Monday, July 7, 2008

Here's Another Weeks' Worth of Post

"Don't pay the ransom money; I've escaped!!"

It is hot outside. The temperature 92 and humidity 54% makes it feel like 101°.
Trying to breath in summer, in southeast Oklahoma is like breathing underwater for me.

Thanks alot Algore, for this stifling heat- I'd never have noticed it, if you hadn't written that book, or that horror flick. But if you read on, you will learn that it is not always warm everywhere in SE Oklahoma in July.

I guess the best things about July are that it is not June any more, and the garden is now full and bearing: Tomatoes, banana peppers and cantaloupe are ripening daily, and the beans, onions and okra are just weeks, if not days away. The fence between me and Dave has blackberries all over it as well, I noticed Sunday. The other very good thing about July is it's 19th day... a Saturday.
So let's blame the lack of blogposts lately on the high heating and eating. Who wants to type anything, after a hot day and cantaloupe??

Time away from the Local Malcontent is my only vacation this year, though the state employees union and a democratic congressman are looking into 4-day work weeks for state employees. Not being a union member (yet)
I don't care either way.

On Friday evening, July 4, Leti, her sister and I drove up to Panorama Vista on the Talimena Drive to take in the entire area's firework displays, and to camp nearby that night. We arrived around 6 p.m., and I gathered firewood for a cookfire and set up the tent the girls would sleep in. They did up the cheeseburgers and hot dogs, potato salad, fried pies and sun-tea. We entertained two other friends who met us up there to watch the displays from as far east as Mena, Arkansas, to Poteau and Wister to Red Oak, Wilburton and Talihina to the north and west.

We all thought it odd that the little town of Red Oak, Oklahoma had the best display of all that night.
Later, our friends left for home, Leti's younger sister went on to sleep, and we two were sitting on the ground (occasionally) looking up at the Milky Way galaxy, at Scorpio now chasing Orion, and big ole Jupiter slowly passing overhead, the natural fireworks if you will.

Leti followed after an hour maybe, to sleep. I brought my sleeping bag to sleep in the bed of the truck, but instead decided to sleep on the ground, nearer their tent than where we'd parked. At least I thought I was closer to our tent... when the park ranger drove through the camping area, he stopped his vehicle, got out, walked over and kicked me awake, asking me if I'd been doing any drinking, did I have any ID, etc.

Only after he left, did I notice how cold and windy it had become at that elevation. I couldn't get warm again, couldn't find that comfortable position either, so I went and slept in the truckbed after all. For a whopping four hours until the dawn, which arrived at 5 a.m. I thought how much I loved to view a scene like that, the new day's light peering over that horizon so distant- as I turned up the truck's heater for warmth inside the cab- in July.

Saturday, we hiked down Deadman's Bend trail to the headwaters of the Little Eagle River, where we had lunch and drank deeply from the pure waters of that stream. I found a place down there where I am going to retreat to, if America becomes the mess that some say is coming... very well hidden. Or at least camp this winter there.
The whole hike was maybe 3 miles through the woods.

Celebrating the 232rd birthday of our America the way it might have been done, by them, back then.


Jungle Mom said...

You are alive!! WOO HOO!
Sounds like a fun trip.

Don Smith said...

Been wondering about you, figured you had snuck off to the woods again, you are getting pretty good at that here lately.

the post read well, and I am so happy to see someone that lives close enough to natures bounty, be able to get out in it, and immerse themselves in the splendor of it all.

The park ranger smokey guy was a bummer tho.


Anonymous said...

I have to admit, I was getting worried about you as well! Glad to have you back! Sounded like a beautiful night camping out under the stars! Natural fireworks indeed! That experience (with the possible exception of the ranger kicking you awake...), was one that no money can purchase. That's the way things were meant to be! Natural.

I'm so happy you had such a good time!

Brother John
Lansdowne, Pennsylvania USA

zeelah said...

hi.. is it really hot over there..?

The Localmalcontent said...

All's well that ends well, I suppose.

Jeffro said...

Wow, you really are in the Ouachita mountains. I deliver tanks to a yard in Hartshorne and formerly one in Wilburton. I've also gone on location northeast of Red Oak. Y'all got some scenery!

The ranger incident would have upset me for sure.

The Localmalcontent said...

I really am in the Ouachitas, Jeffro! Honest Injun.

So are you still delivering to the area? Thanks for stopping by, friend, and fellow GOMLPer.

Jeffro said...

I was in Hartshorne about three or so weeks ago - we deliver to a yard on the northwest side of town. I see signs for the baseball park on the way out there - IIRC it's a BP/Amoco facility. We used to deliver to Willburton, but the customer wanted us to drop off at Hartshorne. We also go to a rural site south of Dustin and sometimes south of Hanna for Panther. Those loads are always 210bbl saltwater tanks that are 16' wide, so I've always got a couple escorts along.