Dad’s Alaska

12 January 2023

Here’s to China Joe and the secret documents he doesn’t remember.

I can believe that China Joe doesn’t remember that he stashed documents marked Secret and some steps above Secret in an office closet and in his garage. I can believe that because, it is apparent that, unless someone tells him the date or the day, he has no clue. His mental faculties are not failing they are gone. The President of the United States of America is a zombie. A meat sack that spouts incomprehensible gibberish at every speaking engagement. A few days ago he mistook a Salvation Army man for a Secret Service agent and the told that ‘agent’ that he’d once been in the Secret Service. Of course, he’s never been in the Secret Service and the closest he’s ever been to the Secret Service is the agents protecting him. There have been so many gaffes and flights of fancy that it seems impossible that he hasn’t been institutionalized. Any normal American citizen who spoke and acted like this man would be in some institution where he could be monitored to keep him from wandering off and protected from himself. Actually, now that I consider it, he is in an institution where he is protected from himself and kept from wandering off. The White House has become a single patient eldercare facility. In spite of China Joe’s mental impairment, there must be people around him that think, even with his extreme impairment, that he’s better than Kamala. I can’t say that I disagree with that assessment. She’s little more than a brainless, cackling hyena. I though Hillary’s cackle was bad until Kamala came along. I doubt that there is a single Republican or Democrat that would propose the use of the 25th Amendment to remove China Joe from office. The potential of placing the’Hyena’ in the office of the President is reason is enough for even Republicans to be rooting for China Joe to finish his term. This brings me to another point. China Joe is getting the blame for all of the chaos that has ensued since his ‘election’. However, it is obvious that he isn’t cognizant enough of his surroundings and situation to have created this economic disaster or the invasion at our southern border. He is being ‘handled’. They put a piece of paper in front of him and he signs it. He’s kind of like a trained monkey and seems to have the intellect to match. This means that it is a cadre of unelected people are running the US into wreck and ruin. They haven’t just run America into a ‘ditch’, they have driven America into the equivalent of the Grand Canyon. There must be a reckoning, at some point. These people have usurped the power of the people and have been and are destroying America. When the Left Wing partisans are purged from the DOJ, FBI and Federal Prosecutors, some of these ‘Handlers’ need to be arrested, prosecuted and go to jail. Perhaps the Republicans will “Grow a pair” and make sure that this can never happen again. Not likely.

Another beautiful sunrise over Kachemak Bay.

The weather has, according to some of the people I’ve talked with, pretty much normal here in Fritz Creek. We have a few days of single digits, a few days in the teens, a few in the 20s and then a couple of days in the low 30s and then the cycle repeats. We haven’t had a lot of snow, for which I am grateful. We ordered and paid a $500 deposit on a 28” tracked snowblower from Ron’s Honda in Soldotna last June, maybe July. That snowblower has yet to appear. It was supposed to be here in September. I called mid-October and was told November. I called in November and was told that it would be December. I called in December and was put off until January. I called two days ago and was told that the snowblowers had been shipped and that they had been given the serial numbers. So now it look as if we might get this new snowblower sometime in February, I hope. The reason for ordering a tracked snowblower is that the wheeled device that we have gets stuck and has to be pulled backward even though it has a reverse gear. As I am approaching old age (I’m only 78) and Summer doesn’t have the physical strength to drag it out of the trenches made by the spinning wheels, we ordered a tracked snowblower. And that dear friends is why I am grateful that we’ve had but a very little snow.

The first piling bolted to the house.

I have been sidetracked by so many things that I am just now getting to the attachment of the house to the pilings installed by ‘Dangerous’ Dan last October. I will admit that I spent a good bit of that time trying to figure out the best way to make the attachment. 4 inch wide 3/8 inch thick steel strap was what I, finally, came up with. I looked at all manner of attachments at the building supply store. They all looked way too flimsy for a house sitting on pilings in an earthquake zone. They were mostly little bits of galvanized steel on the order of an 1/8 of an inch thick. Like I said “way too flimsy”. The steel reinforced concrete piling to which these straps are attached (one on each side) is 3 1/2 feet into the earth and sitting on a 2’x2’x 6” foundation. It is, also, surrounded by 2’ x 2’ of 2 inch insulation board. The insulation is to prevent the piling from heaving up when the ground freezes. It seems to have worked since the piling has not moved. The bolts through the piling, the support and the house beam are all 1/2” in diameter.

About the most exciting things happening around these parts are our idiot dogs chasing a moose and people driving their cars into the ditch. As previously mentioned, the temperature goes above freezing, the snow melts, the water runs onto the roads and the temperature goes below freezing at night. Then by the early morning when people are trying to get to work the roads are icy and often not yet sanded. Those that aren’t extremely careful end up in the ditch and with a $200+ towing charge. I totaled my truck last year on a patch of black ice. It looked just like water on the road until I started sliding and lost control and slid backward into the left hand lane. Fortunately, no one was coming up the hill before the truck ended up on it’s passenger side and down eight feet of embankment. I was only injured when I did something stupid and released the safety belt without holding onto the steering wheel. I fell to the bottom and banged my hard head. No permanent damage to me—truck totaled.

The refrigerator isn’t new. It was given to Summer by a neighbor. It’s about 5 years old and they didn’t want to repair it. They were quoted a thousand dollars to replace the compressor. I suspect that they paid close to $3000 for it new. I, at first, thought that the unit had a freon leak as I has ascertained that the compressor was not defective. After a thorough examination, I determined that the tiny little tube that carries the freon inside to the evaporator coil was plugged up. How or why? I have no idea. I ordered the new capillary tube assembly ($40) and now Summer has this huge refrigerator (no freezer) where, hopefully, leftovers and the salsa won’t get lost. We have two freezers, therefore a freezer compartment was not needed. The old and the new side by side. The difference is obvious. We still haven’t remodeled the kitchen or put sheetrock on the walls but we’ve got one killer refrigerator.

