"There is no limit to what a man can do or where he can go if he doesn't mind who gets the credit." - President Ronald Reagan.

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Tuesday, June 30, 2020

007: "No Time To Die" Item

A small package arrived today from the U.S. west coast office of "Q Branch" of MI6, more commonly known as the British Secret Service.

Strangely enough, it is located in the San Fernando Valley on Woodley Ave. in Van Nuys, California. I'm not going to give out the address, since I've said too much already.

It is a souvenir key ring for No Time To Die, the purported last Daniel Craig James Bond movie. It was originally scheduled to premiere in April, but COVID-19 forced it to be premiered in November.

Here it is:

Mount Rushmore Independence Day Fireworks Called "Glorifying White Supremacy" By DNC


Just when one may think that the Democrat Party couldn't get any loonier, they come up with a new doozy.

From National Review:
In a since-deleted tweet, the Democratic National Committee accused President Trump of “holding a rally glorifying white supremacy” by attending the fireworks display at Mount Rushmore on Independence Day. 
“Trump has disrespected Native communities time and again. He’s attempted to limit their voting rights and blocked critical pandemic relief. Now he’s holding a rally glorifying white supremacy at Mount Rushmore — a region once sacred to tribal communities,” the DNC tweeted early Tuesday morning. The tweet linked to a story by The Guardian, which reported that some Native American groups are planning protests at Mount Rushmore in response to Trump’s expected attendance on July 3.

Here's the now-deleted Twitter post:

Anyone who votes for Democrats needs to have their head examined.

To read more of the National Review article, go here.

Red Rock Park Spotlighted In Latest Motorhome Magazine

Above, Red Rock Park's Church Rock. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

The latest issue of Motorhome magazine (cover date August 2020) arrived in the mailbox a few days ago.

It is a rather "slim" issue of only 58 pages.

However, one item did catch my attention. A photograph of a familiar rock formation was included in the Escape Crossroads section. It was of Church Rock near Gallup. The photo accompanied a short "spotlight" article on Red Rock Park, where Church Rock is located.

Above, The Beast at Red Rock Park Campground in December 2018. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

The article highlights the eight miles of hiking trails and the 157 RV sites at Red Rock Park's campgrounds. I stayed there once. It was for the 2018 Red Rock Balloon Rally that didn't go off quite as planned as a snowstorm came into the area the morning of the balloon ascensions. The 2019 Red Rock Balloon Rally went off far better, despite temperatures in the 20s.

Above, The Beast at Red Rock Park Campground the next morning. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

The last I heard, the COVID-19 pandemic has closed all facilities at Red Rock Park. Anyone interested in camping there should check to see if they are open.

Monday, June 29, 2020

John Wayne's Son Responds To Democrats' Resolution On Airport

Above, Ethan and John Wayne in Big Jake.

John Wayne's youngest son, Ethan, responded to the Orange County Democrats who want to remove Wayne's name from John Wayne Airport.

Fox News reported:
John Wayne’s son is speaking out after California Democrats in Orange County recently demanded that the county’s John Wayne Airport be renamed and all likenesses of Wayne be removed from the airport, over “racist and bigoted statements” made by the American icon decades ago.

The resolution, which passed on Friday, is asking the county's board of supervisors to restore the name to Orange County Airport. 
In a statement to Fox News on Monday, Ethan Wayne said: "Let me make one thing clear -- John Wayne was not a racist. I know that term is casually tossed around these days, but I take it very seriously. I also understand how we got to this point.

"There is no question that the words spoken by John Wayne in an interview 50 years ago have caused pain and anger," Ethan continued, referencing the late actor’s 1971 interview with Playboy. "They pained him as well, as he realized his true feelings were wrongly conveyed."

In the interview at the time, Wayne is quoted saying, “I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people.” He also said he felt no remorse for the subjugation of Native Americans and called movies such as “Easy Rider” and “Midnight Cowboy” perverted. 
Ethan, who is Wayne's youngest son and president of John Wayne Enterprises, went on to say in his statement on Monday: "The truth is, as we have seen in papers from his archives, he did not support 'white supremacy' in any way and believed that responsible people should gain power without the use of violence. 
"Since his death more than 40 years ago, his legacy continues through the John Wayne Cancer Foundation, which has helped provide courage, strength and grit to the fight against cancer, and through his extensive film library. My father believed that we can learn from yesterday, but not by erasing the past. His name, no matter where it is, will always embody these values, and our family knows the positive impact that he made on the world will never be diminished," Ethan concluded his statement.
The push to oust Wayne, who was a longtime county resident, from the airport's name has a lengthy history. The airport, which is in the heart of Orange County, dates back decades and county officials voted to change the name to remember Wayne when he died
Deanne Thompson, an airport spokeswoman, has previously said the county has no plans to change the name or remove a statue of Wayne from the airport, though the issue comes up periodically, including last year.
To read the full article, go here.

