“Wyrd biõ ful ãræd.”

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Moving a lawn tractor.



I mentioned a while back that a nurse has joined the merry band which will come up here to the mountain top if anything untoward occurs.  She's younger than I am,  and takes care of herself but she has no husband. That's a real drawback , living in these mountains, because there's always a lot of work to be done on your place and your property.  She's very petite, and can't do a lot of heavy lifting. She has a beautiful Jeep, one of those four door Wranglers, but she has no truck.  I don't know how anyone lives here without a truck.

She bought a new "riding lawn mower",  one of those small tractors with a 46 inch deck.  I took the truck, picked her up, and we went out to get it from the people she bought it from.  The couple had just "shacked up", and the woman moved to the man's house. He had a mower so they didn't need two, and sold one to my friend.  Loading it wasn't tough. At some point in time, the guy had used a back hoe to scoop out a loading ramp in the side of a clay bank. I just dropped my metal ramp, the one I used to use to load my son's dirt bikes, and we rolled the mower right up into the F250.  Tied it down, and off we went. The road was gravel for about 8 miles, really windy and twisty, with some sections so steep I used granny gear to get up them.  When we got to my friends house, I off loaded the tractor onto a road cut, and she was all taken care of.

But my truck does not have air conditioning, it was 92 degrees in the shade and the humidity was off the scale. Too much heat.  When I got home, I took a shower and lay down for awhile. When I woke up, I'd been asleep for eight hours.  So much for a short nap.

31 comments:

  1. No big deal Harry, you didn't miss much while you were asleep. ;-)

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    1. It was still strange. Remember the "Twilight Zone" episode where the criminals hide out in a cave and sleep for 100 years?

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  2. Harry - i am glad that you helped out your friend - good neighbours are hard to come by. and adding a nurse to your group - BONUS! i did a post about guerrilla gardening on our blog and would love your opinion on it! sending much love as always!

    your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Kymber, not only a nurse but she's an avid gardener and has a huge garden. She gives us potatoes and tomatoes, things like that. She wont' take any money so I was vastly relieved to be able to do something for her in return.

      I need to swing by your blog and take a look at that, sounds like something I should definitely see.

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  3. G'day Harry,

    Glad to see you back on deck again, Well it's been raining here for a week now and pretty cold for us, about 15 deg C. I am starting to get a bit worried about all this rain as I have noticed the local possums, cockatoos and other critters are starting to gather in pairs in the backyard!

    I often wonder how we used to survive driving around without airconditioning, I remember the first car I ever had with A/C, it was a Mitsubishi Sigma (after they took over Chrysler when it went bust) and it was heavenly. Mind you had to turn off the a/c to go up big hills etc. as 4 cylinder motors did not take too kindly to the extra strain.

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    1. Sgt, I was thinking yesterday that it must have been hell living here in the 1840's. There's an old cabin from that time at a local park. Thick heavy logs, no windows. They cooked in the fireplace, which means they had a fire year round. Those must have been some tough people back then. I have the air fixed and am luxuriating in 75 degreees/ 53 percent humidity inside. Outside, it's the Amazon.

      My truck is an 88, and the type of coolant they used back then has been banned by the EPA because it had fluorocarbons in it, which depleted the ozone layer. So I can't recharge it.

      Man, I wish we had some rain. I think I was complaining about the rain early in the spring, then it just stopped and now in the summer it's dry as a bone. When we have thunderstorms they are local. I know you'll think I'm blowing smoke at you, but this is the truth, you can stand on the road, and be dry, but put out your arm and it will be raining on your arm. It's like the storms are putting water straight down with no drift.

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  4. Having a nurse around is super, we have two on our street. Most everyone here has a truck but for us it's really important to also have 4WD. Most people that didn't have one when they moved here do now. Mine is so old and beat that I drive a car to work on good days but have the backup if needed (no heat, no a/c, needs brakes).