That’s it. I’ve got to go to town to get some longer bolts. Ciao!

Dad’s Alaska

30 December 2022

Here’s to 2022 a disaster preceding an even greater disaster.

At the end of each and every year of my adult life, I have been able to look back with some satisfaction at what had been accomplished not only by myself but my country. This year in retrospect has been and unmitigated disaster on the personal level. I totaled my 2006 Dual Cab F-250 on a patch of black ice. I had a utility trailer roll forward and pinch off almost a half inch of my left index finger. This cost me most of six weeks of prime Summer work time. I caught COVID and lost two weeks of work time. THEN as I became well enough to get out and get some of the work done, I caught the flu and lost another two weeks of work time. Then as I got well enough to get out and do some work on the property it started to freeze and snow. All in all I lost about half the Summer. I’m too damned old to be losing 2 1/2 months of my life. On the other hand, America is an unmitigated disaster. The invasion pouring across the Southern border is destroying America. The billions of taxpayer dollars going to the Ukrainian dictator Zelenskyy are putting us evcn further into debt. We’re like a ‘high balling’ freight train rushing past $31,000,000,000,000 (that’s 31 TRILLION) in public debt. That’s a debt we can never pay. Hence inflation. INCREASE THE MONEY SUPPLY which devalues the dollar and since the dollar is worth less and worthless we pay our debts in worthless paper. Millions of Americans aren’t even able to live ‘paycheck to paycheck’ any longer. The US Dollar is the reserve currency for the world. That means that countries value their currency, price and pay their debts in US dollars. When the money becomes worthless (very soon) the Chinese currency will likely become the Reserve Currency. The US Dollar will be good for nothing but wiping you posterior, if a paper dollar even exists. These scumbags are angling to make all of your money digital. That makes it even easier for them to manipulate it to their advantage. The only way to save US Dollar is to go back on the Gold Standard and wrest control of the money supply from the private company called The Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve is neither federal nor a reserve. It is a bunch of the elites making themselves and their politician friends even more wealthy. We no longer print money. Nope, the Federal Reserve just deems it to exist. American is screwed and that means you are screwed. I’d like to see the government recall all paper money larger that a $20 bill. How would you like to be a Drug Lord and all of those shipping containers full of 100 dollar bills suddenly become toilet paper? Billionaire drug lords would suddenly be broke. They wouldn’t be able to pay their murdering thugs or the crooked politicians on either side of the border. I suspect that some of our Congress and Senate would suddenly become much poorer. What a wonderful thing that would be. Broke ass drug lords and scumbag politicians sleeping in tents on the street. One can only dream.

Fire in the sky but no smoke on the water

After much unavoidable delay and procrastination, I have begun to connect the new concrete pilings to the house. Well that isn’t entirely true. I have begun to attempt to connect the concrete pilings to the house. On the first set of straps that I attempted to install I found that the holes I had drilled into the metal straps were too low at the top. They were not going through the center of the beam supporting the floor and the eastern wall. This sent me back to the drill press. While attempting to drill the new holes the chuck came off the drill press. This set me back for more than several minutes. After pounding the chuck back into place I began to drill again. Then the chuck slipped off again. I figured out after much cursing and stamping of feet that the chuck had been put on in Florida when the metal was much expanded due to the ambient temperature being 50 degrees higher than today. I lowered the drill deck and with a 3 pound hammer and an axe head as an intermediary, I pounded the chuck on at Alaska temps. I finished the drilling just in time for the sun to start getting low in the western sky. It didn’t matter because all of the bolts I bought for this project were either too short or too long. Tomorrow, I’ll rectify that problem, if the building supply store is open. Otherwise it will be January 2 before I get back to this. You can’t hurry perfection.

I won the Ugly Sweater Contest.

The weather has been weird. -2.5 on one day and +40 a few days later. The wavy jet stream has the weather screwed up all over the world. I recommend electroverse.co, if you really want to know what is happening with this weird weather worldwide. We’ve had wet snow, rain, sleet and dry snow all in less than a week. The weather apps seem to be getting it right which is scary.

As a matter of convenience summer and I rented a dumpster from a company here in Homer. We get our water from these people, as well. Their water deliveries have been precise, on time and greatly appreciated. Their water guys chain up their trucks, if our short road looks too icy. They do this all of the time during the winter. It’s regular, not uncommon. The guy who is supposed to pickup our dumpster every other week deemed our road icy and too dangerous. I questioned the lady at the dumpster service and she told me that the driver that deemed our road too dangerous was the Vice President of their company. Their excuse was that it was a different kind of truck than the water delivery truck that comes in every three weeks regardless of the snow ice or lack thereof.. A water delivery truck is likely hauling, at least, 3000+ gallons of water at 8.3 pounds per gallon plus the weight of the truck or close to 60,000 pounds. I doubt that a garbage truck weighs in at anything near that. The driver, I was informed was a great driver with years of experience and as previously stated a Vice President of the company. I wonder if he just didn’t want to chain up because he’s somebody. Our dumpster is about 75 yards from the main road and on solid road bed at the edge of a heavily graveled parking lot. Mysteries. Life is full of mysteries.

2 January 2023

As you may have observed it is days later from the writing of the above until now. I hope each and every one of you had a fun New Year’s Eve. Here’s hoping and praying that our 2023 personal lives will be a better and that our country is somehow saved from looming disaster caused by arrogant politicians and really ignorant people. 2023 wouldn’t have to go very far to be better than the last three years.

This is a young cow and I took this picture from about 20 feet away early this last Spring.

