Box Canyon Blog.com

"We are here to unlearn the teachings of the church, state, and our educational system. We are here to drink beer. We are here to kill war. We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us." C. Bukowski

NOTE: Open post and then Single Click On first Post Photo to view an album in a more detailed, larger format...

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Paint my wagon, please...


''Wherever we look there is but a wilderness of rock,'' wrote Maj. John Wesley Powell, the Colorado River pioneer and one of the first "whites" to gaze upon Moab's labyrinth of canyons. ''Deep gorges, where rivers get lost below cliffs and towers and pinnacles—ten thousand strangely carved forms in every direction—and beyond them, mountains blending with clouds.''

When it's good around here, it's really good. But when it turns ugly, it can be really, really bad. 



I write this a prisoner, held two days indoors against my will by unrelenting WIND. Three five gallon jugs of water lay toppled like Dominos. My bike hangs from a cable-lock noose, its front wheel and handlebar pointed backwards like a foot after some grotesque compound fracture of the tibia. 



Looking for a glimmer of hope, I check the ever-evolving forecast on the half-hour. It shows wind three out of the next five days and I am left discouraged. I didn't come here to be pent up indoors, watching Goldie's paint peel and fly off to oblivion. I plug away on this post for 31 minutes. Eee Gads. Now it shows wind four out of the next five days. I break like a crystal glass, shattered by mind-bending frequencies of bad vibrations. Fuck this. I'm going home. I check Ouray's forecast; wind, and snow! I check Grand Junction, wind; Virgin, wind; Denver, wind. It's even windy in Toledo. WTF? April sucks.



I can't muster the fortitude to break camp in wind. Goldie's windows shudder and rattle in the gale, smothering iPod muzak I so desperately need. Goldie's cabin rocks, buffeted by 20 to 30 mph wind with slamming gusts over 50. It's unnerving after 24 hours...torture...worse than waterboarding, I imagine.  You want terrorists to talk? Bring em here and lock em up in a broken down Rv...better yet, a tent. Yeah, a tent. Can you imagine? Guantanamo's a tropical resort compared to Moab in April. 



Thus imprisoned, I peruse the BCB Blogger Sidebar for distraction. Oh good, Jill Outside has a new post. Hmmm. Looks like she went for bike ride in similar, if not worse, conditions. What can I say; when it comes to wind I am not the man she is. I am weenie-man...a coward who wants to be a do-gooder but can't bring himself to go out in bad weather. 



Of course Jill's bike ride comes as no surprise. Little, if anything, comes between Jill and her Outside, particularly foul weather. She just traipsed nearly 300 miles, pulling a gear-sled, across Alaska's frozen tundra on the Iditarod Trail...weeks, I'm talking. Jill seems to thrive in elements that would send postmen and Green Berets packing. Maybe if I had proper clothing, you know, from REI. Right. Who has that kind of money? I'm the guy who carries trash bags in his pocket in case it rains.



Reading of Jill's conquest embracement over wind, my Self-esteem is about as devalued as a Mexican peso. I'd rather eat coyote scat than go out in this shit. I don't enjoy spending my evenings digging red sand from bodily orifices. If not for the paint-peeling sandstorm raging outside (and my well-lesioned ego) I'd be headed home. Instead, I sit here...tail between legs, sinuses imbedded with pollen, eyes watering...wearing tighty-whities tie-dyed by an amalgamated fusion of sticky red dirt and yesterday's sweat. Oh goody, it seems the hot water heater won't ignite when it's windy. What's next, Lord, Locusts? Boils? Mice?



Nerve-grating wind continues to rage outside. I think of Bobbie, all snug by her hearth. A certain loneliness settles over me and I catch myself mouthing a line from Paint Your Wagon's "They call the wind Maria" (pronounced ma-ri-ah).
And now I'm lost, So gol' darn lost, not even God can find me...

I Google the complete lyrics and read them. How oddly apropos for a bachelor in Paradise Lost...

Away out here they've got a name
For rain and wind and fire
The rain is Tess,
The fire's Joe
And they call the wind Maria
Maria blows the stars around
Sets the clouds a-flyin'
Maria makes
The mountains sound like folks was out there dyin'
Maria (Maria)
Maria (Maria)
They call the wind Maria

Before I knew
Maria's name
And heard her wail and whinin'
I had a gal
And she had me
And the sun
Was always shinin'
But then one day
I left my gal
I left her far behind me
And now I'm lost,
So gol' darn lost
Not even God
Can find me
Maria
Maria
They call the wind Maria

Out here they have a name for rain
And wind and fire only
When you're lost and all alone,
There ain't no name for lonely
I am a lost and lonely man
Without a star to guide me
Maria blow my love to me
I need my gal beside me
Maria (Maria)
Maria (Maria)
They call
The wind
Maria
Maria!
Maria (Maria)
They call the wind Maria

This post's pretty pictures courtesy of Maria's Wind taking a day off last week. Call me a weenie and I'll beat up your grandmother.

Peace out, soon to be putting Kamp Klondike in my rearview mirror...as soon as the wind lets up.

mark... 
so gol' darn lost not even God can find me.






























