August 14, 2015
August 14, 2015
August 11, 2015
August 1, 2015
August 1, 2015
Home alone with the dogs and thought I had better write a blog entry whilst Tami has the ability to post it.
Much new here. Got up one of the milspec truck tarps for an expedient shop. it ain’t perfect, but it is drier than standing outside looking up…
We went to town yesterday, I got a few tools for the vacuum food dryer project, and hauled stuff on my back across town, for Tami and Jasmine, Beto’s sister, who Beto sent to buy stuff for him, so he could keep working..
So I got my “working mule” work out, not to mention driving a deuce and a half to and fro…
Found out the other day, that local Taxi’s charge more just to take a person out of our “hole” than it costs us in fuel to go to town and back with the 6×6….
Anyway, got a couple of pick hoes and a tiling spade, for the ditching in progress, Beto broke his own pick hoe on a rock, so I bought him a replacement and gave him his choice of two heads in hopes of one easier to fit to the old handle…
Beto and Alexander are carving a trail for maybe 500 yards, and ditching, to be able to bury the pipe for water powering the vacuum dryer…
I may be going this week to buy pipe.. with Victor, another “socially conscious” neighbor, who has a small pick up to haul pipe etc..
My method, is to just keep gnawing at stuff, and be relentless… eventually you make it…
I learned this sailing single handed, that you just have to let go of everything except destination, and get there, when you get there. and not when you thought you should on paper…
Anyway, buying the pick hoe heads made them come up in discussion with an online “friend of the farm”, That we have been conversing with about our mission statement etc…
I stated that a good pick hoe would be my number one choice of a subsistence farming tool for creating new gardens out of abandoned land, like post collapse.
I personally hope to eventually get to the point we can do you tube videos so I can teach others what I have learned about subsistence agriculture in a life time of dabbling in it from childhood on…
I see modern people in two classes;
1. Unrealistic Preppers
2. The willfully ignorant
The Unrealistic Prepper types think you buy a can of seeds, maybe a bag of fertilizer, and then when the government magically goes away, you plant a two acre garden on your quarter acre lot in the suburbs, and in 90 days or so, you are the local barter grocer…
And then you make a fortune in gold and silver coins from those not so enlightened. (who didn’t think to stash gold and silver like you did.)
Well, ask Tami how easy it is to start from scratch as a city person, and get to a cornucopia just spilling food out in culinary ecstasy….
As I pointed out to her, the other day, the three most important survival and subsistence skills are probably Fire starting, sharpening, and weeding..
Anyway, I do recommend that people know what a pick hoe is, and have one unless they expect to watch the food supply crash on TV.
A good sharp pick hoe is the tool of choice for turning clearings in the forests, or empty city lots into gardens… They take some getting used to. The average pick hoe head weighs about five pounds, and they are devices to concentrate large amounts of force into small areas, to cut or break out very stubborn resistance like from sod, roots, rocks, or buried hunks of concrete from the original construction by a tribe of insane wild eyed white people, casting concrete indiscriminately across the landscape to create “forever Tipis” that they would then buy from their banks for about 3X actual costs, as “time slaves” ….
Anyway, humor aside, you have to sharpen the hoe side of pick hoes fairly often. A decent one will last about ten years, working five days a week, two hours per morning. until the blade gets too short, from sharpening..
There are also some nice down sized pick hoes on the market that weigh perhaps 3 lbs.. This would be my tool of choice for a refugee situation due to it being easier to carry. You can find them in tool racks in garden and tool sections of many stores in the US…
They make a real nice “ladies” pick hoe..
Ask Tami, she uses hers for all kinds of stuff now. It’s like it just slips into her hands when she has a job to do…
Which is why her being harassed for this or that by people far away doesn’t set well.. (back seat drivers with a really long steering column….)
Who probably wont have a pick hoe when they need it…
Here you can buy a decent head made in Central America for $10-$12, my favorites are by a company that makes good quality machetes, and all kinds of other stuff.. Their tools aren’t as finely done as old American tools, not finished etc. but the steel and temper is very good generally… but way better than Chinese on metal quality and temper. (American made! in Central America, by Central Americans).
