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Water Diamonds, Lake Amistad, TX

1/31/17

Walking Trail

Adventure Location: Diablo East, Del Rio, Texas

It looked like a really nice day for some walking with bright sun and cool breezes drifting through the area. A vote was taken and walking the cliffs out off the Diablo East Picnic Area was the loser. It has to put up with the OFM Teams today. It is a short drive from out campsite to the general area for our choice of parking.

The road into the area has a place where you are supposed to go right or left. The wise folks of the National Park decided that the drivers needed some help in deciding to stay on the road instead of going cross country. So they installed this enforcement device to force the drivers to stay on the road.



At this rock the Teams went left and shortly found a good spot for Sierra to rest and wait for the rest of the Teams to finish walking. The OFM prepared himself with a water bottle, a very stylish hat and his handsome belly leading the way.



The trail chosen leads near and along the area cliffs. The trail is about as tough as the OFM Knees can stand any more.



The good part of this area is that when the trail gets too tough a short walk through the desert brush will bring you back to the road and fairly easy walking. After the OFM got a bunch of pictures he took his knees back to the road and walked the rest of the loop past a lot of nice picnic spots. They have shade shelters and picnic tables with grills. Vault toilet rest rooms are fairly close by. You can choose lots of different routes for walking in this section of the National Park. There is a walking route for most folks in this area. I think that a loop of all the road would be less than three miles.

Along the way, depending on the time of the year can be lots of desert flowers.



 
Here is a yucca bloom just getting ready to explode. The plants here do explode in beauty and fragrances when the things are just right. It is a wonderful time to be here and enjoy the short lived fantastic show while trying to have tooooo much fun.



 

 

1/30/17

The Gulch

Adventure Location: Box Canyon Road, Del Rio, Texas

It is unreal the number of RVs heading westerly on Hwy 90. Every morning the short term parking area with about 75 spaces just about empties. By dark it is full again. Lots of really fancy rigs are passing through. At this rate the Rio Grande Valley will soon have some empty campsites. We do not know where they are heading to but they are rolling with great vigor.

A couple of days ago the Teams were wandering around toward the westerly direction and turned onto Box Canyon Road. We have been there many times, but thanks to senility we spotted something we do not recall seeing before. It has been there for decades so it is not new.

What is it? What is it? It is a place where the road goes over the railroad. The rails run through a gulch chopped from the rock hill that was in the way. The day was one of the cold ones with gray skies but the OFM took the pictures anyway. A nice road bridge with fencing walls goes over the gulch. The OFM walked out on the bridge to get this first picture.

 
 

We would have thought it great if a train had passed under us while we were there. But nope, only a couple of birds flew under us.

Next to the gulch was a double track of a road paralleling the rails but up on the top edge of the gulch. We walked a ways down the road until the cold wet wind got the OFM too chilled. It is a very rough road. The Truck of our past might have been able to navigate it but sierra does not even come close.

 

By the time we got back to Sierra the OFM was ready for some hot chocolate and hot tea. Right after this trip is when the electrical event started covered in the last two blog entries. Then today it was fantastically beautiful with warm sun and gentle breezes. Yep we did get out and try to have tooooo much fun but pictures will be later this week. Lots going on.



1/28/17

Hmmmmm?

Adventure Location: Lake Amistad, Del Rio, Texas

The OFM got busy early this morning in the repair effort on the solar system. He went through the system and checked EVERY connection. All were just fine including the ones on the roof and the sockets with the fuses.

Then he got out a brush and cleaned the solar panels even though they only had a faint dust on them. There was one of the 100 watt panels with a small, make that very small, thin streak of dirt like a tree limb had left some residue on it. that streak went bye bye.

Down from the roof he rechecked the battery connections again and still they were tight and clean. Ok what next?

So the system was put to the test. All the lights were turned on, the inverter was turned on and the computer and cell phone recharging, two fans and a couple other small items were turned on. We loaded the system up with more than normal loading and let it run for about three hours. The result was that the panels took the system to float in that three hours. We could not duplicate yesterdays scare. Everything worked perfectly with spare capacity just like the OFM designed it. The Castle carries 200 amp hours of batteries. Our heavy use on cold nights is normally about 30 amp hours is all.

