Textures

Prompts and Challenges

On one of our spontaneous day trips when neither of us have a clue where we are going or where we might end up, Lynn and I came upon this rock house named, coincidentally, Rock House, out in the middle of the Mojave National Preserve in California.

Rock House
Mojave National Preserve
July 2, 2017

 

Maybe too easy for The Daily Post Photo Challenge: Textures.

But, whatever works!

 

Rock House
Mojave National Preserve
July 2, 2017

 

If you were wondering how anyone could-or would want to-live in the remote desert that is now Mojave National Preserve, take a walk along the Rock Spring Loop to find some answers.

The Rock House was constructed by Bert Smith in 1929. He came to this area to recover from poison gas exposure suffered during World War I. Doctors told him he didn’t have long to live, but the dry desert air proved so beneficial to Smith’s health that he lived here for 25 more years! The second long-term resident was artist Carl Faber, who lived and worked at the rock house in the 1980s, selling his artwork to passing travelers.

Christina Mills
Park Ranger 

nps.gov

 

Share Your World – July 17, 2017

Prompts and Challenges

Mojave National Preserve
July 2, 2017

This week, Cee Neuner asks:

What is your favorite cheese? My favorite cheese? I’m Italian! OK, maybe only half. And the other half is vegetarian so there’s a constant battle going on with my taste buds over cheese. I probably shouldn’t eat dairy and call myself vegetarian, but then I shouldn’t eat fish, either. And yet, guilty. Favorite cheese? You name it, I love it. And if you happen to name one I haven’t yet tried, I will search it out. I have heard that limburger cheese smells like feet. Maybe that’s why some people have a foot fetish? I would prefer the limburger!

Are you left or right handed? My left hand is basically useless. It does nothing. I envy people who are ambidextrous as they can do twice as much as the rest of us. I have two left feet. Why can’t I have two right hands?

Do you prefer exercising your mind or your body? How frequently do you do either? I was always tall and lanky and used to take for granted that I would always remain the same. So I exercised my mind. And now that my belly has finally caught up to my lazy lifestyle, I have begun to exercise three times a week for the last two years. Unfortunately, the belly is still there. But I enjoy going to the gym.

Complete this sentence: Hot days are … all relative. We here in the desert love to talk about the weather. But seriously, once you hit 110, every other degree is superfluous. Hot is hot. Except when it’s not. Yesterday was 109 in Las Vegas so we went north to Caliente (“hot” in Spanish) which was almost frio (“cold”) at only 95 degrees.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? Last weekend we were more than an hour north of our home when the air conditioner in my car died. I’m just glad we made it back without the dog dying. Or my wife. Or me. The repair cost me $500. I’m just grateful we weren’t further away and were able to make it home. This week I am painting and moving my desktop computer into the den. I am looking forward to completing the task by next week.

In Retrospect: Cima CA

Gallery

Just off Cima Road, where it intersects with the Cima Kelso Road, we found this railroad spur line. Littered around the area were old creosote railroad ties and spikes. Across the way is the shell of an old country store. Out in front is this ancient relic:

It no longer works. There is no coin slot, no dial tone. Behind the store is an area that resembles a graveyard for old cars and trucks:

But the photo is deceptive as the property behind the store is not quite as neat, more of a dumping ground:

And it seems like the old store has been boarded up by whatever random wood could be found lying around.

 

All photos were taken in Cima CA, part of the Mojave National Preserve , on February 28, 2015 and processed on July 12, 2017

In Retrospect: Sloan NV

Gallery

Let me just say right now, these photos were not taken in Sloan NV. The factory was nestled into the foothills somewhat southeast of the town of Sloan. There is no town or city nearby. We went off road in our (now quite dead) 2006 Hyundai Sonata and saw metal shining up in the hills so went to discover the remains of a blacktopped road washed out in spots, and a metal gate preventing us from driving any further. If you know my wife at all by now, that inconsequential gate did little to deter her. She climbed over it and I followed behind, a lamb to the slaughter. See, I always imagine that a gate means “do not enter” or “go no further” and that 300 pound rednecks with guns- gender is as inconsequential as the gate- with rifles will instantly appear. They did not. The place was deserted.

