinic in Tierra Amarilla, NM which is about 12 miles south of here. I found their web site and have sent an email requesting help.
17 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
A very pleasant morning at near 50° with the wind just slightly moving the tree leaves. The high yesterday was right at 80° once again. I have to remind myself everyday how great the weather has been for me here. Maybe a payback for some of the poor winter weather that I had although it was not nearly as bad as what most people suffered through.
My tooth is much better but I still need some care, probably pull it. The clinic in Tierra Amarilla responded to my email yesterday that they had received it. That was the last that I have heard from them. I sent them another email today asking again if they could help me. If I do not hear from them this week I will then re-think my options but it will probably be try to get some help in Pagosa Springs, CO.
Finished another book today but will not get to the review for a day or two. Did a little more reading on the blog catch up. Did a little work on the Will Rogers weekly article links. Feeling well enough to give Patches her full twice daily walks which makes her happy. She was upset with all my in and out of Desperado while we were in town yesterday. She loves routine, which is good most of the time.
No boots on the ground! We are to assume that these US ground troops are being sent into Baghdad either barefoot or wearing slippers however they will be 'equipped for combat'. Then there will be another 100 Special Forces troops that will no longer be under the Commander-in-Chief but will be commanded by the Secretary of State? Where does the Secretary of Defense fit into this new command structure? They will also 'not be authorized to engage in combat' so am I correct in presuming they are not only barefoot or wearing slippers but will not be equipped for combat? This is a FUBAR operation that only President Obama and his sycophant advisers and Cabinet members could dream up. I fear for the troops that end up bootless on the ground in Iraq.
President Obama announced on Monday evening that US ground troops 'equipped for combat' are being sent to Iraq – just days after claiming that no American soldiers would be deployed to the war-torn country. Obama said that their only purpose will be to protect U.S. personnel and the embassy in Baghdad – and not to join in the fierce fighting raging outside the Iraqi capital.
A White House official also said Monday that the Obama administration is considering the deployment of a small contingent of Special Forces to Iraq, specifically to help Mouri al-Maliki's government slow the advance of the Sunni insurgents. Officials said, however, that those 'special operators' would only be employed to help stabilize a collapsing security situation by assisting and training Iraq's regular and reserve army.
Speaking on condition of anonymity, a U.S official told the Associated Press that up to 100 special operators would fall under the authority of the State Department, and would not be authorized to engage in combat.
18 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
For the past 3-4 days I have had two travel trailers as neighbors in the riverside spaces. They also set up a big tent with table and chairs for their dinning room with the kitchen in front of that dinning room. Water readily available right by the kitchen. A well thought out arrangement and well executed.
I am guessing it was an extended family that totaled about 10 with maybe 1/2 of them children. They were a little loud in their talking but that is just part of being an American. No loud music although I could hear some sometimes. The children were well behaved with no screaming and running around like wild savages.
As they prepared to leave this morning I saw one of the adult males 'policing' the dinning and kitchen area; stooping to pick up small bits of I know not what. Then one of the adult females was sweeping the Parks wooden deck were a picnic table is placed. After they left you would not have known they had ever been there.
I know that I'm being a racist by observing all of this and writing about it so I may as well tell you that the extended family appeared to be Mexican-American or maybe the politically correct nomenclature is Hispanic-American. As John Hayward said in one of his recent articles "It doesn’t matter what you mean when you speak. You’ll be told what you really mean, by organized groups with an axe to grind, and then you’ll be punished accordingly." That is political correctness defined!
Patches and I extended out morning walk a little bit this morning. I was close enough to Sonny's Café that I could see they were not open yet but extended the walk just a little bit more to see if they had their hours of operation posted. They did not but I am guessing that they open at 7:00. I will give them a try before I leave Chama.
We see deer almost every morning when we walk to the north, toward the Rio Chama and town. This morning we hit an all time high sighting of 8 although 2 of them could have been the same deer. I have a tough time telling them apart but they must be able to recognize each other in some way. How do they do that?