Today, I assumed that the building supply store that charged me an arm and a leg for bolts would be open. That was an incorrect assumption. So I’m still stuck with short bolts that are too short and long bolts that are too long. Not that it really matters today. We’re having some major warm weather and the temperature has been above freezing for a couple of days now. This advent brings us back to ‘Mud Season’. I hate mud. I can do hands and knees in the snow and ice but mud, NOPE! I am not going to crawl around in the mud, even if I had the correct bolts. The trip to town was not a total waste. I picked up a few groceries and some vodka. The grocery prices were outrageous and the vodka was even worse. Summer and I will have to do the COSTCO/Anchorage 450 soon. We need vodka, wine, coffee, dog food, dog treats and some other less important stuff like food. The COSTCO/Anchorage 450 consists of 225 miles to COSTCO and then 225 miles back in the same day. This marathon 2 hour (We limit ourselves to two hours in the store) shopping spree is because of the dogs. We have no one to leave them with and no hotel will allow 4 small dogs. Yeah, we’re probably not smart as we keep adopting dogs that other people don’t want. This time of year this will be a 13-14 hour adventure on icy roads, some through some mountainous areas and some crazy, stupid drivers in Anchorage. And again we’re probably not smart to take this trip but even after expenses we can save $400-$500 over the cost of the same products in Homer. When we go we load the wagon, so to speak.

A warm day in Fritz Creek.

We have about 4 more months of snow and cold left in this winter and we’re going to buy 2 more cords of wood later this week. As I previously said we are in a warm spell. However, the really cold weather is in January, February and the first couple of weeks in March. Because of the unusual cold in November and December we’ve burnt a lot more wood than usual. We’ve burned nearly 3 cords. We have about 5 cords left but like that old saw “Better safe that sorry”. I’ve had more than one person joke that “If you haven’t had to burn the furniture to stay warm, you aren’t a real Alaskan”. I think I’d just as soon stay a real Alabamian.

That’s all folks.

DAD’S ALASKA

16 October 2022

Here’s to the professional politicians “May they all rot in hell’.

Biden, McConnell, Schumer, Pelosi, Swalwell, Schiff, McCarthy, Murkowski and all of the other useless life long political scum of both parties are the real problems in America. Almost all of them owe allegiance to China and all of them work against the American people’s interests. What was once a duty to be undertaken as a service to one’s country has become a cash machine for most of the 535 people who are supposed to be upholding our Constitution and serving the people. The vast majority do neither. They serve themselves and their big donors like George Soros, China and whichever BIG TECH OLIGARCH WILL write the ‘Big Fat Check’. I have often wondered how a Congressman or Senator who gets elected with a net worth of a few hundred thousand dollars becomes a millionaire while drawing a salary of around $200,000 a year. Don’t you ever wonder about that?? If I sound angry, it is because I am. I have spent much of my life advocating for simple things like fiscal restraint, smaller government, equal application of our laws and other simple Constitutional behavior by our governments. I really don’t think that it is too much to ask to have a politician put in jail for fraud the same as some two bit con man. Actually, most politicians are a lower class of human being than most two bit con men. It is past the time to ‘Throw the bums out’. It has, finally, come to the point that “We the people” must put our collective feet down. We cannot vote these bums out. They have too much money and power for “We the people” to be able to touch them. The only solution left for us is a Constitutional Convention as authorized by Article 5 of the US Constitution. In such a convention we can get Term Limits, Repeal of the 17th Amendment, Equal application of the law, eliminate and/or curtail some of the activities of the Executive branches of the government like Education, Reform immigration law, and a number of other things that need to be done so that the average American can reap the benefits of “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” guaranteed to us in our Constitution. We have traveled to a point where just the act of getting out of your own bed is likely violating some federal law written by some nameless, faceless unelected bureaucrat in a unknown sub-department of some useless branch of the Executive Department. It is time for a change. Not a change of politicians but a change of the Constitution to eliminate the career politicians and their power over our everyday lives. I was talking to a guy the other day about repealing the 17th Amendment. He wanted to know Why? I explained to him that, before the 17th Amendment federalized the Senate, the various State legislatures appointed the Senators for their State. That meant that there likely WOULD NOT be a career Senator. This is because of election changing of new people in the legislatures, even those of the same party, were likely to appoint a different person at the end of each six year senatorial term. You might suffer a career Congress person but not a career Senator. This makes sense because the Senate was to be the ‘safety valve’ that kept the Congress in check. Did you know that the Congress ( House and Senate) exempt themselves from many of the laws that they make for “We the people” to live by? For example they and their staff are exempt from the Obamacare debacle. That’s just one example and there are dozens, if you want to go find them. They have set themselves up as our Masters. Your primary purpose in life is to work and pay taxes. Whether you can feed, clothe and house your family or yourself is of no interest or consequence to the various government entities from local to federal. Go to conventionofstates.com for an education.

Sunrise on last Monday.

Dangerous Dan continues his frontal assault on the foundation of the ragged old house. Both the front and back of the house have been stabilized. He is now under the floor in mud that is over his boots and with the consistency quicksand. I was under there earlier this week installing insulation. At one point, I thought that I was going to have to abandon my boots and crawl out in my sock feet. I was near boot deep in the mire and sinking. I could not seem to free either foot. I remember thinking that “If I fall down in this I may not be able to get up”. My second thought was “I hope I can reach my phone so that I can call Dan or 911”. The situation may not have been life threatening but it was scary because the longer you stood in one position the further you sank. I had visions of the scenes from old movies where some poor sap stepped into the quicksand and the last you saw of him was an upraised hand and a few bubbles. However, the femme fatale always get saved. Since I was not feeling very feminine then or ever for that matter, I had serious doubts that Tarzan was going to show up and pull me from the muck. I have made it perfectly clear to all concerned that I will not again be installing insulation under there until the ground has frozen solid. The background on this dummy episode is pretty straight forward. I got out of bed, got dressed and made myself a cup of coffee. I looked at the digital thermometer and it read 22.1F. I surmised that since the temperature was so low all night that the muck that Dan had been working in would be frozen solid. Of course, as you already know my surmise was incorrect. This decision to go under the floor was based upon false assumptions and insufficient data not unlike all of the Global Warming/Climate Change decisions. I did manage to, with great difficulty, extricate myself from the muck. This was a lesson in BOB STEELE RULE #1 “Everything good or bad that happens to you is, generally, your own damned fault.” There is one good thing about decisions, if you made a bad one you can just make another. Unless, of course, you’ve jumped from a tall building or a high bridge. Every decision has the potential to be life changing and some are, unfortunately, life ending. I’ve done so many stupid things that I am amazed everyday that I’m still alive. A funny story I often tell when someone mentions my or their life span. It was my 47th birthday. I had driven from Mobile to Bessemer (Alabama) as I did every weekend for months to visit my father who was dying from cancer. At this point, he was bedridden. I sat by his bed and we talked about this and that. Nothing of any consequence. As it was my birthday, that came up as a subject. I said, “I never expected to live this long”. He was sitting up in the bed and there was a long silence while Dad was,apparently, staring at the wall in front of him. After this most pregnant of pauses, he looked over at me and said, “Hell, Boy, I didn’t think you’d live to be 21”. And that brings me to something my Grandma Byrd used to say, “Better lucky than smart”.

