"Terrorism has once again shown it is prepared deliberately to stop at nothing in creating human victims. An end must be put to this."

Vladimir Putin


Monday, July 18, 2016

Too hot and going to get worse.

I changed my plans today. (or yesterday, actually, as it's almost midnight). As soon as I got out to the truck, I knew it was not a day for exploring new hiking trails. Especially with my wife not here at the moment. If something happened out there, I could just lay out in the sun and trees till the buzzards showed where I was. So I did some other chores and took advantage of being in town.

Our town is like the twilight zone. Only old people. I went to the grocery store, and I swear I was one of the youngest people there. I had lunch at my favorite cafe, and there were sure some young kids there. I know well because they sat at the table next to me and got on my nerves something awful. But those were the only young people I saw during the entire trip.

Here are some clips from my incoming email today. These are Classic Arms offerings.


If you want an SKS today, you either have to find one on sale in a shop , or on line at something like Gun Auction.  These Yugoslavian guns are good rifles.  I bought one when the first shipment came in years ago, and they ran $300 even back then. Warning, these are the heaviest SKS rifles I've ever handled, and I have examples of all the SKS rifles produced except Albanian and East German. I think so, anyway.


I have two cases of this exact ammo.  I bought the ammunition wholesale while I was still working. I paid a lot less for it, but times have changed. This is not reloadable, by the way.


The M48 is a Yugoslavian copy of the Mauser 98K. It's not an exact copy, as you can see by the missing cut out under the bolt, but it's a good rifle. There are 1948A rifles, all milled parts. There are M48B rifles, with some stamped parts. And there is just the plain old 1948, with no markings as it was meant to be exported.  These same rifles have other names as well.  To really follow the Yugo guns you need a copy of this book.


Even with this book, trying to figure out the nomenclature of Serbian slash Yugoslavian Mausers is really hard. They broke guns up and reused the parts to make different variants, so you can imagine....


As I was out I took some pictures of a couple of homesteads here that are designed to be self sufficient.


This first place is pretty nice. He has a huge field for planting, a big solar panel set up, and the house itself sits back up on a mountain to the right. Unfortunately, it's a dead end road that goes up there, and the owner, according to his signs, is not partial to visitors. I drove up the mountain once and it's a beautiful place. It has to have been professionally landscaped. I didn't take any pictures of the house though, as there are some prominent security cameras where you have to stop. Didn't care to have a conversation with the owner about taking pictures of his house. I know what I would do if someone tried to do that to me. 


I don't know if you can see it, but there's a palatial manor built up on  the top of the field. He has his solar array way down in his pastures, though I don't know why.  There's a full time caretaker, who lives in a nice house by the gate. He came out and gave me the hairy eyeball while I was taking these, but I don't know why. Everybody in town knows this is the "survival retreat" of a well off individual who lives in Atlanta. According to the word in town, he hardly ever comes up here. It's just a "what if" place. 


The flags in town were all at half mast. I don't know if it's because of Dallas, Nice or Baton Rouge, or maybe for all of them.



I went to the park near town and walked there. At least if I keel over, other old geezers will be there to see me go, and the buzzards won't get me. I only saw oldsters there.


There are benches everywhere. So when you get tuckered out, you can sit and catch your breath.
When this park was built, they started having problems with "undesirables" hanging out there after dark, selling drugs, and rousting normal people. So now the park closes at dark unless there are ball games or something of that nature, and then the Sheriff's Department patrols it. It's also the only place in the county where there are video cameras everywhere, linked to a 24 hour dispatch office run by the Sheriff's Department.




This county has a large war memorial up on a hillside.  It has monuments to people from the county who died in every American war since the Civil War.  There are 72 names under the Confederate stele, and two names on the one for people who fought for the North. Then the other monuments for other wars.

But in the park in town, people have erected monuments to family members who have been lost. They are all quiet, peaceful places. You run up on them as you walk the lanes along the river.


This old man is always at the park. He feeds the squirrels all day. If kids come along, he lets them feed the squirrels too. He says that by doing that, he hopes the children will learn to think of the squirrels as creatures, and not things. Maybe, he says, they won't just shoot them with a .22 or a pellet gun for the hell of it then.

Most people think he is "touched" , pronounced "teached".  But he isn't. He doesn't talk much, and it takes years to get to know him, but once you do he is an interesting person. He's very well educated, and well traveled. He's extremely articulate. I think, from some things he said, that he is a veteran and given his age, I would guess Viet Nam.  He has a small home in the only part of the county more isolated and ignored than my own. He's a  good fellow. When my kids were little, he let them feed his squirrels.







