Monday, Sept. 26, 2022 – Good News!

Hey Sweetie!
Felt a lot better this morning, was able to spray a few more paddocks and put some more stuff away, then got a call from James that they are NOT going to insist I leave the campground! (Though James did suggest it might not be a bad idea to stay at Jeff’s.) Really, though, I think I and the critters are safer here, the horses will be able to go in and out of the barn as they please. Lola’s not going to like the thunderstorms no matter where we are, and the forecast has us maxing out at about 20-30 mph winds. Unless there’s a freak tornado, I’m not too worried. I went around and made sure all the gates and stall doors were closed, took down my screen room and rolled up my awning, moved everything out from under the gooseneck to safer places, topped off my batteries, checked my generator, ran into town and filled up my propane tanks, filled up the water tank in the back of the truck, put the car cover on the Buick, lined up the truck with the trailer hitch just in case I felt I needed an extra 6000 lbs. of ballast, and generally got everything battened down. My timing was great, just a short while after I finished, a strong thunderstorm came through, and we weathered it with no problem. Cleared up after that, now we’re in the calm before the storm! Finally settled down for the rest of the day, reading and watching TV, which pretty much is all I’ll probably be doing for the next three days, since they’re calling for a lot of rain coming in, starting tonight. I had hoped to put some more posts out before the storm but ran out of time. I just laid them on the ground, and I’ll think they’ll be fine there. Took my shower early, right after I got done working, and I’m going to be early to rest my back some more. Surprisingly feeling a lot better today, despite all the hard work, so obviously the day off yesterday helped. If I get a whole three days more off, I’ll certainly be in the pink! Though I doubt I’ll be able to do much post installation, it will likely be WAY too wet, but we’ll see! I can always check it out with my original four-wheel drive, aka Flash, once it starts to clear up. Anyway, I’m off to bed! Good night, my darlin’! Love you!

Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022 – Necessary Day Off

Hey Babe,
After a good night sleep, I still woke up in some pain in my lower back and hip, sorry to say. I got up and fed the horses, did some more spraying, and by the time I got back to the trailer, I was in agony again. Managed to get my breakfast done, then stayed in my recliner reading for a few hours, until even that was more than I could stand. Climbed up into my bed and did some stretching and shiatsu massage while reading for a long time. It was after 5:00 by the time I came down, and iced up my back for awhile. I had tried heat this morning, which didn’t help that much, and though the ice helped a little for a short time, it didn’t last. I felt just good enough to spray a few more paddocks in the afternoon, but again, by the time I got back, I was in pain again. Tried to stay comfortable in my chair for the evening, but once I start moving, the transitions are still killing me. I’m hoping that another good night sleep flat in my bed will make a difference tomorrow. I sure hope so. It seems like the hurricane is tracking a lot further west and north, so I’m fairly certain I won’t have to move. They’re only predicting 30 mph winds, tops, probably not even enough for me to take my screen room down! Not sure I could in the shape I’m in anyway. It’s so tiring, being in pain like this! Well, tomorrow is another day, we’ll see how I feel in the morning. Did managed to do my usual Sunday laundry, heading off for my shower and bed now. Good night, darlin’! Love you!

Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022 – Post Painting and Hurricane Preparation

Hi Darlin’,
Still having problems with my back, I’m sure I haven’t been doing it any good with all the physical labor I keep doing, but it usually feels better when I’m moving than when I sit for awhile, it really spasms when I have to get up again. Lots to do, though, today, starting with doing the final painting on the posts, and putting the crosspieces on a couple of them. Ready to put them in, but we’ve had a lot of rain, so it’s going to have to wait till the water levels go down. I think the red, green and teal trail I can do, they seem to stay the driest, but the yellow and white will be tough until we have some dry days. After finishing that, I took off some of the skirting on the trailer, figure even if the hurricane misses us, we’ll probably have enough wind to blow that around too much. Then I took out my new air compressor, and was really impressed for about ten minutes, it brought one of the trailer tires up 20 pounds in that time, then it made a weird sound, and though it kept running, no more air seemed to be coming out. I let it cool down (even though there was nothing in the instructions about overheating, like every other compressor I’ve ever bought), and I thought the downshifting noise was maybe it turning itself off as a precaution, but I waited a long time, then tried it on the Buick tires, and still got nothing, so this one’s going back. I love the design, and even though it’s supposed to go up to 160 psi, I’m guessing it will only do that if there’s no weight on it, so I’m going to have to just roll it onto the Jiffy Jack and fill up the tires when they’re off the ground. I already arranged an exchange, and it’s slated to be here by Monday, which is good, because if I do have to move, I need air in my tires, they’re all about 20 lbs. too low right now. By the end of the day, though, they’re now predicting landfall between Tampa and Pensacola, so I don’t seeing it having any significant impact here. Fingers crossed, because I don’t want to have to move yet! Of course, the new camp hosts are going to be here soon, so I’ll have to move then, but I’ll have more time and less stress to do that. Put some more stuff away, mowed my little patch of grass, put a lot of stuff in the shed, just in case. Then I worked on a little secret project for a couple of hours, which entailed walking around a bunch of the paddocks, so again, more strain on my back. I finally finished that up around 4:00, then settled down for the rest of the day. Finished off my limited series, watched a New Zealand movie, now it’s shower and bedtime for me! Good night, sweetie! Love you!

