But first… I wrote a day ago, on some Forums as an intro to the past Blog “150 miles or so from here, the “blue light” specials must be screaming in the aisles of the urban smorgasbords of consumerism.” I had no idea this would follow. I don’t read the news much, just enough to know if we are still spinning in the right direction, my opening Internet page is Yahoo and it provides me with enough despair on a daily basis. A despair I have learned to run in parallel with our own Life here as two separate paths going into the same future but as distant from each other as apples and oranges. 24 hours later after writing the above I read “NEW YORK – Police were reviewing video from surveillance cameras in an attempt to identify who trampled to death a Wal-Mart worker after a crowd of post-Thanksgiving shoppers burst through the doors at a suburban store and knocked him down.” and it leaves me sad and speechless.
A Life, a Human Life, as yours and mine has been taken away needlessly in the name of materialism, disrespect and hopes of happiness most likely would be provided by a new I-Pod or a pair of pants on sale that day. A crowd of 2000 since the early cold weather of 5am had been waiting for hours only to take away a Life that had only lived 34 years. It puzzles me. Are we that unimportant in the big scheme of things as the crowd themselves turned angry after the Store closed due to the death of one of their employee. I always feel as there is much to think about. We all need “stuff” to live with as ourselves do too. We all need the mighty $ to also enable us to live, pay for our communications, food and medical bills, transportation, the needs can be endless. But have we lost amidst all of this giant chaotic seemingly as a fireball spinning out of control the “respect” much needed for each other? Have so many turned into the robotic motions of Life “trampling” others for only their own selfish needs?
Our Postal Delivery route on Highway #118 as I was told is the furthest going in the USA. It is not the longest. The longest belongs to “Brenda Reeder” who has been delivering to her 227 boxes, driving daily 200 miles, but, she is never 40 minutes away from her main post office on the outskirts of Dillon, Montana. Our Postal delivery team drives 78.8 miles each way between Alpine’s and Terlingua’s Post Office, sometimes a bit more if they have to make a U-Turn!
So today I decided to play the part of the Mail Carrier… 23 miles short of Terlingua however as the day was getting late which is where the turn off for “The Oasis” is. Those little boxes are each a “federal” little habitat and maybe one reason why so many are a bit bent as the first one I came across. Must be a national thrill to beat up those with a baseball bat. A mail box or boxes I think says a lot about the neighborhood or the lack of it. This one above, it’s gate, is always decorated for the occasion as it was for Halloween, Thanksgiving and now Christmas. Must be some thoughtful Ranch owners that like to create a bit of smiling.
It is a road we ride all the time. Lets face it as when we leave “The Oasis” we have only two choices… right or left, besides of course the 1400 miles of dirt road throughout Terlingua Ranch. We enjoy it every single time. Calm or windy, blue skies or darkened ones, the elevation fluctuating between 5400 and 3400 feet demands always the proper gear, and every time I have thought about how the postal delivery feels about it driving it 6 days a week.
I always hope that they do not loose sight of their surroundings, maybe even feeling privileged to have such a job where the landscape is so immense and so different by the day as the skies differs so constantly. I know I would like it and as we stopped ourselves quite often the route seemed so short, so familiar and at the same time so new of unseen wonders lining up the road.
I keep thinking about how “urban” all this is and yet I know it is not. Only for us. More and more there seem to be this great discrepancy between the winter months and the summer months in our Life. I feel too planted quite so often, so planted that I rearranged our camping gear the other day. It did not take long to question myself as May is such a long ways away, but keep hoping that maybe a hot spell will take us out of here to some exotic and far destination. And then we love it here and we both do not do too well with the cold. This is exotic! This is far! Every day the “vagabond” in me when it is time to check that mail box wants to retaliate and run away foolishly for this time of the year.
The route has its long stretches without a mail box. It is a bit as parts of our own present Life without to many adventures. I wonder what the drivers see… feel… if they look?… or has it become routine as I hope not, as it just donned on me the other day having a tendency to overlook what is right in front of us. A bit like living in Florida and never stepping on the beach. Meaning Big Bend… overlooking Big Bend lately. Last night was cold, 27F degrees, but those nights are rare and there is much primitive camping available in the Park. I better repack that camping gear as I think that is the plan in the soon forecast.
This is where we turn off, our own box, name taped over a few other previous tenants of the area with the same address but different location. “Ara & Spirit” seems to also work as one letter arrived addressed to the both of us the other day without a last name. I always wanted to do this since we have been here… that was the project. The next one is the appetizer I made for Thanksgiving, looks as hours of struggle but just a few minutes of preparation truly.
The key are those mini puff pastry cups made by Pepperidge Farms. 24 to a box, on a non greased cookie sheet bake them in a preheated oven at 400 till dark golden brown. Brush them first with a egg yolk wash, meaning an egg yolk whipped with a couple drops of water. The filling… chopped cooked shrimp, 1/2lb cream cheese, some sliced green onions, chopped parsley, chopped red bell pepper, a bit of hot sauce, some horseradish… You can really use anything you want! fill… serve… They did look good and tasted good.
I think my mind is a bit ahead of the present time, a bit “perplexed” maybe about my Dr’s verdict for Tuesday morning thinking that maybe feeling better does not mean a thing! Till then…
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Two years of Photography is finally in order on SmugMug… In “Your Favorites”, in “States”, some labeled “first year” and second year”, now also “Texas the third year”. Feel free to browse, you can even use the slide show mode and have fun.
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Be well, always. Ara & Spirit