72-Year-Old Woman Gored By Bison At Yellowstone

Above, a Yellowstone bison relaxing on a hill. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

There are reasons why national park rangers tell people to keep their distances from wild park animals.

The following is a good reason why.

The Casper Star-Tribune reported:
A72-year-old woman from California was gored by a bison in Yellowstone National Park after approaching the animal multiple times to take its photo. 
The woman, who moved to within 10 feet to take the picture, sustained multiple wounds Thursday evening and was flown to Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center in Idaho Falls, the park said in an announcement. Rangers first provided her with immediate medical care. The incident happened at her Bridge Bay Campground campsite.

I have taken many photos of bison during visits to Yellowstone National Park, all have been through telephoto lenses.

To read more, go here

10 Japan Love Hotels To Suit Every Taste

Above, the entrance to an Osaka love hotel near Dotonbori. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Japanophiles are familiar with pretty much all aspects of Japanese culture and that would likely include the "love hotels".

What is a "love hotel"?

Savvy Tokyo has an article on them and they it start with:
These 10 love hotels are perfect whether you’re a first-timer or a veteran ‘rabuho’ guest. 
What do you do if you’ve found somebody special, but aren’t really digging the thought of bringing them back to your tiny apartment, in need of a spicy adventure in your love life, or on the look of a really special Staycation? Go to a love hotel (ラブホテル) of course! 
What’s a Love Hotel again? 
A love hotel is basically a facility that offers short stays—by the hour or for one night only. A rest or short stay can range from 2-4 hours and cost between ¥2,900-¥7,000 depending on the date, hotel, and room type. On the other hand, a stay or overnight can cost anywhere from ¥3,900 to well over ¥20,000. These prices are of course all before tax and don’t include any room service, extra amenities, or costume rentals. 
To read more, go here

President Trump Weighs In On John Wayne

Above, John Wayne in The Sons of Katie Elder (1965).

A few minutes ago, President Trump Tweeted:

Newbie RVing Essential Tips

Above, The Beast at the Elk City, Oklahoma KOA Kampground. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Since the pandemic has essentially drove a stake into the hearts of air and cruise line travel (at least for the time being), recreational vehicles are looking more attractive for people who have suffered "cabin fever" at home for the past four months. They're now buying RVs in droves or renting them.

A lot of them (probably the majority) have never used a RV before and Do It Yourself RV has some RVing tips that they should take note of.

They begin with:
At its core, RVing is simple; pile the kids and the dog into a rolling efficiency apartment and hit the road. In reality, if you are new to RVing, there are a few things you really must know before you get started.

To read more, go here

Sunday, June 28, 2020

More Dry Weather To Friday

Above, outside this evening. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

A few minutes ago, I checked the National Weather Service website on the weather forecast for the coming week.

The first part of the week includes a Red Flag Warning for strong winds and low humidity. The Red Flag Warning covers over half of New Mexico and the whole state of Arizona.

But, there is the possibility of showers and thunderstorms beginning Friday (20% chance at present). We sure could use the rain here. We're supposed to be in monsoon season now through September.

This week's forecast:

Partly cloudy, with a low around 57. Southwest wind 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 30 mph.
Sunny, with a high near 81. Windy, with a southwest wind 15 to 20 mph increasing to 25 to 30 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 40 mph.
Monday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 50. Windy, with a southwest wind 20 to 30 mph decreasing to 5 to 15 mph after midnight. Winds could gust as high as 40 mph.
Sunny, with a high near 78. West wind 5 to 15 mph.
Tuesday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 47. West wind 5 to 15 mph.
Sunny, with a high near 82.
Wednesday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 52.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 82.
Thursday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 55.
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 84.
Friday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly cloudy, with a low around 58.
Independence Day
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 86.
Saturday Night
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly cloudy, with a low around 58.
A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, with a high near 86.

Christmas Feed

This morning began as a typical Sunday morning for me.

Most of it consisted of doing laundry and changing the bed sheets. But after that, I was free to do whatever my mood at the time moved me.

It had been a while since I last gave Christmas some carrots. I bought a large bag of them the other day and gave her a half dozen of them.

She was at the opposite end of her pen and as soon as she saw me arrive in the Jeep (she recognizes it and gives it a good look whenever I drive by her pen), she came right over.

Speaking of the Jeep, since I put a can of Berryman B-12 carburetor cleaner into the gas tank, I have had no stalling or hesitation problems. Hopefully, that cleaned the carburetor needle valve so it won't stick.

Naturally, I took a few photos (some friends have literally asked me to post more horse photos).

Here's some of them:

Dr. King and The Duke

Above, John Wayne by Norman Rockwell.

The radical left Democrats have a campaign to tear down statues, monument and even portaits (in the U.S. Capitol) of people they don't like over alleged racism.

The latest is a move by Orange County, California Democrats to rename John Wayne Airport over remarks made in a Playboy interview in 1971.

From Fox News:
California Democrats in Orange County are demanding that the county’s John Wayne Airport be renamed and all likenesses of Wayne be removed from the airport, over “racist and bigoted statements” made by the American icon decades ago.