Friday, Sept. 23, 2022 – Possible Hurricane Coming

Hey Sweetie,
Got word today that there might be a hurricane coming our way (one of the reasons I never really wanted to stay in Florida during the summer!), so of course, everyone’s getting all excited about it. Apparently, I won’t be able to stay here if it comes too close, so my orders today were to start packing everything up, putting stuff away, and getting ready to move if the order comes down. It’s not supposed to get here until late Tuesday or early Wednesday, and the trajectory is completely up in the air right now, but I’m supposed to get prepared anyway. So I cleaned up most of the painting stuff and put it all in the shed, leaving just enough things out to do a little painting tomorrow. My biggest concern is the row of posts I still have left to install, whatever I can’t get in will have to be moved and stored, which will be the biggest pain. I put away a lot of stuff, but I’m not too worried about the screen room and stuff just yet. Frankly, I’d be safer out here than at Jeff’s, he’s got so much junk in his yard, more stuff to get thrown around, but I don’t have much choice. The barn out here is probably safer than his stable as well, but I don’t know what else to do. I’ll wait to see which way it’s going, I might just head somewhere in the opposite direction. I did some research, and with a rig my size, parked, it looks like I can sustain winds well over 100 mph, especially if I’m head on into it. We’ll see. Anyway, that’s how I spent my day, that and running into town for some hurricane preparedness shopping, like topping off my fuel and getting some groceries, water and dog food, which I was low on. Settled down for the evening to a Turkish limited series about a time traveling journalist, now I’m ready for shower and bed. Good night, babe! Love you!

Thursday, Sept. 22, 2022 – Tractor Tire Done, Among Other Things

Hi Babe,
Worked on my shoulder a bit this morning with my massager, and it does seem to be helping. My back was a bit better, but still painful, just less often, so I’m going slowly on everything, but it seems to help to keep moving. After chores and breakfast I ran into town, stopped a the Post Office and picked up a bunch of packages. A little behind-the-seat insulated storage deal so I can carry some water and a few tools with me without taking my little cooler, two new flame dispersal plates for my grill, one from the manufacturer and one from a third party, but I think it’s too small and will likely return it. The big item was a new air compressor/tire inflater. The last ones we had gave up the ghost, so I got a new one. I’m worried about the trailer tires losing a little are, and this one is supposed to go up to 160 psi, so it should handle the 123 I need on those tires, but we’ll see. It’s nice, though, because it works on AC, DC and it has a rechargeable battery as well, so it should be handy. Then I went to the tire place and picked up my tire, at last. Then off to Glenn’s to drop of an extension cord I’m letting him borrow until his electrician can finish wiring in his new spa pump, and to do a little pool cleanup. Then back to camp, where I persuaded a couple of the hunters that had come in earlier to help me get the tire in place, so that worked out well. I wouldn’t usually ask for help, but with my back the way it is, I didn’t want to make it worse by trying to manhandle something that awkward. Tried to replace the flame dispersal plates, could only get two of the four screws out, but I could fit the new one in anyway, so I left it like that. Settled down for the evening, already took my shower, heading to bed right after my Spanish lesson! Good night, darlin’! Love you!

Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022 – Almost To The Home Stretch

Hiya Darlin’,
A good night sleep, actually woke up early, and then spent about an hour doing a few stretches and using that little shiatsu massager we’ve had for decades. Can’t believe it still works! But it actually helped quite a bit, I felt a lot looser when I got up. Still moving really slowly, still have minor back spasms, but fewer and less painful, so I guess I’ve made progress. After chores I spent some time trying to coordinate the last handful of arrows and guide posts that are left to be done. I finished painting all (hopefully) of the crosspieces, and as much of the remainings posts as I could. Some will need some numbers added, but overall, except for maybe one or two more oddballs, I should just about have all of the posts completed. I was going to pick up my tractor tire, but I’m expecting a package at the post office, and they close early on Wednesday, so I decided to wait until tomorrow. That ended up being a good decision because I need to go up to Glenn’s tomorrow and drop off an extension cord for the pool guy, who’s putting in the new pump for the spa in the afternoon. So mostly a run around day tomorrow. Spent most of the afternoon working on the GPS files for James, got those and the Intersection Post placement shape files to him by end of day. Then spent more than an hour trying to make a plane reservation for next month to Phoenix. What a mess! American Airlines prices were outrageous! And they were going up hundreds of dollars of minute! Plus they had terrible connections. I ended up booking on United. Their connections aren’t that great, I have a couple of long layovers, but at least I go to Houston as my stopover, rather than Charlotte, and it was half the price. I know I’m not paying for it, but still, I’m not going to make my client pay over $3000 for a single flight! Crazy! Anyway, that mostly killed my evening, now I’m ready for my Spanish lesson, my Sleepytime tea, a shower, and bed! Good night, sweetheart! Love you!

Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022 – Attempt at Recovery Day

Hey Sweetie,
Had a pretty good night sleep, though when I got up I was still suffering from muscle spasms in my lower back, so I decided the best thing to do was to try and rest today in the hopes of reducing the problem. I alternated between icing it and heating it most of the day. Worked for a few hours on the trail map and How To Read the New Markers flyer, then finally settled in for the evening. I actually found the gravity lounge chair I use outside was the best relief, and sat out there for a bit until it got too hot, then moved inside to my recliner, which doesn’t seem as comfortable, though that may just be because I’m sitting up more to work on my computer. In any event, I’m truly hoping to feel better tomorrow. I didn’t even go in town to pick up my tractor tire, though they called this afternoon. James stopped by for a bit and we got caught up, other than that it was pretty much a nothing day. A quick shower and bed coming up! Good night, babe! Love you!

Monday, Sept. 19, 2022 – Crazy Busy Day

Hey Babe,
Whew, what a day! Woke up, still in a lot of pain, took some ibuprofen and got busy with chores. Right after breakfast I headed out, stopping at the post office to pick up a bunch of packages that have accumulated since last week, then dropped off my tire at the Goodyear, then headed to Glenn’s to do the mowing. Was pleasantly surprised that the position I was sitting in on the mower didn’t hurt, and who knows, maybe the vibration was like a massage, but I ended up feeling better at the end several hours later than I did at the beginning. Once the lawn was done and I got back to the house, I discovered Glenn’s friend Terry there, he was working on installing the pool pump that I dropped off yesterday, but couldn’t complete the job because of some electrical hookup challenges. The old pump (which was new) needed to be returned, and he asked me if I could drop it off, so we packed it up and got it in my truck. I stopped back at the Goodyear expecting to pick up my new tractor tire, turns out it was still sitting exactly where I left it, they hadn’t even started it yet! They “got busy,” and somehow that translated into everyone else getting prioritized over me, so I was not a happy camper there. Headed back to camp, managed to print Glenn’s return label, took a quick shower, scoffed down a can of pea soup, then ran into town to drop of his package before the 4:00 deadline, called Goodyear again and they STILL hadn’t finished the job, and by then I was out of time anyway. Drove down to the HQ for the SFWMD for their recreation forum, sat through that from 5:00-8:00, chatted with James and another guy, Jeff, who’s working on the Cypress Creek restoration, and with whom I made a couple of simple requests based on his presentation, one about widening the gate along the East-West canal on the northern side of the property, and also about their proposed bridge over the Hobe Grove Ditch (one of my favorite spots on the OTL trail), and making sure horses still had access to it as a watering stop, since it’s the only naturally occurring water for miles along that trail, and he seemed quite amenable to both ideas. Finally headed home, got back around 9:00, very late for me. Settled down to a Jeff Foxworthy stand-up routine, which made me laugh out loud many times (a nice change from so many of the doom and gloom programs that seem to pervade TV these days), now I just have to do dishes, Spanish and off to bed! Good night, my darlin’! Love you!