A new treated lumber ladder on the roof to service the stove pipe and the roof. The old one was not treated and had been there since 1982.

We are almost ready for winter. The wood is stacked in the tents, the loose items on the property have nearly all be stowed away, Summer and I have changed over to studded tires and my pre-winter ‘To Do’ list is shrinking daily. It snowed a bit this week. Very fine white stuff was falling out of the sky. It wasn’t sticking but is was falling. I am taking this early snow as a portent for a very cold and snow filled winter. The last two winters I have used a wheeled snowblower to clear our parking area and make paths for the dog to run in. The problem with the wheeled snowblower is that it often gets stuck and once it is stuck it has to be extricated by brute force. Putting it into reverse just digs it in even further. I’ll be 78 in a couple of weeks and snatching that 100+ pound hunk of iron out of the trenches it dug is getting to be too much. Summer decided that we would use our PFD (Permanent Fund Dividend) to purchase a snowblower on tracks like a tank. Dutifully, I traveled to the local Honda dealer 80 miles away and paid a $500 deposit on a $3800 tracked snowblower to be delivered in the last week or so of September. The delivery date was then pushed back until the first week in October. Since I had not received a call to come get my machine, I called earlier this week. Now they tell me that we will get the machine sometime in December. I am starting to believe that the dealer bet mine and other people’s deposits on some stupid football game and lost it all. I sincerely hope not because I’m old. Actually, the last couple of sentences were a joke except for the part about my being “old”. However, it seems that to Honda, we aren’t very important here in Alaska. Our equipment gets shipped last, if at all. With less than 800,000 people the entire state population is smaller than some medium sized cities in the Lower 48. The economics make sense for Honda but aren’t very helpful for us Alaskans.

If rocks were dollars we’d be billionaires

When I changed over to the studded tires, I found that the brake pads on the front wheels of the Subaru were very nearly gone. This coming week I’ll get the brake pads and new rotors. Then one day when it isn’t raining I’ll get them installed. One more little job before the snow flies. The Subaru had been running kind of funky for some time. I realized that all of the gas that had been put into the tank had come from the same place. I changed the gas location and now it seems to be running much more smoothly. They must have had some water in their gas or something. I won’t be buying gas there for a while. A couple of weeks ago the Subaru was running a little too hot. I took it to the local Subaru shop and found out that after the new radiator had been installed that the engine hadn’t been “Burped”. Who knew? Anyway the mechanic explained to me that Subarus have a quirk in the engines that traps air. Because of this you have to start the engine and let it idle for some time after the initial fill of the radiator. As the engine heats up the air trapped in the engine comes out and the radiator burps out a bit of fluid whilst releasing the air. The engine burped several times This process only took about ten minutes because the engine was already warm. The mechanic had a special funnel that fit tightly into the radiator opening so that no fluid was lost and after the final burp he filled the radiator to the top and put on the cap. I was very lucky that the engine was not damaged by the overheating.

Inside the big green tent with much stuff left to go to the Salvation Army

Summer and I spent a few hours yesterday (Saturday) going through the big green storage tent. This is a project that we’ve put off for many, many months. While the tent was closed the chickens were still able to get inside. They would climb and/or fly up onto the shelves, that I built to store glassware and other personal stuff, and lay their eggs. All of this flapping and moving around on the shelves, of course, knocked things off the shelves. There was broken glass and cooking utensils scattered around on the floor amongst the chicken droppings and shells of broken eggs. The plan was to go through the stuff and donate that which we no longer wanted or needed to the Salvation Army. About three hours into this mess we called it for the day. Today (Sunday) we will attempt to finish this filthy, disgusting project and make the run into town to the Salvation Army store. Five years ago we brought up a lot of stuff that we find that we did not need and now don’t want. Things that seemed useful or valuable at the time are now valueless and worthless in this new stage of our lives. Before we left Florida we donated a bunch of stuff (four pickup truck loads) to the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch. In retrospect, we should have donated everything except our clothing, a few pots and pans and some dishes. The trip up to Homer would have been way-y-y easier and exponentially less stressful. Again, I find myself quoting my Grandma Byrd. “Live and learn. Die and forget it all”.

A trailer load of green tent trash headed for the dumpster.
Kindling drying in Summer’s greenhouse. We’ll likely use it all before this winter is through.