When all the testing etc. was over all we could figure out is that the OFM must have misread the equipment readout. So for now we are cleared to go back to boondocking and rolling when our week of paid camping is finished. At least nothing required $$$$$$ or $ for repair or replacement all systems showed perfect performance. So we had a big hamburger for supper tonight in celebration.



1/27/17

Good Decision

Adventure Location: Lake Amistad, Del Rio, Texas

The OFM took it pretty easy today. Sierra took us to a special spot and the OFM took pictures. But that story will have to wait.

The OFM made a good decision a couple of weeks ago when he chose to test the rig’s boondocking ability after the year without doing more than an over night. The location for the testing has been San Pedro Campground just outside of Del Rio Texas. It is very close to the city in case things went bad and they did.

In the past boondocking we could run the furnace as much as needed each night and the solar panels would restock the electrons during the next day even if there was some light cloud cover. We never had to worry about the batteries since they never got below half full of electrons before recharge the next day took them to full again.

This boondocking episode has not been that good. It has been a constant battle to minimize the 12 volt use. The charge would go to maximum reading but the duration of use went to about 30% of the previous years. This was not good. In this cold weather we could not leave the furnace to keep the Teams warm at night. For the first time since the AGM batteries were installed nearly five years ago, we had to worry about using too much power in a day.

After four days of boondocking it was obvious that something was wrong. Today clinched the deal. The day was light overcast and the panels were putting out plenty of electrons for the batteries to eat. We left for the adventure with a reading of about 40% full on the batteries. We returned a few hours later to a reading of 95% full which is what the OFM expected considering the overcast conditions.

A friend stopped by and a nice visit happened. After running ONE light bulb for three hours the batteries showed 25% full is all. That is not enough to last the night decently. Good grief now what. After a bit of checking the OFM decided the most likely culprit is dying batteries.

Considering it was very late in the day, a quick command decision was made to get us a full hookups campsite for a few days while this mess was sorted out and corrected. We lucked into the absolute last site available for a week at the Broke Mill RV Park. We have been here a few times in the past, like last February when the two tornadoes just missed us and tore up things all around us.
 
By the time we got here around 1700 the batteries had discharged down to about 10%. This is NOT the type of equipment to have when you head off into the Big Bend of Texas country. We will be here until it gets rectified. Naturally you can expect us to take advantage of the laundry, library, exercise room, the 1.5 mile hiking trail, Wifi, cable TV and the rest of the benefits of having 120 volt power, like electric heaters and staying warm.



1/26/17

Taking It Easy

Adventure Location: Lake Amistad, Del Rio, Texas

We threatened the OFM with baseball bats and tire irons that he would take it easier or be hospitalized with serious bumps and abrasions. He agreed to an easier day just to see how he recovered by the days end. So what does he do but run over to 277 North campground and knock out 2 miles of walking. He did take one picture of the lake.

 

We have to give him credit because he only walked places that did not involve scrambling or rock hopping. At one location we were following a trail that his “memory” said go left at the fork. Quickly we were engulfed in briars and stickers. But we made it through the short distance and crossed the barbed wire fence to safety. After crossing the wire fence, a look to the right showed educated the teams we should have gone right instead of left. It worked out well so it was just an extra little adventure.

The OFM has started to attempt art now that he has time and eyes again. The big change for his attitude is to try some of the advice he has found in tutorial books. Most recommend some small sketches of your concept of what you want to show in your art work. That gives you a chance to work out questions without ruining an in progress piece of art.

One item an artist, that seems to have his act together, recommended is to also do a couple of practice drawings of the main points of interest in the new artwork. That makes sense to the OFM so he is also doing that. All this means that it takes a few hours or days before he can get to work on the “real thing”. But it seems that he should also have a much better piece of art when it is finished.

So for the work he is considering, here is his first attempt at the main attraction. This piece of art was suggested by the tired bird picture posted in the blog a few days ago.



We will be taking the effort in a slightly different direction than the photograph. Cameras are for making copies of reality details. Art is for showing your feeling about or interpretation of the realities. The OFM is not interesting in just copying something seen in front of him.

Since age causing him to drop several of his lifelong toys, he needs new items to do and for trying to have tooooo much fun.