One of the weirdest petroglyph characters I've ever seen...not far from Tower Arch

19 comments:

  1. You had me laughing and chuckling loudly for the full read!! plus as usual enjoyed your gorgeous photos of stunning formations and colors of the earth and sky. A very pleasurable armchair experience for us readers :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Forgot to mention about "Jill Outside" - I used to read her blog but jeeze, she's a hardy soul!!! I couldn't bare to read about her hardships anymore, so I opted out of her blog cause it was too painful to read . . . not even her purdy photos could entice me back :(

      Delete
    2. I kinda know what you mean. However, I find her inspiring...like when the going gets really tough I catch myself saying "what would Jill do? She wouldn't let a little wind stop her." Sometimes I need a little extra "push," you know, since I'm older than this red dirt playground :)
      Interesting...I'm glad you followed up.
      Is there such a thing as too much? too risky? What defines us, our jobs? our noble deeds? what we do after work? Church? School?
      I know what gets me up in the morning. It involves challenge, some risk, and hours on some trail...preferably one that peters out and leaves me wondering what's around the next corner.

      Delete
  2. You made me laugh a LOT, and the photos were gorgeous. So nice to get out there virtually and imagine the slickrock, although I still don't like imagining riding the way you do.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Love the broken tibia imagery 😋

    ReplyDelete
  4. WTF! I liked your Grand Finale post and was hoping you were heading home the next day. So now here I am all comfy in my man chair, roaring fire a goin a slice of pizza in one hand a glass of a red blend table side and outside the sun and showers are caressing our snug little bungalow here along the Russian River, but I do feel for you though, so just keep this in mind next year when April rolls around would ya?
    Pack up now and get the hell out, wind ain't going to kill you, I hope not any way.:)
    Just looked at the Ouray web cam and it looks sunny & inviting.
    Head on out now

    ReplyDelete
  5. WTF! I liked your Grand Finale post and was hoping you were heading home the next day. So now here I am all comfy in my man chair, roaring fire a goin a slice of pizza in one hand a glass of a red blend table side and outside the sun and showers are caressing our snug little bungalow here along the Russian River, but I do feel for you though, so just keep this in mind next year when April rolls around would ya?
    Pack up now and get the hell out, wind ain't going to kill you, I hope not any way.:)
    Just looked at the Ouray web cam and it looks sunny & inviting.
    Head on out now

    ReplyDelete
  6. Misery loves company. 35 degrees and windy here in MO. Sigh..

    ReplyDelete
  7. Ha, I can relate to your description of being trapped in an rv by the wind. I am usually pretty comfortable in my rig, but it seems to become smaller as the wind keeps blowing. It's probably no consolation, but it is blowing here along the eastern Sierras as well.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I won't rest easy till you are back home with Bobbie. And BTW, I just can't get the song by Christopher Cross "Sailing Away" out of my head. -Scamp

    ReplyDelete
  9. I think many of us across the country will agree with your statement "April sucks"! Sitting through our 3rd Sunday in a row of wind and snow here in IL. We usually have the camper out by now and are getting ready to put the planter in the field. Go away winter!!! Your beautiful pictures give us hope that we'll get outside one of these days.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Oh how I hate the desert wind.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Wind and cold in Arkansas was just as bad. We bought a stack of 16ft insulation board at estate sale for FIVE dollars for the whole stack...nobody else was dumb enough to want to load it in this wind. :) nothing like being cheap!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Lordy, you have a way with words! Whatever happened to the novel you were thinking of writing???

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I could write a novel on the writing of that book (sigh).

      Delete
  13. You have me guffawing here! You are hilarious when you're mad at the wind! You're making me feel better that I'm not there. I live near Jill, and yes, we've been having wind like yours. I got slammed to the ground by it the other day, and I have a huge hip bruise to show for it. Despite your very negative picture of it, I'm dying to know where Kamp Klondike is. We've explored near there, and we've never found a decent looking place to camp. (kynabear5@gmail.com if you care to share).

    I guess that you won't still be in Moab in May. Ah well - that's our next window of opportunity.

    ReplyDelete
  14. laughed and laughed at some of the images you managed to place in my mind..thanks for that. The wind does have a way of rattling not just the windows but but our psyche as well. We've often been hunkered down in those gusts. The silence and sense of quiet that follows makes our exhales deeper, oh and the inhales too. Hope you are on your way to those high mountain inhales and exhales now!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hi Mark. I just came across this older post. Thank you for the laugh. As you know I went to Moab with my Dad around this time, and agree that the desert wind is something special. It's wholly different living in it than just getting out for an hour-long ride.

    Anyway, despite my general theme of recreating in bad weather, I don't think it's one of life necessities. I just really like to go outside. Also, I can see from your commenters that my blog veers toward complaints too often. I admit for most of 2017 I was not at my best. My general life outlook is so much better when my body chemistry is balanced.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jill, thanks for your comment. So glad you are getting back to "normal." Recall about a year ago, when you were in the depths of "Hell," I predicted, "Next year about this time you will look back on "this" as just a bad dream." or something to that effect, which didn't help you in the NOW of it. I have a niece who went through similar hyper thyroid problems and it took a long time to regulate and adjust to meds (had her thyroid removed!!!).
      Cheers, and get outside :)
      mark

      Delete

The Box Canyon Blog is an interactive site. Don't just sit there, PARTICIPATE !!!