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June 20, 2022 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Don’t call me Maria

Mountain meadow with snow capped Rocky Mountains in background. (© image copyrighted, all rights reserved, no permissions granted)

Mountain meadow with, yes, snow on peaks in the background.(© image)

This is it. Where I’ve been.

Although the hills are alive with the sounds of mountain music, just not the perky Maria Von Trapp

Oh, Ok, so I strummed a few guitar chords during the Dylan / Peter, Paul, and Mary era, didn’t everyone?

The truth is that news on medical front is not going as we had hoped. That considered, I made an executive decision, tossed everyone and a bit of everything in the car, and headed to the mountains for a brief respite. Away from it all.

A friend offered us the use of their recently purchased river front, ski country condo – older, worn, and needing some serious “updating” – but it worked fine for us – especially since Molly Malamute was also welcomed without reservations.

View towards ski slope from the balcony. (© image, copyrighted, all rights reserved, no permissions granted)

View from the balcony. The river is just a few yards down the hill. Ski lift is the bare line on the left. The children’s ski school bunny hill to the right of the main ski slope. Yes, that is a couple of snow patches still remaining. Snow was still lingering when we departed.(© image)

It’s off season there and very quiet except for contractors bringing in new carpet and doing work on some units. Fine for us.

Most of the week was spent walking trails, crossing bridges as chilled snow melt rivers chased under – one moose on the loose sighting – and just sitting on the balcony listening to birds, the river, and the Aspen trees.

Molly was enchanted with the fenced balcony because of the sloping ground, she was some 5-6 feet higher than the trail below. She was Queen of the Tower when other dogs came by – dog friendship without any risk of pack order “conversations” and stress.

As it turned other others were also enjoying the peace and quiet away from the maddening crowd.

From bridge over the Snake river which was flowing rapidly from snow melt. (© image copyrighted, no permissions granted, all rights reserved.)

One of Molly’s viewing favorite spots. From a bridge over the Snake river which was flowing rapidly from snow melt. Such a lovely sound. (© image.)

Doing nothing much did bubble up somethings to ponder

  • Some new cars are taking the wheel. Is that really a good idea? One commercial shows a couple driving up to a Bar/restaurant after a day of SUV-ing around nature. A common obstacle in the parking lot will not dampen their mood. So what if the only available space is a much too narrow one between a pickup and a car? No problemo. They get out of the car, and the driver directs the car to move forward and self park itself – which it does neatly. Works as successfully as a well trained German Shepherd. Smugly they go inside. Sure looks like there’s no way for the driver of the car on the right to get in unless he crawls through his passenger side door and slides across …or maybe wiggles through his sun roof. Not to mention the passenger of the truck can’t get in that vehicle either. Hmmm. Around here, the pretty couple might come out to find some irate person has taken a baseball bat or tire iron to the side of their car. The commercial showing a clever gimmick, but maybe not a smart one. Right now people are so hair trigger, best not ask for trouble?
  • From the “Don’t know whether to laugh or cry” files: the handwriting is on the wall…A doctor friend relayed Friday afternoon’s office drama. One of the front office girls was hurrying down the back office hallway – with tears in her eyes. What was wrong? “That patient’s husband was mean to me,” she wailed. The problem? He said she needed to work on her handwriting. Apparently, the older man, being given a page with instructions and his wife’s next appointment, couldn’t decipher what had been scribbled  by the employee on the page. The doctors said to the office girl, “Look, his wife is important to him and he wants to make sure he’s got the necessary information correct. Just smile and help him out here. Haven’t you heard the customer is always right?” “But he was MEAN to me,” she repeated. Believe it or not the young employee huddled in the back office and sniffled with hurt feelings until the man left. “I feel like I’m raising kids both at the office and home,” the doc said to us. Commenting on handwriting has now become a micro-aggression and, possibly, a hate crime.
  • Windmills go round. West Texas has flocks of windmills on the mesas. In the past they always seemed like sculptures, until closer examination presented some cracks in their myths. Near the Baca ranch/Amarillo area, it was pretty disturbing to see the majority of the ghostly spinners have black stains streaking their stems. Then there were all these windmill broken arms and tower pieces piled up like a dinosaur boneyard not far from the feedlots and Cadillac Ranch. Some of the once angelically  white components showed scorched and burned areas. Hope there’s not an unexpected future of hazardous waste being created.
Yellow wildflowers along the river. (© image copyrighted, all rights reserved, no permissions granted)

Some sunshine land-leashed? Wildflowers along the river. Molly was frequently wearing a dusting of yellow on her muzzle. (© image)

We’ve wandered back here. Sweltering heat and simmering thoughts.

Molly upon returning, has made it quite clear she’d prefer the frequent Colorado walks in the mountain air – even with a touch of AZ wildfire smoke one morning.

The paw chilling snowmelt running across the paths? Oh, her leaps across weren’t avoidance – only exhilaration and enthusiasm. Really.

We’ve promised we’ll take her back – a much more appropriate environment for her, after all.

Paws crossed this week, as we regroup. Will blog as time and focus allows.

Anyway, meanwhile, please don’t call me Maria. Maybe Mariah?

Ain’t no mountain high enough.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.



Leave a Comment
  1. easyweimaraner / Jun 20 2022 7:10 am

    we have this windmill wrecks here too… we wonder maybe don coyote was there to fight them?

    Liked by 3 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 20 2022 7:32 am

      The most reasonable explanation ever! They don’t seem to be ice age casualties. Thanks for spinning that over this way.


