Archives for December 2006

Quiet December Night

It’s another dark night at the ranch, in the lodge. I’m spending the evening alone, but I love the isolation and personal time out here. A few minutes ago, I got back from turning the generator off for the night. The batteries have enough juice to power a few lights, the T.V., and the computer in the lodge. They are generous to allow me to use their PC, which uses a satillite connection. It’s dark in the deep desert. The grand canyon is covered in black with nothing but the stars. The moon will probably come out later.

A bobcat came across the lawn in front of the lodge just after the sun went down. They’re not very big animals.. I watched it for a few seconds then gave it a little surprise. It took of at incredible speed down the hill and through the wash, and was gone. Since last August and I’ve seen kit foxes, coyote, antelope, bob-cats, birds of prey, and most of everything living in the Grand Canyon. We have a pet road runner which hangs out like some close friend. He ruffles his feathers when basking in the sun. I’d like to know why he does that? The bobcat was quite a treat.
In the morning, I’ll drive one of the company vans across the Arizona Strip to Saint George, 85 miles away. There are some steep dugways as you head out of Whitmore Canyon, and climb elevation, passing by the Mount Logan Wilderness Area. There’s an old pioneer school house about 13 miles north, and then there’s the endless expanse valleys and mountains. The Arizona Strip is one of the most isolated areas in the United States. National Geographic magazine calls it The Tibet of the Americas, simply because it lacks human population. The main reason why there aren’t folks living out here is because there is no natural running watera. That means no rivers or streams, except for the Rio Colorado that formed the largest canyon on Earth. Luckily the folks I work for own a private spring.  They run water through a 7-mile pipe to the ranch from the spring. It is fresh and cold. The water pressure is gravity fed.

The Arizona Strip is hard and rugged country. It takes a tough and rough human to really survive. It can be a lonesome place, but the silence is a rarity. There’s mysteries to this land. The unknown is out here. I can feel it every day.

A Few Wintry Thoughts

The frigid weather that hung around for a while is now passing. It’s warming up. It was nice in the sun, here in Cedar. So I took my dog and went for a drive out into the desert. At night, I’m dreaming again like when I was younger. These dreams are very real and inspire me to write something tonight. As for today, my brother and I devoured pizza for lunch on top of a parking lot roof, downtown, while watching smoke rise from chimneys into the blue sky. The mountains and the desert sprawled beyond the outskirts of town. There was a simple and mysterious beauty about everything. What a splendid day!

There are things that I am able to understand about this desert that doesn’t require scientific data, or the intellectuals of western civilization. I feel happy to be apart of existence, and to live on Mother Earth. I may be ignorant somewhat in the way I interpret this info, but I’m no friend of a structured life. The wasteland is in my heart, and I’m personally sovereign and happy. I haven’t been able to find this peace with Western Civilization, America, pop-culture, or around people who live by and believe in a status quo. I don’t believe humans live in a world of suffering, and I don’t believe one can only reach salvation in the next life by adhering to certain religious laws in this one. Heaven is right here on Earth and I feel the love of the Great Creator.

Before dusk, I went to an old pictograph site. I arrived just as the sun was beginning to set. The smell of light snow and juniper filled the air. The wind moved gently through the trees. There was a gentle evening glow and the sky was cloudless. The air was crisp. The silence was soothing; away from town, away from noise. Those painted images tell stories of what happened long ago. I listen to what they have to say.

This world has gone through many cycles. The one we live in may change some day. So don’t take beauty for granted. The wilderness is still amazing. There is a great unknown that lives in those hills of eternal rest… The ravens were playing tag as I watched the evening sun. Their wild conversations echoed through the canyon, bouncing off steep rock walls. The images seem to know when I pay them a visit, because I never feel alone.