I have had no reply to the emails that I sent to La Clinicia del Pueblo de Rio Aribba in Terra Amarilla other than that they have received them and someone will contact me soon. In my mind "soon' has now passed. I sent an email to Pagosa Smiles in Pagosa Springs, CO this morning asking them if they can help me. That will be a 100 mile round trip for me which I did not want to make but it seems that is what I must do if I'm going to get the tooth fixed.
I received a reply from Pagosa Smiles almost immediately saying they could take me today at 1:00 or 2:00 but I have elected to go next Monday. The tooth continues to let me know that it is there but nothing that I can not live with for now. I will make a day of it and go to a better(?) market for my weekly groceries. Get there early in the morning and take advantage of more restaurants to chose from for breakfast. All those things that you do when you go to the Big City (population 1,727).
19 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
I thought it was a little colder this morning than the past few days when we went for our walk. Sure enough when I checked out the reported low temperatures in nearby reporting locations that maintain history I found that it was probably 34-35°.
I finished catching up on the one blog that I had started from the beginning. Caught up partially by reading but just as important to my success was the author discontinued the blog and started a different one. I may read the new one for a while to see if the old one returns. Past is not prologue but as I was catching up I read that the blog had been shut down a couple of times and then returned, it may happen again.
Began reading another blog at its beginning. Worked on the Will Rogers weekly article links. Did my usual daily bog and News reading. Put together another pot of pozole; using pork this time but other than that not much of a change. So, it was another of my usual days of not much happening.
I think this is novel number eight of DeMille's that I have read. It has John Corey back doing his freewheeling thing and talking his wise ass talk. Love the guy! He does not have Kate Mayfield with him in this story but talks his talk with a Long Island female homicide detective. The Weekly review is well done I will only say that I'll always pick up another of his books if I get a chance especially one with John doing the detecting.
Tom and Judy Gordon were bright, young, attractive scientists whom everyone seemed to like. So who would murder them--and why? Could their deaths have something to do with Plum Island, supposedly an animal research facility but possibly a top-secret site for biological warfare experiments? Could it involve a pirate's treasure buried in the vicinity more than 300 years ago? Returning to the Long Island, N.Y., setting of The Gold Coast (1990), DeMille makes his finest showing since that enormously popular book. Important to his success here is the catchy, ironic voice of narrator John Corey, a freewheeling Manhattan detective who's at his uncle's house on the Island to recover from bullet wounds and who gets tapped by the locals to act as "consultant" on the case. Key to the novel's sway is its boisterous plot, as DeMille expertly melds medical mystery, police procedural and nautical adventure, adding assorted love interests and capping matters with a ferocious storm at sea. Atmospherics are strong and the novel acquires its own storm force as it moves toward a cataclysmic denoument. DeMille's research seems sound as well, rendering the inner workings of a science lab as believable and fascinating as the discovery of treasure maps. It's a smooth job from an old pro who knows what readers are looking for. - Publishers Weekly
Flimflam Man: The Tragedy of Barack Hussein Obama by Monty Perlin has just been released from the publisher. I doubt that it will be #1 on the New York Times Bestseller List but Perlin knows President Obama.
The book jacket "teaser" summary says the following:
President Barack Obama is the most unusual president of my lifetime and perhaps the life of the nation. An unprecedented, popular beginning was quickly squandered leaving the dreams and hopes that propelled him to office shattered. Camelot was not to be. Obama's phenomenal fall from grace creates a serious political liability for the media and the Democrat Party. Supporters may turn on him in an effort to save themselves. For political aficionados, it doesn't get much better. For those who love their country, it is despair. The final act is apt to be the most exciting.
20 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA184 June 20, 1926
Yahoo! Mail has been slow loading for the past 6 weeks of more. Yesterday they revealed why. The Mail Page now has Themes and other bells and whistles that do not mean a damn thing to me.
All I want is to send and receive email and be able to delete those that I no longer want. I don't care what color the Page is, within reason, and have not checked to see what the new bells and whistles might do other than get in my way with Pop Ups advising me to try this and try that. Another Programmer Full Employment project dreamed up by the new CEO that is really 'into' appearance rather than function.
A big Class A came in yesterday and took one of the riverside spaces. Not the one that would have blocked my river view however. The two most frequently used riverside spaces are down river from me and they are pull-thrus. The one directly across the street is a back-in and only a big rig will block my view but any tow vehicles parked next to it will. I expect someone to be in there by the end of today.