“The Democratic Party of Orange County condemns John Wayne’s racist and bigoted statements, and calls for John Waynes’ name and likeness to be removed from the Orange County airport, and calls on the OC Board of Supervisors to restore its original name: Orange County Airport,” the resolution, passed Friday, says. 
The resolution, first reported by the Los Angeles Times, calls on the Orange County Board of Supervisors to reverse the 1979 decision to rename it after Duke, and cites remarks he made in a 1971 interview with Playboy. 
“I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people,” he said in that interview nearly 50 years ago.
The way I see the comments, he was saying that black people should not be just handed positions of leadership and authority if they aren't educated enough to shoulder responsibility. His general emphasis was not skin color, it was education.

The Wayne Family answered the critics back in February when the controversial interview was posted in social media.

From Fox News:
John Wayne’s family is speaking out after the late actor’s 1971 interview with Playboy resurfaced on social media, resulting in outrage and a fiery debate. 
“We hope America remembers John Wayne as we do: a devoted family man, great friend and cherished actor on the big screen, as well as for his continuing work to find a cure for cancer through the John Wayne Cancer Foundation and the John Wayne Cancer Institute,” the John Wayne Family wrote in a statement to Fox News.

“It’s unfair to judge someone on something that was written that he said nearly 50 years ago when the person is no longer here to respond,” the statement continued. “Regardless of color, ethnicity or sexual preference, [our] father taught us to treat all people the same, with respect.” 
Wayne was also asked about educator/activist Angela Davis and discrimination. He responded, “With a lot of blacks, there’s quite a bit of resentment along with their dissent, and possibly rightfully so. But we can’t all of a sudden get down on our knees and turn everything over to the leadership of the blacks. I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people.” 
Lewis then shot back at Wayne, asking if the actor was equipped to judge “which blacks are irresponsible and which of their leaders inexperienced.” Wayne responded, “It’s not judgment. The academic community has developed certain tests that determine whether the blacks are sufficiently equipped scholastically. But some blacks have tried to force the issue and enter college when they haven’t passed the tests and don’t have the requisite background.” 
“I don’t know why people insist that blacks have been forbidden their right to go to school,” continued Wayne. “They were allowed in public schools wherever I’ve been. Even if they don’t have the proper credentials for college, there are courses to help them become eligible. But if they aren’t academically ready for the step, I don’t think they should be allowed in. Otherwise, the academic society is brought down to the lowest common denominator. 
“… There has to be a standard. I don’t feel guilty about the fact that five or 10 generations ago these people were slaves. Now, I’m not condoning slavery. It’s just a fact of life, like the kid who gets infantile paralysis and has to wear braces so he can’t play football with the rest of us. I will say this, though: I think any black who can compete with a white today can get a better break than a white man. I wish they’d tell me where in the world they have it better than right here in America.”
Wayne was echoing what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said about black and education, although, admittedly, not so artfully articulated.

King said:
“It seems to me that education has a two-fold function to perform in the life of man and in society: the one is utility and the other is culture. Education must enable a man to become more efficient, to achieve with increasing facility the legitimate goals of his life.”

“At this point, I often wonder whether or not education is fulfilling its purpose. A great majority of the so-called educated people do not think logically and scientifically. Even the press, the classroom, the platform, and the pulpit in many instances do not give us objective and unbiased truths. To save man from the morass of propaganda, in my opinion, is one of the chief aims of education. Education must enable one to sift and weigh evidence, to discern the true from the false, the real from the unreal, and the facts from the fiction.”  
“But I believe as we struggle with these problems, we’ve got to struggle with them with a method that can be militant but at the same time does not destroy life or property. And so our slogan must not be ‘Burn, baby, burn.’ It must be, ‘Build, baby, build.’ ‘Organize, baby, organize.’ Yes, our slogan must be ‘Learn, baby, learn,’ so that we can earn, baby, earn.”

To read more, go here.

Diamond Lake and High Cascades

Above, The Beast at the Diamond Lake RV Park. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

During my 2017 Great American Eclipse trip, I headed into Oregon to the Crater Lake National Park Area. Since I didn't have any campsite reservations at the national park, I stayed instead at the nearby Diamond Lake RV Park.

The visit into the area was slightly marred due to wildfires in the area. A firefighter encampment was about a mile away from the RV park.

Still, the area was beautiful and Diamond Lake is a great place to visit. Beware! There was no WiFi during my stay and I found Oregon to have non-existent to spotty (at best) cell coverage from the time I left Idaho to Bend, Oregon.

The News-Review has an article on Diamond Lake.