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    1. Kathy, it does plug a real chink in our armor to have her on board. Plus she's really helped me update my medical supplies and equipment list, which was based on gleanings from the internet and from different books I bought. I am trying to find her a husband but it is hard here, there are not that many older , single males. The best place to meet singles is church, but she is like me and doesn't attend. If I was a Mormon I would marry her too and have two wives, but the locals would burn me out and ride me out of town on a rail if I tried that here. Might be worth the risk though, that sure is a nice jeep she has! I keep older vehicles , both for the sake of saving money, and because of the EMP issue. My daughters Commander will go out in an EMP event, because it's a 2007, but there's nothing I can do about it.

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  5. It never hurts to help a neighbor and someone with skills that may come in handy someday is a bonus.

    We have managed to get everything to our BOL when it will all get sorted out and put in place well......... your guess is as good as mine hopefully before snowfall lol. Once I started packing our preps I couldn't believe how much I had gathered in just over 2 years I know that I have some gaps but now I at least have a list and filling in should be a lot easier. The mountains are beautiful and we have seen a lot of game so we know it's around here just hope it is still here come fall.

    Getting my internet up and running was a bit tricky but I can live without it just don't want to. I picked Black Raspberries today, tomorrow a cobbler in my new LP oven. We have lived in a rural setting for most of our life but this is beyond rural just plain out in the boonies just me and the wildlife for entertainment.

    It is so nice not to have a next door busybody telling you to get a clothes dryer and take my underwear inside he didn't like to look at them, after about 18 months of this type of thing I would have moved to the moon just to get some peace so decided with what else was going on in the world we just moved the date for the "big move" up a year or so and here we are. Whew, glad it's over I'm not getting any younger.

    Tomorrow is another day and I'm sure I'll find something to keep me busy, just before we left a friend gave me a bag of wool to spin so if the rain keeps up that would be a lovely thing to do, knitted socks for the winter would be nice.

    Later guys I'm starting to nod off.

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    1. Having neighbors within visual or aural range is not my style either. For one thing, I shoot a lot and don't need anyone's complaining about that. For another, I like knowing nobody is going to drop in on me unannounced so I can completely relax.

      I have rearranged some of the things in my storage areas trying to fit more in. I need another, purpose built building for storage to be honest. I keep a lot of bits and pieces if they are still useful or could be useful, and it requires a lot of room. Storing bulk food is space intensive, too, since you can only stack those plastic storage pails about four high if they are full of heavy product like wheat or corn.

      It sounds to me like you have a really nice place and will be in good shape when the inevitable happens. Staying busy is never an issue in the boonies. Rather, it 's deciding when you have done enough for the day and can take a second to rest.

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  6. Hey Harry,

    (captaincrunch)

    I was at the beach today. Surfed for awhile and checked out some other beaches. I was pretty tired too even though I had air conditioning, I am pretty tired out.

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    1. Could be worse. You could have been surfing off North Carolina and had your arms bitten off by sharks, as happened to a couple of folks this weekend!

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  7. You know, I dont wanna rain on your parade, but... I can'thelp but think that this gal being single is a problem in the sense that if she winds up hooking up with the 'wrong guy', then he becomes privy to things that you might not want others outside your little group to know about. I mean, it could be the end of the world, she shows up at your place as planned, and in addition to bringing her medic bag and drug stash, she also brings the dirtbag boyfriend she just met last month who has a bad drinking habit and a fondness for other peoples valuables.

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    1. oh crap. could CZ be on to something here?

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    2. Could happen, but not likely. She's a person of good character, and on top of that, she's 57 and got a level head on her shoulders. Besides, I'll take the calculated risk in order to secure her medical skills. That's one of the areas where I have been light on accomplishment, and her joining up plugs that gap. As far it goes, any of the people ear marked to come here could violate our understanding and show up with a criminal son, a meth head daughter, etc. I've been very careful about who I lock on, but nothing on earth is certain.

      It's a risk but the whole survivalist lifestyle is a risk when you consider it.

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    3. Harry - i was kind of teasing you with that comment. i know that you seriously vet each member of the group and that your vetting process goes pretty deep. and you are right - it's either form a group of people you vetted or go it alone. sorry if my comment came off wrong. i was just trying to be funny! sending much love as always!