Well, that’s it. We’re back to work. Winter is coming too soon

Dad’s Alaska

Here’s to the Omicron virus that might save us all from COVID forever

I’m pretty much isolated from the human race up here on Greer Road hill. Yeah, I have the interweb and streaming TV. My isolation is physical rather than mental. I talk and text with friends in Florida fairly regularly and I harass a few people on Fakebook when I’m not in Fakebook jail. I think I’ve done about 16 thirty days stents plus several 3 and 7 days sentences. I figure that if they aren’t putting you in jail you aren’t spreading the truth. Anyway to my point, I read several on line newspapers every morning whilst sucking down 32+ ounces of coffee. I just read a day or so back that GlaxoSmithKline have developed a real COVID vaccine. I haven’t taken the jabs that are currently available as I’ve been waiting on a real vaccine that is not the MRNA gene therapy currently being foisted upon the public as a ”vaccine”. The CDC changed the definition of ”vaccine” in order to call this gene therapy a vaccine. This new vaccine, apparently, generates a natural resistance to COVID like the polio or measles vaccines. According to what I’ve read it has few, if any side effects and encourages the bodies own defenses to recognize and attack the COVID virus over much longer periods of time. It is being approved for use in Great Britain but is unlikely to be approved in the US. This is because the CDC/NIH/FDA and other alphabet agencies have a reputed financial interest in the MRNA vaccines being used in the US. It’s another ”Follow the Money” deal. I guess I’m naive but I was not aware the government agencies ( and maybe government employees) could profit from research done with taxpayer money. Anyway, the take away on this is that there is a better, safer real vaccine out there that you probably won’t hear ever about here in the Marxist Republic of America. Now on to more mundane and non-medical things.

Much to our surprise it is blowing our third blizzard for this winter. The entire property is covered in about 18 inches of previous snow with another six to ten inches predicted for this blizzard. Those items which we did not picked up have disappeared until late April or early May. The same goes for all of our outside projects. I had intended to put a porch deck on the back of the house in November. And then frame in a walled, roofed ‘Arctic Entry’ atop the porch deck. In that entry we would have had a bench, a place to hang coats, other outerwear and snow covered boots. That just isn’t going to happen. The Fall and early Winter has been colder than in previous years. We bought ten cords of firewood logs this year. I reduced them to rounds, split and stacked most of it myself. Ended up doing the last two cords with only one working arm. I had some surgery on my left shoulder. The doctor told me to not pick up more than five pounds with that arm. I waited until six days after the surgery to start splitting the last two cords. I was using the left arm just to balance the round before I put it on the splitter.

The geese have, finally, resigned themselves to their captivity. They are no longer trying to get around, over, under or through the fencing. Their pond has frozen solid so we’re having to take water to them every day. Taking water to them every day is a small chore until you find yourself ’post holing’ through 18 inches of snow. This struggle led to starting the snow blower. The snow blower was built for the genteel suburban snow. That is to say moving snow off concrete or asphalt paving. The suburbanite opens his/her garage door, starts the snow blower and cleans his/her driveway and sidewalk. No problem as the machine is operating on a hard surface and does not get stuck every three feet. The narrow tires sink into the snow left behind and will not proceed forward. When shifted into reverse it will not back up without some major snatching and jerking to get it out of the holes the tires dug. I spent almost an hour and a half forcefully shoving the plow forward in order to clear a path to the goose house. This time included the time I had to take to let my pulse get back under 140 or some number that made me think my heart might jump out of my chest at any moment. I seriously contemplated what I might do if I stroked out. I really didn’t want Summer to find me slumped over that confounded machine dead. I certainly got my cardio for the day. After resting up for awhile I plowed my way to the wood tent and then to the conex (40’ shipping container) and the water tank sheds. This plowing while strenuous was done on packed gravel which made it a lot easier.. Not easy but easier.

After my heart pounding trip to the goose house it was time to take water to them and then post hole my way to the chicken house to collect eggs and check on their water. They were good on food as Summer had dumped fifty pounds of food in their feeder the night before. Of course, they were out of water so struggling back through the snow to get a bucket of water and then returning with that 40 pound bucket of water pretty much did me in for the day. It was only about 3:00 PM and sunset was just over and hour away, but I was done. There would be no more snow blowing trenches.

The next morning I ate my cinnamon raisin bagel, sucked down 32 ounces of coffee and then went outside to start the infernal machine. I was and did plow/trench my way to the chicken house. It was pretty much a repeat of the goose expedition only maybe 20 feet further and on the side of a hill. During the previous days fiasco I developed some techniques that made it somewhat easier. I got pretty much the same cardio workout but finished the longer course in less time. Just as I got the blower back up the hill a neighbor, one of Summer’s friends, arrived with his snow plow truck. He had plowed his own driveway and the drove down to our house to plow our road. This, usually, costs money but he does it for us no charge. Snow plowing isn’t his occupation. He works up on ’The Slope’ or in oil field for you Lower 48 denizens. It just happened that the last blizzard came at a time when he was off the job for a couple of weeks. I think he works 2 weeks on 2 weeks off but now that I’ve said it I realize that I really don’t know. After he had plowed the road he was backing out to the main road and somehow got his truck stuck. He’s gotten a little too close to the edge of the road and the truck slipped down the slight embankment. My truck covered in snow and ice had to be cleared to be able to see well enough to extricate his truck. After my truck had warmed up and melted the ice off the windshield, I went to pull him out. Had to jerk his truck harder than I would have liked to get him out of the ditch. My heavy rope tow line got cut on the blade of his snow plow which leaves me with 6 feet less rope and all of my other rope that size is buried somewhere under two plus feet of snow drift. I guess I’ll just have to make do with the shorter rope until Spring when I probably won’t need a longer rope. After he went on his way, I plowed Summer’s parking area and the ‘turn in’ to the parking.

Summer was at one of the ’up the hill’ neighbors home for a visit a few days ago. For some reason the lady had to move her truck. While moving the truck she backed into Summer’s car. The fender was bent, a headlight crushed, the grille popped out and the radiator support bracket bent. All of this damage on her 2006 Subaru might lead the insurance company to total it out. I was supposed to have repaired the Summer’s Land Rover in latter part of October. However, it rained and rained and rained and then when the rain stopped it started snowing. Needless to say the Rover is not repaired. Of course, we look like the rednecks we are with a dead car on blocks in the yard. The Rover repair is postponed until May or June of next year. Summer has said that she could borrow one of Dan’s (her significant other) trucks while the Subaru is being repaired or condemned. If they condemn it she will just buy it back from the insurance company and use the settlement cash to have it repaired. She is in love with that little car.

