Thursday, July 1, 2010

back in the saddle

Dear Ones,

I submitted the federal grant for which I am responsible only yesterday after having worked on it since leaving Loveland the 2nd weekend of June. Better to have left town and done it afar, even out of contract, to get back to the ranch a.s.a.p. Mary immediately went to work cleaning up and preparing for guests as I have already reported in a previous blog. In this post I will try to recount the last few days since my last post.

Sunday 27 June

I noticed a poster for an event at the Ruth Marie Center that i had planned to attend. However, after hours of working on the grant, I rushed off with Mary to Alamosa about the time the oral history presentation was going to begin. Mary and I had recently attended a 'self-benefit", I'll call it by the Wildwood Sounds owners in an attempt to recoup the costs of their hosting live music in Del Norte. I was sad to have missed the Adams State sponsored cultural event as it is just this kind of activity that makes living in rural areas worthwhile. Traveling to nearby towns for groceries and the like only reveals the on-going decline in the region.

Monday 28 - Tuesday 29 June

I wound up spending all day on the grant, especially trying to deconstruct the budget the grant account sent that I had to use to tag planned activities with costs. Mary had gone out with Laura Kelso to Salida early in the morning and found me still at home poring over budgets and trying to reconcile them with what descriptions we got from principals. I was discouraged about the work, but it was close to done.

Wednesday 30 June

The grant was submitted at 1:00 pm, then Mary and I drove to Alamosa to drop off recycles and eat Thai for lunch. She had the yum neua and I had a prad krapow with fried catfish. We ran a few errands and drove back. The lunch was good, but I must say that the Pipe Dream Ranch is more appealing and inviting than any event or venue elsewhere.

Thursday 1 July (TODAY!)

I got up way to early. My brain goes off about 5 hours after I retire. And I am not particularly rested. I tend to get up and read and then go back to sleep. Before today, I'd do this then arise again at about 7:30 a.m. I am thinking of asking for accommodations from the district as I have not had success with supplements or sleep aids. Anyway, Mary got up as well and we were pretty both pretty beat after other errands, this time in Monte.

Upon returning to the ranch, Mary picked up the mail to find the addendum to the contract that was sent by the lawyers working with her mom. Nothing much was changed, the general manager still has absolute authority over decisions about the ranch. It is surprising that Mary's siblings do not understand that despite their love and confidence for the general manager, that the contract obligates the GM to no one.

She called Nat Sr. to find out why. None of the siblings was there with her, so none of the concerns Mary shared and none of the assurances Nat Sr. offered would go outside their conversation. Mary had walked back to the ranch to complete this conversation. I stayed home to nurse my back, then wound up finishing and loading the lilac bush trimmings into the trailer. I grilled burgers and veggies and now we're vegging out on a video.

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