1/25/17

Hit The Wall

Adventure Location: Lake Amistad, Del Rio, Texas

The OFM did it today. He hit the wall hard. He had been moving briskly most of the day AGAIN. Suddenly about 1600 he ran out of energy. The Teams were lucky he was near the Castle. It saved Sierra from having to go grab his foot and drag him back over the gravel and through the thorns. He went inside and rested. Then started to get up and decided it was horizontal time. Down he went like hot mashed potatoes==kersplat onto the bed. ZZZZZZZs instantly. To the Teams it looks like he is needing to take a few more rest breaks during his activities. But you know him, he never has done anything gentle or smart.

He did manage a great supper tonight. Where does this fool come up with these ideas???? We have no idea. He took a chunk of Slovaceks sausage and cut it into small pieces. Then he opened the cole slaw precut mix and put it into a large bowl. The sausage went in next. Then a large dollop (that is a special exact amount) of Maries Cole Slaw Dressing on top and did a wonderful job of mixing it all together. Zam Bang it was great.

Now it is time for a tour of some of the rock hopping areas the OFM has been “training” upon. It also gives a few nice views of Lake Amistad. The first is of Southwind Marina and the rest are random spots around the lake.






The Teams hope you enjoyed the short tour of the lake near the big bridge. It is a good place for trying to have tooooo much fun.



 

1/24/17

Desert Quiet

Adventure Location: Del Rio, Texas

The OFM hit the bed early last night and passed out like a quart of good liquor would do, except he does not drink. Along about 0600 he awoke and was surprised to pieces that he had slept so long straight through. Back in Rockport there was always something happening during the night like emergency vehicle sirens or whatever. Getting a full nights sleep was difficult. But out here in the desert the loudest thing after dark is usually the sound the starlight makes as it zooms past your rig. Sometimes an ant will stomp across the campsite and interrupt the quiet. Most nights it is just plain old QUIET.

Anyway working our way on to around 0700 the morning came screaming over the horizon putting the solar panels to work. If you don’t believe it check out this good morning scream from the sun.



So the Teams got busy getting busy. Breakfast was great with oatmeal and fresh brewed tea. Then the OFM started out on what turned into an incredibly busy day.

You had a view of the campsite at night in the last blog entry. Here is what the cramped and crowded area looks like in the daylight.



It feels odd to not have a neighbor close enough to listen to their conversations inside their rig from our rig. Yep it is nice to have elbow room.

The OFM did not waste any time getting busy on getting in some good exercise. Before too long he was finding his way through the desert and boulders. He sure wants to drop about 50 pound in 2017 so he can move around easier. By the days end he was sore all over and a couple of joints were complaining too. He did take a few pictures while doing all this running around. Here is one of the rock piles to help him regain his agility lost a few pounds ago.



And this evening the sun did not leave quietly. Of course this is the west Texas desert so the sun usually screams when it is doing things. Even the good byes are loud.





 

 

 

 

1/23/17

To The Desert

Adventure Location: Texas

After we got away from Rock port, The Castle and Sierra got along really well. It was a very easy tow. At the first rest area the Teams took a short break. Man it really feels good to get out of the coastal salt mess. It also feels really great to be rolling.



At a later rest area near Sabinal Texas the OFM even took a short nap. He needed it to calm down and start to relax. The rest of the way to Del Rio he was doing much better about the stress from the last few days. The doctor report is that the eye drops are working very well and to check back in late fall.
We finally rolled into the campground at Lake Amistad about 1730. Then the OFM walked down to The Boondork’s trailer to visit with Tom. Catch him at http://www.theboondork.com/mainphp

Yep the OFM will be sleeping in the desert tonight.


 
 


1/22/17

Soon

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

It has been a busy day of getting the Castle ready to roll. There was a lot of things to put into a proper place and other things to get rid of. About 1900 tonight the vacuum was going strong. Several things needed to be done while we had ample 120 volt power. Now in the morning if the eyes pass the testing, we have to roll up the electrical cord and couple to Sierra. Then wander over to the office and pay the electric bill. From there it is ROLLING TIME and the Teams are ready.

1/21/17

Nearly Gone

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

Most of the day was bright and beautiful. So the OFM went down to Cove Harbor at the bird watching platform and took this nice picture of some of the marsh in the area. At times that large pond in the center of the picture is teeming with red fish wanting to be caught. A yak is needed since the average depth is only a foot or less.