Sunday, Sept. 18, 2022 – Long Runaround Day

Hi Darlin’,
Was hoping my back wouldn’t hurt as much this morning, but the pain kicked in and I had to take three ibuprofen, and even that didn’t help much. Guess I’m going to have to find a chiropractor. Anyway, did my chores, had breakfast, then headed out to start my errands. A quick stop at Walmart for a couple of things, then a stop at Glenn’s condo to pick up his new spa pump (I’ll be glad when that’s installed, it might just help with my back a bit!), then decided to check out Walton Rocks Beach, which is a off-leash dog beach about five miles from the condo. Didn’t know if I had the energy, but decided it would be good for Lola, and she did have a blast! I just sat and watched her as she romped around with some of the other dogs. There was one dog there in a shark swimsuit, it was hilarious! It actually had a dorsal fin, and if he had gotten into the water, it would have probably been terrifying if they didn’t notice the dog attached! Never saw him get in that deep, though, probably a good thing! Didn’t stay too long, but had a good time. Next stop was Glenn’s house in Indiantown, dropped off the pump and straightened out his pool pump. Evidently they lost electricity a few days ago and the pump reset to some setting that doesn’t keep the pump running, but I fixed it. Dena had bought a fruit picker and I used it to get down one of the big papayas that was ready to drop, though I put the basket under one of them, shook the tree, and the one next to it dropped! Oh, well, it seemed to stay intact, so now I’ll just ripen it up as is. It was way too late to start mowing, and frankly, my back couldn’t take it today anyway, so hopefully tomorrow. Grass doesn’t look all that bad anyway. Got back to camp, only to learn from the cleaning guy that there was yet again problems with one of the showers, so I went and turned that off and locked it up. I also noticed the well pump tank was overflowing again… It never ends with this stupid plumbing out here! Then I checked my batteries again, because yesterday when I went to check the water level, it was way down again, so I had refilled them, today they were literally boiling. I topped off a few that needed it, and turned off the charger for a bit to let them cool down. It was really hot in there, so I opened the flap of the skirting to let some cooler air in, hopefully that will work. I’m going to run the batteries down again before I put the charger on, just to try to get them behaving normally again. Don’t like to see them boiling, not when they sit next to my propane tanks, right under my bedroom! That would be bad! Finally settled down for the evening, putting an ice pack on my back, which worked about the same as the ibuprofen (some relief, but not much), finished watching a limited series program, so now it’s time for shower and bed! Good night, sweetie! Love you!

Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022 – Slow Start, But A Productive Day

Hi Sweetie’,
Felt a little better this morning at first, then sat down for a few minutes after breakfast and got achey all over again for some reason. Took some ibuprofen and waited half an hour, then started moving, which helped a little, but not all that much. I am trying to get down to the last few posts, filling in some of the blanks of this still left to be done, and it’s pretty confusing. It didn’t help matters when I discovered by computer and rebooted overnight after some update and I ended up losing all of my most recent trail work on Google Earth, which means I have to do it all over again, darn it! Fortunately I had updated my Post List and was able to recover a lot of the information, but still had to redo it on GE. Once I got that sorted, I cut the remaining crosspieces and painted them, hopefully these will be the last. I corrected some things on a couple of posts, and figured out how many more posts I needed to get. Then I took the left rear wheel off the tractor, it’s been showing some serious signs of cracking on the sides, so I had ordered a new one earlier in the week, and it arrived Friday at the Goodyear dealer in town, so I want to drop the wheel off to be changed on Monday. I managed to use the front end loader on the tractor to help me get it up in the bed of the truck, so I didn’t need to get any help. Just as I finished doing that, two lady riders arrived back in camp and announced they had found my chain! I had let everyone in camp know I had lost one and asked them to keep an eye out for it, and lo and behold, it was found! Yay!!! Surprisingly, it wasn’t on the trails I did on Wednesday, but rather on Tuesday on the Red trail, not far off from where it crosses the main grade, so I ran out there in my truck and walked in to retrieve it. So happy to get it back!. I have a bunch of old posts to pull out, and I was worrying about how to do that, didn’t really want to buy a new chain, glad I don’t have to. Then I ran over to the maintenance shed to pick up some more posts so I have all that I’m going to need, I hope! I needed seven but I picked up twelve just in case, hoping that will be the last bunch. Rinsed those off, did a little picking up around the carport, then came in, showered and settled down for the night. I had to take another ibuprofen, though, I still have some lower back pain. I was going to take the day off tomorrow, but brother Glenn asked me to do some errands for him, so weather permitting, I may just mow the lawn as well, but we’ll see. Been having a lot of rain the last few days. Anyway, done for the evening, heading to bed shortly. Good night, babe! Love you!