Saturday, June 20, 2020 – Busy Day of Fun!

Hi Darlin'!
Once again the campground is crowded, though thankfully my nearest neighbors are all horse people, no big families of screaming children or loud music, yay! I took Flash for a ride today, thought I'd take the Lake Loop backwards to see where I thought I might have gone wrong before. Turns out, I didn't go wrong, the map is wrong, at least it is when it's overlaid on Google with the actual trails. A nice ride, though, he seemed to have more energy today, though we lost a boot for a few minutes after taking a nice canter. I hope I can find some places where I won't have to put boots on the horses because of gravel, I guess I'm just spoiled after Florida where it's all sand, though there have been some placed that don't feel compelled to put gravel on the trails. At one point we had to cross the road just before the park entrance, and there was a line of cars waiting to come. Seems like a popular place in the summer! Anyway, it was a nice ride, I gave Flash a bath when we got back, then after a brief rest, I did some housework, doing some things I'd been meaning to do for a long time, like stick down the power strip in the bedroom and vacuuming around the bed. I also put up a hook I hope will work for closing the slide. It's the one job I haven't been able to do easily on my own, but I managed to do it with a temporary measure before, hopefully the hook will make it a permanent one, at least until I can get the slide adjusted so it closes properly. After doing all the housework I was in the mood for, I drove down to the boat landing with the kayak and spent some time in the "kayak lounge." Only problem was, I thought the beach was noisy and crowded yesterday with what looked like about a hundred people, but today there must have been three times that! One girl at the boat launch said they had to wait 20 minutes just to get through the park gate, which I can believe from the line I saw earlier. Spent about an hour out on the water, though it wasn't too relaxing with all the noise. Got back to camp, then I deflated the kayak and bagged it. I'm thinking of keeping it in the first stall rather than trying to haul it up and down to the attic. After all, in a couple of weeks I'm going to be on another lake, where hopefully I'll get to take it out again. Maybe I'll even try my hand at fishing, who knows? After resting a bit from that, I walked Lola down to the lake and we played for 45 minutes there while I had chicken in the oven, then got back, filled up the tank with water since I have some laundry to do tomorrow, took my shower, had my dinner, watched a little TV, and now I'm just about ready for bed! Love you, babe! Good night!

Friday, June 19, 2020 – Ride and Lola Play Day

Hi Babe!
A good night sleep, a late breakfast, a lovely ride on Apollo! I found a really nice and easy trail today, the orange trail. Though I usually don't like linear trails, I didn't want anything too strenuous today, and this trail fit the bill perfectly! After the initial climb, which is long but not too steep and is mandatory for every trail except the Lake Loop, we turned south along a ridge line that had some really nice views. We saw several gorgeous butterflies, the kind that look like it's flying backward to throw off it's predators, beautiful! The footing was mostly dirt, and it was mostly level as well, so Apollo had a fairly easy day of it, though he's getting to be as slow as Clio used to be in her later years! I don't know if it's an age thing, or that his feet still hurt a little, but his average pace now is barely over two miles an hour. I have to keep pushing him into a jog just to get anywhere! Maybe it's the heat, it warmed up a lot today. I gave him a nice bath when we got back, then a little while later I walked Lola down to the lake and we played fetch for a while until she was pretty worn out. Then back to camp, a hot shower, a nice filet mignon dinner, and evening of quiet TV. That's it! Another day in the life, living the dream! Love you, babe! Good night!