So I am enjoying rediscovering older photos of mine and reprocessing them “in retrospect”. Hope you are, too.

“The undiscovered places that are interesting to me are these places that contain bits of our disappearing history, like a ghost town.”

Ransom Riggs

Cee’s Share Your World – February 27, 2017

Gallery, Prompts and Challenges
Newberry Springs CA February 25, 2017

Newberry Springs CA
February 25, 2017

Ever ran out of gas in your vehicle? Are you kidding? Lynn and I are always at odds with filling up the gas tank. She laughs at my anal-ness (is that a word?) of filling up no later than at a quarter tank. She will wait for the warning light to go on before she even thinks about stopping for gas. But no, we’ve never actually run out of gas.

Which are better: black or green olives? Kalamata olives in a salad or on a pizza, green olives in a martini!

If you were a great explorer, what would you explore? I’m pretty much a virgin when it comes to travel so I would love to visit and explore other cultures.

Quotes List: At least three of your favorite quotes? This is tough because my favorites are not inspirational and there are so many. “Don’t let schooling interfere with your education” – Mark Twain, “Any girl can be glamorous. All you have to do is stand still and look stupid” – Hedy Lamarr, and “Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read” – Groucho Marx.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? I’ve been cutting back on my work hours and spending Tuesdays and Thursdays in the library working on a coffee table book. Last week was the first week and now I don’t want to go back to work-work. Ever! Next week? Just endless possibilities,

Thanks, as always, to Cee of Cee’s Share Your World.

Go.

Look.

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Shoshone

Gallery, Prompts and Challenges

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The town of Shoshone California, on the southeast edge of Death Valley, is one block long, if that. On one side of the road is a post office, a gas station, and a motel. On the other is a local museum, a cafe, and the Sheriff’s office. I’m not sure whether or not it’s a real sheriff’s office as the town looks a little too small to have a dedicated officer of the peace. It doesn’t even have its own fire department, for cryin’ out loud.

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I became aware of Shoshone one weekend last year as I was out driving on my own towards Death Valley and ended up in Tecopa with less than a quarter tank of gas. Tecopa is known for its hot springs and that’s it. There’s a small craft beer brewery on the outskirts of Tecopa where I stopped to ask directions to the nearest gas station. They said I could go on up the road about ten miles to Shoshone, where the gas would be about $5 a gallon, or go back to where I came from and stop in Pahrump, which was more than 3 times as far but the gas would be less than half as much. I didn’t think I’d make it back, though, so off I went to Shoshone.

And I fell in love.

The original “man cave” that kicks off this post is where the miners lived during the years the community was active. It is NOT the local motel. I actually met two travelers who were staying at the motel and they had come all the way from France. Everyone in Shoshone was friendly once you smiled. But maybe that’s true for everywhere you go. Those French people sure were nice!

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Anyway, behind the local diner, The Crowbar, was an old abandoned shack that I could only imagine belonged to the mine boss. No cave for him. His one room shack had all the comforts of home; a bed, a wood burning stove, a kitchen table and a chair. What it didn’t have was indoor plumbing. But the outhouse was only a few short steps from the front door.

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The train tracks were pulled up, melted down and recycled during WWII. The old train station no longer exists, either, but a mockup of what it looked like stands exactly where the old one did.

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Up on the hill, across from the miner’s homes, is the old cemetery.

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If, one day you decide to head on out to Shoshone or Tecopah or any part of Death Valley, please don’t go in the middle of summer. The hottest recorded temperature was 134 °F (56.7 °C) on July 10, 1913, at Furnace Creek, which is the hottest atmospheric temperature ever recorded on earth. In a typical year, the park experiences about 140 days of triple-digit temperatures, including 89 days at 110 degrees or hotter, 18 days above 120 and three days above 125. Last June, the high one day was 129.

And let me tell you, once the temperature hits anywhere above 115, there’s not much difference between that and 134.

Hot is hot!