Other than that most of the day was spent getting the OFM to change his mind set to rolling from RV parking. Tomorrow morning starts the getting ready to roll effort. Monday morning earlyish is the eye doc visit. After that event, if all is well, we will be coupling up to the Castle and rolling out from the RV park. Our first stop is to get the Castle its Texas Vehicle Inspection so we will be fully legal on the public roads. We hope that by noon we will be on the way to Lake Amistad. With the late start we may not make it all the 320 miles to the campground tomorrow but we will take a big bite out of the trip.

All the Team members are ready for some desert fun.



1/20/17

Pelican Food

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

The very dreary day was warm. So it was running around time for the Teams. One event was taking the OFM to the Sinton golf course park practice field so he could hit some golf balls for the first time in almost a year. He amazed us that that wretched body movement could actually connect a golf club with a golf ball. At least he got a lot of nice exercise chasing his golf ball into normally not traveled locations. No OFM or snakes were harmed in this event.

Later in the day the OFM decided to stop at the harbor pier and try his luck with catching some entertainment. So he grabbed the Team rod and the camera and went out to make a fool of himself. As his luck would have it no fish were caught for most of the trip. But on the way off of the pier he found the fish. He landed about every third one that hit his lure and there was a lot of hits. Here is a picture of one of them.



When that fish was released, it was tossed into the shallow side of the pier. This give the fish a bit of time to get back into fish mode without danger from other fish. They swim around for a minute or two until they get themselves back together. Then suddenly ZOOM off they go back to the deeper water and doing fishy things.

That fish was special. It seemed to like the idea of getting its picture taken. So it piddled around in the shallow water and rocks posing for the camera and acting like pelican food.

Pelican Food

A little after that picture was taken it was ZOOM time for that fish also.

Not too long after the picture was taken a rain shower moved into the area. The temperature was a little cool and a gentle breeze was easing along but getting wet would not have been nice. The OFM decided it was time to head for Sierra. As it worked out we got into Sierra about ten seconds before the rain hit us. That was close.

When it was all said and done we had a pretty good day of trying to have tooooo much fun.



 

1/19/17

Sea Monster

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

It was a beautiful day down at the shrimp boat channel. The sun was bright and the temperatures really delightful. The OFM was really enjoying his time wade fishing. When we arrived and Sierra got the Teams parked, the view really had the OFM excited as he got ready for fishing.



The OFM had been enjoying the fishing for quite a few minutes when he noticed something moving in the water. The critters head was sticking out of the water and it started heading right for him. He could not recall ever seeing a critter with a head like this one so he started backing out of the water. The sea monster kept on coming so the OFM hurried out of the water and back to Sierra.

He and Sierra watched as the sea monster got to the shore and worked its way onto the beach. It was not a pretty creature for certain. It was about six feet long and three feet high.



The OFM and Sierra had a hurried conference and decided that the Teams needed to be somewhere else RIGHT NOW. So the OFM grabbed a telephoto picture of the sea monster and hopped into Sierra with the rest of the Teams. Away we went without hesitation.

When we got back to the Castle the OFM put the images into the computer and studied them. Man O Man that is an ugly sea monster.The telephoto picture shows the sea monster and its ugly skin. we are certainly glad the teams left the area without hesitation.



Seeing that ugly sea monster was really a special event in the world of trying to have tooooo much fun.

1/17/17

No Excitement

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

 
As this pelican can attest, not much exciting is going on around here.



A good effort last night resulted in two full Walmart bags of not used items left the Castle and found good homes with some nice folks who will use them. That emptied a cabinet and a half’s worth of the Castles many cabinets. We are definitely living a lot more lighter than a year ago.

The Castle is a 2006 model and has had the Teams living in it since July 2007. Naturally things are wearing out and needing replacement. The local camper parts house gives a 10% discount to veterans and we have made use of it for a few replacement items. One of which was a new bathroom door knob and latch. The old one just gave up the ghost a few days ago and we need door latch that works for when we are traveling. It would be really bad to have a door flapping back and forth while the Castle is rocking along the highway.

The new door knob came in today and was installed as the highlight of the last two days. Here it is in all its glory.



That is one more item out of the way for when we get to roll soon in search of having tooooo much fun.



 

1/15/17

Adventure Choosing

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas



Hey! Look over there on the bulkhead. Isn’t that the world famous Old Fat Man?