It begins with:
The High Cascades in eastern Douglas County offer stunning beauty with mountains, forests, wildlife, waterfalls and some of the best high lakes fishing in the Northwest.
The biggest lake in Douglas County is about 80 miles east of Roseburg. Diamond Lake is known as the Gem of the Cascades and the 10,000 acre lake’s fishery is legendary. 
The area draws visitors from all over the world. Because of the close proximity to Crater Lake National Park, many people from around the country and from many other countries will stay at Diamond Lake and make the short 20 mile trip to visit the national park. 
“We, here at the lodge, have 41 cabins and 50 motel rooms,” said John Jonesburg, marketing and events coordinator for Diamond Lake. “And there are 100 summer homes on the west shore that are privately owned.” 
The resort has motel rooms, cabins, studio units, campsites and an RV park where visitors can make their home base to see the whole area.

To read more, go here

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Remington Arms Filing Chapter 11; May Be Sold To Navajo Nation

Above, a box of Remington 9mm cartridges. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

This is one business deal that could prove to be quite interesting if it comes into fruition.

Reuters reported:
June 26 (Reuters) - Remington Arms Co, America’s oldest gun maker, is preparing to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection that could come as early as Sunday night and is in advanced talks for a sale to the Navajo Nation, according to a source familiar with the matter. 
The Native American tribe is planning to vote to approve the deal as soon as Friday, the source said. The tribe previously had bid for Remington, planning to drop its most controversial semi-automatic rifles, the New York Times has reported. 
U.S. retailers have placed restrictions on gun sales after school shootings, hurting manufacturers such as Remington. A Remington Bushmaster rifle was used in the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting in Connecticut in 2012 that killed 20 children and six adults, making it central to debates over gun policy. 
The gunmaker has filed for bankruptcy before, in March 2018 after sales faltered and the company had trouble meeting requirements of its lenders.
I personally don't own any Remington firearms, but I have purchased their cartridges (such as the box of 9mm cartridges shown at top).

To read more, go here

Mount Fuji Officially Closes, Barricades Placed

Above, a view of Mount Fuji from a Shinkansen train. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Thanks to COVID-19, the governments of Shizuoka and Yamanashi have packed up Mount Fuji and put it into storage for the remainder of the year.

Well, not exactly, but the mountain is now officially closed.

SoraNews 24 reported:
In an ordinary year, we’d be just a few weeks away from the start of Mt. Fuji’s climbing season, with hikers headed up Japan’s tallest mountain to rise above the summer heat and appreciate the country’s natural beauty from a one-of-a-kind vantage point. 
2020 has been anything but ordinary, though, with the coronavirus disrupting just about all aspects of life. So instead of officially opening the mountain to hikers on July 10, as had been the plan, the governments of Shizuoka and Yamanashi Prefectures recently announced that Mt. Fuji (which straddles the border between the two prefectures) will be closed to visitors for the entire summer, and in effect the remainder of the year, since the climbing season was scheduled to end on September 10. 
They’re serious about the restriction, too. This week Yamanashi’s Fujiyoshida City, where the Yoshida Trail (one of the most popular routes to the peak) starts, installed barricades to prevent hikers from making their way up Fuji’s slopes.

 To read more, go here.

Sheriff Warns Of Anti-Gun Governor On Biden’s VP Short List

Above, Sheriff Tony Mace addresses the 2nd Amendment Rally in Santa Fe on January 31. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Cibola County's Sheriff Tony Mace certainly does get around.

He was recently interviewed about New Mexico Gov. "Malevolent Michelle" Lujan Grisham being on Joe Biden's "short list" of potential vice presidential running mates and he warns that she has a decidedly anti-gun outlook.

According to Bearing Arms:
New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham has emerged on the short list of potential running mates for Joe Biden, according to CNBC, and now one of the state’s most outspoken sheriffs is speaking out against the idea. Citing her “government experience and her deep background in health and aging,” the network paints a glowing portrait of the governor, including her efforts to impose new restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms in the state. 
On today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co, one of those sheriffs sits down with me to talk about Grisham’s record, and why he believes it would be a big mistake to put her a heartbeat away from the presidency if Biden wins in November. Cibola County Sheriff Tony Mace is a Democrat himself, though a decidedly conservative one, and he’s long objected to Grisham’s gun control agenda as an unconstitutional overreach that does nothing to reduce violent crime while infringing on the rights of state residents. Mace helped lead the push for counties to declare themselves Second Amendment Sanctuaries, and he’s one of many sheriffs who vocally opposed the governor’s push for a red flag law as well. 
Now Grisham is pushing a police reform bill, and Mace says that during a recent special session of the legislature called by the governor, members of the public were not allowed inside the Capitol to testify or lobby for or against the legislation. The sheriff says, however, that several members of Moms Demand Action were spotted inside the building speaking with lawmakers about the bill. Gun control groups have embraced the idea that “police violence is gun violence” while still pushing for new non-violent felony offenses that would be enforced by armed police officers.

To read more and view Sheriff Mace's interview video, go here

Travel + Leisure: "10 Best Places for National Park Camping"

Above, The Watchman at Zion National Park. The Watchman Campground made Travel + Leisure's list. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

When I saw the Travel + Leisure article on the "10 Best Places for National Park Camping", I tried to remember what national parks I've camped in, tent or RV.