They also have slip eyed axes of good temper. These are not known about in the US, but are a good axe for the survivalist due to ease of handle extraction for mobility or replacement. See: imacasa.com
Someday I am hoping to do videos on subsistence skills, and get on YouTube. It could help thousands of people survive.
Just because the society is going to collapse doesn’t mean everybody will die. Its the ignorance of simple things that will kill millions.
We have governments more concerned about “Continuation of Government” than about whether the bleeping people have a decent chance to keep their kids alive.
If I were king, I’d have WPA projects going on to get water from northern Canada via pipes and geo thermal powered pumps, to every possible garden spot in the sun…
Instead, Government spends their time and our money, passing secret trade agreements that no doubt will keep themselves fat as long as possible.
Welcome to Animal Farm, where the pigs are more equal….
Anyway, better get your pick hoe now while you still can.. they haven’t out-lawed them yet…
And any real survivalist would know that people are going to need ten times as many pick hoes than guns…
But people with more bullets than brain cells, probably have not even thought about that….
August 1, 2015
I just got an Android knock off and have been trying to figure it out. Until I get a computer literate person to join our group, communications may be spotty. I am not able to get pictures off my laptop to the Android. The Android’s pictures seem to be poor quality, so when I want to update the blog I sometimes have to go to town to use WiFi at the internet cafe to get pictures off my laptop. I don’t want to bore you with the details but, as you know, internet communication is not as easy here as it is back in the states. We are also very busy trying to figure out the growing seasons and trying to get our seed acclimated to the the climate here. This could take several generations before we can get things producing. Everything in nature occurs in its own time….not for our convenience ;-).
I also want to take this time to clarify my relationship with Gary since I occasionally find some folks aren’t clear on the situation. Gary and I are working together on this project. We are not romantic partners anymore and haven’t been for a long time, since our personalities are like oil and water. I explained that way in the beginning but some folks may not have read all the blogs.
I am so proud of my daughter, Jade. She studied so hard all through high school and has graduated from high school and is on to other adventures soon. I am so grateful for friends like Paula who took Jade in when I was on my way to Panama. My trip was unfortunately delayed so much that Jade was not able to join me as I had planned. Now Leslie is having an open house for Jade when I can’t be there to celebrate with her. Thanks Leslie! Bless all of you who have helped in my absence. I don’t think I would have taken this journey if I had known how difficult and long the road would be. I miss being able to celebrate this special time with my kid. I may be far away but my heart is always with her. I love you honey!
I am feeling very nostalgic today so sorry if I am not as chipper as usual. It is not easy being a pioneer. Makes me think of the wagon trains heading west in the US in the 1800’s. I’ll bet those folks missed their families and friends back home too. But they had even greater hardships to bear and no internet access at all. So I should be counting my blessings. Do do miss you all though….
For those folks with the ham radios. Yes, I do have a radio but we still need a few items before we can set it up. It is one of the things on the looooong TODO list that wasn’t as important as other stuff.
I am just hanging in there today…
July 1, 2015
We got a bit of rain last night, needed it. Tami is planting Manicillo and working in the garden, Beto is raking compost. He will be done with the first hillside about Monday he thinks.
I spent yesterday morning on the wood lathe and bandsaw, making end plugs for the tent poles project. Got a dozen roughed out. and several more steps to completion, and will likely need four times as many before done…
I am learning as I go, and trying to see what is applicable to green house frames, as that is also on the agenda.
The last few days I have been studying a couple scientific studies, concerning the future of humanity. It’s something I have been into since high school when I first ran into the MIT limits of growth study.
The MIT study was bad mouthed by Reagan, and then the elite all ran off and invested in the things pointed out by the study; like declining health and increasing mortality rates. They became CEO’s of drug companies, (now known as “big pharma”) and then investment schemes, in exact opposition to what was needed to save humanity according to the study which has since been proven to be very accurate…
Basically in summary, the study said that we had to cut capital investment to zero and go steady state, or collapse with a population decline of 50%.
Anybody know anything about “derivatives”?
That was the fix; capitol investment extrapolated out to infinity….
