Monday, June 5, 2017
Cold this morning! I actually ran the generator for 2 hrs to get the temperature up to 59°F. I opened the east blinds and am waiting for the sun. The sky is cloudless. There's frost on the grass in the clearing outside my window. My digital thermometer is telling me the low temperature was only 52°F in here. It felt colder than that to me. I must be having a bit of hypothermia.
Last night Ron called me at 9:00 p.m.. Roger had just texted him. The cattle rancher had been chasing down cattle that broke out of their summer pastures in another part of the county all day. I feel bad for the guy. He promised to get here first thing in the morning. I kinda think the cattle here might have broken out of the 80, too. I heard mooing south of my current location, which is too far west. I just hope those aren't his cattle. They could be someone else's. Lets hope that for him. When Ron gets a chance he'll hike the 80 and check fences. If they're good, we'll know the cows belong to someone else.
I've been knitting, texting and trying to keep warm. Then the sun got up past the trees, and its too warm. @@
The cattlemen, and women, arrived around 10:00 a.m. With horses and dogs. I was relieved to see the horses (no ATVs!). The rancher's "men" were mostly under the age of 25. A couple of them looked 16. A few of them were girls. They finished quickly and left about 11:30 a.m.. The rancher stopped by to apologize on his way out, but I told him it wasn't necessary, it wasn't his fault. It was a mark of character that he apologized anyway. He looked about 80 something. Raised in an era where character and taking responsibility were the norm. He said he thought he got them all, but if I see any stragglers, call. Both he and his (roughly) 18 yr old great grand daughter were very nice.
Ron has checked with the County Road Department. They say there is no public road on this property. Still waiting on confirmation from County Planning.
County Planning confirmed what the Road Department said. Ron called Roger and had him submit the paperwork.
The older model dark blue pickup sped by again. I have no idea if he stopped this time, as he approached from behind me.
Tuesday, June 6, 2017
Up in the night with pain and bloating. My digestive system has been down. Judging by the location of the pain now, I think I finally got it moving again.
Ron called on his way to Portland, just as I was waking up. He's going to help my stepmother, Debby, move my father to a memory care facility. Its going to be hard on everybody. My father's dementia has progressed to the point that he's rarely cognizant, highly suspicious and often violent. Apparently he ordered his sister out of the house yesterday, during a full blown temper tantrum. She'd come down to help with the transition. Debby is trying to make it as smooth as possible for him. Intermittently he regains his right mind and apologizes for the trouble he's causing. Its heartbreaking. The hope is that he will find the activities and social life engaging, making him less frightened and agitated. Plus they have people to help him up when he falls, etc. My father likes Ron, and my stepmother hopes he will be a calming influence. I believe her brother-in-law is also standing by. I pray this goes smoothly.
Ron called and told me that the initial transition went pretty well. All my stepmother's planning paid off. Hopefully the next few days will go well, also. My Dad liked the attention the staff showered on him at first. He did tire of them pretty quickly. He recognized Ron, though he couldn't remember his name. Ron did a good job keeping my Dad's spirits up. Once they shoo'd the staff out Ron said, "Great! Now that their all out of here, lets order in some beers!" Neither of them drink beer, but its the kind of joking around that my Dad enjoys and Ron's good at. Debby had my father's room all set up with some of his favorite furniture and important pictures and memorabilia. He has a large flat screen monitor with a slide show of pictures as his screen saver. He has his photo albums. Ron said he was in and out of cognizance. He did mostly remember the reason his wife gave him for being there: that she needed to go take care of her mother for a few days. He did tell Ron that even though they were telling him "a few days," he figured it would be 2-3 months. At one point he told them he was ready to go home now. I was worrying that he might try to leave on his own but Ron said its pretty secure. Hopefully he'll adjust quickly.
Ron did say Roger sent him documents. More seller signatures on stuff. He'll review them from a full sized screen later. We talked a little bit about the stuff we wanted to start with once we close. I let Ron know that I did have realistic expectations about how fast things can get done. I'm hoping that when he comes on weekends he will line me out on stuff to work on each week. As a for instance, identifying the front property line so I can pound fence posts and fix the fence. When that's completed, he can stretch the wire, I'll clip it. That kind of thing. If need be I can stretch wire by hand, but he insists that he do it with an ATV or the Kabota tractor.