A lot of times I have camped just outside of a national park in a private campground since getting a campsite in a national park can be problematic. But my family and I have been lucky a few times.

The national parks I've actually camped in include Lassen Volcanic National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Zion National Park, Mesa Verde National Park, Joshua Tree National Park, Grand Canyon National Park (North and South Rims), Yosemite National Park, Sequoia National Park, Redwood National Park and Crater Lake National Park.

Some of the parks are in the Travel + Leisure list.

They begin their article with:
There’s something magical about setting up camp in a national park, surrounded by impressive mountains, wooded forests, or rocky desert landscapes. National park camping allows visitors to fully immerse themselves in the natural beauty of our country’s most stunning destinations, from the Pacific coastline of Olympic National Park in Washington to the shores of the Atlantic Ocean in Acadia National Park. Plus, with options for RV hookups, traditional campgrounds, and backcountry camping, there’s something for every level of comfort and experience in national parks across the country. 
Whether you’re crossing the country in an RV on an extended road trip or simply looking for a peaceful place to get away for a long weekend, there’s a campsite for you. We’ve rounded up the best campsites in the 10 most popular national parks, but first, there are a few things to know before camping in a national park.
To read more, go here.

Friday, June 26, 2020

Trump's Dilemma

Associated Press Photo.

Rush Limbaugh had an interesting monologue today on the dilemma that President Trump is in.

One of them involves possible insubordinate generals who "may" refuse orders to go into the cities to restore order.

Another one is that in past years, 1965 and 1968 are two examples, governors and mayors welcomed the National Guard when they were requested by them to restore order. Such is not the case today. Many of these Democrat mayors and governors want the riots to continue and they aren't supporting their own police. Some of them are moving to defund the police. 

Here's a snippet:
But I tell you, Trump has really been hemmed in here by something that I don’t think a lot of people are giving enough consideration to, and that is the already expressed insubordination of the American military. 
These generals, Mattis to Milley to all these guys that have come out and basically disavowed anything to do with Trump to, say, the trip over to the church in Lafayette Park. They’ve made it clear, if Trump calls out the U.S. military to restore law and order, that they may not do it, that they may tell Trump to go take a flying leap somewhere. And he’s aware of this. 
So the worst thing he could do is, as commander-in-chief, is order these guys to deploy the military and have them say, “Screw you, Mr. Pres.” He’s gotta be really, really careful about this. He knows everything that’s stacked against him. And he knows the narrow path that he has to win reelection. 
RUSH: I’m hearing people say, “Rush, Trump’s gotta do more to stop the rioting. He’s gotta do more to step in there and stop this.” Yeah, I know. But, folks, in the past whenever this has been necessary, it was done by helping overwhelmed local and state authorities who wanted order restored in their states and in their cities. We don’t have that part of the equation right now. 
So it’s one thing to say, “Trump’s gotta stop the violence. He’s got to show leadership. He’s gotta move!” Well, if these lunatic governors do not want this stuff stopped, if the governor of Washington and the mayor of Seattle don’t want it stopped — and if Gavin Newsom doesn’t want it stopped in California and if that mayor in Detroit doesn’t want it stopped — and then Trump moves in there anyway? 
You know, that’s the big difference.  
In the past, when there was this kind of rioting and disorder and property destruction, even Democrat governors and mayors — Mayor Daley Chicago ’68 — wanted it stopped. They welcomed the arrival of the National Guard or federal troops. But that… What’s Trump gonna do?
Today's Democrats don't want it stopped.

To read more, go here

Behind The Property and Across The Arroyo/Gully

Above, on the secondary back road. Welding was going on at one of
 the residences to the left in the background. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

After checking my mail and doing other things around the house, I went outside and noticed a couple of utility trucks on the roads behind the house. This got my curiosity going.

So, I got into the Jeep and headed over to where the trucks just left the area. The east-west utility road directly behind my property feeds to a secondary road to the south on the other side of the gully/arroyo. So I drove on there for a little bit and noticed the light of a welding torch near a residence on a hill. (Hope they don't start a wildfire in the dry conditions we now have.) This was the first time I drove on that road.

So I decided to turn around and head back (getting back home took a little longer than expected as the carburetor was acting up, but Nandoh was able to get it running). We think it's a stuck needle valve.

But I did manage to take a few photos of the area at the road and behind my property.

Above, the GOCO Beast Barn on the left and the back of the garage from across the gully/arroyo. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Above, same shot but not zoomed in. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Above, a neighbor's collection of junk across the gully/arroyo. Photo by Arman Vaquer.

Above, the road that leads to the utility road behind my property. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Best Apps For Those Who Enjoy The Outdoors

Above, some of the locals of Oatman, Arizona. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

People who enjoy the outdoors have different interests and ideas on what they enjoy the most.

Fortunately, there are many apps tailored to those varied interests.

