Wednesday, June 30, 2010

It Must Just Be Me

My sister-in-law and brother-in-law came from Ohio in their sporty Porsche for a visit.

They let Retro Man and I drive it.  I don't think I'm a convertible kind of person.  I looked like Ronald McDonald when I got out of the car.  Besides, I get nervous thinking everyone is looking at me while I sing to the radio.

This is Lady Porsche laughing at me.

She is laughing because I am telling her that strange things happen every time we go to Tree Ring.  She doesn't believe me.

Apparently she doesn't read this blog.

So we all went up to Tree Ring to finish putting up the poles of the Shelter.

The last few poles went in real nice.

And then it was time for a blackberry break.


They're looking really good right now.

After the break, the three of them went for a hike to the back of the property, and I got in the van and took pictures of the plants along our drive.  Some came with butterflies.


Once I figure out what these plants are, I'll label the pictures.

So then comes the part of the blog that is



As I was sitting in the van and looking around, I saw a lime green gecko climbing up a tree.  So I jumped out to take a picture.  

And then I heard a noise behind me.  

It was the van rolling down the driveway. 

Given the fact that I can't walk very well, I loudly yelled 'HELP', which was really useless, since the only thing that heard me was the gecko. I tried to run after it with my crutch, but had to jump out of the way lest it run me over.

Oh I know what you are thinking.  That really wouldn't be possible. But Tree Ring has taught me that all sorts of things you never thought of are possible. It's the wilderness you know.

The look on Retro Man's face kept flashing before my eyes as I thought of ways to explain the unexplainable.

What in the world was I thinking?  Even City Girl knows better than that.

I've wondered before on this blog if all of these strange things started happening to me since I met Retro Man. But no,

I     THINK    IT'S    JUST     ME.

Fortunately the van stopped without incident.  

Thank goodness the hills aren't very big in Florida.  It missed a tree by a foot.

The driver's door was pinned against a tree, so I had to get in the passenger side and maneuvered my way over.

Yes, I put it into park first. 

This was not my finest moment.

I'm not sure what to do now.  I think I'm dangerous to myself.  And maybe others.

Certainly vehicles should be afraid

Today is my 20th Wedding Anniversary.  I am so glad my husband stuck with me all these years despite the fact that strange things happen to me. I love you honey.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Shelter Gets Some Legs

Oh my, what's this?

Why it's the truck delivering the poles for the shelter.

It even came with its own forklift.  That is just so cool.

I really need to get out more.

We had to have the poles delivered to Tree Ring after making the mistake of thinking  we could get them there ourselves.

Unfortunately, it was just about as hot as it gets in Florida.  I just wanted to go up to Tree Ring, make sure the poles were delivered, and then come home.  But Retro Man thinks he is 20, and decided he would meet the truck, camp for three days and put all 8 poles in.

I said no thanks, I learned my lesson the last time we were stupid enough to camp in this weather.  But please take lots of pictures and tell me all about it.  

So he did it all by himself.  It was 95.  And hot.  And humid.  Did I mention there are snakes, no A/C, or electricity?

The truck unloaded the poles,  and he began cutting them to size.

He got the front right one in (as you're looking at the shelter) and called me.

It was around 2:00.  He said it was really hot.  He was sitting in the truck with the A/C on, trying to cool down.  Thought he'd take a break and eat some lunch.  It took about two hours to get that pole in.  I told him to stop and wait until 6 when it was cooler.  I'm picturing his blood turning to sawdust.

Nope, he was going to keep going.

At 9:00 he called me.  He'd gotten 4 poles in.  That was about 3 more than I thought he should put in.

All of the poles were supposed to be 5-6s.  Meaning they were 5 to 6 inches in diameter.  But one of the poles clearly shouldn't have been in the pile. 

It was an 8-9.  He said that thing weighed about 300 pounds.  

Note to self:  Always double check your purchases.

He knew once it went in the hole, it wasn't coming back out.  Fortunately, his setup was good.

I asked him how he was feeling, and he said he was tired.  And REALLY dehydrated.  He took a shower with a  home made contraption connected to a bucket of water.

The next morning he called after he got up.  It had rained and thundered until 3 in the morning.  Yuck.  Thankfully the sides of the pop up stayed in place.  

We agreed that he would do what he could until noon and then break camp and come home.

Around 2:00, since I hadn't heard from him, I gave him a call.   He got  two more poles in. 

On the last pole, he got a little delirious and stirred the concrete so long it started to harden.  He figured his body was about to give out, so he finished up to come home.

Next time we'll make it a day trip.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

5 Things About Me

To introduce myself to all of you, I thought I'd list 5 things about me you probably don't know.  

Unless, of course, you are one of the people I told to read my blog so that it appears that I have readers.  You know who you are.


1)  I started out as an Opera major in college (there really is such a thing).  But during my Junior year, my parents told me they weren't going to pay for me to get this ridiculous degree, so I majored in Geography instead.  Primarily as a joke, because it was only in college that I realized that the British Isles are islands, that Great Britain was one of those islands, and that England is in Great Britain.  Can anyone be so stupid and be in college?  Apparently so.  