The poor little Rover abandoned in a snow bank until Spring.

We failed to sell a couple of fruit trees (one pear & one apple) this spring and summer. We now have them sitting in our living room. Because we were trying to sell them (and because of the 42 other ‘opportunities’ that cropped up) they did not get planted on the property. And here in Alaska, it is more than just digging a hole an plopping the tree into said hole. The moose like fruit trees. When the trees are young the moose will eat them almost to the ground and the tree dies. You must build a moose proof wire cage to protect the young trees. We just didn’t have the time, hence trees in living room.

We’ve had continuing water problems. With the new 1000 gallon tank installed and the 500 gallon tank residing in a newly constructed shack, I thought we were good for the winter. Yeah, I was wrong AGAIN. A heat tape failed and the pipe, by which the big tank is filled, froze and cracked. Fortunately, when the pipe froze and burst the pipe was plugged with the ice and we did not lose the 100+ gallons of water still in the tank. Still some of the fiber glass batting insulation got wet so I had to remove it and take it inside to dry off. Two trips to the hardware store plus digging through my own plumbing supplies got the fill pipe rerouted. The insulation, at last, dried and was reinstalled. This process only took parts of two days as there were other chores that needed attending. We had been using water from the 500 gallon tank as the 1000 gallon tank was near empty. We did not realize that the tank heater had failed on the small tank. So when the water truck arrived on Monday, we still could not fill the big tank because of the burst pipe problem had not been resolved. Also, we found that the little tank fill pipe would not work. I opened the tank to find three inches of ice all the way across the tank and into the fill pipe. I used a hammer to break a hole in the ice so that we could fill the tank from the top. I held the hose in the tank while the water guy ran the pump. We got a week and a half of water pumped into the small tank and I got the tank heater working again. The object of the two tanks was to have a month of water and then only have them filled once a month. This would save us a couple of hundred dollars each month. Water is my mortal enemy but I shall prevail over it.

This is Friday at about 8:30 AM. I’m sitting down with a sausage biscuit on which I placed a dollop of mustard and, of course coffee. Sunrise is at 9:54 and sunset will be at 4:02 this afternoon. This means that I’ve got just over 6 hours to tend to the critters, bring in firewood and whatever other outside chore that needs to be done. There is the reopening of the pathways to all of the various destinations on the property. The previous day’s heavy snow (it is still snowing) has rendered the near stroke inducing snow blown paths of Tuesday and Wednesday pretty much useless. I see some snow mowing in my future. If I don’t get the paths blown out again today, they’ll be full again by tomorrow.

I have included some pictures for your enjoyment.

Wednesday’s Sunset after it, temporarily, stopped snowing.
Tuesday just after sunrise,
The Chicken Trench
Icicles after last weekend’s warm up to above freezing.
The Goose Trench
Summer’s ‘closed for the winter’ store.

That’s it for me. While the pictures were loading I fried a Honey Bun in butter and ate it. The sausage biscuit just didn’t do the job. Hope all of you had a Happy Thanksgiving. See ya soon.

Dad’s Alaska

26 November 2021 Friday

Here’s to antacids and fervent hope that this isn’t the last time that most American’s have full bellies.

With Thanksgiving is behind us now and Christmas is looming up before us. Those Americans who were fortunate enough to have eaten their fill yesterday should indeed be thankful. There were some Americans that did not partake of the bounty and there are likely to be a lot more of them by next Thanksgiving. The country is being flooded by non-American poor people from around the world. They are expecting to partake of the bounty of America whilst doing little or nothing to increase that bounty. Many can neither read nor write the language of the country from which they have fled and certainly not American English. Most have not received even the minimum of preventative vaccines for childhood diseases and are bringing with them diseases that were eradicated decades ago in America. They are ignorant of the American culture and many seem to have little interest in assimilating into the culture of America. In other words, there is a whole class of people who will divide up the resources of the American ’safety net’ leaving less for everyone. Our elderly, impoverished America children and war veterans are going to get a much smaller slice of the ’safety net’ pie. All Americans, aside from Native American, are the descendants of immigrants. Virtually all of these immigrants came here legally, adopted the American culture and language. They received no aid and they went to work doing whatever they could to feed themselves and their families. Each ensuing generation did a little better until America had a burgeoning Middle Class. In the past 60 years we have very nearly destroyed the Middle Class with almost unlimited giveaways (so called entitlements) and soaring taxes. So called ”entitlements” have driven men out of the family unit. Our politicians and labor unions have lined their pockets with cash whilst driving most of our manufacturing, the heart of America, overseas. The minimum wage has destroyed youth employment and the work ethic once instilled into young people. High taxes have driven the mothers of the children into the work place and the children are feral because they have no supervision by either a mother or a father. On top of all of that, those among the illegal alien population who are willing to work, will work for less, which will take the last of the jobs that might would have supported an American family. I’m scared to death that America might be done.

We had a White Thanksgiving and we will almost certainly have a White Christmas. About 8 inches of the fluffy white stuff fell out of the gray sky. This did not chill our Thanksgiving cheer. Summer had brined and roasted a chicken for our Thanksgiving dinner. We had cornbread dressing, green bean casserole, candied yams topped with marshmallows, yeast rolls, cranberry sauce, apple and pumpkin pie. There were only three of us to eat so we did not need to cook an entire turkey. Some of the leftover chicken has just become a chicken sandwich. Yesterday’s overeating is being followed by today’s near fasting. I got around to eating the aforementioned chicken sandwich at 2:30 in the afternoon. The morning was nothing but coffee. And speaking of coffee, I cannot fathom how some of you get up in the morning and then don’t drink coffee. 2 to 4 sixteen ounce cups of coffee start my day everyday. I don’t become a functioning human being until I’ve had, at least, one 16 ounce cup of that flavorful brown liquid. Prior to the consumption of that first cup, communication is grunts and gestures. Before coffee, I am an annoyed, non-verbal cave dweller. After that first cup I become my usual calm, collected and verbal self. While I still am not yet ready to do more than sit at the table and read the news on my computer, I am alert and coherent. After the 2nd, maybe 3rd or even 4th cup, I’m ready to put on cold weather clothing and get on with the outside chores.

