This blog chronicles the importance of and efforts to return to Mother Earth in spirit and in body. This journey is not one of primitivism or reenactment of an earlier age. It's hope is to inspire me to find the middle ground between necessities of the 21st Century, the need to find a simpler way of life, and our ethical responsibility to protect the land and preserve our natural resources.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Land Ho! Land, no.

This weekend I traveled to southern Colorado to check out some property just south of Walsenburg: 35 acres of ranch land with rolling terrain, junipers, and a few pinyons.

I got up early and headed south on I-25 and stopped about 9:00 A.M. for breakfast in Pueblo. It was only about another 30 minutes to 160 west. After a mile or so I found myself on action-packed Main Street, Walsenburg. Another mile or two south and I took 330 south. About fifteen miles later I wound east/north/south/east on Rowell Road (it's a country road) until finally turning again on Sunset Court. The end of Sunset is the western tip of the isosceles-triangle-shape property. The northern tip nearly aligns with the southeastern tip--where the Mayne Arroyo has cut a half-moon into the geometry.

From the jeep west, are uncompromising views of the Spanish Peaks. The sun was hot, and the smell of juniper and sage wafted on a slight summer breeze. It was just after 12:00 NOON, I'd guess, though I'd checked my watch about 40 times. The agent didn't show. But that's OK. You're tempted to open the closets and look in drawers if you think you're by yourself.

I'm still struggling with the concept of an acre. I know an acre's dimensions, but I couldn't quite visualize 35 of them put together without signs or fences or whatever. I stumbled across to the arroyo and the distance to the jeep seemed impressive. Cactus, junipers, sage, and underbrush were beautiful, but the earth was rocky and hard. The sky, boy the sky above was great. And the view, too. On the whole it was a terrific adventure, but not the property for which I'm looking. I think I need some trees and some real water. At least, I need some soil!

Will keep looking.


Anonymous borgwoman said...

Definitely, you need some better soil. Just dealing with the clay in my little garden is a headache most of the time. And about the water, I was wondering if fishing was a important part of the plan? A natural stream would probably already have fish in it. When I was reading about this stuff like ten years ago, I read about making fish ponds and what fish are best for raising in man-made ponds and stuff like that.
Or maybe you are a vegetarian?

Tuesday, July 25, 2006  
Blogger cabinboy said...


I believe that a vegetarian lifestyle is ultimately the way to go. But I struggle with the notion that if we ARE NOT suppossed to eat animals, why are they made out of meat? But seriously, I think more people would be vegetarians if meat didn't appear magically in the local supermarket.

Anyway, I think to coexist peacefully in ecosystem, one must be observant of all life around him. I think that when one is hungry, fish, rabbits, etc., are acceptable.

One needs water (and water rights) to grow crops, too.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006  
Anonymous borgwoman said...

You'll need even more water if you have a nice sandy soil. I lived in a house with a nice sandy soil, but I left the soaker hose on for hours and hours. You could grow just about anything except figs and okra.
Now I have this accursed clay, which is only good for figs and okra. But it takes less water. I forget and leave the soaker hose for an hour or so, and then there is standing water around the tomatoes and the plants turn yellow.

Are you trying to be totalling self-suffient, having nothing that you can't grow or make yourself? Or will you try to grow a surplus of something to sell for extra money or what? Anyway, I was wondering which books you found expecially interesting? I used to like to read that sort of thing, but nothing that was too technical.

Sounds like you had fun yesterday, even if it did turn out not to be quite what you wanted.

So what happened with the job? Or do you have enough saved to get started on the project without further employment?

Tuesday, July 25, 2006  
Anonymous borgwoman said...

I must remember to spell check next time.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006  
Blogger cabinboy said...

No worries about the spellcheck! I appreciate your comments. having lived and worked in gardens in Missouri (where the soil is pretty good), I bet that clay and sand make havoc! I just read in the 1884 Farmer's Almanac that barley grows great in that kind of soil. So if you've got enough room, grow a crop of barley and make barley cakes. Horse love them, too.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006  
Anonymous borgwoman said...

Well, I went to Whole Foods to get some TVP, and they were out again, even though they promised it would come in Monday. But I'm not a vegetarian either, so it doesn't really matter, I'm not going to starve or anything like that. Just trying to take off a few more pounds, that's all.

So I was going to tell you before that when I was reading all this stuff ten years ago that tilapia was the recommended fish for the home pond, but I thought maybe I might be remembering it wrong so I looked it up today. Tilapia is recommended, but it is a warm water fish from Africa, so I guess it is NOT recommended for Denver. Anyway, ten years ago, I had never heard of tilapia, but now it seems to be everywhere. But I still haven't tried it, so I couldn't tell you much about it. I can, however, tell you about carp. Carp is in all of the books too, but what most of the books don't mention is what a hassle it is to make something edible out of the carp. First, the carp has zillions of little bones. Supposedly, if you cook it right, the little bones get really soft and you hardly notice them, but I just don't think that's a great idea. Second, after you've dealt with the bones, half of the carp is dark meat, and it's really awful. Usually, the cat wouldn't eat it. So, if you eat carp, you should maybe have some other fish like catfish around so you can feed them the leftover carp. Yuck.
Seems like I had read something about raising freshwater shrimp, which would be a whole lot more to my liking, but I didn't find anything about that today.

Anyway, you still haven't mentioned what happened with the job, so I hope you are doing okay.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006  

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