I'm still not sure if the British Isles are considered part of Europe or not.

I'll guess yes.

2)  I believe that curly potato chips taste better than flat ones.

3)  I don't know anything about love at first sight, but the minute I met my husband, I knew I'd know him forever.

4)  In 6th grade, Cheryl, Penny and I had a contest to see who could stay 100 pounds the longest.  I lost first.  Cheryl won because she always brought beansprouts for lunch.  She was a vegetarian before it was cool.

5)  My Mom used to call me Queeny.  My real name is Sue.  Once she jokingly called me in from outside "Sooo Eeee", like when you call a pig, and that started a trend.

I started out with 10 things, but decided to cut it down.  I noticed my posts seem to be getting too long because of my incessant need to tell a story.  

If you have any posts about you, please leave me a link in a comment.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Memorial Day TRC Style

Our Memorial Day was pretty memorable, but not in the way that you think.

Retro Man and I were talking about presents for City Girl, whose birthday is coming up in a few weeks.  We were trying to think of something unusual.  Like black light bowling or something.  But then we remembered that she isn't 9 anymore.  She's going to be 17.  Among the ideas we threw around was horse back riding.  Yeah, that would be fun.  We tried to talk to her about it.  "That's cool", she said, "could I just get some money please?" 

Hiding our disappointment, we acknowledged the truth.  It's not that black light bowling or horseback riding aren't fun.  It's that we're not cool.  She's too cool for us.  Showing up anywhere with Mommy and Daddy - especially for a party - is about the last thing she wants to do, birthday or not.  

So we decided to go horseback riding by ourselves.  It probably wouldn't be crowded on Memorial Day.  Some day we hope to have horses at Tree Ring anyway, so we figured we should get in some practice.  

City Girl went kayaking with her friends.  I have to admit, that sounded pretty cool.

We got to the Stables, and I asked for a very mild, gentle horse since I'm a little crippled.  The young handlers said, "Oh, you'll love Sophia.  She's so gentle." and "She's my favorite horse!"  Retro Man got a beautiful little Quarter Horse named Goldie. 

Those are Sophia's brown ears in the picture.  That's about as close as I ever got to Goldie.  Sophia plodded along like she' rather be ..... damn near anywhere than on that trail.  She went about 1/8 mile per hour, but she was very steady.

After a short time, Retro Man told the guide that came with us that she could go back to the stable now, we had it under control.  "Are you sure?", I asked him.  I'm thinking one small buck and I'm on the ground with numerous broken bones.  I'm thinking Christopher Reeves.  Handicapped people are really vulnerable.

"Oh yeah, we'll be fine", he said.  The guide told us not to get off the horses, or they wouldn't let us back on.  No worries, I thought.  I can't get on or off without help anyways.  She told us that the horses wouldn't go over the bridge because they know that it's the hour point and will only go back. 

I swear no sooner did that guide turn the corner out of sight, when Sophia the "lovely" horse turned off the path and just stopped.  Retro Man and Goldie were way far ahead at that point. 

I yelled at Retro Man and told him Sophia wasn't budging and I should just call the stable girl back.  "No, no, just give her a little kick", he yelled back.  Well that's hard to do when one of your legs doesn't work, but I tried anyway.  Nothing.  I patted her on the neck and sweetly said "giddyup".  Nope, she wasn't having any of it.

And then she turned her head and attempted to bite my leg.

First one leg, and then the other.

With stark terror and shaking hands, I pulled the cell phone out of my tank top bra and started dialing.  I started whimpering.  I was blind with terror.  As I looked down to dial, I noticed a giant horse fly on my bad leg.

"H-ooooo-nnnn-eeee-yyyy, h-eeeee-lllll-pppp mmmm-eeee!", I cried as I desperately tried to shoo the fly away with the camera in the other hand. 

Retro Man and Goldie galloped up to me like they were best friends coming to attend to an emergency.  You know, just like in the Westerns -  "Here I come to save the day".  He hopped off his horse and grabbed Sophia's reins.  She tried to kick him, but he jumped out of the way quick, then led Sophia and I into the shaded path, and hopped right back onto Goldie.

Just like that.

I was so jealous.  Goldie loved him.  Sophia hated me.  

Sweet, my ass.

We got to the bridge that the stable girl told us about and I knew Sophia wasn't going across.  Retro Man said he was going over no matter what.  Sure enough, Goldie pranced right across, just like he asked her to.  He went a short distance and then returned.

The rest of the trail ride was uneventful, thank goodness.  Here is a picture of me with complete control of Sophia.

When we got home and told City Girl the story, she thought it was hysterical.  I tried to tell her that the story is funny now, but at the time it was not.  That made her laugh harder, which made me laugh at myself too.

During the story telling, Retro Man told me that when he went to get Sophia's reins, there was a bee on her nose and he brushed it off.

So then all night long I thought about poor Sophia.  I misjudged her.  She wasn't trying to bite me, she was trying to show me she had a bee on her nose so I could brush it off.  I felt horrible.  Sophia really was sweet.

My co-worker Heather, who grew up around horses, said no way.  That horse was trying to bite you.

What do you think?