And the MIT study did not factor in climate change, which has moved the date forward.
Anyway, now two more similar studies, and if you don’t study them, you haven’t a clue as to whats coming. I will have Tami link
all three studies here, so I can feel I have done my part.
MIT limits of growth study (original) http://www.donellameadows.org/the-limits-to-growth-now-available-to-read-online/
Sesync study (nasa) http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921800914000615
The Perfect Storm Study http://www.bis.gov.uk/assets/goscience/docs/p/perfect-storm-paper.pdf
The Sesync study basically points out that for the last 5,000 years all collapses of civilizations have been related to two things;
And that elite, management, bureaucrats, etc. are basically a form of predatory parasite on the rest of humanity and the planet.
Also that they invariably deny needed changes until the food system collapses, and even then refuse to change as they watch the masses starve. The French Revolution is probably the classic example.
The third study, known as the “Perfect Storm Study” by the Brits, is an overview of agriculture and affecting dynamics.
Which could bring the willfully ignorant up to date, if they would uncork their heads long enough to read it.
Basically you can read all three studies in less than an hour if your reading speed is average.
Anyway, having been into this so long, I have seen a consistent pattern of the scientific community being unable to get ahead of the curve on their prediction models. An example is the ice melt graph in the Perfect Storm study. I know why this is. Basically a combination of lost time gathering data, exponential curve on all effects, and endemic denial in humans of anything self caused.
In other words, it’s going to happen a lot faster than any imagine, and some of the studies are seeing 10-15 years out as getting ugly.
Also, one disruption of any fundamental; say a war in the mid east, restricting fossil fuels distribution, could and would set off a chain of events that would be unstoppable.
Meanwhile the management is the problem, which I have repeatedly pointed out in past blogs. But at least now have scientific confirmation for you in the Sesync study.
If you are white collar or affluent, your share of the problem is larger than those poorer. And ditto for even ” fat first world slaves”..
The US has traditionally exported its poverty to the third world. Usually via economics and puppet mastering backed up by murder and genocide. And yes Virginia, living American presidents have been indicted for crimes against humanity in other countries, and you probably have never heard about it.
Anyway, there you have it, heed, read, or bleed.
This will affect you, this will affect your children, and if you expect the Nanny State to save you, you will most likely be dead wrong.
But read the studies, and actually try to think how it all fits together, and you may understand what we are doing and why just a little bit better.
June 21, 2015
June 21, 2015
It is Gary’s 59th birthday today. It is also Courage’s 2nd birthday. And, can you believe it?…. it is also Gary’s son Noah’s birthday today!! What are the odds of that? All born on the summer solstice. It is eternal summer here so I don’t notice the solstices as much as I used to in Michigan.
Courage’s birthday present is the new dog fence! He seems quite content with it except at first when he got zapped as he tried to climb out between the wires. Suni is not quite as happy with it. She got zapped immediately and ran into the house after yiping. She is more sensitive than Courage and is still a bit nervous to stay outside. She has been hanging out in the shed most of the day. She is kinda like Chicken Little thinking the sky might be falling or maybe she thinks that it is the sky that is zapping her. She does very much enjoy being off the chain though. The dogs don’t bark nearly as much when they aren’t tied up.
The farm is keeping us so busy that we just take small bites out of projects every day so it doesn’t seem so overwhelming. This week I worked on placing stones on the top part of the steps leading up to the shed. I got tired of sliding down the slick incline after days of heavy rains. Actually, it is a lot of work carrying heavy stones to the work site but if you do a couple of steps a day with a shovel and pickhoe, it progresses nicely. When I see the the pleasant changes to the landscape, it is very gratifying. What time I do put into the garden seems very worthwhile since I know my efforts will be rewarded when nature gives back much more than I would ever have the energy to give.