No traffic on the road today at all.
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Heating water for dishes.
I slept through the night, waking up around 4:15 a.m.. Not so much cold or symptoms, as starving. I did the usual coffee/Rosie breakfast routine, packed everything up and drove down to see if I could get out to open the gate. Success! Well partial success. I forgot to pull in the step and I messed it up going through the mud hole spot.
I'm back on the property. I've set up in a different location since the original spot was very close to where the cows liked to bed down. I took the time to set up level. I'll have nice afternoon shade here, reducing the need for running the a/c.
I took my camp chair and placed it on a spot some distance away that got better cell reception. Not even a single bar right here. I called Ron when I thought he might be on his way to work. While we talked, I sat in the morning sun and enjoyed the peace. The insecticide didn't seem to make a dent in the mosquito population. I was hoping there would be a silver lining...
When we came in I noticed there was one lock gone from the front gate. It must have belonged to the rancher. So I hiked over to the corrals to check those locks and chains. They were gone, too. I checked with Roger to see if I could put chains and locks up myself but he said to wait for closing.
Oops! I missed one of my grandson's birthdays yesterday. I didn't have very good cell service anyway, but still. So I called my daughter-in-law's cell, no answer, voicemail box full. I called my son, he was at work. I arranged a time to call Gabriel this afternoon. It would be evening for them in Texas.
I made my call to Gabriel from the same place I called Ron this morning. Four years old! Their lives are rushing past and I'm missing it. I was walking back, dragging my chair, when I noticed 3 head of Angus cattle on the south end of the cattail pond. I called Roger, so he could let the rancher know, then hustled up and got in the RV, shutting the window and vent. As I was coming t'ward the RV I started smelling the chemicals again and my throat is giving me problems.😕
Wouldn't you know it they moseyed over and are grazing and bedding down right next to the RV. The rancher will try to get here in the morning. I hope he's early. Roger got permission to give me his name and number.
We're stuck in here until he comes, or they wander off. I'm worried about Rosie's need to potty. Its a bull, a cow and a calf. I took this out the rear window. Nice looking cattle!
I tried starting the generator and the a/c in hopes that they'd leave. Nope.
7:30 p.m. They finally decide to move on. I last saw them disappearing into the timber east of the cattail pond. The pond is on the other side of the grass berm behind them in the pic.
During my evening call from Ron I learned that my Dad had a sleepless night last night. He roamed the halls all night long looking for his wife and trying to get out so he could get home. Debby decided the original plan to leave him there, by himself, for a couple of days before going back was not a good idea. Instead she spent the entire day with him today. She was hoping he'd nap in his chair. I don't think he did. The narrative I got from Ron was unclear on that point. Debby had sent out emails, but I don't get them yet. My Dad and Debby looked at his photo albums of his adventures, and were visited by a few of the other residents. One of the pictures they hung on his wall was an announcement poster heralding a book signing for one of his books. It generated some conversations with the residents. My Dad continued to ask to go home. Its got to be heartbreaking for both of them. I know it breaks mine.
Ron also relayed the findings on the road that's shown on the property map during that call. It took a lot of digging but he eventually uncovered the history. It is a public road. It was dedicated in 1892. The previous Title searches don't include it. The petition was never completely finalized. The road has no name. It hasn't been used in something close to a hundred years. It will still have to go through the formal process of vacancy. Ron recently went through a similar situation like this in another county, for a client. It was a real mess because they'd ignored it, built on it, then the county wanted to develop it... They hired Ron to clear up the mess. Thats why he wants this taken care of now. He put together a bunch of info for the estate, and volunteered to do all the work for free if they submit it and pay the fee. Since they're the long time property holder it would be better if they initiate it. There will have to be a public hearing, with notice. It will be cheaper and faster if they elect to have Ron do it and their lawyer is not involved. They meet tomorrow to vote on it. Its up to them.
Thursday, June 8, 2017
It was a peaceful night, with mild detox at 3:00 a.m.. I have some symptoms, painful, but not severe. Rosie and I got up at 6:00 a.m.. No sign of the cows. We spent a little time outside getting soaked by dew and playing stick. No call from Ron this morning. He'd had to go in early because there was a train derailment at work yesterday, and repairs have been underway. Inspections and blaming "sessions" were scheduled for early this morning. Basically its going to be a day of heated arguments for him. We are now waiting for the cattle rancher, Bob.