I received an email from my broker yesterday that says in part "The request to change your mailing address to Arizona has brought up the question of your legal address". I responded that I consider the Arizona address to now be my "domicile" or legal address. I don't know what they are going to do at this point. They brought up the issue of "if our company is registered" to do financial business in the state that I consider to be my legal address.
I'll let them sort it out. I have made inquiry however of an attorney in Sierra Vista to re-do my will and name himself my Executor. Then for my current broker, or new one if they tell me they are not registered to do business in Arizona, I want to use his address as my 'legal address' (31 C.F.R. § 103.121(b)(2)(i) -- Information required: allows for the address of another contact individual). Maybe this will put paid to my issue of a 'legal address/required information' that is a huge problem for full time RVers trying to open/keep their bank and brokerage accounts.
FoxNews had "2014 Top 10 Mexican Restaurants in the U.S." in their Leisure Section today. The list was from gayot.com with FoxNews linking to it, not something that Fox developed on their own. In the Top Ten I have been to NONE of them. From a quick read about each of them I doubt that I ever will be in any of them. Maybe I should make up my Top 10 List of 'hole-in-the-wall' Mexican restaurants and send it to gayot.com. HA
Mona Charen is a columnist and political analyst but her political stance is conservative which make anything she says or writes suspect. I believe that she has asked the right questions of President Obama in her article Foreign-Policy Questions for the President posted at National Review Online on 20 June 2014. This quote contains only a few of the questions she asked.
If it is in the U.S. national-security interest to keep Iraq from disintegrating, why are you deploying at most 300 special forces — just 50 more than you sent to find and destroy Joseph Kony of the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda? Does Kony represent a comparable threat to the United States, in your judgment?
You said, “Above all, Iraqi leaders must rise above their political differences and come together around a political plan for Iraq’s future.” Does this “must” have the same force as your earlier call for Bashar Assad to step down?
Do you think it is easier for factions within Iraq, wracked by tribal rivalries, ethnic divisions, religious differences, and a history of tyranny, and amid a crisis featuring armies marching and beheadings by the hundreds, to “rise above their political differences” when you cannot bring yourself to negotiate sincerely with Republicans about the national debt or spending?
21 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
I read my Daily blogs but delayed my usual checking of the News. I had other things to do online. Sent an email to a dentist in Sierra Vista requesting an appointment for the first week of December. I had reservations at RV Parks thru mid-October so I also contacted two Parks that would give me sites thru mid-December. My choice for a winter over location does not have an email address and no one answered the phone. They may not be open during the summer months - too damn hot.
I'll keep trying their telephone during the next few months but needed a reservation for my mid-February stop and needed to make a deposit because they have limited spaces. I did that today to guarantee that I have a space. I will then go from there to the same Park that I plan to stay in during Nov-Dec. This may be my 'domicile' RV Park that I return to every Mar-Apr when I go for my annual VA appointment, a dentist appointment, Patches' vet visit, DMV if necessary etc.
The other accomplishment of the day was to complete the Will Roger weekly article links for August. Started reading my Monthly blogs which I'm a little bit overdue in starting. Also got in some couch time with my book and Patches. A productive day by my standards.
McCain posed for pictures with these rebels, smiling as the camera snapped. Now, ISIS, Islamic State of Iraq and Syria formerly known as Al Qaeda in Iraq, is using those pictures as a campaign ad.
When Senator McCain returned from his trip he was in strong support of providing more arms to 'these fighters'. The good Senator did not have a clue and now the ISIS is using him for propaganda purposes. He is trying his best to walk back that previous support but I'm not sure that he can. I hope he retires and does not run for re-election or if he does that he is defeated.
On Memorial Day in 2013, John McCain went on a secret trip to Syria to meet with the rebels who were fighting against Bassar Assad. At the time, McCain described his visit as ‘moving.’ During an appearance on CNN, McCain elaborated on his experience.
“It was a very moving experience to meet these fighters who have been struggling now for over two years. And they’re very aware of the battlefield situation and they’re very disturbed about the dramatic influx of Hezbollah fighters, more Iranians, and of course, stepped-up activities of Bashar Assad.”