Thursday, June 18, 2020 – Ride, Kayak and Putter Day

Hey Sweetie!
I swear, life is starting to feel like my golden years of summer vacations spent at the cottage, with the added advantage of horses and air-conditioning. As promised, after breakfast I saddled up Flash and we went on a nice eight mile ride. His ankle seemed fine, though there was more gravel on the trails we took today than I liked, but we didn't have a lot of strenuous grades, either. It was a little strange, though, the "trail" turned into a paved road that ran by a couple of farmhouses! I thought maybe I missed a turn, but sure enough, there was a blue marker. Can't remember seeing THAT before! It was a good ride, though, even though most of it was a pretty slow walk (relatively speaking), but we did find a nice spot to do a great run, first at a gallop, then he eventually slowed down to a nice canter when he realized I was going to let him run. Got back to camp in mid-afternoon, quite a few more campers had come in. After resting a bit, I put on my bathing suit, loaded up the kayak and headed down to the boat launch, spending another hour or so floating and paddling. A couple of other inflatable kayaks just like mine went by me, and one of the women commented that it was a "lounging kayak," which is a great description! My kayak lounge! Great for happy hour, which is about what time it was anyway. Once I got back to camp, I rested a bit, then walked Lola down to the lake and we fetched for awhile. There was a family down there with another dog, and they were eventually persuaded to let him go so he could play with Lola, though you know her, she ignored him and kept her eye on the ball. He kept trying to mount her, and she kept telling him off and running away. Kept here busy, though, and hopefully wore her out so she'll have a good night sleep. Once we got back to camp, I had a stream of teenager girls come by wanting to pet the horses, which, of course, I let them do, plus gave them some peppermints so they could treat the horses. After they all cleared out, the girl from at the lake came by, and she helped me feed the horses, clean up, and refill all my water tanks. After she left, I puttered around doing a couple of odd jobs, then took my shower early and settled in for the evening. But just like summer vacations at the cottage, I spent most of my day in my bathing suit, doing one fun thing, then resting, then going off to do another fun thing. Lazy, hazy, days! I feel like I should feel guilty, but I don't! I'm just enjoying it as much as I can, knowing you're with me, every step of the way, like it used to be years ago. I miss you, darling! Good night, my love!

Wednesday, June 17, 2020 – Hay Day and Not Much Else

Hiya Darlin’,
While I had all good intentions to go riding today, I never made it. As you know, I filed a complaint with the state licensing bureau about that terrible realtor, and yesterday I received the realtor’s response to my complaint. Not surprisingly, it was filled with more lies. I don’t understand it, I have written documentation that proves he’s lying, but he still lies! Anyway, I was compelled to write a rebuttal, which took a lot longer than I expected, and by the time I finished, it was after 3:30. Since I had arranged to pick up hay at 5:00 today, it was too late to go riding. I’m going tomorrow for sure, though! I drive the 25 minutes to they hay farm and picked up 8 nice bales at $4.50 a bale, which will be enough to get me well into my next stop. After unloading the hay, mostly into the first stall and the rest under the gooseneck, Lola and I walked down to the lake and played fetch for a while. We were joined by a young mother, her little boy, and a little brown puppy about 12 weeks old, who kept trying to play with Lola, who ignored her, because she was too focused on playing fetch. They eventually left, and Lola and I walked back up to the trailer. Flash has been doing a Houdini on me lately, somehow he keeps getting off his highline and his anchor, so I had to do some work on that to make sure he stays put. Not that he goes very far, but I had to solve it before the weekend when this place is bound to get crowded again. A few campers came in today, mostly without horses, and I expect that trend to continue, not really looking forward to the crowds. Anyway, took an early shower, watched one DS9, now I’m ready for bed. I have to get my body clock adjusted, this going to bed right after the sun goes down makes me feel like I’m 4 years old going and it’s only 7:00 or something. Hard to live by the creed Early to Bed, Early to Rise with this kind of schedule! But I’m determined to at least get into bed earlier, even if I end up reading half the night, which is what I’ve been doing lately. Crazy! But, off I go! Good night, babe! Love you!

Tuesday, June 16, 2020 – A Little Trailer Maintenance

Hey Baby,
Had a hard time getting to sleep last night (probably because I was so static all day yesterday), so was a bit lazy when I got up this morning. After chores and breakfast I finally mustered enough energy to run down to a hardware store to get the screws I needed to make the repair on the exterior panel of the trailer that’s been bulging. Got back and did my best to put them on, but could only get about half of them done because it was bulging so badly and I couldn’t get enough leverage standing on a ladder to put enough weight behind it to get the screws in, then they were rounding out so quickly, which just made things worse. Randy at Harmar said if I can’t get it done myself, he’d be willing to let one of his guys do it when I pass through that area in a couple weeks. I’ll keep trying, maybe someplace where I can get a picnic table close enough to manage it, but we’ll see. I also put some sealant around all the windows, just as a precaution, so now all I have left to do is the roof, no hurry since I did that last year, but I do need to check on it to make sure there are no leaks, particularly where that panel buckled. Meanwhile, Lola escaped for a while when I was busy working, and when she didn’t come back in a reasonable time I went looking forward, turns out someone had “found” her and the DNR guy was driving around with her in the passenger seat. I was near the lake when they passed by and I flagged them down. If only people would stop detaining her, she’d come home in her own good time, and a lot quicker! Oh well, I know they mean well. Anyway, that was pretty much the extent of my day. I’ve found some hay on Marketplace about 10 miles away, I’ll be getting some tomorrow, and Flash’s foot seems fine now, I’m going to take him out in the morning and see how it goes. Watched a rather fun mystery movie with Daniel Craig (with an indeterminate Southern accent), Christopher Plummer and an all-star case on Prime called Knives Out, done rather Agatha Christie, put them all in a room and reveal the murderer sort of style. But now I’m ready for my shower and bed, and hope that I can get to sleep earlier than last night! Good night, darlin’! Love you!

