The Way of the Ranch

Monday, October 30, 2017 –

Cooler temps this morning, and a bit windy.  Patty’s back to polishing the window frames.  It doesn’t look like she’ll get all of them finished or installed today. We’re expecting a fair amount of rain this coming weekend, so we’ll tarp the glamper today.

I was outside with Bill yesterday looking at the fence neighbor Mike and I have been working on.  I told Bill I still have to build the gates.  That’s when I noticed one of the gates was built, up and working.

Apparently, Mike built this gate while we were at Travis AFB this past week.  Mike is so generous, as are many living on this road.  I’m going to jump in Thumper and drive to his home to thank him.  It is beyond words to describe how kind our neighbors are here.

As October is fading, I just realized it has been forty-years ago this month I arrived in California from the Ranch in Utah.  The Ranch was a significant living experience for me.  One day I went to visit where I soon would be living.

Ron 1 (2)
Monarch, Utah 1974

It was Easter Sunday 1974.  A few of us friends were sitting around a fire pit sharing in adult beverages.  I climbed up a nearby Cottonwood tree (pictured upper left corner) to assess the feasibility of building a tree house.

I was about twenty-feet up on a branch when it decided to break and drop me to the ground.  I broke my pelvis in two places and my left arm. Not feeling the pain after some scotch whiskey – OK too much scotch, I rode in a car  150 miles to Salt Lake City, and went to bed.  The next morning you know I felt it!  I called “Too Loose Bruce” to drive me to the hospital.  Bruce had a VW bus, and I would be able to lay down.  The pain became excruciating.

Monarch Utah 2009
Patty at the Ranch 2009

Moving to the Ranch about six-weeks later, the first thing to be done was to dig an outhouse.  I crouched down on one knee favoring the left side. the broken side of the pelvis, and with the one good arm I got it done.  There was no electricity, gas, or running water.  I read by light of a candle or lantern light, hauled drinking water five-miles from a natural spring in 10 gallon Igloo coolers, used one cooler as a ice box for perishables.

During the winter months house heat was generated from a wood burning stove, and in the summer I kept a fire going in the pit outside for a large pot of hot bathing water and cooking over the coals.  Winter came before I could afford the cost to bring electrical power to the property.   I wouldn’t want to live that basic again, but it was an experience I enjoyed at that younger, beautiful time.

We’ll be leaving for Travis tomorrow about 10:00am, stopping on the way to print pillows in Folsom.  Patty left her sewing machine at the Fisher House for the weekend.  She’ll complete this week’s orders from there.  Our first treatment is at 2:20pm.  If we don’t encounter traffic, we should get there a little before 2:00pm.

Neighbor Neva will again watch the birds for us.  The Fisher House accepts service dogs, so we’ll be taking Chloe with us.

I won’t be able to post much the rest of the week at Travis with the connection problem I’ve been having, but for those unaware, you can catch up with us on Facebook.  I will be packing this computer to take with us before the day’s out.

When we return home next weekend, I hope to find you here, continuing to read the story.  In the meantime, thanks for visiting and hanging here with me and Patty.




2 thoughts on “The Way of the Ranch

  1. I enjoy your ongoing story. I find it interesting and learning about your early life is a treat. Hugs to you and Patty. Hope all goes well At Fisher House. Xoxo Terri Y

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