22 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
The problem tooth was paining me again Friday thru Saturday night but is back to just enough pain today that I know it is there. Not looking forward to the dentist visit tomorrow but know that I need to 'get it done'.
The Monsoon Season in the US southwest is generally thought to start on June 15th. Sometimes earlier and sometimes later. I received an email from my cousin in the southeastern corner of Arizona that said they had received their first rain on the 14th. A couple days later I got a fairly decent shower here at the Park. Today looks like it is building up for a bigger storm that may kick off daily rains for rest of the time I am here.
Not doing much of anything today. Tomorrow will be a busy day for me that includes the 100 mile round trip drive to Pagosa Springs, CO. It may be a little later in the day before I get a posting up that tells you how the day went.
Elliot Rodger may have used knife, hammer, machete in killings, attorney says a Los Angeles Times story once again points out the hypocrisy of the anti-gun crowd. I have written before about the number of hammer deaths there are in this country and the anti-gun supporters say nary a word.
You read, or hear, a lot about the three people that he murdered with a gun but the lame stream media has been quite with regard to the method used for the first three victims. They were murdered with knife, hammer and machete. Where are the anti-hammer activist? Why do we not hear demands for registering hammers or background checks before you can buy one? Could it be that the government fears a citizenry with guns but consider them no threat if armed with hammers?
Exactly what happened remains unclear. Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown called it a “pretty horrific crime scene,” saying the three men had been “stabbed repeatedly with sharp objects.” Police made the discovery after Rodger embarked on a deadly rampage on the streets of Isla Vista, killing three other UCSB students and wounding 13 other people before apparently taking his own life.
An attorney representing the three families, Todd Becker, said they believed the killings occurred sometime that day and that a knife, a hammer and a machete were used.
23 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
The trip to Pagosa Springs for the dental appointment did not get the problem tooth fixed. It did start the process but I go back on Friday. That will make it about 220 miles total to reach my dental care or around $80-85 for gas. Today cost about $50 for the exam and some antibiotics. The extraction on Friday will be another $110 unless they have to cut it out and then it will be $260. Just another something you need to think about when deciding on the fulltime RV lifestyle.
I was able to get a good breakfast at Colorado Café. They had Enchiladas de queso Montados on the menu which I can never pass up. We were within 30 miles of the New Mexico state line so the question continues to be "red or green?". I had it with the eggs over easy and red. Very good and the prices were reasonable for a tourist town, I'll go back.
I then went to City Market which was a huge store compared to the markets I have been shopping in for the past couple of months. They had everything that I wanted and I bought extra before I found out I was going to be back on Friday. I was also able to use my Smith's/Fry's Reward Card so when I do go back on Friday I will fill up with gas again and use the discount. That takes a little bit of the sting out of the cost of driving the distance required.
The dental exam was short and sweet. I told the dentist that I was told the tooth would have to be pulled someday, he took a look and said "I can't do anything to save it, the time has come". Need to take the Amoxicillin for at least three days before pulling it so Friday will be the day. I hate to think about it but will be glad when it is done.
I'll finish my current book before the day is over and start on another one, then get the review posted in a day or two. Late in getting to read my Daily blogs but will get that done before the day is over. Probably just a quick scan of what is happening in the world as reported by the News.
24 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
Patches and I avoided a disaster this morning although I'm am the one of us that understands that. We were walking a new route along a street that had undeveloped lots so there was a lot of grass near the street. Patches was doing her constant sniffing, sniffing but then began pulling hard on the leash which caused me to look where she was looking. I don't know how close he was when she first saw him in the tall grass but when I saw him he was at about 10'.
It was Peppé le Pew walking away with that arrogant waddling gait that skunks have. I didn't get any pictures; the grass was obscuring any good pictures and I would have only got a picture of THE END. I was also trying to control Patches that still wanted to go meet this new creature and get a sniff. OH, if she only knew. However, my one and only prior experience of a dog shot by a skunk was the dog did not think he smelled bad and was very confused about why we would not let him near us.
