Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day Twenty-Four and Day Twenty-Five, Horse Shoes and Hand Grenades

I am still holed up in Elk, Washington. It is my ancestral home. I love it here; there are ranches and trees. It's like that show Bonanza. And it's an odd kind of hippie paradise. I may just retire here.

I am still in my own personal Winnebago. People are starting to knock. I have been introduced around. Friend Chris has all kinds of kin. And I have met his gal and his beautiful daughter, flowers both among women. They permitted me to dine with them this evening. I made friends with their two handsome dogs and we had beefy noodles. And ice cream. It was a beautiful evening and everyone walked away fed. Cheers!

I did yesterday have every intention of leaving. I woke up feeling just fine. But I never really got around to going anywhere. It ain't entirely my fault. I did have to type up my memoirs which rather took a while. It had been an eventful night. Then Chris showed up and poured me a couple of beers and then Chet showed up and then it was all pretty much over.

Chet is a fellow about my age. He is drinking away his troubles. He has a Suzuki Samurai he bought for four-hundred bucks. He says it's a Chevy but I wasn't fooled. It lost its top in a wreck. He replaced the windscreen and welded in a roll bar. The two seats in back are exposed. The jagged chunk of sheetmetal that serves as a sort of roof sits at about eye level and threatens to take off your head. Chet likes to ride up there.

It was his plan, not mine; I've got walking to do. But I am after all a guest here. It was his idea that we drive his little truck up the nearly vertical side of a mountain, drink beer and shoot off guns. As it was that sounded pretty good to me. I guess it's a fairly typical entertainment around here, but it was to me all so very exotic.

Of course we couldn't just take off right away. We had to wait until dark. We went over and got Tommy and his delightful friend Carrie and we killed some time eating burgers and smoking and drinking and speaking of this and that. Tom does meticulous restorations of antique cars and is building his own log home. He's almost done. It's tall, two stories with a large covered porch on one end. Carrie rides a Harley painted 1950's green.

Carrie did the driving, God bless her. Tommy sat right next to her. Chet and I sat way in the back and smoked and drank all kinds of beer. We took pains not to start any forest fires and left all our empties for the Boy Scouts. We had little protection; I guess the idea was that we should be ready to leap to safety at any time but, I don't know, you kind of get settled in.

We started out on logging roads and moved to sled roads and from there on to no roads at all. Chet's idea was that we should go straight up the side, where no man had gone before. The Suzuki Samurai is a surprisingly capable little vehicle. I took a turn at the wheel and blasted right up what seemed very much like a straight up and down hill.

Getting down was the tricky part. "Come get your truck," I yelled. I slid all the way down on my butt and handed the keys back to Chet. It was pitch black and there were cliffs and drop offs. The stars were filling the sky. But at that point they were getting a little blurry so we decided to sit on a big rock and shoot off guns. No one could hit much at this point but a good time was had by all.

The next day I planned to help put in a horseshoe pit but that never really got going. So we smoked and drank and bullshitted a bit. Elk is an earthly paradise. People have an image of life in the country. They think it's all about drinking beer and zooming around in monster trucks and shooting off guns. Well, it is. And that's as it should be.

Find me now on the morning of day twenty-six, struggling to escape this magical place. As it is, I would just as soon stay.

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1 comment:

  1. That is just hilarious sounds like some great people! You was able to catch those couple days of enjoyment and relaxing sounds like a great time and imagine tons of laughing. good for you came across such hospitable folks...keep in mind for early retirement possible. I am still laughing.

    Miss Polly