Friday, June 29, 2012

For Your Support

I want to thank each and everyone of you, my kind friends, for your support and words of encouragement as we dealt with our family problems. It shames me that I've even bothered you good people.

This will be the last post in which I will mention my grandchild, Little Bit. I must sadly report she has been lost to us for the foreseeable future. I will not reveal the details as I'm sure I've tried you patience far too much with this sadness.

The bigger shame is how the Florida state government doesn't recognize the rights of grandparents.

It's been a very sad day. Our hearts ache.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Resistance Movements

I must confess I like movies and books that deal with resistance movements. Doesn't really matter which resistance, though I like the stories of the Irish Republican Army above all others. Kinda runs in my blood don't you know. Don't ask why, I just do. With the current situation in our country a good resistance movement might solve many of our nation's problems.

The Swedish had more than there fair share of hero's involved in their resistance, as did the Italians, and believe it or not, the French.

Quality resistance movies are hard to find. In the above picture you'll notice 'the wind that shook the barley.' If you haven't as yet seen the movie by the same title - find and watch it. It's on Netflix.

It's interesting to watch a good resistance movie and identify the firearms. The early Irish movement greatly depended upon the Brits steady, but reluctant, supply of good rifles and handguns. Enfields during the early years later gave way to Colts.

Help me out. I'm bored. If you have a good title, book or movie, give me a yell.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Believe It or Not

Believe it or not I've preached this simple little fact for years.

For all your survival needs and preps - I give you the lowly .22 but effective.

H/T; Enola Gay


Just Another Wednesday

I've grown webbed feet. My gills have formed and I'm certain this green stuff on my arms is algae.

It itches.

My rain gauge has been emptied twice and both times it overflowed. It holds just a tad over six inches.

We're wet, and the rivers and creeks of this area are well above flood stage. Welcome to sunny Florida.

Sorry for the silence. My internet went out yesterday, early. Not so bad as it gave me a chance to read and watch the down-pour. Went home and continued to read, and watch the steady and unrelenting rain.

My driveway slopes up and then flattens at the top. I keep our travel trailer parked back and next to our privacy fence. When I arrived home it was parked in about two inches of water. A mess of leaves and debris had formed a dam where the upper and lower driveway meet. I kicked and scrapped and stood back and watched the rush of water as it flowed down my drive and into the street. The waters came within a few inches of flooding my garage.

Fiddler crabs now graze my lawn.

Reports are the groups's bug out location, the Boar's Nest, is now occupied by catfish. The building sits high on piers so hopefully the interior is dry. We have an old Airstream travel trailer parked nearby and I'm hopeful my ammo cans are water tight. I'd hate to lose thousands of dollars of ammunition, and other preps, but I'm sure the trailer is flooded.

The local horse, pastured next door, has taken his weekly bath.

Hey, I've business to run. See you good folks later.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Bits & Pieces

Recently I had to make a quick trip to our local WallyWorld. Normally, I stay as far from the place as possible, it being a third world nation with the worst dressed humans I've ever seen. Need evidence, click here.

I rushed through the store and grabbed the item I needed and back at my truck I noticed an object on the ground next to the democrat-truck return area. I walked over and found a nice new FoodSaver. It had been taken from its box and laid there bare-butt naked.

I'm not the type to look a gift horse in the mouth. Took it home and thought, 'Its been trashed.' Much to my surprise when I connected the cord to power and hit the button she hummed and purred like new. Score one for me. By the way, the vacuum sealer pictured is an older model.


Tropical storm Debby has dumped a ton of rain. When I went to bed at 0300 this morning I feel asleep to a downpour. The high winds left a mess in my yard. I went out early this morning to find another mess of downed limbs in the yard. At least my newspaper had been double wrapped and was dry.

I'm afraid when our group next visits the Boar's Nest (our bug out location) we'll find the river flooded and I worry about our old travel trailer. The trailer is our storage unit and holds precious items easily spoiled by water. We need to move it to higher ground and place it high on pilings.