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    4. I got that, Kymber. I was really just answering CZ and you at the same time. It's a hard decision to make, actually. For many years I planned on going it alone, just the wife and kids. But the more I read, especially Rawles' series, Sherrods three books, and "Lights Out" I realized I probably couldn't make it with just the four of us. Then the kids moved away, and I knew just the wife and I couldn't keep things going if the kids were not able to make it home in some long term problem period. So I started working on either finding a group to join, or starting my own. You know how well finding a group worked out for me, i.e. that it didn't. But there are all kinds of issues with having other folks here and I have been as careful as I could be. It's a real quandary. You want to know the thing I really worry about? It's "who's in charge here?" Supposedly I am, seeing as it's my place and I set all this up. But one of the people who is supposed to come here has a late thirties husband, a veteran, who is a fire fighter now. He has impressive credentials. I half way think I might take a seat and let him run the show if things get bad enough. He's like I was when I was in my thirties, but I'm not that way now at 63.

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  8. Eight hours! That is some nap. You must have been more tired than you knew.

    When the a/c broke in my car and we had to drive four hours without in 90+ degree temps it was rough. I was drenched. My feet even swelled up!

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    1. Lisa, I saw about your ordeal on your posting about the trip. I swear I don't know how you made it, as hot as it has been. I can handle cold, but high heat makes me feel really ill these days. I try hard to work outside at dawn and dusk. When I got back from hauling that tractor around I was really beat. The F250 is not that easy to drive, especially on narrow gravel roads with steep grades and lots of sharp curves. Add in the heat and humidity and I was pretty much done in by the time we finished.

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  9. Hey Harry,

    (captaincrunch)

    On your truck. You have a R-12 refrigerant for the AC. You can get it converted to R-22, or R-134A I think. I cant remember which one??
    (I do not know a whole lot on AC or Electrical) I did have a 1991 Toyota truck that was converted from R-12 to the new refrigerant back in the late 90's) It was easy and inexpensive.

    Harry it may pay to check into having your trucks AC converted and made operational again.

    Yeah' Harry.

    Texas Sharks are very friendly.

    One day on drudgereport.com you may see a story that says "Texas Surfer bites Shark" or "Man bites Shark"

    We do things a little different down in Texas.

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    1. CC, I can have a conversion kit installed on the truck, but it's expensive and I can usually avoid getting overheated by doing what I have to do early in the morning or after dusk.

      Sharks are never friendly, they want to dine and dash with you as the main course!

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  10. Harry,

    Closing the open gap is a good thing. It sounds like this nurse is level headed, I hope she fits in well with your group. It was very nice of you to help her out.
    Maybe she'll pick up an old truck to work around on her property.

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    1. She's a country girl and does pretty well on her own, but some things she just can't handle. I'm glad to help her out when I can be of service. I feel a lot better about our situation now, as she is an ER nurse with lots of experience. My wife worked in a clinic in Nigeria and she can sew up wounds, etc, but this lady is a professional. She's already been a big help revamping my medical equipment and supplies list.

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  11. That's great that you are helping her out. What a great friend/guy you are.

    I'd think that living out there I'd want to get a truck to haul things. At least a bigger vehicle.

    My husband used to have a truck. When my sister and I were both prego with our 7 yr olds we needed something that could manage to have 4 car seats. My husband used to watch her 2, 2 days a week, and she did the same for us. That's when we got the Honda Pilot. It still can haul, but also fit the car seats if needed. It also gets around in the snow well, unlike what a van would do.

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    1. Alissa, I was glad to do it. In fact, I was pleased she asked me to. You really need a truck out here. For one thing, I cringe to think of her loading bags of garbage into the back of that exquisitely beautiful Jeep, but she does because there's no garbage pickup out there where she is . Then when you need lumber, wire, cement, gravel, crushed stone, or all the other hundred and one things you need to keep going here, what do you do without a truck? I know people who have two trucks. One , new and shiny for driving around. The other, like mine, mechanically sound but dented and scratched, for working.

      That Honda Pilot sounds like a good vehicle. I like a vehicle that can serve more than one purpose, based on how you have it configured. The snow maneuverability sure doesn't come amiss either.

