Today Karla and Hilary headed for the hills. Ben decided to go along too, as did dogs Sioux and Sallie. Oh, and so did Florence, if you count cats. Luke had already flown in to the ranch by helicopter a couple of weeks ago.
I phoned this evening and they all had arrived safe and sound at Florence Lake. Luke was there to greet them, and to delight Karla by having cleaned out the cabin of the winter’s rat shenanigans. The way the cabin at the lake is built makes it near impossible to keep those rodents out. But I am certain Luke will come up with a way to do it, even if it involves encasing the entire structure in reinforced concrete. Not too attractive, but hey.…
Every year we go through this whole routine. It’s been done for over 60 years and involves taking the stuff you need with you to the lake like clothes, food, and toiletries, and stuff like records of boat rental agreements, and extra blankets to replace the ones the rats decided to live in. Speaking of rats, I’m sure we have more of them than anyplace on earth. At least when you look at the destruction they can wreak. You never see one, but you can count on finding their toilets everywhere. Big cats can help control them, but we’re not so sure kitty Florence is up to the task. Sallie, the little black dog, can probably outperform Florence at the task.
Meanwhile, back at the (lower) ranch, my duties increase. Answering phone calls and responding to emails fills my day. I get up early, before the onset of oppressive heat, and get all the irrigation of plants and trees done. Old horses need feed supplements. When noontime comes and we have enough solar power, I turn on the well pump so I have enough water to keep everything alive and maintain a tankful of water to help fight the inevitable wildfire that so far hasn’t happened. It’s coming. We haven’t had a big fire since 1961. We are very overdue since the normal cycle is a wildfire every eight years to keep things in check. Nature’s way of lots of small frequent fires keeps our wild lands healthy. But humans have messed with nature’s plan to detrimental results.
In my next post, I’ll speak of policies that make fires more destructive than they need be.
Update: Not next post, another post. What I wrote for my next post was really too angry to put up.