Incidentally, the much vaunted "heat dome" is forming over the central part of the country and the last few days of this week are expected to be extraordinarily hot. The Weather Channel says it may set new records. The entire country is supposed to be hit with unusually high temperatures , starting Friday and going through the weekend.

If this really does get as hot as they say it is, it might be a good idea to check your on hand supplies and equipment.  (language warning)


Thoughts for the day.







"But don't get me wrong; I loves the womens, I surely do. But I swear, a woman's breast is the hardest rock that the Almighty ever made on this earth, and I can find no sign on it."  Bear Claw Lapp








24 comments:

  1. Your friend in the park sounds like my kinda guy.

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    1. He's got his own thing going on, as they say. Seems to be happy, and I don't know many people you can say that of in this day and age.

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  2. Stay cool, Harry. Stay cool.

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    1. If I stay inside I'll be fine. This weekend is supposed to be a whole new order of hot, so I won't be going out much.

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  3. Hey Harry,

    (captaincrunch)

    I think its kinda funny that someone would put out a solar panel array out in field that can be planted or where everyone can see it from the road. I guess some people are some people are not very bright.

    The story of the old guy in the park feeding the squirrels is good one. I always admired hermits and solitaries. I can understand the allure of being left alone to process my thoughts and kinda enjoy nature like 'Henry David Thoreau'

    That reminds me that there is a true story of a World War One veteran that got gassed in a gas attack. He survived the war and was given six months to live. He moved with his wife to Padre Island and basically squatted on the island in a shack made from driftwood and lived another 45 years on the island.
    He was not actually a solitary but liked being away from other people.
    When the 'crash of 1929' hit. He was already too poor to noticed the difference and kept on living his normal life.

    On the weather. Its hotter than hell down here as usual. Same as every summer.

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    1. One of the big problems with solar power in the mountains, is that anywhere you can live, anywhere that has any level land at all, is going to be shaded from the sun by the mountains around it a lot of the time. That's what made my solar power system a waste of time and money. These guys have built palatial homes that you can get to pretty easily, so I guess they figured no need to conceal anything. There's also the fact that without actually meeting them, I don't know how much of their planning is "survivalist" and how much is just rich guys doing what's "cool", and solar power is in right now.

      Padre Island back in the 1920's and 1930's must have been a really great place.

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  4. Harry,

    I agree with you! Don't venture out on your own especially in this heat. I'm glad to hear you went into town and walk the local community park. The man pictured in the park reminds me of a Vietnam Veteran.

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    1. Sandy,

      it's 1:30 in the afternoon on Tuesday now. I went to the little lake near the house for my walk. Not many people there but enough that I wasn't worried about just disappearing. I'm pretty sure Squirrel Man did service during the Viet Nam era, but he never intentionally mentions it or wears any period paraphernalia, like most old veterans do. But sometimes terminology slips into his conversation that dates from that period. Things like "if you get too close to him before you throw him the food, he'll just dee dee up the tree."

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  5. I liked the thoughts for the day. Really gave me a chuckle. Maybe in the future you could do a post on how to survive the wife/girlfriend. I'm sure you have some good advice you can give us, right? --Troy

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    1. Alas, I think I would be the last one to give advice on women. I sometimes think that during our first 15 years she put up with me, and during the next 15 years I put up with her.

      She's a good wife, and I wouldn't trade her for a Hawkin gun, but I don't understand the way she thinks sometimes. And I know she doesn't understand me on occasion. But maybe that's why we are still married against all odds. Our lives together are never boring! ;-)

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  6. When I grow up I am going to find a nice spot like that and be that old guy on the pick-nick table feeding the squirrels and not giving a crap about what is going on in the world around me. And if people think I am a couple fries short of a happy meal all the better.

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    1. It has sure worked for him, and for a long time. He has a little truck, and a place back in the woods. He is completely oblivious to anything other than his immediate surroundings. He is an intelligent person, just not real talkative until he's known you a while. At some point, he just checked out of the world. Seems like he's happier than most people I know. He doesn't worry about things, that's for sure.

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  7. I love the idea of self sufficient homes! I have Little Houses as a theme for a newsletter that my students have to redesign. I saw a book at Duluth Trading Co. on self sufficient homes. I wanted to get it, but it's been an expensive month, so I refrained.

    I hope you survive the heat. It's raining good here today, and is supposed to get up over 100 for the rest of the week. Nebraska sure has 4 true seasons. I hope this rain helps push the humidity out of the air. My asthma got so bad last night I woke up, and I had to use my inhaler. It's been a bad year for that. I'll have some years where I won't have any asthma.