We drove through hard rain on our way home from Cedar Key. Not one put off by wet hair I stopped a couple of times to shop at road side produce stands. In one I purchased a jar of honey, some local and unique to this area Mayhaw jelly, a watermelon, and some fresh picked cantaloupes. Then Sweet Wife grabbed a few jars of pickled vegetables and fresh tomatoes. We ate well last evening.

If you've never tried Mayhaw jelly....I feel sorry for you. Whitehead Farms makes some of the finest jelly in our area. They are located in Lake Butler, Florida. For the adventurous among you call, 904-966-1602, they do not have a web site, and no I do not receive a penny from them. I just like their Mayhaw jelly.


The range of the Mayhaw bush...


Many of you have nicely asked about the condition and other news of Little Bit. Sad to say, I don't know. The last time Sweet Wife had a chance to visit and speak to her was May 22nd, for me it's been since June 7th. Since then we've received zero information as to her condition. My few minutes with her only revealed she'd lost weight. We are in the dark.


You guys have a great day. I need another cup of coffee. See you later.

Hey, be nice, and God bless.  And, Matt, thank you. You're a good man.


Saturday, June 23, 2012


My friend, Ben died.


You will be missed old partner...


As Evening Approaches

We strolled and ordered pizza and took a long walk and admired the locals and flowers and I snapped a couple of pictures and it was good.

Above - the news on our arrival.

Hemingway at work.

Across from our condo - the old and now abandoned Captain's Table restaurant...a sure sign of the times.

My day in a simple picture.

She went and shopped...asked my opinion and of course I liked it.

For kymber. A variety of Hibiscus not familiar to us...and here's another....

Sweet Wife really likes this variety, said, "It's a really neat one."

Above, this is a famous landmark here on Cedar Key. It's called the Honeymoon Cottage. We've watched it deteriorate for close to twenty-nine years....I don't believe it was ever used as a 'honey moon' cottage. I think its just an old fishing shake the locals used as a tourist gimmick and the local artist jumped on the band wagon and have painted it to death. I still remember when the walls stood tight and straight.


 For my friend, lotta joy. We stay at The Island Place. This is a group of privately owned condos for either purchase or rent. As far as I know only two are presently on the market. All are open to rent on either a daily or weekly basis, if not in current use by the owners. I highly recommend the Island Place. Each unit has a kitchen and most can accommodate two to three adults and a couple of rug rats. Each unit has a kitchen, normally fully equipped, a small washer and dryer, dish washer, television (if you insist on the distraction) and a land-line telephone. The office transmits a wi/fi signal, but don't depend on it. Cell phone service is very irregular. Cedar Key is located at the end of a chain of small islands connected by a causeway. It's a long way from any major town or city.

Most  visitors to Cedar Key walk. Many use golf carts. If you must drive and waste gas it'll be a short trip. Many of the local tourist traps have gone out of business. This depression has really been felt here in this small fishing village. There are two or three very fine restaurants, and one really great pizza joint.  There is but one grocery store on the island...its called, The Grocery Store. Prices are high. They do stock a fine selection of wines and other silly high end items. Shop inland and use a cooler for your milk and other perishables. Trust me.

The locals are friendly and helpful. They know on which side their breads buttered. Other than tourists the main money maker for these good folks are clams. Fresh clams can be purchased in several places along with smoked mullet and dip.

There are consignment shops and dress shops and other silly tourist clap-trap to wear you out if you can't read and relax. There is a fine world class fishing pier for the man of your life.

You may contact The Island Place at 352-543-5307. Ask for 'Gulf Side' condos. You'll want to see the water. Ask for condo 109, 108 or 107. Any above those are fine too. They also have a web site...just Google it. Reservations are highly recommended.


Island Time

I again must make this as quick as possible. My connection to the Internet here is tenuous - fleeting as the wind and I never know how long I'll have to work. So, I shall make an attempt to post pictures while I have the time, and if the God's allow, write a few words.

I'll try and answer your comments, too, but if you don't find an answer please understand I shall reply as soon as we arrive back on the mainland.