  2. disperser / Jun 20 2022 7:50 am

    Yeah, the whole self-parking and self-driving thing have a dark side . . . people will forget (or not even learn) how to operate their vehicles. Perhaps a good thing, given the quality of some drivers.

    As for windmills . . . there are always compromises, and looking at things in isolation always paints a distorted picture. Not a fan of them myself, but if we’re talking oil spills, pipelines and wells win hands down. Also, leaky cars, and people doing their own oil change and not properly disposing of the oil, are a thing (less than it was).

    As are old junkers strewn in various places (perhaps we’ll come to see old windmills with the same nostalgia old rusting cars evoke). There are no easy solutions, but the answer isn’t to stop looking and continue as we’re going. Not that I’m against continuing as we’re going . . . I ain’t got no kids, so I’m not particularly interested in sacrificing anything.

    And yes, I miss the mountains of Colorado. Not enough to move back there, but some fond memories of the sounds, smells, and vistas (except the smoke and fires).

    We had talked about a visit to Yellowstone this year . . . but maybe we’ll wait until they rebuild the roads. The parks have already been crowded for the last few years (even prior to COVID) and with restricted access, it’ll now be even more difficult to get a spot for a visit.

    As an alternative, maybe a trip to the Great Lakes (the Upper Peninsula). Great memories from there as well.

    Take care, stay cool, and here’s hoping for better news on the medical front.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 20 2022 8:30 am

      You have to wonder if something has stepped in to save Yellowstone. That poor park has been so over used – just like predicted a long time ago. We used to go there every year as I was growing up. The first dramatic change I remember was a massive fire – in the mid ’80’s? A return trip a few years later just emphasized “you can’t go back”.
      The car thing is just as you said…many can’t even drive stick shift anymore – missing a lot of fun there…especially in traffic or stopped on an incline. HA Ha. Oddly I think rusted vehicles and farm equipment are rather intriguing – even beautiful in a way – with stories to tell. But not obviously collected and piled up. The windmill piles were weird. But don’t worry, we also saw lots of repair trucks on site – and more and more blades being trucked in. A good supplemental source still in development
      Agreed we need find better sources while carefully tweaking and improving what sources we have. Noticed Germany today is firing up old coal plants …not a good thing. Actually the US oil industry, with all the technology used in the fields, is one of the most efficient and cleanest in the world(much safer & eco friendly than moving by trucks or trains) Still horrible accidents happen…Venezuela’s the worst about cleanly producing oil – which is why the US should not be supporting that industry there..and there’s the weird habit in certain other countries of tapping/breaking into the pipelines to steal oil…then leaving the gashed pipe to continue to flow. No easy answers, but need to keep looking – while trying to keep quality of life. Do not want to slip back…sliding enough as it is…
      Ah, the Great Lakes sound fabulous – a nephew lives/works up there (works in an electric/alternative fuel/experimental vehicle design/engineering division). Every summer his Upper Peninsula vacation pix lure. Good plan!
      Thanks for traveling this way to comment

      Liked by 1 person

  3. walkingoffthechessboard / Jun 20 2022 8:11 am

    Love that picture of the Snake River. Hope you are doing better on the medical front. Maybe if the handwriting was actually on a wall it would have been easier to read? Nah, probably not.

    Liked by 2 people

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 20 2022 8:33 am

      On a blackboard perhaps – in view for everyone to see and rate ability? Now there’s a though. HaHa.(How many can’t even sign their name well now? Good think banks are electronic instead of writing paper checks these days)
      Thanks for penning an astute comment

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Kate Crimmins / Jun 20 2022 9:38 am

    Not sure what “mean” means. I can’t read this can you rewrite doesn’t sound mean to me. Maybe a tad sensitive? Fortunately everything around here is entered in a program and at the end you get a printed version of follow up instructions. I’m glad about that. I get amnesia when a doctor talks. Can’t remember a damn thing after I take my clothes off!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. SusanR / Jun 20 2022 10:07 am

    My doctors also provide printouts of all instructions. Except for the vet this week, who had to handwrite the label on Rowdy’s new med because of a printing problem in the office.

    The best night’s sleep I ever had was at a house in Snowmass where a river flowed by just feet from my open window. Exquisite. Hope your trip brought similar healing vibes.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. The Coastal Crone / Jun 20 2022 12:05 pm

    A cool place to go to get out of the Texas heat!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. shoreacres / Jun 20 2022 12:40 pm

    There’s a reason so many yachties head to the mountains in summer. There’s a strange absence of anyone around just now except kids’ sail campers and boat workers. If I were a rich woman — tralalalalalala… Just call me Tevynia!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Bookstooge / Jun 20 2022 2:31 pm

    Oh boy, if that is “mean”, that kid is going to have a miserable life. What she needs is an older brother and a younger brother to toughen her up.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. cat9984 / Jun 20 2022 5:03 pm

    Hope things improve medically

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Anne Mehrling / Jun 20 2022 6:50 pm

    What a refreshing respite!!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Helen Devries / Jun 21 2022 7:24 am

    That looks a wonderful place to visit….off season.
    Having handwriting which looks as if a spider had fallen into the ink pot the typists at work rejoiced when i bought a word processor when they first came out…..I shudder to think how the young receptionist would have reacted.
    Hoping for better news on the health front.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Ally Bean / Jun 21 2022 12:07 pm

    Your getaway seems idyllic to me. I’ve never been anywhere outdoorsy like that in years.

    Gotta laugh about “Commenting on handwriting has now become a micro-aggression and, possibly, a hate crime.” Poor child so unfairly singled out by the mean old man! Funny story, sad story

    Liked by 1 person

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