I have also been using the pickhoe and the shovel to trench the edges of each terrace in the garden. The rain has been unseasonably hard and heavy this year so we aren’t as far along on growing things as I would have liked. I had been getting ruts forming where the heavy waters were draining down the terraces. Gary taught me that by digging trenches and building one or two stone channels down each terrace where the water was forming ruts, that you can direct the waterflow so it isn’t so damaging to the terraces. I have also edged each terrace with thin poles. Laying them on the edge of each terrace creates a barrier to stop the water flow. It also looks pretty cool. Once the manicillo is established and we have mulched all the beds, erosion won’t be a problem. I also bought a hunk of greenhouse plastic and some seedling trays. Soon we will be able to plant new seedlings without worrying about them getting washed away.
Until next time…….
June 16, 2015
It’s been awhile since I have blogged, have been busy, and Tami does such a good job on her blog that I often feel complacent.
Since I wrote last, much has happened. I went on my first cruise from Long Beach to Vancouver BC with Paul, and we had a great time together, and discussed business opportunities. The weather was generally cold, so I was glad to have brought my trench coat, which was a big hit on the ship. it’s a Romanian wool Soviet era military uniform coat, that I replaced the buttons that were gun metal gray, with American military gold buttons, which set the coat off nicely. Coat was $30 online, and buttons $20 at Action Surplus in Springfield Oregon.
Paul and I ran into a Monsanto Exec on the pier in Vancouver, ahead of us in the Customs line. He had his luggage monogrammed with the word Monsanto. I suggested that a Monsanto monogram was risky here, (I was thinking in the Pacific North West) and he thought I meant in Canada, and stated that Monsanto had farms all over Canada. (I’d guess he doesn’t realize that BC is actually part of the Pacific North West culture, and we tend to dislike Satanic corporations, militaristic governments including our own, and the only way to tell the Canadians from the American government’s taxation victims, is they say; “eay?” and we say “huh?”..)
So then I suggested to Mr, Monsanto, that he could cover the monogram temporarily with a sticker that said; “pedophile” and no one would think as negatively of him…
This got a surprised look from his wife, followed by a half second smile…
Anyway, after we got back to California, we got an appointment to talk to Valerie Millano Phd. (plant sciences) and I informed her about Manicillo, and its potentials to replace Alfalfa in warm climates as a fodder crop.
During my stay in California, I had my first ever experience inside the Chinese American community, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I was amazed at their velocity of Americanization, and how much fun it was to explore Asian markets, and several Asian restaurants, the whole trip was an experience of a life time, and being with Paul was great….
On the way home, I had a long lay over in the Panama City airport, where I would have frozen to death without the trench coat, (they had the air conditioner set so low, you could probably freeze beers…)
Anyway, made it through all the TSA and customs stuff OK, most of the workers seemed tired and burnt out from having to actualize a Federal “stupid shit” agenda…And I’m starting to suspect it’s not average Americans who have been dumbed down, but that it’s the bureaucrats pulling down the stats.. Most of them could get a better education working for Walmart, than their Ivy League universities…
As far as I know, no courses titled; Practical reality 101.
I find it amazing that 300 million plus people would put up with infinite crap from about 525 Federal “Pork Necks” to coin a phrase….
Most Americans seem to have a TV in their colon, and are very very near sighted.
Anyway, it was really nice to get home, so I can now start booting the gravity water powered vacuum food dryer project, which was Paul’s gift to the community here.. neither of us will make a cent off the project, but it will create many spin-off business potentials…
Paul also donated his wife’s Saxophone for a little girl in the village. which was incredibly thoughtful and caring, on his part.
After I got back, I was told that the teachers in the grade school wanted my help teaching English, so last Wednesday made my first stab at it. Teaching over 50 grade school kids. it was a great time of laughter, with the kids and teachers writing like crazy in their notebooks, as I pronounced and explained things about the English language. I used up a new stick of chalk in less than 30 minutes. and
taught how to pronounce words in groups with similar sounds that rhymed… the Dr. Seuss method of English education.
I started with words from the official curriculum, and expanded. so the kids got really good at pronouncing with the word groups.
The next Friday Tami and I did a town run, and got delayed by the usual Latino-landia sudden service.
It started to deluge on the way home, and I put the tire chains on the front end to get the Deuce and a half in the entrance road and up the last hill to her parking area. The creeks were roaring and deep, vegetation flattened by the rain, and as always, we just squeezed by the land slide without rolling into the little river. I actually rubbed the outside mirror on the embankment… there are other places where I
hang all four outside duals over the ends of short culverts to get through.