Well, world famous is not what I would call him, but it is the notorious OFM of blogger land. He isn’t worth a flip at catching fish but if he is taking our picture he does have good taste in photography subjects.



I hear he says he tries to have tooooo much fun.



Yep. He even seems to brag about it at times.



It seems to me to be a good idea. What do you want to do Dizzy?



I don’t know. Got any suggestions Jim?



No but let’s ask Marty. She usually has something to say. What kind of adventure should we have today?



I have no idea, but I bet Jeff can come up with something.



Nope. I am going to take a nap.

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So my friendly readers this proves that even pelicans can have an off day when it comes to trying to have tooooo much fun.



 

1/14/17

The Answer

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

Our friend from To Simplify has a great answer tonight on his blog. Please go over and enjoy it.


Glenn knows how to try to have tooooo much fun.



 

1/12/17

Popping Cork Delight

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

It has been a great day again. The OFM actually got off his lazy and did some maintenance on the Castle. First he cleaned out the outside access to the under the couch storage. There was only a few things in there but each and every item was closely scrutinized to be sure we needed to be carrying it. Then the storage was swept clean of debris. This is the first time in ten years it has been cleaned. To our amazement there was less than a half cup of desert sand “stored” in it. Then the items to be retained were stored back in the compartment. that was a great event.

But it inspired the OFM to actually wash down the outside of the Castle with a brush that is stored in the above mentioned compartment. It is one of the soft bristle brushes that gets a water hose hooked to it. When the water is turned on, the water flows up the handle and out into the brush. It sure makes washing the outside of the Castle a lot easier. Ours was purchased at Walmart over ten years ago and is still doing well.

After all this activity the OFM thought he deserved a nap and we agreed. We have to be careful to be easy on that OLD man you know.

Let us go back to the start of things this morning. The OFM got going relatively early this morning and fixed his own breakfast. Then it was off to catch fish again. A popping cork was the chosen tool for helping fish fail to be cautious enough. The speckled trout were VERY cooperative about biting. The trouble is each and every one of them was 1/8“ too short to be legal. but they were a vigorous bunch of fools. We know the OFM caught over a dozen.

Here is how a popping cork and lure hangs when it is in the water. Some well meaning folks will tell you a popping cork is only for live shrimp fishing. they are wrong.



Now here is a closer view of the cork and the lure we prefer.



Now it gets interesting. Two fellows came out onto the pier while we were devastating the fish. The OFM motioned them in closer to where the fish were at to give them a good chance at some fish. Neither one was using a popping cork but rather free lining their lures. After catching more fisheees the OFM moved on out on the pier and let them have the spot to themselves.

NEITHER of them caught a single fish while the OFM kept on catching a fish about every third cast. Finally the older fellow put an old style popping cork on his line and blam a trout on the next cast. Yep we think using popping corks can be a very effective way of lowering the fish population in salt water.

Catching tooooo many fish gets close to having tooooo much fun.

1/10/17

First Footprints

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

Back to the beach adventure we go. Check out this empty beach. Notice the OFM footprints in the lower right leading to the jetty. He got to put the first footprints of the day on this part of the beach.



There were other footprints on the beach the other side of either jetty but none in the middle area. We did a good job of scattering footprints all over everything before the OFM quit burning electrons with the camera.

We went out to near the end of both of these jetties. These are the Fish Pass Jetties. One is the North jetty and the other has the odd name of South jetty for some reason. From near the end of the north jetty the OFM took a bunch of terrible wave action shots with the camera. We did end up with one decent picture. As you can see from the picture no human has any business at the very end of the jetty.



And this was a relatively calm day.

We arrived here near the low tide bottom so during the adventures here the tide was slowly coming in and attempting to strand Sierra. This small tidal pool was forming at the base of the north jetty while the Teams watched it in action.



In about two hours the water would likely be lapping over the OFM’s shoes if he had stayed there. We still had several hours to go before Sierra needed to get out of there so the OFM went walking on the beach south of the south jetty. He got in about a half mile of walking south and then had to come back all the way to Sierra. Usually winter is a good month for beach combing but on this day the pickings were very slim. But the Teams did a good job of trying to have tooooo much fun.