The past couple of days have had high temperatures in the low 80s. That will continue for a couple more days if the forecast is correct and then increase into the mid to upper 80s. It is getting hot. The forecast for my next camp is even worse with some high temperatures to be in the mid-90s. "O, woe is me,
To have seen what I have seen, see what I see!"
The Park here is surprisingly empty today. There is a circle loop to the northwest of my space that was totally empty this morning whereas there have been rigs there since I arrived. The riverside space across the street from me has remained vacant for this past week but a big Class A parked there today. There was a travel trailer attempt to back into it a few days ago but then chose a different space. I have neighbors on both sides of me but the spaces here are not that close together and I have not been disturbed by either of them. Patches has even become tolerant of the dog that is sometimes leashed outside on a 20-30' rope.
I have a couple of pozole meals remaining but I made up a pot of what I'm going to call Southwest Pork & Beans. Not very elaborate: about a pound of pork stew meat cut into bite size pieces and browned, about a pound of chorizo browned, 28oz of Cannellini beans, 6oz Contadina tomato paste a little water and a couple dabs of powdered cayenne. To be served with flour tortillas. I have also changed my daily salad slightly because the radishes looked terrible I picked up some daikon. I have been wanting some but the small grocers that I have been frequenting don't carry such esoteric vegetables.
How US and Britain were warned of Isis advance in Iraq but 'turned a deaf ear' by Richard Spencer for The Telegraph in the UK that tells a story of ignoring the ISIS threat to Iraq. It may not have been that but rather it was an intentional decision to allow the ISIS to do what VP Biden suggested back in 2009.
It was then that Obama asked Biden to take on the role overseeing the U.S. departure from Iraq and bringing various factions together. By assigning Biden to Iraq Obama was able keep the issue at a high level while not taking full control of it himself. Biden had experience in Iraq and he suggesting dividing Iraq into three _ between the Shiite, Sunni and Kurdish communities at that time. It did not happen then but that is exactly what has happened as a result of President Obama turning a 'deaf ear'. Coincidence?
Five months ago, a Kurdish intelligence "asset" walked into a base and said he had information to hand over. The capture by jihadists the month before of two Sunni cities in western Iraq was just the beginning, he said.
There would soon be a major onslaught on Sunni territories.
The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (Isis), a renegade offshoot of al-Qaeda, was about to take its well-known cooperation with leftovers of the regime of Saddam Hussein, and his former deputy Izzat al-Douri, to a new level.
His handlers knew their source of old, and he had always proved reliable, officials told The Telegraph. So they listened carefully as he said a formal alliance was about to be signed that would lead to the takeover of Mosul, the biggest city north of Baghdad, home to two million people.
"We had this information then, and we passed it on to your (British) government and the US government," Rooz Bahjat, a senior lieutenant to Lahur Talabani, head of Kurdish intelligence, said. "We used our official liaisons.
"We knew exactly what strategy they were going to use, we knew the military planners. It fell on deaf ears."
25 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
Yesterday afternoon I had one of the Park staff stop by to see if I was alright. They had not seen me during the day and were just checking. This is a good thing. I have had a couple of other Parks check on me. If I fall over dead it makes very little difference but whoever finds me could see that Patches is taken care of.
I stopped at the office this morning. Told them I was alive but most importantly I wanted to see if there were any more books in their small library that I could trade for. I hit the jackpot; there were two Baldacci novels and a Flynn, I happen to be reading one of his at this time, plus a good thick novel by a new to me author that I took also. My unread library is now almost full.
I now have a dental appointment in Sierra Vista for my December cleaning and if I'm happy with that they will become 'my dentist'. I will still need to see two others during the year but I will be coming back to this same one in Sierra Vista every year in March/April.
I have also reserved a RV space for all of my stops that will get me back to Sierra Vista in November for a month stay. While there for that month I want to see if I can get my medical records transferred from VA-Pahrump to VA-Sierra Vista. Also want to get a new will written up and a new Executor named while I'm there. I contacted one lawyer via email that has not responded, a assume he was not interested in having me a client. I'll try another. I also have a RV modification that I want to have my RV shop there do for me.
