The Bridge On the River Kwai

Just spent a couple of days out in the swamp.

Last trip out I transferred all my frozen meat into the 12 vDC freezer and shut down the propane refrigerator. Even at 40 percent run time the fridge was drinking about 50 to 60 pounds of propane a month. That is way to much. When I have the time I’ll try to find the problem and fix it. I looked on the internet and everything says to adjust the doors so the seals will be tighter. The instruction sort of say, “open the doors”, “adjust the hinges”, “problem solved.”

To me this is akin to your car engine not running. You look it up and find “open the hood, fix the engine, close the hood.” Guess I’ll have to study on this further.

The good news is that the 12 vDC freezer that Plume sent me worked gang busters. When I arrived yesterday it was holding a steady zero degrees and the batteries were holding up well. I still need to add some more panels and a couple of more batteries soon but for now things are great.

Amos and Hannah were up for the weekend. I always look forward to their visits. They are super company and always have something going on. This weekend we built a bridge. Regular readers are already aware of the marsh across the back of our properties and that we’ve never managed to get across it. This weekend we may have laid the groundwork for finally seeing what the back 2/3s of our properties look like. Or we may have built a bridge to nowhere.

I was negligent in taking pictures so the before pix are missing. I do img_20161113_111510298_hdrhave a few after shots.

Ok, so it doesn’t look all that impressive. It consists of three 4x6s sixteen feet long and a whole host of 2x6s four feet long. But keep in mind that we hauled these things down 17 miles of bad road in a 6 foot bed pick up. Amos tooled along at a snails pace while I followed his dust cloud. At one point I had to signal a halt when the load shifted which could have resulted in scattering our (their) bridge everywhere.

On site there was the chore of getting the wood to the marsh. Where I have several wide paths cut that I can drive down, Amos has miles of narrow twisty paths requiring negotiation. But not to worry, Amos has a converted riding mower to tow everything in place. Yeah, right.

With Hannah expertly guiding the newly christened ATV getting the freshly cut four foot 2x6s was something somewhat akin to a nightmare. Not to belittle her driving, she really did a great job. But obviously the ATV didn’t get the memo regarding its new status and kept getting stuck. Still, it was finally done.

Then came the three 4x6s. For the uninformed, a sixteen foot 4×6 weighs roughly about a thousand pounds. The ATV didn’t read the second memo and refused to budge about half way in. So we towed them in one at a time by hand.

I was in the process of writing a memo about naps when they turned to and started building. Figuring it was a moot point I tore the memo up and feeling like a British soldier in a Japanese war camp I pitched in and tried to help.

After much pain and anguish the bridge was completed. You can imagine how happy we were when we found out that the other side ended right in front of a huge stump. “Not to worry!” says I. “I have tannerite. We’ll blow the stump up!” So off I went to gather said tannerite and a large caliber weapon.

Back at the bridge we mixed the tannerite, packed it into the stump then fell back to what we thought was a safe distance. Amos took the first shot while I was in retreat with Ziggy. (the Zigster isn’t a big fan of gunshots much less huge explosions) A few minutes later I learned that he had hit it but it didn’t detonate.

So back to the stump to repack it and try again. This time I took the shot. Three shots later I could clearly see that I had hit it and still no BOOM. We gave up at that point.

On a brighter note, the swamp inspector examined the bridge and img_20161112_161804878_hdrpronounced it satisfactory.

Speaking of shooting, I saw a display a few weeks ago that left me totally impressed. Amos was out with a friend and they came by my place for some recreational target shooting. We set up some rebar out to about 40 yards. It was late afternoon so the light was failing but we weren’t going to let that stop us.

We had put some apples on the rebar at 40 yards which I thought was a waste at the time. Soon I couldn’t even see the apples. That’s when Batman took a 50 caliber black powder rifle with a scope and exploded an apple. I knew he was a good shot but had no idea he could see in the dark.

Thinking that the show was over I settled back on a five gallon bucket to watch the wind down. That’s when he pulled a pistol, announced he was shooting an apple and commenced to do it.

As best as I can tell, this guy is part bat or something. He must emit some kind of chirping or something to find his target through echo location. Till then I wasn’t sure how to peg this guy but now he has to be Batman.

Meanwhile I’ve taken another part time job that is taking up a lot of time at least for now. As a result I’m not able to spend as much time out in the boonies but my finances are beginning to look up. Hopefully in a few weeks I’ll be able to cut back and put in two or three days a week then spend the rest in the swamp.

Dear Hollywood celebrities, You exist for my entertainment. Some of you are great eye candy. Some of you can deliver a line with such conviction that you bring tears to my eyes. Some of you can scare the crap out of me. Others make me laugh. But you all have one thing in common, you only have a place in my world to entertain me.

That’s it. You make your living pretending to be someone else. Playing dress up like a 6 year old. You live in a make believe world in front of a camera. And often when you are away from one too. Your entire existence depends on my patronage. I’ll crank the organ grinder; you dance. I don’t really care where you stand on issues. Honestly, your stance matters far less to me than that of my neighbor. You see, you aren’t real. I turn off my TV or shut down my computer and you cease to exist in my world. Once I am done with you, I can put you back in your little box until I want you to entertain me again.

I don’t care that you don’t like Mr.Trump. But I bet you looked cute saying it. Get back into your bubble. I’ll let you know when I’m in the mood for something blue and shiny. And I’m also supposed to care that you will leave this great country if Trump becomes president? Ha. Please don’t forget to close the door behind you. We’d like to reserve your seat for someone who loves this country and really wants to be here. Make me laugh, or cry. Scare me. But realize that the only words of yours that matter are scripted. I might agree with some of you from time to time, but it doesn’t matter. In my world, you exist solely for my entertainment. So, shut your pie hole and dance.”


OK. So it isn’t exactly a river. More of a mud puddle maybe. But who img_20161113_111524403_hdrwants to wade through it? After I get a marker that says “River Kwai” I’ll post a pic.

One thought on “The Bridge On the River Kwai”

  1. A great start to the highway across the swamp, name it “Ingovány Trail”.
    Keep on building & soon you will have a township.
    I’m glad the bridge inspector approved your construction.
    It looks like he gave it a close going over.

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