Monday, June 15, 2020 – Paperwork

Hi Sweetheart!
A much quieter night, a good night sleep, and a beautiful morning to wake up to today. I didn’t want to ride Apollo two days in a row, so I decided to go through the mail I got last week and get caught up on my bookkeeping, pretty boring, but it took up most of the day. I talked to Jeff, and it seems I did leave the GoDogGo machine at his place, on top of his A/C unit, and it’s been sitting out there the whole time. He thought it was one of the bad ones, but I’m sure it was the new one. Of course, after sitting outside for two months, chances are it’s going to need some repairs anyway. He said he plugged it in and it didn’t work, but it needed a new sensor any, plus if it got too wet that would affect it. I’ll have to rebuilt it probably when I get back down there. At least I know where it went! Lola and I walked down to the lake and did fetch for awhile, I let the horses graze on the grass a bit, gave them wormer, and settled down for the evening. Couldn’t get Netflix for some reason, so I ended up playing backgammon, which I downloaded, and, I’m sorry to say, am starting to get addicted to. I got an answer from Harmar, and they said they’ve been actually screwing the aluminum panels on these days, and told me exactly what kind of screws I need, so I may be taking a ride out to the hardware store tomorrow. I’d like to get that done before this dry spell ends. Other than that, it was a pretty uneventful day. I’m actually having to think up things to do now, instead of having a list so long I thought I’d never get to the end. A few jobs hanging, but nothing critical. Never thought I’d see the day! Anyway, time for shower and bed! Good night, babe! Love you!

Sunday, June 14, 2020 – Fabulous Ride Today!

 

Hey Darlin'!
Well, when I got up this morning, there was some rain going on, just a little sprinkle, it didn't wake me (I LOVE my earplugs!), but when I took those out I heard the sounds of people starting to pack up, YAY! (Sorry...NOT!) I did my usual chores and was having a pretty quiet day. First I took some pictures of the aluminum panel that's starting to bulge and sent it to Harmar for advice (I had emailed him late yesterday and surprisingly, he responded immediately). After that, I trimmed Apollo's front hooves, I figured maybe the boots wouldn't come off so much if they fit a little better. Then I decided to use your saddle for Apollo, since I was having trouble taking off that stirrup accessory, you know the one that turns it 180 degrees so it's facing forward? The bolt on that thing keeps rubbing my ankle and annoying me, so I decided to change to your saddle, which, even though it has the same thing, doesn't seem to rub me, go figure. Anyway, once I did that, then I spent a few minutes trying harder to get the stirrup thing of MY saddle, and finally managed. It doesn't matter, it will make a good guest saddle. I hadn't really thought about going to ride today, but the clouds went away and it turned into a beautiful day, and Apollo seemed bored standing around, so I saddled him up and headed out. I had to make a few adjustments to the stirrups to get the right length, but finally managed it. What a gorgeous day! Mid-70's, a few puffy clouds, just perfect! I decided to take about a 5-mile loop and we headed out. Fortunately, this trail had hardly any gravel once we got away from camp, so he was a lot more comfortable. We took the Blue trail toward a place called Tree Lane, which was all road-width, then hung a right onto the Three Hills trail, which was a perfect single track, very little mud except one spot right at the bottom of a creek where he lost a shoe, but it fell into the creek and washed itself off. It was a wonderful ridge line trail, and indeed, there were three hills you had to go up and down, but in between there were beautiful vistas, and most of it wasn't too steep, or had great switch-backs to help. A few trees were down, but nothing impassable. Of course, Apollo's getting to be so slow the five miles took us a lot longer than usual. Down to just over 2 mph these days, old slowpoke! I concede part of it might be his feet still hurt a little, but we only had about a quarter of a mile of gravel near the end, so I really think he's just out of shape, though he's starting to get back into shape now! Flash is still favoring his left hind leg, and it's only been a week tomorrow since he started limping, so I'm just going to keep resting it until it's completely healed, I don't want to re-injure it by riding him too soon. Anyway, got back to camp, which was considerably quieter than when I left, gave Apollo a bath, then put them both on anchors so they could graze awhile. They're right outside the screen room so I can keep a close watch, the nicest setup since I've been on the road this season. Finally settled down for the evening, won't be long till I'm off to shower and bed! Good night, Sweetie! Love you!