    The camps on my site, I too was worried about indoctrination. I asked more about their disciplinary action. They really only call out kids that are having real issues. My boys rarely get in trouble at school, so they won't get called out I'm pretty sure. They are people pleasers. If they give anyone grief it's me. Ha! They keep me on my toes. The camp is mostly games, pizza, and rec room stuff. The stuff that they do talk about are things I agree with like showing empathy, and respecting one another. They went to preschool at a church, and we had more problems with that then the camp they go to now. Mica used to get in trouble for not praying. I'm like, "Wait a minute..." We had conferences, so I had talks with them. There isn't a lot of preschools around here that are not religious in nature, unless a kid goes to a daycare. :/

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    1. Alissa,I will have to look for that book at Duluth Trading Company, it sounds like a good one.

      The weather in your part of the country is supposed to be the worst associated with this heat dome phenomenon. I hope you and your family can stay inside where the temperature and humidity can be controlled to some extent. I know you suffer from asthma,as my own wife does, and this kind of weather is hard on you. I called my wife this morning to see if she needed another inhaler and needed to temporarily transfer her prescription up to the kids city. It would be just like her to forget and then have the one she has go empty.

      I know you are careful about your kids exposure to what and how they learn at camp. I was once required by my school to allow one of those traveling circuses that administrators inflict on teachers, into my classroom. That bunch ostensibly used role playing to teach tolerance but in reality they were espousing alternative life styles. My principal did not believe the classroom teachers when we complained about this. But she got an education herself after the kids went home and told mom and dad what they learned in school that day. The "specialist education program" in that case came to an abrupt end. But having been burned once I am always nervous about role playing. I know you have that locked on, you have probably had similar experiences.

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    2. I'm so glad my kids have an indoor camp the next few weeks. If they were outside this week that would be horrible. This week is a science camp at a college. We keep the summer full of camps because they learn, it keeps them busy, and it's cheaper than daycare.

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    3. We didn't have any camps near us in summer time, but since my kids were home schooled, it really didn't impact on us. They did go to vacation bible school in the summer for the period it was active, because their aunt put a lot of pressure on my wife about it, and the kids seemed to enjoy the socialization.

      You have so many things to choose from there, it's really a nice set up. Based on what I have heard of day care it's probably better for the boys to be in a camp environment anyway.

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  8. Harry,

    Are you interested in another ferret? My sister in Chattanooga has decided that she cannot adequately care for her ferret and wants to give him away. Since you are in the general area and I know you are fond of them I thought you might be interested. His name is Percy and he is about a year old, I think. Very personable little critter and was I allowed pets in my apartment I might take him myself.

    Grey Fox

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    1. Absolutely. I would be delighted for him to come live with Spike and me. Can you tell me how to get in touch with her? I can come to Chattanooga to get him, it's just two hours away. My e-mail is harryflashman23@gmail.com

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    2. Email sent

      -Grey Fox

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    3. Got it, and replied as well as sent one to the contact. Thanks, I appreciate it and will work out the details to suit your family schedule.

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  9. Seems like that guy is looking for people to try and have a go if things get tough, having it all on display and by the sounds of it everyone knows as well.
    What's the film like that the clip is off? Looks quite funny.

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    1. Kev, it's a very confusing situation in the states. First, we have old school survivalists, who expect some sort of severe societal disruption. They are secretive about their location, set up, and everything else for obvious reasons. Then there are preppers, people who seem to me to be less into preparing to the extreme of the older crowd, and less interested in politics and weapons. Then you have the homesteaders, who want to live off grid and be self sufficient but who generally don't worry much about society. And there are many, many people in all the different "in between" sections of that spectrum.

      This guy up on the mountain had his place built by contractors, to very specific plans, and of course they were local and they talked to everybody. So it's pretty obvious, based on his specs, that this is a "flee Atlanta" location for him. Also, he spent a huge sum of money and never goes to the place, so he pays a full time caretaker to keep the place in trim and take care of the animals. This kind of boggles the mind here, as there is not a whole lot of wealth up here. And what there is, is generally on the shore of the lake or on mountain ridges. I haven't met the guy so I can't really gauge.

      The clip is from "This is the End" which is very funny but very, very vulgar and not something you would watch with your wife , and certainly not with the kids. It's funny as can be, though. It has a lot of young comedians in it, and I thought it was entertaining.

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  10. Oh, so glad Spike will get a new playmate. We lost our beloved cat today....it is always sad. Send pictures of Spike's new buddy when he arrives, will you?

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    1. I sure hope it works out. I really need another ferret, Spike is lonely and I am used to having more than one.

      I'm really sorry about your cat. I know how much it drags a person down to lose an animal friend, especially when you keep to yourself and they are your companions and friends.

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