I may have mentioned that we have fenced in the geese. This has led to the daily chore of making sure that they have water. Their pond has frozen solid so my old beat up body has to schlepp 5 gallons of water to them whether I want to or not. Same for the chickens but they are more of an every third day chore. Picking up the eggs in everyday and sometimes twice a day since they freeze and crack pretty quickly after the hens get off of them. I got these minor chores done about an hour before sunset today. usually do it earlier but the caloric hangover from yesterday slowed me a bit today.

I most certainly did not get all of the summer work done but I did get all of the loose debris picked up. Tomorrow I’ll see if the snowblower will start. i shoveled some temporary dog paths through the snow today. Tomorrow I’ll put in longer and wider paths leading to all of the buildings. The little short legged Taco will then be able to run around outside the house and bark a trees falling in the woods 500 miles away. Betsy being long of leg has no trouble navigating 6-8 inches of snow. She just goes wherever she wants to go.

So far this winter has seemed, if not in fact, colder than the past couple of years. I found a web site called electroverse.net. The writer contends and has the proof to show that we are in a low sunspot/ lower output phase of the sun. It appears that even NASA grudgingly agrees with him. He contends that we may be in for several years of colder winters and cooler summers. So far he seems to be correctly analyzing the data. However, time will tell. If the summers are indeed cooler that is going to lower crop yields and, perhaps, create some hungry people in the world.

Today’s high was about 15F Tonight is forecast to be around 0F. Currently at just past sunset it is 10.5F.

Here are some pictures from yesterday’s and today’s snow.

This was from a couple of days ago just for contrast.

Dad’s Alaska

17 November 2021

Here’s to a safe, happy, healthy Thanksgiving and Christmas

Winter has set in with a vengeance. The current temperature at 3:00 in the afternoon is 6F. I had shoulder surgery on the 2nd of November. Since then I split and stacked 3+ cords of firewood. Since I was instructed not to lift anything over 5 pounds with my left arm, my right arm and shoulder got a pretty serious work out. One wood shed tent is completely full the other is about half full for a total of about 8 cords. I’m hoping that this will be enough to get us to April.

A tent full of warming goodness.
The last of the unstacked wood waiting for the Beserker to come back out and play.

Got the last of the wood stacked yesterday. Had high hopes earlier this year that I have all of the wood stored before the first snow. I missed that goal. Went Berserker on it yesterday and completed the task. Only took four pairs of wet gloves, ten frozen fingers and about 3 hours to complete the job. The temp yesterday never got above 16F and the snow and ice on the wood was causing me to fumble around a lot. Picking up the same piece two or three times in order to toss it into the tent where I had to pick up again to stack it was aggravating and tiring. Anyway with the wood, at last, stacked in the tents I was able to get on to other chores like watering the geese, retrieving the chicken eggs, winterizing the log splitter and on and on and on.

Log splitter with gas treated for storage.

The wind blew like crazy last night. The splitter tarp blew off and I’ve yet to find it. The drop cloth cover did not blow off so it was protected from the unexpected snow early this morning. The outside work is either done or will have wait until Spring. After reading Electroverse.net, I was expecting and preparing for an exceptionally cold winter for Fritz Creek. The high temp predicted for the next nine days is 19F and the predicted low for the same period is ZERO. Probably going to be burning a lot of firewood and dressing warmer inside the house.

The early morning snow on the truck.
Summer just home from work and my ugly mug

Now that outside work is done, I can get back to finishing the sheetrock in the upstairs bath. There really isn’t much to do. There are a few trim pieces that will take longer to cut that install. There is, also, some missing sheetrock in the ceiling of Summer’s upstairs sitting/media room. This was caused by removing a wall and moving a light fixture. A pain in the rear but not hard work. These little projects will likely occupy me for a couple of days. After that I might just go get a job. I am really very bad at sitting around. Getting a job at my age may be a problem. I can still lift 80 pound sacks of concrete so I am not physically handicapped. Not supposed to be lifting them right now because of the shoulder surgery but in a couple of more weeks lifting boxes or whatever should not be a problem. The bigger problem may be that I haven’t submitted to the Gene Therapy that the government is calling a ”vaccine” The other impediment to gainful employment might be the employer mask mandate. I have not worn a mask anywhere but in my doctor’s office and the hospital. If you want medical care you MUST COMPLY. Anyway my job search might be futile as there are few jobs for old men in the fields in which I am competent. Nobody is going to hire an antique Journeyman Marine Pipefitter, Electrician, HVAC Tech or an Appliance Tech. Best job I’m likely to get is ”Would you like fries with that?” I’m not so prideful that I wouldn’t take the french fries job. Like the old salt said, ”Any port in a storm”.

The outside temperature has dropped to -2F. It was 3.6F when I went outside to get the eggs. Found some of them frozen and cracked. Guess I’m going to have to go on egg patrol a few times everyday. Was filling a bucket with water for the geese and found that the water line is frozen some where. Went to the water house and found that all of the pipe heaters were on. It’s too late in the day to try to troubleshoot the problem as it is nearing sunset. Sunset is at 4:32 today. I took the water that I had in the bucket to the geese and as I was returning I slipped and fell. Fortunately, when I fell I landed on my right shoulder. I didn’t fall very hard and the only thing damaged was my pride. This is the first time I’ve take a tumble this winter so I guess it time to put on the ice cleats.

Well it is 5:30. It’s dark and we have what looks like a full moon tonight. Might be almost a full moon as I am viewing it through a small gap between two spruce trees. Summer just got home and her dogs are going crazy. I guess that’s it for me today.