There was a Reuters headline today that told it like it was U.S. economy contracts 2.9 percent in first quarter but then devoted much of the article trying to spin that bad News into "it is not so bad". "The U.S. economy contracted at a much steeper pace than previously estimated in the first quarter, but there are indications that growth has since rebounded strongly. The Commerce Department said on Wednesday gross domestic product fell at a 2.9 percent annual rate, the economy's worst performance in five years." They put a lot of lipstick on that pig in the rest of the article but it remained a pig. The stock market yawned!
The Administration's talking point will be it is all former President Bush's fault and the Tea Party Republicans in the House. The Federal government must spend more money and then the GDP will be on the rise again. More child immigrants will kick start the economy and it is only because the Tea Party Republicans oppose comprehensive immigration reform that it is not happening. Blah, blah, blah
This is the second book by the O'Shaughnessy sisters that I have read and it is also the second in their Nina Series. The first that I read was Writ of Execution, number seven in the Series, which I reviewed on 3 April 2014. I think what the Weekly calls legal slight-of-hand is what makes the book enjoyable for me. The mystery twists and turn are well done also. The love partner twist at the end did not surprise me that much because I had read Writ first but it joins the mystery twists to make the book a good read. I will get more O'Shaughnessy books if I can find them.
From familiar elements - four mysteriously missing young women; a filmmaker everyone loves to hate; a woman defense attorney with several suitors; the attorney's courageous but unhappy young son - sisters Pamela and Mary O'Shaughnessy have fashioned a thickly plotted and pleasantly baffling second legal thriller. Tahoe-area attorney Nina Reilly was shot at the end of Motion to Suppress (1995). As the increasingly alarming facts of her latest case pile up, she is haunted by memories of that wounding. No less haunting are certain details of her personal past, which Nina's new client, Terry London, an energetically spiteful documentary filmmaker, seems to know as much about as Nina does. Out of that past and into Tahoe comes Kurt Scott, the father of Nina's son, Bob. Almost immediately, Terry is murdered, Kurt is accused of the crime and Nina must assemble his murder defense. To complicate the mystery, Terry had just finished a film about the 12-year-old disappearance of a local teenager who may have been only one in a series of young women killed by the same hand. Did Terry know and abet the killer? As Nina ponders that question, a devastating mid-story revelation plunges her into a difficult ethical dilemma. Fans of the genre will luxuriate in this deft, multileveled tale of legal and criminal treachery, whose pleasures include elegant courtroom sleight-of-hand and the eerily wintry backdrop of Lake Tahoe. And the surprises don't end with the identity of the killer: Nina's last-page choice of a love partner will raise a few eyebrows as well. - Publishers Weekly
26 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
The idiot lights for my holding tanks and fresh water tank provide almost no reliable information about how full or empty there are. The fresh water tank has been at 3/4 full for most the past two weeks, the black water tank has been full for that same length of time and the gray water tank has been moving back and forth between 3/4 and full. I decided it was time (about two weeks) that I should empty and take on fresh water. The sound of the water pump has become a better indicator of when to do this than any of the idiot lights.
The remainder of my day was spent doing what I do every day. I guess the exception would be my reading of Monthly blogs. I am making progress but I don't think I will finish them all before this month is over but that is not necessary, Monthly is a rather flexible designation for how often I read them.
The big Class A that was blocking my view of the Rio Chama left this morning. Or more correct, the 'toad' parked beside the Big Class A was blocking my view and it left with the Class A. I expect there will be someone in the space again this weekend and certainly during the long July 4th Holiday.
The June Hecla Put that I sold was 'put' to me at the strike price. The price of the stock needed to be above the strike price or I would buy the stock. I know this when I sell the Put and I could sell the stock today at a profit, just not as much as I received in Put Premium. I am confident that the stock price will continue to move up from my reasonably low carrying price so no harm done although I would have preferred to have kept picking up Put Premium.
There is something strange going on when James Howard Kunstler writes an article that agrees with my position on an issue. The quote below are selected paragraphs from his blog post Hard Times? where he actually supports my thinking on the 'immigration' issue.
The New York Times editors seem to think that if they tell enough sob stories about illegal immigrants in their ongoing sentimental series “The Way North,” that the national debate will turn into a giant pity party and the nirvana of a human peaceable kingdom will come true, with no consequences — except for more interesting cuisine in states that formerly subsisted on Salisbury steak and pie.