Passport Magazine has an article with as listing of different apps for outdoorsy people.

It begins with:
Everyone is looking to get outside this summer. The warm weather, the gorgeous sunshine, and the call of adventure is drawing people out of lockdown and onto journeys around the country. With continuing concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic, many travelers are looking for a more socially distanced vacation. Camping, RVing, National Parks, State Parks, and small towns close to nature are at the top of everyone’s list, and why shouldn’t they be? 
This is the summer of outdoor adventure, of road trips, and new and wonderful experiences. And what better way to help you on your journey than with some amazing apps? With all the information you need at your fingertips, you’re bound to have the perfect summer. Here are a few apps you need to check out to make your travels more enjoyable.

To read more, go here

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Trump Answers BLM's Newsome

President Trump has answered Black Lives Matter leader Hank Newsome's threats.

CNS News reported:
(CNSNews.com) - "I just want black liberation and black sovereignty by any means necessary," Hank Newsome, the head of Black Lives Matter for Greater New York, told Fox News's Martha MacCallum Wednesday night. 
Pointing to the American Revolution, Newsome said this country was born in violence and it now exports violence by blowing up other countries. Newsome indicated that his group is operating in that tradition:
"If this country doesn't give us what we want then we will burn down this system and replace it. All right. And I could be speaking figuratively, I could be speaking literally. It's a matter of interpretation."

Sounds like he's making threats on once side of his mouth and trying to (at the same time) weasel out of them on the other side of his mouth.

President Trump didn't mince any words in his reply on Twitter:

Sure is, Newsome's mealy mouth aside.

To read more, go here.

She's Back Home

Above, back home in the garage. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

After trying different remedies over a couple of weeks, I think the Jeep is now fixed.

It ran fine all the way from Gallup to Jamestown today after having a new electric fuel pump installed. One of my Jamestown friends followed me down Route 66 and two miles on Interstate 40. He said we averaged 45 m.p.h. on Route 66 and 55 m.p.h. on I-40 (which is interesting since I wasn't pushing it). Jeeps aren't known for their speed.

Above, the new fuel pump. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

I was told that old electric fuel pumps are affected by the head generated by the engine and outside temperatures and cut out. They work fine once they are cooled off, but the problem would happen again once high temperatures return. The mechanic said the pump was old.

After installation, the mechanic drove it from the shop to Fort Wingate and back with no problems (roughly 12 miles each way).

Even though the repairs done last week didn't solve the problem, they were necessary and would have to be done anyway.

So, I guess I can have fun driving around Six Mile Canyon again.

NM Snitches Turning In Violators of Health Orders

The Democrats in control of the New Mexico state government and their toadies in the Department of public health are encouraging people to snitch (tattle) on people and businesses allegedly not complying with the governor's health orders. 

This reeks of Nazi Germany.

According to the Albuquerque Journal:
The secret’s out. 
New Mexicans have turned on their fellow Land of Enchantment residents in recent weeks, reporting those not wearing masks or physically distancing far enough, holding mass get-togethers or selling things on the sly. Thousands have reported businesses and individuals for violating New Mexico public health orders during the pandemic to the Department of Public Safety.  
The state government website has a portal where people can easily report noncompliance with the orders. A state senator was among those outed for making a report.
And now, there’s an effort by some, including a political blog and an Albuquerque radio host, to unmask these tattletales.

This kind of thing is very familiar to those who are students of World War II history. In case you aren't one of them, here's what happened in Nazi Germany.

From The Holocaust Explained:
In Nazi Germany, some citizens passed on information about their neighbours, family, and friends to the Gestapo. This was called informing. Nazi propaganda presented the Gestapo as an omnipresent all-seeing, all-knowing group, but in reality there was just one secret police officer for approximately every 10,000 citizens of Nazi Germany. The Gestapo were therefore reliant on a network of thousands of informants. 
The information passed on by informants typically accused someone of breaking the law or of being a criminal in some way. The information provided was not always based on fact and could often be rumour or suspicion. For example, if someone had stereotypical Jewish features they might be informed on to be a potential Jew, and would therefore have to prove that they were not a Jew to the Gestapo or face torture and imprisonment. Informants reported on a number of different undesirable activities, such as anti-Nazi sentiment, communist activity, Jews in hiding, people suspected to be Jews, and much more. 
These are the kinds of people who would have turned in Anne Frank.

To read more about what's going on in New Mexico, go here

Bear Encounter Near Old Faithful Geyser

Above, a Yellowstone black bear and her two cubs. The bear involved in the encounter was a grizzly. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

When hiking in Yellowstone National Park, it is rare, but not unusual, that encounters between humans and bears happen.

One did Monday.

According to the Flathead Beacon:
YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. – A Missouri tourist was knocked to the ground by a grizzly bear and suffered minor injuries as she was hiking near Yellowstone National Park’s Old Faithful geyser, park administrators said Wednesday. 
The 37-year-old tourist from Columbia, Missouri was hiking alone Monday morning along the Fairy Falls Trail when she came upon a pair of grizzly bears. One of the bears knocked the woman to the ground, scratching her thigh and causing minor injuries to her face when she fell, officials said. 
She declined medical attention and the surrounding area has been temporarily closed, according to park officials.