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52 WEEKS PHOTO CHALLENGE: WEEK 22 : NATURE

Gallery, Prompts and Challenges
Glendale NV January 8, 2017

Glendale NV
January 8, 2017

We took a ride yesterday just to get out of the house. Lynn had just had another operation on her foot (the 4th in 7 years) and was going stir crazy. So I packed her and the dog into the car and, with no particular destination, we ended up in Glendale NV, which has it’s own exit off the freeway, one gas station, one permanent home, and several mobile homes. That’s about it. But, of course, I had my camera with me and did find something to shoot! 🙂

The Girl That Dreams Awake has offered the word prompt “nature” this week. I offer this image in return! Such is nature in our part of the woods- or desert, as the case may be.

52 WEEKS PHOTO CHALLEGE: WEEK 21-PEACEFUL

Gallery, Prompts and Challenges

For this week’s instalment of the 52 Week Photo Challenge, The Girl That Dreams Awake has chosen ‘Peaceful’ as the prompt.

Mt. Charleston NV November 27, 2016

Mt. Charleston NV
November 27, 2016

I get this feelin’ I may know you
As a lover and a friend
This voice keeps whisperin’ in my other ear
Tells me I may never see you again

I get a peaceful easy feelin’
And I know you won’t let me down
‘Cause I’m already standin’
Yes I’m already standin’
I’m already standin’
On the ground.”

Written by Jack Tempchin • Copyright © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

There is a beauty, and peacefulness, in the most harsh of desert landscapes.”

Written by Emilio Pasquale

Happy New Year to you all.

Peace!

52 WEEKS PHOTO CHALLENGE:WEEK 18TH -FREEDOM

Gallery, Prompts and Challenges
The View from old Route 66 Golden Valley AZ November 26, 2016

The View from old Route 66
Golden Valley AZ
November 26, 2016

So The Girl That Dreams Awake chose “Freedom” for this week’s word prompt. She chose to show birds- as in “free as a bird”. I chose the open road, since I hate to fly.

Now, let’s go see what other people think of when they think of freedom.

The American flag, anyone?

Share Your World – 2016 Week 47 (Grateful list)

Gallery, Prompts and Challenges
Cima Train Mojave National Preserve November 19, 2016

Cima Train
Mojave National Preserve
November 19, 2016

This week Cee is having a special theme for Share Your World. It is Thanksgiving in the USA and she thought we could do a grateful list for this week.  

What are you grateful for in regard to:

  1. Your home life? I am grateful I have a home. So many people do not and we see them on street corners every day asking for a handout or pushing all their personal belongings down the street in a shopping cart.
  2. Your family? I am grateful I have been given a second chance to have a family. I destroyed my family through divorce 17 years ago and was feeling pretty low and depressed for quite a while.
  3. Your blogging community? I’ve “met” a lot of great people who support and encourage me in my hobby.  
  4. Your city or immediate area in which you live? I always looked down upon Las Vegas as a place to live. But circumstances brought me here 17 years ago and I’ve learned to appreciate the abundance of things to do. Some are even free!
  5. The regional area in which you live? We are so close to so many different areas in which to savor the outdoors. The great Southwest. I have boots. Next is a cowboy hat. Then a jeep or truck and my conversion will be complete.
  6. The country where you live? I’m not too excited about the direction our president-elect seems to be taking us with the people he is choosing to surround himself with. But we are in a democracy in which we are able to protest- and I certainly will be doing so.
  7. You? It’s taken me a long time to grow up- I believe that is a problem for most men. I finally have, for the most part. But don’t ask my wife for corroboration. She’s a bit feisty that way.

Optional Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? Last week we took a day trip to Cima, in the middle of the Mojave National Preserve, which is about an hour and a half from where we live. We have been out there several times and there isn’t really anything there that we haven’t seen before. Still, I was able to get so many photos that I am still working on them this week.

Please go visit Cee’s Share Your World and share thanksgiving wishes with her. And to those of you who have taken the time to read through, Happy Thanksgiving (and please stay safe and sane through, what has to be the most asinine corporate decision of all time, the creation of Black Friday, which now starts on Thursday.)

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