It’s not a drive way for the faint hearted. Fording at flood stage, and slick as snot patches with no gravel… with short radius corners. and dips and rises.
The last hill is the steepest part, and Whistler went up it in compound low six wheel drive, front tires chained up, and we just barely made it. that’s a bit of a challenge, but it just kept chewing its way forward…
If I ever have to do that again after hard rains, I will also chain up at least one set of the outside duals aft… The drive, in the steep spot is so steep you can barely stand up on it when wet…
Actually I enjoy the adventure, and watching the faces of first time riders.
You have to learn to enjoy being crazy to survive in the third world outback…
The Nanny State would have a nervous breakdown here. Tami has them regularly in her adaptation struggle….
She says it’s hard to go from a cushy life to nothing… (the only cushion here is your own hind end…)
She still catches harassment from her girlfriends, (arm chair life coaches…) I’ve noticed in life that most decisions are choices between this or that mistake.
We expect others to get as good as we are at choosing which mistakes
we prefer to call a life.
To each his own screw ups eh!?!?
We are not here because we wish to keep our opinionated friends and family happy with our lives. We are here because we both believe in doing the right thing for current circumstances.
And oh! by the way!; I have now had over 6,000 views on
my google plus comments on you tube videos etc.. brag, brag, brag… meaningless I know, but it does prove that my style of being opinionated is plenty controversial.
Actually, I use the comments sections to seed concepts into the virtual collective mindset. And have seen my concepts show up in later videos etc…
The thing to remember, is that expecting everybody else to be like you, is a no starter. Projecting clonism?
But that we are thinking apes in a group sense.
Some are members of more evolved thinking groups, and others are working their way up towards Baboon class…
But it all depends on perspectives…one man’s top is another’s bottom…To me the adventures here are what I call a life.. To a city drone in suit and nylon stockings, it would be a horror to wake up in my movie…
My opinion, is that its better to be practical than have perfumed thoughts.
I would rather people didn’t like me, than they just think they did.
Anyway, this morning I got the dog pen electric fence operational.
As Tami called it; a milestone.
I had been working towards it for weeks, months, years, and kept having to deal with other problems, that seemed to never end…
Some of the other problems finally farted out, and now the dogs can be lose around the junk pile.
Next on the 2-Du list, are things like an expedient green house for starting plants, and to get progress on the truck tarp awning shack extensions.
And while I am struggling towards those objectives, I will also be trying to boot the Co-op’s food dryer for them, so I don’t have to watch or smell their hard work tomatoes rot by the acres.
I ain’t here to please anybody but my self…
Last night, good neighbor Beto came over, and asked about seeds, volunteering to do seedlings of tomatoes and cucumbers, open pollinated, starting with the oldest seed. I went to his house to watch him do the flats, and learned a few things.
Beto got dumped by his handler a few weeks back, and needed a thousand dollars, that we didn’t have either, to reboot.
That’s the cost of producing a single tomato crop here, and they only make about $2,000 a year doing it. The costs stem from chemicals and hybrid seeds. So basically what we are doing, is likely going to raise local incomes by 50% by teaching heirloom seed reproduction and organic agriculture, plus the organic crops will also be worth 50% more…
So, do the math…If we can get it to spread, we can more than double the incomes of a hundred thousand families.. not a bad bit of work, for something others enjoy criticizing us for doing…
The bottom line on this planet, is a dichotomy between vanity and compassion.
I never was much to look at, suave, or rich. So I guess its just natural for me to be who I am, more focused on actual results and keeping things honest, than vanity fodder. Many have a hard time
with that… my only form of functional diplomacy is;
“interpersonal gun boat diplomacy…”
Actually, Tami and I were watching a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western last night, and I really related to the portrayal of sheer guts…
I think that’s what sets me apart from some fellow humans… sheer effrontery…
Just be happy I’m not a gun slinger…
May 17, 2015
I am still home alone even though I get visits from Yovany. Good thing I enjoy my own company ;-). Gary and Paul seem to be having a great time traveling together back in the U.S. and presenting their business plan to different contacts that they have made. They finished the cruise and are staying at Paul’s house in Walnut, California. Gary told me he is getting fat from eating all the good food on the cruise and at various restaurants. Should be fun to pick on him about that when he gets back! He should be home on May 23rd.