The bear was a mother bear protecting her young, so no action will be taken against the bear.

To read more, go here. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Craving Sushi

Above, Asya and I at Gladstone's 4 Fish in Malibu.

Funny, the day started out with a discussion of food with Asya, but it was more about Danish food and Mexican food.

It has been about four months since I last had a sushi dinner at Zen Steak & Sushi in Gallup. Zen is the only sushi restaurant in Gallup.

Above, Zen Steak & Sushi in Gallup. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

I could get some in take-out, but since I am about 20 miles from the restaurant, I would have to bring along an ice chest to bring home the sushi.

That's one thing I miss about living in the L.A. area. There are plenty of sushi and seafood restaurants to partake at.

In the San Fernando Valley, there was Crazy Tokyo Sushi in Tarzana, Kabuki Japanese Restaurant in Woodland Hills, Tomoya Sushi & Izakaya in Woodland Hills, Benihana of Tokyo in Encino and Sushi Go 55 in Little Tokyo, to name a few.

Above, Miki Hayashi and I at Crazy Tokyo Sushi.

For just seafood fare, there was The Chart House in Marina Del Rey and Gladstone's 4 Fish in Malibu.

Last year, I discovered Hibachi One on Coors Blvd. in Albuquerque, which compares favorably with those I frequented at in Los Angeles.

I'll sure as heck will be glad when the lockdowns and limited dine-in orders are over and done with.

But, I did cook a salmon dinner this evening. That helped.

Social Distancing On A River Raft

Above, yours truly (right) rafting last summer on the Snake River. Photo by Float-o-Graphs.

Last summer, I did something that I hadn't done since the late 1980s: white water river rafting.

The occasion was when a friend and I went to Jackson, Wyoming for camping and visiting Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. I went with the Dave Hansen Whitewater company for some rafting on Wyoming's Snake River. I had a great time. During the raft trip, we saw two bald eagles.

This year is a little different with social distancing, but the rafting companies are adapting.

According to the Jackson Hole News & Guide:
In any year not as strange and off-putting from the jump as 2020, David Cernicek would see a steady stream of large groups rafting the Snake River in 20-minute intervals during the busiest days of the season. 
That’s not the case this year, and it won’t be. Still, the Bridger-Teton National Forest river manager is overseeing an industry finding ways to paddle through the COVID-19 pandemic. 
“Coming out of the gate it was, ‘How can we do this?’” he said, “because there were people who believed we couldn’t do it.”

Chief among the limitations on rafting this season is the amount of people who can occupy one craft. This summer the Bridger-Teton is not issuing its traditional group permits for parties of more than 15 people. 
Cernicek said restrictions like that have been managed well on the commercial side by whitewater outfitters. For private parties from outside Wyoming, though, there’s been pushback. 
“There’s a lot of unhappy people, mainly from out of state, that would like to be bringing their usual groups like they do every year,” he said. “It’s very understandable, and they do want to know if commercial outfitters are being restricted as well. 
“The folks that don’t really believe in COVID being a real virus, they seem to be much angrier.” 
Reports of substantially less angry river-users came from Dave Hansen Whitewater and Scenic River Trips’ Bud Chatham. After months of uncertainly about the future of the business in 2020, Chatham said his team is just happy to be back. And the customers, too, are keeping their distancing but in the same boat.
Above, a final photo at the end of the raft trip last summer. Photo by Float-o-Graphs.

To read more, go here

Shoes Can Melt In Grand Canyon Temperatures

Above, the Grand Canyon. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Hot temperatures at Grand Canyon National Park has prompted park officials to warn people that their shoes can "melt."

According to CNN:
(CNN) - The National Park Service is warning visitors to the Grand Canyon that Wednesday's extreme heat could pose an unusual danger: melted shoes. 
In a tweet Monday, the Grand Canyon NPS showed how excessive heat can cause the glue holding hiking boots to melt, making the shoe fall apart. This warning comes on top of additional concerns about extreme heat in the West. 
Temperatures in the Grand Canyon are predicted to hit 112 degrees Fahrenheit Wednesday. The heat will get more intense with lower elevation. 
The National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Warning for elevations below 4000 feet in the Grand Canyon, cautioning that temperatures will get more extreme deeper into the canyon. People in the area are advised to stay hydrated and out of the sun.

One good thing about the high heat is that it will kill the coronavirus (supposedly).

To read more, go here

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Yosemite Closes Campgrounds Over COVID-19 Concerns

Above, North Pines Campground in Yosemite Valley. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

People planning to camp in Yosemite National Park will have to wait longer before getting a campsite reservation.