My friends, meet Hemingway. Hemingway is a six-toed cat, a direct descendant of the writer Hemingway's family of cats born in Key West. Our cat Hemingway lives here at the condo. He refuses to leave and while we're away is cared for by the buildings staff. He's coal black, and if you look carefully at his front feet you'll notice his sixth toe...see the right front foot under his belly. When we arrived he came in, jumped into my lap and gave me a good rub down. Then to Sweet Wife. He's a very nice old cat. About seven years old. He's eaten one bag of food since we arrived...just eats and sleeps. He has many friends....

Hemingway's friends arrive not long after chow is provided.

Random shots of the condo...

My office. Cover shirt in foreground.

The Storm. Notice the leading edge of the clouds, the roll. This shot is to the south and west. Its headed our way. Mere moments after I took the shot lightning forked. Wish I'd caught it on film...

View from our deck.

Another, the waters edge.

My Sweet Wife reading the menu for her birthday dinner. We had a fine meal. The chief is a three time world champion for his clam chowder.

Enough pictures. I have three novels to read and my time is limited. We made a stop on the way here and I got carried away and bought three John Sanford Prey novels. I somehow missed the last three and this weekend hope to correct my oversight. 

As I glance out I see the clouds are gray, the winds light. At the moment, life is good. Sweet Wife just left for an afternoon of shop browsing....Lord help me. So, please excuse me while I make another pot of coffee and return to the deck with my book.

Take care.


Friday, June 22, 2012

We're Here

Reception for cell and wi/fi is extremely spotty...this will be short.

We have arrived at the condo on the Gulf and all is well. Just back from Sweet Wife's birthday dinner.

Here, I hope are a few photos.

Above, a view from our condo. The deck and water.

And, that's it. Can't get the rest to download due to this very weird wi/fi service....

Anyhow, I'll try again tomorrow.


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Bits & Pieces

Beautiful day here....warm, light winds. Tropical storm dinking around out in the Gulf. As with all things in life if you want to make God laugh tell him your plans. We have a long weekend planned at Cedar Key. We leave tomorrow morning. What the heck, rainy days make for fine reading.

Tomorrow is Sweet Wife's birthday. She'll be twenty-five. (I bet she smiles if she reads this post.) Anyhow, a few days later we celebrate our anniversary. This weekend is my gift to her. She needs a break from her routine. It's been a rough year and her tears have left tracks on her cheeks which will take years erase.

I will post from Cedar Key between nap sessions. It'll be the first trip in many years without our Little Bit. She'll be missed.


Last weekend I joined my friends for a day out at our Boar's Nest. Spent some time on the range. The little (and very heavy) Detonics Pocket 9 functioned flawlessly. I'd been told she would have an awful recoil, a hurt your hand kick. Bullhockey. Her weight absorbed and she fired like a dream. I like her. She'll now replace my backup carry piece in my satchel.

I did order a spare magazine for her which are as rare as hen's teeth. Took me a while to find one but finally came across a little shop out in Kalifornia. Place called Gunclip Depot.. The final tally was a wee bit over forty dollars. Hate it when people refer to a magazine as a 'clip.' If you think you're a member of the gun culture and walk around calling a magazine a 'clip,' go buy a pair of clogs and walk a poodle......

I also wrung out my new to me Para P-12 .45. Again, flawless performance and quite accurate. Not a single hiccup.  Well worth the money paid. I love a good gun deal.

Isn't she pretty....


A few days ago my good friend, Duke, came by the shop and gave me a gift of a bag of his fresh homegrown tomatoes. Most of the bag held yellow tomatoes. Sweet, with a sharp fresh acid taste....remember the tomatoes your grandparents grew in their backyards...yeah, that kind. I took the yellow tomatoes and made a big salad last evening. So good. Thanks, Bubba.

I still have a few left over and hope to pack them down to Cedar Key. They're too good to waste and I'm the kind of fella that enjoys a good tomato with nothing more than a shaker of salt.


Business is slow this morning. Excuse me while I jerk another cup of coffee.


I took a walk this morning. Must have been around three. I have many sleepless nights of late. Anyhow, I eased down to the river and walked out to the edge of my neighbors dock and listened to the crickets and a school of mullet flip and flop from the water. I stood there, hands in pockets, for close to twenty minutes then slowly walked back and took a seat on our front porch and listened to an old owl sing a haunted song until the light of dawn.

