Living - and already savoring - the Adventures across the backroads of western Idaho and eastern Oregon!

26 January 2013

Remembering – and Celebrating – Ranger Kenny Hartman

There are times to be glib, to be lighthearted or flippant.  And there are times to take life as-is, as it comes along, “good” or “bad,” as it gives and takes at its own cold pace.

So it is with my friend Kenny, lately with us and with the Maryland Park Service (MPS).  He passed away in early December, with that same spirit that inspired me to become a much stronger volunteer for MPS.  What did he do when diagnosed a year ago with pancreatic cancer?  No chemo for Kenny – he pressed on with his Caribbean cruise with his friends as long planned so they wouldn't be depressed about it.  He always was full of smiles and a good spirit, along with a Disney Corp.-taught knack for improving everything around him while keeping all the key folks on-board with his vision. 

The world is a bit more somber, a bit less cheery without my friend Kenny.  I wish him the colors of heaven, the horns of triumph, and a bit of sod that even there he can improve.

Wanting It All

Just two quick thoughts today:

  1. If a tree falls in the forest... ...someone probably has an opinion on it.  Even far away from DC.  
  2. “I can teach anybody how to get what they want out of life.  The problem is that I can't find anybody who can tell me what they want.” … Mark Twain

19 January 2013

Taking in 'Life in the Making'

Gentle Reader,
I thanked you just last week for staying tuned to my Two Medicine Man blog.  While I meant it, I often find other blogs in the Blogosphere to be amazing for any number of the creative, graphical and touching ways they pique our interest and delve into our shared humanity.
Today, let's celebrate one of those blogs.  It's entitled 'Life in the Making' and I found it downright zap-insightful and Joni-approved charming.  It brings me into author Anne's seaside world of wonders and beautiful photos.  

I encourage you to check it out at:  
From the land of never-melting snow and 12-degree high temp's (but no complaints)
     ~ Jose

09 January 2013

Slingshots of Random Wonderings

On the topic of my walk-abouts… while I stroll along the canal, I wonder why we all wonder, and what we wonder about wondering.  Maybe that’s about as clear as wondering about why cats do what they do — HAH, you let me know how that goes!
By the way, I took advantage of my holiday time off to listen to my new Aerosmith CD.  Loudly as befits the music.  And I highly recommend it, Music from a New Dimension, as they’ve long ago left the booze and drugs behind and now deliver some powerful chords and an interesting vibe that makes sense to me.  Helps set a lively mood and energy level too.
So I wonder about why I didn’t disturb Mr Bunny Wabbit as our dog and I walked by?  He looked just like a chocolate Easter bunny silhouetted against the snowy hillside.  We slowed down so I could check him out and since the dog didn’t see him, we left him alone.  Neat.  Guess I didn’t want to wreck the silent ambience?
I wonder about animal tracks, or the lack thereof.  Have they vacated the neighborhood or gone underground?  I wonder about irrigation canals; since they’re dry in the winter, why don’t more animals slink along them?  I wonder about the weather inversions we’ve constantly gotten since winter began — why here more than any other northern tier state we’ve lived in?  I wonder about people who don’t slow down despite bad weather, and whether they’re closet self-destructive.  I wonder what makes us tick and why (some of us) find solace and inspiration from walking outside in mid-20’s when the house was perfectly toasty and full of fun family members.
You know what I don’t wonder?  I do not wonder why I’m wondering about these trivial things since I’m truly glad I have the head-space to even ponder them.  Life is not perfect but being at home with my family those two weeks has shown me it’s not perfect, but a pretty darned good life…
Today’s Compassionate Moment:  “When your science teacher smashed a frozen rose with a hammer, did you warm the petals to bring them back to life?”

03 January 2013

Jumping into Snake River: a new Look for 2013

"It is good to realize that if love and peace can prevail on earth, and if we can teach our children to honor nature's gifts, the joys and beauties of the outdoors will be here forever."
     ~ President Jimmy Carter (a true hero in a messed-up world)

Can I better sum up the tangents, twists and ramblings of our lives?  I took advantage of 2013 and our recent move to retool my blog site.  It was boring me to tears, so I amp'd it up a bit.  I'll try to make it even more interesting in the near future.  But I keep in mind it's a window and what you see on the other side needs to be worthwhile, not jazzed-up empty words about nothing.

The best to all of you in 2013 -- you may not be a butterfly hatching from a cocoon, but nonetheless get out there and live your dream whenever you can.

P.S.  This new picture is from the nearby Snake River, an authentic part of our new milieu.

01 January 2013

Observations from the Trails of Rural Life

(This post was written the other day and, sad to say, I avoided going online so it never got sent!  Happiest of New Years to your families and you - I know we ourselves are looking forward to an interesting, or least odd, year ahead).
Anyway, back to the blog post ... It’s so easy to read into so much.  Listening to the wind, kissing the sun, and having the scents and smells of the area permeate into my psyche mean, well, lots of deep thoughts.  Or just weird wanderings of the mind.  You decide.
·         Being higher up, 2300 ft. elevation, really does mean the moon looks closer.  So weird but so true.
·         When having plain ugly dirt for the four-acre backyard is today’s reality, it’s an exciting thing when you flip it on its head, knowing that instead it’s a blank tableau awaiting us to finish our first County Extension two classes: Living for the Land, and Victory Garden
·         This is the first place ever that I find holes in the ground to be fascinating – moles, foxes, whistle pigs or badgers?  And why so interesting – is that saying my walks are getting too boring?
·         Coyote howls are fascinating when they triangulate around you and you’re (reasonably) sure they won’t have you on the menu.  Especially when they’re the same size as your bad-attitude 60-lb dog.  Bring it on — I could use a pelt!
·         Christmas cookies are the perfect entendre to meeting neighbors, who in this spread-out area sometimes haven’t met one another in several years … we have become ambassadors.