Last Thursday Luke and Randy dropped by the lower ranch with one goal in mind—to finish putting a roof over our double barn. Several months ago we had a couple of 28-foot-long truck trailers, without their wheels, installed next to each other. There was a space between them that, once roofed over, would provide a nice place to park our aluminum ferry boat, which we bring down every year from the lake. (The bigger all-steel ferry boat has its own storage building at the lake.) Off to the east we extended the roof to protect the aluminum “luggage boat,” which also gets hauled down yearly.
The project had remained in a partially-roofed state for several months. The cheetahs arrived and in less than one-and-a-half days finished the job. I, the gofer, was near finished myself, not accustomed to that kind of work speed. They both agreed that they could have completed the job in just one day if it hadn’t been so hot and humid—near 100°F. They had to take breaks in the shade and dip their heads in the cold spring-water-fed horse trough for cooling.
When the two of them left, the place felt empty and a little dead. Randy will be heading back to his home in England after a whole summer at the high ranch, while Luke returns to finish some projects, supervise the removal of some hazard trees, and take the horses over Paiute Pass to the Bishop side for trailering down to Furnace Creek Stables in Death Valley for the winter.