When you hear of people speak of lonely it's not easy to relate. I believe I understand, now. Sometimes lonely hasn't a cure. It can become a permanent part of ones life. As of yesterday I'm sure my loneliness became fixed, branded on my soul.

Within the next few weeks I shall make a decision. Is life worth living without a heart....or should I simply thank God for what I have and toughen my soul with the loss and plug forward empty of happiness.

I'm weary.

P.S., Sweet Wife will be 'over' fifty tomorrow. The twenty-five was a joke....


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Thanks & Welcome

To my new friend and follower, Beth of Red Barn Farm. Beth, I promise to always answer your comments, and if I miss one, let me know and I'll correct my oversight.

Please, if you haven't as yet made a visit to Beth's farm, ride on over and say hello. I'm sure she'd enjoy your company.

Again, thanks and welcome. You are now among friends.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Waitress

She was tall, this waitress. We'd walked into the cafe and took a small table near the back. She walked over said, "Hello." Nice enough. I guessed her age at 30, kinda cute.

It took Sweet Wife all of ten minutes to decide on her selection. Me, six seconds. I wanted the seafood platter, a lot for one. The cafe was cool, felt good.

The tall waitress returned. Asked, "Where's Little Bit."

Here's the thing. We didn't know the tall waitress, never seen her before in our lives. We've patronized the cafe on many occasions, and yes, with Little Bit a few times, but we'd never revealed our names.

I was shocked. Sweet Wife gave me the look. I knew I was in trouble.

I glanced up and asked, "Do you know us?"


Then, "You asked about Little Bit."

"Yes," she said, "Just wanted to say hello to her. She's such a beautiful little girl. Seems sweet."  Sweet Wife had a very tight smile on her face. I felt like I'd been punched with a rock.

The waitress walked away with our orders. I looked at Sweet Wife, asked, "What the heck just happened?" She said, "I don't know but I bet she reads your blog."

Me, all defensive, "I've never met this woman in my life, I swear."

Her, "Sure, I bet you haven't. Then how did she'd know we're Little Bit's grandparents?"

Good question. The tall waitress returned. Smiled and said, "Stephen, Sweet Wife, what would you both like a drink?"

Okay, now I'd had enough. I said, "Excuse me, but have we been introduced in the past?"

"Oh, no, but I know you. I've read your blog for about six months now and I just love the way you write and I just love Little Bit, and I just love how you write with passion, and I'm learning so much from you. You read a lot of books don't 'ya."

All red faced, I am....from under the table Sweet Wife has kicked me at least three times. I sputtered, "Thank you. That's very kind of you. But please, how did you recognize us?"

I'm willing to bet not two people outside my family and friends are aware I write a blog. She continued, "From Susan, the weekend waitress, you know, the blonde with the curly hair. She reads your blog too and she recognized Little Bit from the picture on your blog. She pointed you out to me. She's the one that told me about your blog and said she just loves Little Bit too."

Sweet Wife is me, I can tell when she's mad. She puts on one of her looks and I know my goose is cooked.

I drop the subject and the tall waitress walks away. When our food arrives we eat in silence. I leave a generous tip and afterwards we walk, in silence, back to our car. We drive home, in silence. We park in our garage and inside our home Sweet Wife turns to me and said, "Take her picture off the blog," she punches me in the chest with her finger, "do it now."

I said, "I'll think about it."


One Brave Man

Want to see the face of agony? Then watch....

Praise the Lord and pass the cream.

H/T to Jim, at My Terlingua


Thanks & Welcome

To my two new friends, LB of and tyler north of Guys, I promise to always answer your comments.

To my other friends, please take a moment and run over and say hello to these nice folks.

I'm sorry it's taken me so very long to say thanks and welcome, but my life has been complicated of late. I do very much appreciate you hitting that little blue button.

Again, thank you and welcome. You are now among friends.


Monday, June 18, 2012

I Promise

Tomorrow I shall post....promise. At present, I'm too darn tired. It's been a long hard weekend.


Sunday, June 17, 2012


Yes, I'm still alive. I will write a post later this evening and give you all the details of my boring life.

I've three nice new followers to thank too....and shall do so as soon as possible.