Saturday, June 13, 2020 – Noisy Day at Campsite

Hi Sweetheart!
Once again, weekends at the park turned into a noise fest, one of the worst I’ve experienced since the 4th of July in New York, when it was packed but we were the only ones with horses. Right across from me I have tenters with lots of kids, who keep coming over wanting to pet the horses (you know I’m a sucker for that!), but at least their not yelling at each other all day. I decided, though, to stick around camp today, just to keep an eye on things, it’s so busy and I have so much stuff laying around. All day, more and more people joined the group across the road, now there’s like four cars and half a dozen tents, despite a sign out front that says one vehicle per campsite and provides a parking lot for the rest. The worst was around 4:00 someone showed up and turned their truck radio on full blast, with awful modern “rock” I guess you’d call it. I had to go ask them to turn it down, it was making my teeth shake! They turned it down some, but it kept increasing gradually as the day went on. I truly don’t understand why people come out to a natural environment of peace and quiet and then want to get as noisy as they possibly can! Much less inflicting their choice of music on others! I’m looking forward to more primitive, horse-only camping, it’s always the non-horse people that make all the noise! So I spent the day updating the Facebook page with all the horse camps since Jefferson Lake in Ohio last year, where I left off. I got it up to date now. I hate to say it, but I even felt compelled to write a pretty scathing review on that awful Double J at Mammoth Cave, I just wouldn’t want anyone else to make plans there and have them turn out to be terrible because they didn’t know. Three days of wasted time and money, not to mention how it ruined my plans for our wedding anniversary. Anyway, water under the bridge, as you’d say! Flash’s ankle seems to be a little better, but he’s still really favoring it, so I think I’ll just let him rest some more. I put them on anchors so they could graze, fortunately the other campsites on my side of the road are mostly empty so they have room. Of course, within an hour or so of grazing, they ended up standing right by the highline anyway! Overall it was a pretty relaxing day, though. I resisted the urge to do some work on the trailer, convinced myself I could wait until either tomorrow or next week, nothing urgent, so all my work was on the computer, nothing physical. It’s almost 9:30 and it’s still light outside, which drives me crazy! I’ll be glad to get back in Central time! So even though it seems early, I’m ready for my shower and bed and another good night sleep with my earplugs! Good night, baby! Love you!

Friday, June 12, 2020 – Errands and a Kayak Ride

Hey Baby!
Got up a bit early this morning, and got on the road to do some shopping as soon as the chores and breakfast were done. I headed northwest to a town called Salem, which looked oddly familiar, I think we must have driven through there another time. Anyway, I went to the Walmart because it was the only one with a mosquito plant in stock. My old one died, again. I grabbed it first thing, did the rest of my shopping, then skipped over to the Tractor Supply because I was low on Flash’s food, and, of course, this is the only store in the area that DOESN’T carry the Nutrena Perform. They stock the hard-to-find Balancer (which I had already stocked up on), but not the Perform, so I had to run down to Sellersburg SOUTH of Deam Lake in order to get it. It wasn’t really that far so it was no big deal, it just took longer than I expected. I bought one of those ball launchers, the ones that look like an air gun but it works on a spring, since I don’t have the GoDogGo anymore, wherever that is, so I played with Lola for a bit. Once I wore her out with that, I got a hankering to get on the lake, so I inflated my kayak, put it in the back of the truck and headed to the boat launch. I didn’t want to drag it on the rough ground, so I managed to put it on my head African-style and take it down to the lake. It’s a pretty small lake, you can pretty much see the whole thing at once, and it was a nice time. I headed north against the wind until I reach a spot where the tops of the dead trees were still sticking out of the water, then turned around and just let myself drift slowly all the way back down, taking in some sun, saving a strange-looking bug from the water, which I put in the grass when I got back to the launch area, and generally relaxing, would you believe! It was so peaceful, as only electric motors are allowed so it was pretty quiet. There were a few fishermen, but mostly it was folks on all kinds of human-powered vessels, like paddle boards (where the paddler stands up like on a surfboard), paddle boats (where they pump their feet like on a bicycle), a lot of one and two-man kayaks, and even an inflatable or two like mine. As I was heading back to the boat ramp, though, it was getting busier, as was the campground by the time I got back. I’m glad I got to see what this place looks like during the week, because now it’s become utter chaos. It’s very busy, and evidently they use the horse camp area as overflow, because though every site is almost full, most don’t have horses, but they do have lots of kids. I mean, LOTS of kids! Lola will have a field day tomorrow if I don’t keep an eye on her! A lot of small campers and tenters, so I expect it won’t be a very quiet night (thank goodness I bought a new supply of earplugs!) I did a load of laundry this morning, so I have fresh sheets for the bed, so now I’m off to take my shower and get into bed early. Love you, darlin’! Good night!