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  12. Hey Harry,

    Just got back from fishing, it was a good day on the water. I'm glad there are still great, unspoiled places one can go for some solitude in this country. If I could also get in a nap after fishing I think that would be nirvana...

    You were just kidding with Karen about having two wives like the Mormons, right? I think nowadays everyone knows they only have one wife, unless you are a fundamentalist. I digress. In any case, that would be great to have that nurse there at your place when it all goes south (no offense to southerners). I need to get going on my own group plans. Problem is, I can't think of too many around here that I could trust. I think I just need to move. --Troy

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  13. Sorry, I meant Kathy :)
    --T

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  14. Troy, I want to be a polygamist Mormon. What's the point of giving up coffee and booze if you can't have two wives? However, I doubt my current wife would be ok with it......

    I always wonder where that phrase "goes south" came from. Not very flattering but it's probably not associated with "The South."

    I don't much like to fish, but I like to go along on the boat and just enjoy the quiet. When my brothers and I used to get together they'd go fish and I'd just hang around the camp. There are places out west like you are talking about, beautiful, quiet, and secluded. Hard to find anything like that back here now unless you are willing to hike in a long , long way.

    I feel easier in my mind knowing the nurse will be up here. I think medical issues get overlooked a good bit when people are doing their planning, but things happen and you really need somebody around who actually knows what they are doing. I've got all the books, and in a pinch my wife can handle basic things, but this woman is a real professional with many, many years experience. She's also a nice person.

    I try to have people who don't need to travel a long distance on our "team." It's possible things might deteriorate slowly, and there would be time to make a long drive, but it's more likely when something happens it will happen suddenly. Then people might not be able to make it here. I have alternate plans for my kids up North with some Canadian friends because I'm not sure they could get from their city back down here in a big Black Swan Event.

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  15. your kids will be in safe hands with your canadian friends - i promise!

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  16. Well, you can't go wrong if you have a backup place in Canada. Good folks that will always back you up. I can think of one in particular...hehe.

    Harry the day you become a polygamist is the day I start drinking. I can hardly handle one wife! And if you really want to start a heated debate, just bring up the subject with any modern woman! Wow! ...Look out! --T

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  17. I like that idea about the loading dock cut into the hill - gonna have to remember that one.

    Everybody needs a pickup.
    I had a pickup but sold it - one of the 2 dumbest things I've ever done.
    Okay, maybe 200 dumbest things... 2000 dumbest things?

    That pickup was ordered by me new from the Mac Haik Ford place on I-10 West in Houston in September 1993, after a guy PULLED RIGHT OUT IN FRONT OF my mint-condition 1969 Impala. The Impala survived (his mini-van didn't) but the Impala was now "unclean". If you're a car guy you'll understand... :)
    The pickup was a 1994 F-250, 460 engine, manual seats, windows, transmission - as little to break down as possible. It was paid up when I sold it to a Texas A&M student. (At least it went to an Aggie and not a T-sipper).

    Here's the best part about buying that truck, and it deserves its own paragraph.
    All the regular salesmen were busy right then, so they palmed me off onto the salesman who handled fleet sales for companies that buy several trucks at one go. Turns out that if you buy 45 trucks instead of just 1, Ford treats you a little better... The fleet guy showed me his "fleet book", which had every single option with its own individual code, rather than the "package deals" that you and I usually see. He suggested that I start with the absolute base model truck, and only add the individual things I wanted. I got EXACTLY the truck I wanted.

    Five years later I sold it to buy a like-new 1976 Eldorado convertible, but I should have just kept the truck and bought the Caddy anyway. That Eldo had the old Freon AC also. I couldn't get it refilled so I ended up replacing it as CC mentions.
    I sure did like that Eldorado, and I've got a great Eldorado story... Sad thing is, the 1976 model had the same 500 CI engine as earlier models, but since 1972 or so they had gradually detuned it from about 430 HP down to about 200. Remember the 70s gas crunch ? This was the government's response. You got the same 500 CI engine block, which still used about the same amount of gas, but was now detuned to give you less than half the power. Absolutely textbook Government Solution.

    Short version and then I'll shut up - everybody needs a pickup.


    - Charlie

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