It has been raining steadily most afternoons and the seedlings are starting. In fact, it is 12:30 pm and it just started pouring rain. Thank goodness this shed roof is fairly new and I stay totally dry! Many of the seeds we brought didn’t sprout so we will be replanting things in the bald spots with fresher seeds. The corn and the squash are growing very quickly though. The radishes, beans (many different kinds), fenugreek, and many of my herbs are coming along nicely. I spend 2-4 hours daily weeding and/or planting manicillo.
Yovany and I walked the other morning. He got a clipping of a neighbor’s rose bush since he knows I like flowers. He also picked me an aster-type flower. When we got back to the farm he cut the long rose stem into three pieces and stuck them in the ground in my garden. He also stuck the aster cutting right in the dirt. The roses are starting to sprout already!
The farmers around here have a kind of yodel that they use when they want to signal to each other from long distances. Anyway, one day after listening to Yovany and some uncle in the distance yodeling to each other I chimed in with a yodel of my own . It’s the Tarzan call that Carol Burnett used to do on her variety show years ago, only my rendition is rather pathetic ;-). Yovany seems to like it though and he will try to get me going by doing the Tarzan call himself (he knows who Tarzan is)……
I don’t have to worry about anyone sneaking up on me while I am here alone. The dogs are a fail-safe alarm system. And the Latinos are terrified of Courage unless they see him off the chain and see how much calmer he is when not restricted. The indigenous people also maintain their distance when they see the dogs. One fellow who walked by when we were camping on the coffee plantation said, “That dog could rip your throat out!”.
Courage is a bit too strong for me to handle since he is a very friendly boy but he gets over-exuberant. He could rip your arm out of the socket if he decided to take off after something while walking him on a leash. Gary handles him most of the time. Courage just loves to be with people and prefers to be in the house right next to me rather than outside. He shoves his nose into my stomach or my crotch to ask for a scratch. And he makes no apologies for his brashness. Suni prefers to gaze out at the land and watch for things to bark at. She is more submissive and easy to manage. Both dogs get so excited when Beto and Yovany walk by that they get crazy with excitement and it is hard to calm them down. Beto pets and plays with Courage. Yovany is slowly getting more at ease but is still very leery of the big bruiser. Yovany does take Suni for walks on a leash occasionally. They both seem to enjoy that.
One day last week, the dogs were outside and I heard a bit of a ruckus outside…like heavy scraping of chain. I rushed out to see Courage sitting on the porch with his chain still on. I looked over the edge of the porch and I was horrified to see that the drill press that had been sitting on the deck was now totally dangling over the edge where it was suspended on Courage’s chain! This piece of machinery must be 40 or 50 lbs and I had a hard time unlinking the chain to release Courage. You wouldn’t have known there was anything wrong just to see Courage sitting there. The large weight didn’t phase him much. He is definitely sled dog material!!
Since I can’t drive the deuce ( I wouldn’t want to on our dangerous, rough roads in this village) I am kinda stuck here until Gary gets back. The hour walk to the bus stop is fairly steep and so I wouldn’t be able to carry the supplies that I need back to the farm. I need cracked corn, rice, cooking oil and a 40 lb bag of dog food among other things. I have been making cornmeal mush or rice for the dogs and mixing it with a bit of cooking oil, sardines if I have them, or I put in a handful of dry dog food. I have been rationing things so I can hold out until this weekend.
I have been watching movies (that Gary’s son put on a hard drive for me) and reading. I try to work on Spanish at least a little bit every day. It is still coming along slower than I would like. Maybe others find it easier but it is not an easy thing for me to learn a new language. I just keep plugging along, trying not to be too hard on myself, just knowing that eventually it will get easier and easier if I just keep at it. Maybe the brain synapses don’t fire off as much after you get past 50!
Until next time…