Thursday, June 11, 2020 – Very Productive Day, and A Ride Day, Too!

Hi Sweetheart!
I had such a good night sleep, I woke up with lots of energy, so I got busy putting up the screen room, installing the new springs that were delivered yesterday up in the hay loft, taking down the GoDogGo box and my inflatable kayak for a future date on the lake, filling up the water tank in the truck, all before breakfast. After breakfast, I started to get out the fetch machine when I realized the one in the box was the old one I was keeping for parts, but I couldn't find the new one! I then went on a thorough search of every conceivable place I could think of, but I could never find it! I had the power plug and all the extra sensors I bought just before I left Florida, but I never could find the machine! I either must have left it at Jeff's, or put it in the back of the truck and someone stole it. I left a message for Jeff but still hadn't heard from him by bedtime. Great mystery, I just can't imagine me leaving without it! Finally, I decided to take Apollo for a ride, since Flash's foot is still suspect. He doesn't seem to be limping anymore, but I'm not sure it's completely healed, so I thought I'd give him some more time. I didn't put Apollo's boots on at first because I didn't know what the trails were like, but I took them with me, and within about 50 yards of the campground it became clear there was a lot of gravel, so I put them on. He was so tentative, trying his best to avoid the gravel, so naturally I ended up being smacked in the face with branches all day. I don't think he was in any pain, he was just trying to stay off the gravel. We decided on the Lake Loop, a six-mile ride that does exactly as the name implies, though at one point I veered off onto a renegade trail, and it was pretty good for awhile, even though there were some trees down, but eventually it just petered out. I tried to find a way through to the road, but I was too far off the track, so I headed back to the trail. Once we got back on the renegade trail, I looked down and realized Apollo had lost a boot, right in the midst of all that cross-country we were doing. I figured it was hopeless, but I went back and took a look around anyway, and was just about to give up when I suddenly spotted it! A miracle! He lost it a couple more times during the ride, as we went through some mud and it got slippery. Anyway, it was still a nice ride, slower than usual, but it was a gorgeous day, so no complaints! As a reward, I put him on an anchor and let him graze, there isn't anybody near us and there's lots of clover, so he really enjoyed that. Then I went on to do a bunch more stuff, like fixing one of those little fans in the horse compartment, one fell off a few weeks ago so I had to put it back up and rewire it. I tightened the door handles on the back of the trailer, they tend to loosen up after awhile. Then I remembered I had received a new wand for the pressure washer, and figured I had better check it out to make sure it worked before it was too late to send it back, so I climbed back up to the "attic" and brought it down, changed the wand, plugged it into water and electric and checked it out. Everything seemed fine, so I packed it all up again and hauled it back up into the attic. Then when I came inside I remembered I had a cornice piece on the slide-out that came off that I needed to repair, so I cleaned that up, glued and nailed it back into place, good as new. I've discovered through trial and error that if I can just pull the slide in the tiniest bit while I'm pressing the button, I can actually bring it in on my own, a problem I've been trying to solve for a while. I just need to put in a hook of some kind so I can put a rope on it and pull it, something I'll do on another day before I leave here, hopefully. So a long, busy, really productive day, got lots of little jobs done. Tomorrow morning I plan to shop, then hopefully I'll take the weekend off like a normal person and just enjoy myself! I'm still adjusting to the time change (Indiana doesn't change for Daylight Savings, so they're technically on Eastern time), which means it doesn't get dark until well after nine, still getting used to that. Anyway, time for shower and bed! Good night, darlin'! Love you!