1/9/17

Too Much Fun

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

After two early days of chasing warmth and sunshine the OFM wore out. He hit one of the beaches early this morning. As soon as Sierra got parked the OFM hopped out and started taking pictures. Here is the first picture of today.



By the end of today he was totally worn out and is doing his best to stay awake while this post is completed. He needs his beauty sleep. Yep the Teams came really close to having tooooo much fun today. Now all of us need to sleep. Night Night.

1/7/17

Survival

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

The OFM was cold last night so he turned on a heater to get warm. Then he checked the outside temperature and it was 27 deg F. Even an Arctic Fox like the Castle has to have internal heat with those conditions. The Castle held a comfortable 70 for the night with the electric heater running once in a while.

This afternoon about 1600 the OFM went around the campground and took pictures for evidence. Yes it did freeze here last night and it was a hard freeze as you are about to see. The OFM did not notice the freeze very much last night since he turned on the heat.

Two site north from the Castle is a nice large banana tree that was spreading enough to start to be a bother with the roadway. Well it got some natural pruning last night and might not be a trouble for a good while now.




The statue fountain near the Castle had the water in it frozen solid and was still solid as dark fell and we headed for a light freeze tonight. The basin in this picture is frozen solid. That means the circulation pump is frozen in there somewhere. We hope it survived.




There is a long leafed plant that grows like a bush here in the park in several places. They all seemed to survive with damage. This particular one normally stands about three feet tall. Now it is mostly a mushy mound of damaged leaves.




The owner has planted lots of Plumeria inside the campground. They make beautiful flowers and grow well normally. The leaves of the plant did not fare well with the cold, but we hope the stalk did fare well and will soon be back in spring growth mode.




Now all we need is for the fish to be really hungry tomorrow and beg us to cast a lure to them. That might be another great day of trying to have tooooo much fun.

1/6/17

Ice Knife Wind

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

The OFM made the Teams get out and experience the wonderful weather today. There is nothing so invigorating as a 37 degree F wet wind blowing 20+ miles per hour to brighten your day. Yes Sir the Teams were really enthusiastic in this endeavor.

When we pulled into the Rockport Beach Park the flags were waving at us with lots of excitement. We think it was because the OFM was the only fool to come to the park today.



Sierra drove the Teams around the whole park looking for anything not frozen in place. Even the waves in Little Bay did not seem enthusiastic in providing interesting movement. But on the way out we noticed that some of the palm trees were dancing in the ice knife wind. We do not know the name of the dance but it did use some low to the ground moves.



The (knucklehead) OFM even stopped for a couple of casts to see if any fish were dumb enough to not head south ahead of the cold front. Nope, none of the fish were dumb enough to stick around for this misery. But the OFM was.

By now even the OFM was ready to give up and get back into the warm of the Castle for some effort at trying to have tooooo much fun.

Great Idea?????

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

The OFM Teams camera has trash on the lens or image receiving device. You have probably seen it in a picture or two over the last year plus. Today the OFM thought to blow air in around the telescoping lens. Then into the compartment where the video card and batteries reside. He hoped to dislodge some of the garbage that shows in our pictures.

His breath is the first thought but it likely would be way to moist and cause condensation troubles inside the camera. So it was quickly ruled out. OK then use the air compressor and dial the air pressure way down so as to not explode the camera.

So far so good but we did not have a way to get the air into the camera. We needed a “air gun” like we used to have when we had a shop. Off to Walmart and there was a complete kit to set us up with an air gun and a bunch of stuff we did not need. That is spelled $$$$$. So more thought was in process as he wandered all over Wal-Mart.

Suddenly in the garden section was the answer. A garden sprayer would produce a decent strong stream of air and the Castle has one in a storage bin! Back at the Castle it took looking into a couple of bins before we found the sprayer.



We took the trouble of rinsing it and drying it out so only air would be sprayed. Then we tested by pumping it for about ten hours it seemed but in the end it puffed out a strong stream of concentrated air. Next was a recharge of the sprayer and into the Castle to try it on the camera. It worked perfectly. You could tell that air was impacting the thin cracks around the lens. Then we went to the battery cavity and sprayed air all through that and could feel some air exit around the lens. Wow this is going great!