Miss Suzy doing her favorite trick i.e. sleeping

Alaska Summer

Summers here are extremely busy. There is a feeling of rush to get starts planted so it will make it to harvest time. Too early your plants could die and too late your plants will not fruit and will die. There is sort of a Goldie Locks situation here.

I have been harvesting broccoli raab for w few weeks now and it just keeps on giving. My Chinese cabbage is almost ready to harvest. I am so excited!

It’s hard to walk in here because everything is so big!

Everything in the outside planters are starting to take and grow. I am in my happy place when I am gardening. If I could make a living at it, I would!

Tomato Palace

We are now finishing a new project which will contain my corn and potatoes! It’s a lot of work to get a new plot fenced in and tilled. That’s what we have been working this week. Today, I will be able to plant my potatoes and corn. This is it! The last day you can plants starts in the ground for it to produce.

Today we will fence the new garden plot and get things planted. From there it’s all about maintenance. Water and weed the garden. I am sure glad this garden is almost done. I am so sore!

View from our property
To finishing another garden project! Cheers!!

Social Distancing: I don’t know what day we’re on!

Lots of stuff has happened and not happened. I give up!

Just kidding! I have been extremely busy with my plants and working around the house. I have hardening up all my brassicas, artichokes and onions. They now reside in the greenhouse.

My tomatoes, brassicas, onions, and artichokes.

We are melting rapidly and are just about out of snow. We have been left with mud and that’s okay. I am not gonna complain!

We have been waiting for spring and it has finally arrived. We can finally burn our brush pile! And so that’s what we are doing now.

Me and the fire

It was a glorious day yesterday as we started the fire. Sun shining bright, 55 degrees and warm, total short sleeve shirt weather. Today, we will try to finish burning. There will be a burn ban starting at the end of this month so we need to get our burn on!

Dad chillin by the fire
Music and hard seltzer. I buried them in what’s left of the snow to keep cold

We hung out and enjoyed burning in the sun and watching all the snow melt before our eyes. I am so happy that the snow is gone. Now I will have to change my tires from studded to regular.

3 days ago. Now its almost completely defrosted.
Friday’s dinner with Dan consisted of bear sloppy joes on top of tater tots and Romano cheese! YUM!
Fabulous Fabio

Well, That’s all I have for now. I will try not to be a stranger and keep posting.

Dad’s Alaska

Vodka ladened, lobster encrusted Covid-19 killer

09 April 2020

At this location in 1894 not a damned thing happened. Pretty much the same today. Most of the day was spent shoveling snow away from projects that I want to get to ASAP. The shoveling was/is an attempt to hurry up the process of melting the snow so that I can get to work. It is odd how the snow melts in odd patches. It can be the same apparent depth all across a large area but will melt out only at one place. That one place seems to be exactly the same as the place 10 feet away that did not melt. It’s a mystery.

I had to take the frame apart on the collapsed tent in order to be able to get to the stuff inside. Some of the bolted together joints were so badly bent that there was no way to be able to lift it back up even close to where it should have been. Disassembly was the only workable solution. Once all of the metal was removed it provided easy access to Summer’s 4 wheeler, my 12” miter saw and a number miscellaneous things that we’ll need this summer.

The next project was to retrieve the jacks I had been using to raise the front of the house. While doing that I removed all of the pieces of wood that had been used as spacers and the lumber used to make places to set the jacks. This entailed some wading in mud but it wasn’t too bad as I avoided the really soft mud.

The COVID-19 fiasco continues. America is destroying itself without needing any outside help. Neither the Russian Communists nor the Chinese Communists could do a better job of destroying America than our political class is doing. With all of the governors and mayors as friends, we certainly don’t need any enemies. Out of 7,500,000,000 (that’s 7.5 BILLION) people in the world only 1,600,000 (1.6 MILLION) people have the COVID-19 disease. That’s 2/100 of 1%. Where is the damned pandemic?? I know where the pan-ic is but I just can’t find the pan-demic.

Finished up my day bringing in firewood and putting away the dishes AGAIN. Both of these chores seem to be never ending. But you have to eat and stay warm so I guess I’ll continue to trudge through the drudg-ery. Had a taco salad for dinner. It was very good but more than I could eat. I’ve gained 5 pounds nursing the gouty knee. Today I was almost able to get down on it and crawl. Maybe tomorrow will be the day to crawl back under the house and finish the leveling. One can only hope. Buh Bye for now.

Social Distancing (quarantine) : Day 14 -16

I have spent three days repotting plants because I still can’t use my greenhouse and the outside garden. I had to go to the feed store to get more flats and pots. While I was at the Wagon Wheel, I bought some asparagus roots that look like they are about three years old. This is good, that means they will produce large enough sprigs that we can harvest. My old asparagus is one year old now and won’t be ready to harvest for another two years. I can wait that long! It’s one of my favorite vegetables. But that can’t go in until the geese and ducks are out of the greenhouse.

It looks like I am going to have to move more plants upstairs so I can make room for new vegetables I need to seed out. Otherwise, I’m not going to have kale and lettuce this summer. It must be done.

Excuse the mess. As you can see the plants have taken over the living room.
Cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower
Brussels Sprouts, shallots, tomatoes and peppers
Basil, dill, cilantro and lots of tomatoes
Tom Thumb tomatoes
Three baskets of Tom Thumb tomatoes
Saw this little one while driving back from Dan’s house.

It was wild Alaska the other morning when something attacked and ate my hen Dead Bird II. I didn’t name her, my friend’s children did before they gave her to me. It stuck. There is no sign of her little body. Just lots of feathers and a trail of blood and feathers to the road. I’m guessing it was a dog or a coyote. It’s so sad. My rooster has been looking for her since it happened. I will get him a new hen when I think its safe.

Well, I guess that about it. Going back to work to get the bathroom finished and move plants to my bedroom.