According to KTVU:
Reservations with arrival dates between now and July 31 have been canceled for the following campgrounds:

- Bridalveil Horse Camp
- Crane Flat
- Hodgdon Meadow (canceled through Aug 15 due to Great Gray Owl nesting)
- Lower Pines
- North Pines
-Tuolumne Meadows
- 50% of Upper Pines 
The unprecedented COVID-19 crisis has forced the park to make budget and staffing cuts, which have significantly impacted service.
Out of concern over COVID-19, campgrounds won't reopen until after July 31.

To read more, go here

Seattle Thugs Vandalize Jimi Hendrix Statue

It appears that no statue, no matter who it is of, is safe these days.

Some thugs vandalized (can you believe it?) a statue honoring rock 'n roll icon Jimi Hendrix in Seattle. Hendrix was from nearby Renton, Washington and is buried there.

The following was posted on Facebook:
These morons even vandalized the statue of rock legend Jim Hendrix on Seattle's Capitol Hill. Did these brilliant droolers not realize that Hendrix was a BLACK rock star?

Here's the photo that accompanied the post:

Black Lives Matter = Marxist Uprising

Rush Limbaugh, during his show today, covered a lot of topics today (as he took yesterday off), but his comments concerning the desecration of monuments and the toppling of statues needs to be emphasized. Those desecrations are only minor steps towards the bigger goal of tearing down this country. 

They (ANTIFA and the Black Lives Matter organization) aim to tear down everything from national monuments and, incredibly, statues of Jesus Christ.

This isn't about the killing of George Floyd by the police. That initially was the excuse for the mayhem. It should be obvious to everyone by now.

He said:
It is a fabulous record to remind people of prior to the virus. It is overwhelming, particularly for African-Americans, it was through-the-roof great. The economy, unemployment, wages, all of that, something that is purposely being torn down. And I think, you know, the American people have a clear choice here, and it’s unlike a choice that they’ve ever had. This is not a choice between Republicans and Democrats. This is a choice between America, as founded, and bye-bye America, as founded. And that’s exactly what’s on the plate. That is not an exaggeration. 
It is abundantly clear, and it has been abundantly clear to me for years now, these people on the left, they have no interest in correcting what they think are America’s mistakes. They’re tearing down statues. They’re tearing down artwork. They’re tearing down anything with a link to the past in this country. It’s not because the past offends them. It’s because they’re getting ready to wipe out this country. They’re getting ready to totally scrap it and start again. They believe the country is irredeemable. 
Folks, it’s a bunch of Marxists. We find ourselves in this campaign not against Republicans, Democrats. This is the American people versus Marxism. It’s the American people versus communism. In stark terms, it’s exactly what we face here.
To read the full transcript, go here

Trump: Destroy or Vandalize A Monument, Expect 10 Years In Prison

President Trump posted the following over at Facebook:

Albuquerque Int. Balloon Fiesta Cancellation Reactions

Above, the Red Rock Balloon Rally. As of now, it is still a go. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

The news that the Albuquerque International Balloon Festival is being postponed/canceled isn't sitting too well with many New Mexico citizens.

Several have voiced their displeasure over the news on Facebook.

Here's a sampling:
Oh of course. Lots of income for Albuquerque. 
Unfking believable that pesky fake flu is so smart people crowd up in the stores and protests but being out in the open field is bad what a joke. 
Oh but let them hold a violent protest – that would be just fine! 
Hey where are all the MLG lovers?? I guess y'all be happy about this bullshit. 
 Yep! Their little nazi governor is out of control. Let’s see how they like it when their taxes skyrocket. 
Last year the Balloon Fiesta brought in $180 Million to NM businesses, Its obvious MLG could not care less about the people of NM. 
Since Santa Fe cornered the market on hot air? 
Ridiculous for a virus that’s 99% curable. 
All that potential revenue...gone. 
There goes the single biggest revenue generator annually in this city. In this state, for that matter. I guess Gov. Lujan-Grifter will have to raise taxes. 
And here YOU New Mexicans have YOUR Governor "Diabla" who will completely and totally run new Mexico and ALL OF HER LEGAL TAX PAYING RESIDENT RIGHT INTO THE DESERT SAND!!! Just remember that those of you that DID put her into the governor's office are ALSO TO BLAME FOR THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO BECOMING A SOCIALIST STATE!!!! AND JUST LOOK AT THIS AGENDA!! SHE IS FOLLOWING THIS TO THE "T"!!! 
So Balloon Fiesta has been cancelled but people can still "mass gather" to protest for BLM and against police while destroying public and private property?
Makes sense.... 
SHE just keeps getting stupider by the day. And cancelling the biggest money maker in New Mexico, AFTER she has already emptied the surplus money that the state had BEFORE she was governor means that she will be wanting "OUR" President Trump to bail out New Mexico, too. I sure hope that ALL of you Lujan-Grisham lovers are really enjoying 'OUR" state be run right into the desert sand!!!

At present, the Red Rock Balloon Rally near Gallup is still on. It is generally held in December.

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