Next we fired up the camera to see how much good we had done. The camera showed us that blowing the air into the camera did absolutely no good for our trouble. All the dust spots were still there in the original spots. None of them had been moved. Ratzzzzz. So now we are back to looking for a new camera that fits in a front shirt pocket and is one $ in cost instead of $$$$$. We noticed some with waterproof to 30 feet designation and some with dust proof designation and some with both. Maybe the next camera will not get the trash inside like the last two did. We will miss the viewfinder though. The OFM really would like a clean camera to record his efforts at trying to have tooooo much fun.

1/5/17

It Came Home With Us

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas
 
1/4/2017
The OFM made a mistake a couple of years ago and purchased to small of a skillet. Today he remembered to look at TFal skillets at Walmart. There was a larger one available at a decent price. So a ten inch skillet followed us home. Since it is COLD outside this evening we put the stove top to work to heat the Castle.

The skillet was compared to the smaller skillet and deemed a better item for us to carry. The smaller skillet was donated to the land fill. For those who might care, the TFal brand of cookware has served the OFM very well for 19 years as a single man. The slippery coating has held up on all the cookware we have abused in this time period. It is also decently value priced.




After a good scrubbing and rinsing it was time for the new skillet to earn its keep. The refrigerator was raided for ingredients. The OFM usually has some good stuff in the refrigerator for eating and tonight was very good.

  • The ingredients were: Slovaceks sausage thinly sliced.

  • A nice green Mexican bell pepper

  • A chunk of pretty Mexican cabbage

  • Coarse ground black pepper and garlic powder

  • A large Mexican onion

  • A good dollop of olive oil


This was all stir fried gently leaving some crunch to the vegetables. The sausage was slightly curled at the edges and NO burned edges on anything. The wonderful meal was slipped onto a plate, a hurried picture taken and the feast began.



With the voracious OFM the feast did not last very long. Another good point is stir frying seldom creates much mess to clean up. The OFM got that chore done in about fifteen minutes. Now he is planning on a huge cup of decaffeinated green tea to finish out the evening.

Yep kicking back with a big mug of hot tea and sketching possible paintings sounds like a great way of finishing up the day of trying to have tooooo much fun.



1/4/17

Shiverring

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

Here it is Wednesday morning and COLD outside. The OFM is shiverring and quiverring over there in front of three electric heaters going full blast. Not much going to be happening for the next couple of days.



So let’s just have a rosy time indoors.

 

1/2/17

Bad Winter Day

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

The sun came up to a cool morning with a gentle breeze. Quickly it became a gorgeous day. The sun was very welcome. The OFM once again took off from the harbor area for a long walk. He is trying to help his legs by losing weight again and keeping the muscle tone better by gentle exercise. Exercise that makes your joints hurt is just plain wrong.

When he made his way out to the end of the breakwater guarding the entry to the harbor he rested a few minutes. That is a treacherous walk out to the end with all the slippery algae on the concrete. While resting he noticed the old docks from ancient history of the harbor. We do not know how old the docks are but the OFM recalls them being over fifty years old.



This is quite a horrible winter day isn’t it.

We renewed our Rockport Beach Pass today for $20 for the year. It is probably the best valued fun ticket we have used in several years. One important thing is that the pass gives us access to the wooden pier at the end of the beach. It is a good fishing pier.

Today the OFM did a bit of fishing on that pier with a new to him lure named a Mirrodine. It is a pretty lure and it actually caught two fish. If you put the fish end to end they would measure about 16“. In this picture of the first fish, the Mirrodine is about 3 1/2“ long. Those are 2x6 decking boards the fish is lying upon. That little fish had eyes bigger than its mouth we believe.

 


A lot of the day was spent just enjoying the 72 degree sunshine and doing lots of serious relaxing. But grocery shopping had to happen. Walmart was swamped with customers AND the computer cash registers could not accept any sort of credit card or debit card. It was the old days again with CASH only. The OFM went crazy and treated himself to a bag of potato chips. WOW that guy certainly does know how to live it up when he is trying to have tooooo much fun.

1/1/17

GKII

Adventure Location: Rockport, Texas

 
WE have the pleasure of announcing the production of GKII is in progress. GKII???

Grand Kid number 2. GKII is due in July and therefore has taken command of the re-planning of the OFM Teams travel agenda for 2017. Of course the Teams will do our best to be on site for the big event when it happens.

This is a pretty good way to start off a brand new year of trying to have tooooo much fun.