Well, bummer!! My symptoms escalated to severe, "All Shots, All Meds" level. Lying here trying to recover before the cattle people come and find me a mess; Bob already feels bad enough.
Ron did call briefly around 8:30 a.m. to touch base. I didn't tell him about the rising symptoms. He already had a full plate of stress. There's nothing he can do about it anyway. "Its my burden. Its mine, and mine alone to bare." (Frodo Baggins)
There's a lull in the rain. Its been pouring since 10:00 a.m.. I stopped expecting Bob once the rain began. If the rain really stops, he might yet come today. If the cows show up at the pond at 4:30 again, that would be an excellent time.
Ron texted me saying he had a good call from the executor of the estate. I'll have to wait until later to find out the "skinny."
I got a call from Debby. She put my Dad on. Apparently he no longer remembers he has children unless he's looking at the pictures. He hasn't slept in his bed yet. Debby did say that when she told him she needed to go he said,
"I'll stay here and pick up chicks." A moment of clarity and humor. That made Debby feel pretty good.
Ron called. He had a few minutes. He wanted to share his conversation with the executor with me. He said the executor, John, informed him that he (Ron) was now the estate's agent for the road vacancy. He also relayed that the estate's board of trustees were "... thrilled that shirttail relatives were purchasing this property." He also said that they were told originally that "relatives wanted to camp on this property for 2 weeks. There was no mention of my interest in buying it. They've had a lot of trouble with relatives that have camped and left trash all over. When they said "No," they were next told that I offered to pay (to camp here). Well, I did, because I was that interested in seeing if it would work for me. But there was still no mention to them by the listing agent of my interest in buying it! They feel that with everything thats happened, and that we're still going forward, it must be "meant to be." I told Ron, "Or, it could be that their "shirttail relatives" are just stubborn..." Anyway they voted to approve the sale. Its Official!
Friday, June 9, 2017
I got a call from Bob. He apologized for not getting here yesterday. I told him it was raining so hard up here they couldn't have done a thing. He'll be up in about an hour to an hour and a half. He was also going to apologize for missing some, but I told him we have Angus down in the valley, and I know how they are.
I also got my Friday morning call from Ron and the boys on their way to daycare. Last one until fall. I shared with the boys about the dead snake Rosie and I found 2 days ago. It had been stepped on in the cattle drive. I told Joey it was still a little bit alive when I found it, but I didn't have any snake's ointment or snake bandages, so I couldn't save it. Then I told him about the really big snake I almost stepped on last week. He wants to see them. I told him I had seen Fox's house, and Snake's house, but I hadn't seen any owls. Joey knew immediately that I was referring to the story of "the Gruffalo." He claimed to have a gruffalo at his house. I wonder if they're making gruffalo toys now? They certainly merchandise everything else. It could be an imaginary one. He has quite the imagination. He told me he was going to stomp on that gruffalo with his feet. I told him to be sure and wear strong shoes because, remember, "Gruffalos have sharp spines on their backs." Lol
I told them about the deer that came down to check out Rosie and I last evening. He wants to see that, too! We even talked about the cowboys coming to round up the cows this morning. Toby had a lot to add to the conversation but most of it wasn't intelligible. I think it helps Ron to have me entertain the boys during the drive. Especially since they aren't happy about going to daycare.
Cowgirls rode passed. I heard one of their horses calling to a horse friend. I went to the rear window and saw two more horsemen riding across one of the upper meadows. I did't see the cows though. I'm hoping I just missed the cows running out ahead.
Twenty minutes later the cowboys made another pass along the front fence. Boy did one of the horses holler! I'm wondering if they kicked those cows up this time?
The cowgirls made another pass. Nothing more after that.
Bob called around noon. We are (hopefully) cow free! There were actually 2 cows with calves, and the bull. I lost the call, so I didn't get to thank him properly. When the thunder storm passes I'll go out and make a call with a little more signal strength. We are having another downpour which will be good for me. Washing the property clean. I let Roger know, and gave him the update I'd got from Ron last night. Just as we finished that call the T-storm started. I texted Ron and shut everything down including the cellphone. It was right on top off us. I couldn't even count to one. The hair on the back of my neck was standing up.