The New York Times, like just about every other institution in the progressive orbit, has surrendered its collective brain to a morass of feelings, longings, and promptings that leads ever deeper into a wasteland of dishonesty. As a long-time registered Democrat who started voting in the year of Watergate, I resent being taken for a ride to the place where anything goes and nothing matters. And especially where nothing matters less than clear thinking and straight talk.
Currently, progressive America is pretending that the conditions of the 19th century still prevail here — boundless material resources and land for the taking — and that we can happily accommodate the overflow from our equally overpopulated neighbors, Mexico and the countries of Central America, any way they can manage to get here. The sentimental approach as represented by The New York Times, is exactly what will prevent the kind of hard choices that national leadership is faced with. Both established political parties could founder on this issue.
27 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
Read Will Rogers column 88 years ago: WA185 June 27, 1926
Today was a lot like Monday.
I drove to Pagosa Springs and stopped at the Colorado Café for breakfast. They had a Chile Relleno Omelet as a Special which sounded good. It turned out to be sounding better than it was. It was a chile relleno inside an omelet with melted cheese on top and then something like a Hollandaise Sauce over the top of that. Served with a big pile of hash browns and very thin sourdough toast. The coffee was good but I was not impressed by the Special.
Next stop was at City Market again for groceries while I was in town and could take advantage of a big, well stocked market. I also filled up the gas tank while I was there and able to use my Rewards Card for some discount.
Then to Pagosa Smiles to get the tooth removed. It was expensive but what were my alternatives? I didn't have much choice given that I didn't want to live with the pain. It is gone and as I type this I now have some pain that the Novacaine has worn off. The extraction was one of the easiest that I think I have experienced so all is well so far and I am confident that I'll feel much better tomorrow.
I'm way behind on doing all my usual daily reading again as I was on Monday. I'll get caught up by the end of the day but probably not get any Monthly blogs read and will just skim the News.
By the time I got back to the Park two of the RVs in my neighborhood had left. The closest one was a big Class A in one of the riverside spaces across the road and just down river from me. The other one was a couple spaces north of me in the same row and his dog was a problem for Patches in the early morning. Barked at her every time we went past but Patches was always good and did not respond so it was good training for her.
She had a really tough day today. When we got 'home' she collapsed on the couch and has been sleeping all the time that have been slaving away at writing this posting. She is some dog!
28 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
I took my last pain medication yesterday at about 7:00pm. I still have some pain this morning but it is not any worse than it has been for the past week while I was taking Ibuprofen 3x a day. Continue to take the Amoxicillin until gone, I think Wednesday. I expect that I will feel even better tomorrow and maybe by Monday I will have forgotten this entire experience.
The dentist instructions said no exercise for 3-5 days. I could probably 'force' myself to not walk for that length of time but Patches is NOT going for it. We did our usual shorter walk yesterday afternoon and I did not feel too bad. This morning was a longer walk and I felt a little sluggish and tired by the time we got home.
I'm a little sluggish now also so it has nothing to do with exercise just my natural inclination to be lazy. I have the perfect companion with Patches, she acts the same way - does her walk and then sleeps most of the morning. She then demands that we go for our afternoon walk.
Since I am in a lazy frame of mind I was on the couch with my book a good part of the day. Managed to get some more Monthly blogs read. Have caught up on all the News that the media deem to report. A recovery kind of day after the busy and traumatic day of yesterday.
I am recording my blood pressure and heart rate in the morning before getting out of bed to report to my VA medical provider. Yesterday morning it was 116/64 44 then at the dentist office before they did anything other than have me sit in 'the chair' it was 124/75 81 whereas this morning it was back down to 109/56 45. The blood pressure reading was not all that bad but look at the heart rate - can you say anxiety! HA
Obama cites France as standard for workplace benefits by Susan Crabtree was an article in the Washington Examiner on 23 June 2014 that reported on President Obama's first White House summit for working families. It didn't get much coverage in the lame stream media which is just as well. Socialist France is broke and everyone, including the media, except the President knows that using them as a model is not the path that the US should take.