Yesterday I burned a fair amount of gun powder and slung lead downrange with the 'group.' We had fun.

Sad Father's Day for me, but such is the way of life. Sorry, but I must run. Things to do, places to go.

To all the dads out there - have a great Father's Day. You deserve it.


Friday, June 15, 2012


I'm busy, busy, busy this morning. I'll be back as soon as possible. I will also post a thanks and welcome to my two new followers when I can catch my breath.

You've just got to love Father's Day for business.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

My Bag

I've always carried a satchel. She travels with me daily, sometimes slung around my shoulder, often just by its grip. We're never apart.

Its old now, handmade of leather somewhere in England and I've darn near worn it out. The satchel is filled with my business journals, reading material, and other bits and pieces. One pocket of the bag holds a backup handgun with a spare magazine.

I bet if I search long enough I could find a piece of candy and cookie crumbs left by Little Bit. My old leather satchel serves many purposes. She's part 'get home bag,' but more importantly, a transport of my shops cash and records. I need her. Let me repeat, we're never apart.

It's time to replace my old companion. It arrived this morning.

I chose canvas for my new satchel. She's soft and will mold to my body. Plenty of room.

I purchased the bag from Major Surplus, Everest brand, made in China, of course. But, she's well made. Sturdy canvas with good stitching and brass attachments.

Here's a picture of her mouth standing wide open. I've already placed a couple of items inside. My Kindle and handgun. I shall include other items when I take her home. A chunk of Paracord, a water bottle, a lighter, spare cash for when its needed, and whatever else I can find I believe I'll need in an emergency.

Between this bag and my 'get home bag' which is always in my truck I'm ready for whatever the good Lord or mother nature throws my way.

Guess I'll retire my old leather friend to the attic. She's served me well.


Thanks & Welcome

To my new friend and follower, Monsoon Matriarch. I promise to always answer your comments. It might take me a few hours, days, and in a few rare cases weeks, but you have my word, I will reply.

My new friend writes two blogs, FrugalPrep and Being Awake. Please, run over and say hello. I'm sure Monsoon would appreciate a visit.

Again, thank you and welcome. You are now among friends.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Number One Seventy Eight

Since I just can't seem to find a name for my newest follower, number one seventy eight, I must ask for help.

If you've hit my blue button in the last twenty four hours, please, leave a comment for me with your name, and if you have one, your blog link. This will allow me to properly thank you.

I'm funny that way.



Our Newspapers

Are fast disappearing. I find this disturbing news, sad. My daily paper had a short story in the money section with the news the old Times-Picayune has laid off two hundred workers. The paper will only publish three times a week. What a shame.

My morning routine as always consisted of a good cup of coffee and a print edition of our local paper. To read the paper on-line just isn't the same. I like the feel of paper, the sweet smell of ink. Though our paper is as thin as a human hair I still enjoy news I can set aside and return to after a few minutes out on the floor of the shop. I even take the comics home to my wife.

I guess it bugs me because its another piece of our history and childhood slowly fading into the mist of time. Newspapers have been a part of my life. It wasn't all that long ago I read three different papers a day, then Sweet Wife put her foot down and said enough, cost, you know. I still sneak a Wall Street Journal home time to time.

I feel sorry for New Orleans.


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Storage Container

If, like me, you foresee the day when a rifle storage container is a necessary item then you should take a look, here.

It's the U.S. Military PA117 in olive drab. Rigid and and tough, waterproof.

Just a word to the wise.


Dull Tuesday

Not much new to report. I was very busy yesterday and didn't get a chance to blog...sorry. Ran Birth Mother all over town in hopes she'd find a job. Then I had a doctor's appointment and then back home where I passed out. The evening prior I had another one of those no sleep nights. Doctor did give me a new prescription for the problem. Hope it works.

Boring stuff.

The dude with the Detonics Pocket Nine did come back and I purchased the little booger. She's a pretty and hefty little handgun. Stainless steel. Very nice shape. I'll wring her out this coming weekend.

No rain, in my area, yesterday. Lot's of thunder but zero water. Today I'm sure the rains will return but at least we had one day to dry out.

Time for work. See you nice folks later.