President Obama held up France as the gold standard the U.S. workplace should emulate during an event at the White House on Monday.
Extolling the business virtues of helping workers balance family and employment demands, including providing paid time off for the birth of a child, Obama said that if France can provide the benefits, so can the United States.
29 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
A few days ago I was writing about the Park being almost empty. The circle loop to the northwest was empty for the first time but that changed by this morning. The circle is full and most of the other spaces are also. I got another neighbor across the street to the northeast that has two little yapping dogs that are going to irritate Patches.
They have a very big 5th wheel that from the looks of things will be here through the winter. The fellow put up canvas skirting all around it and staked that to the ground; I'm guessing he fastened over 50 snaps and drove in over 50 stakes. To my way of thinking that is a lot of work for a month stay so I'm guessing he is here long after I am gone.
A lot of tent campers have set up also. One group have 6-7 in big circle around a community table then there are others scattered all around. The Park also has over 20 cabins that appear to all be full. Many of these people will be here through the July 4th weekend I'm thinking. The good thing so far has been everyone has acted civil and I still have my river view.
Where the tooth once was is sore, or as the medical people like to say "tender", today but not causing me much pain. I still think that it will probably be just a memory by tomorrow night. It gave me something to write about but I now must move on to even more banal things.
I can't pass up this story Jobs, cars seen cementing U.S. spring rebound by Philip Blenkinsop for Reuters dateline 29 June 2014. I expect to see it repeated by much of the lame stream media in their business sections tomorrow. It is a 'pump' story that I think will deflate rapidly by this time next week.
I do not quote from the story but the author expects the June new jobs to be over 200,000 which will make it the fifth straight month of job gains above 200,000. Or as he says "a run unmatched since the Sept 1999-Jan 2000 period". What he does not say is that the CES Net Birth/Death Model has added an average of 160,000 to each of the past four months to reach that 200,000 level but the monthly average adjustment during the Sept 1999-Jan 2000 period was -0-.
The United States can firmly consign its weather-beaten start to the year to history this week with June vehicle sales and jobs data expected to show a strong end to the second quarter.
The U.S. economy contracted at a 2.9 percent annual rate, the sharpest decline in five years, in the Jan-March period, figures showed last Wednesday.
An exceptionally bitter winter, the expiration of long-term unemployment benefits and a marked slowdown in restocking by businesses combined to drag down the world's largest economy, but these factors should have faded by April.
Monthly jobs data, arguably the most important gauge for both the Federal Reserve and the American people, is expected to show U.S. firms are continuing to hire at a solid pace as a virtuous circle of economic activity and growth takes hold.
30 June 2014 Little Creel RV Resort (Chama, NM)
The neighbors in the big 5th wheel are gone. The 5th wheel remains but the people and their yappy dogs left sometime yesterday. Maybe they have set the 5th wheel up as a weekend 'retreat' and will come up for the long July 4th weekend and then weekends during the remainder of the summer. I guess paying for a month and leaving it parked to be used only on the weekends is cheaper than paying daily rates and towing that beast back and forth. Or, I don't know what is going on?
The Park has cleared out a lot especially the tent campers. The circle loop has about 20 spaces and this morning there were 3 RVs remaining. Most of the cabins were also vacant yesterday afternoon. I'm sure that is all going to change again starting this Thursday afternoon.
We saw 9 deer this morning on our walk. There were 6 does in the grass where we saw the skunk; grazing like a herd of cows. Then saw two more just off Highway 17 between a couple of houses going north and one buck coming towards us then turning south. He was of good size and his antlers were in velvet but I think there were 4 points on each side; some would call him a 4 point buck others would say he was an 8 point.
I did finish reading my Monthly blogs yesterday. Got it done partially by forgoing other reading and partially because 5-6 of those on my list had not posted or only posted once or twice in the past month. I dropped one from my list that had not posted for the past 6 months.
I have one, maybe two, Southwest Pork & Beans meals remaining for my 'linners' but started another pot for next week. This will be a baby lima, red potato and smoked pork shank soup/stew. Will be served up with some sourdough bread and a mustard greens, rutabaga and tomato salad.