Friday, February 11, 2011




It was a busy morning as we bustled about the rig readying ourselves to get the big wheels rolling.  I had been concerned about our problematic rear passenger side hydraulic Jack.  Would it retract?  It did:))  Only glitch we had was when the living room slide would not come in.  A bit of finagling in the fuse panel seemed to do the trick & the slide finally powered up & came in. 



It was exactly high noon when we rolled out the laneway & through the gate on our journey to our next destination.  Weather was good, rig ran well & the traffic was light as we finally reached our next destination a half mile away & 2 minutes later.



From here on in I am going to refer to Glen’s house where we are now as the Flying W Ranch.  That is the name carved into the wood fireplace mantle by the man who built this house in 1977.  His name was Richard Wiegand & he was Ingrid’s Brother.


Didn’t take us long to have the chairs set out, the satellite dish set up, BBQ in place & Mexican tapestries hung.  Sure felt like home.  And we could tell the doggy guys liked it too.  Tired from our big move we just basked in the sun & watched the multitudes of birds around the feeders.  Even some Gambles Quail came in very close.  From the time Richard Wiegand began building this house nearly 35 years ago he made it a priority to look after the many birds in the area.  And, all those birds descendants are still here in the front yard with a steady whirr of little wings & a continuous chorus of bird songs.  How wonderful it is to be in the constant surrounding presence of nature.



Jeanie phoned to say they were on their way with Jim & Rene to the property we had just vacated so we slipped on over & awaited their arrival.  Wasn’t long & the little green Jeep led the following truck & fifth wheel through the gate & onto the property.  Last time we saw Jim & Rene & their big dog Wyatt was Borrego Springs CA when we were both boon docking at the Clark Dry Lake Bed.  Nice to see them again.  Some of you may remember Jim & Rene & their previous 3 legged dog Jerry when they appeared on the Nature Channel with their touching story about Jerry’s cancer.  JERRY'S STORY.


We all did a walk around of the property & house then Jeanie & Ray came over to the Flying W for a look around.  They had never been here before but knew Ingrid’s Brother Richard.  Jeanie was able to give us a little history on the house & property.  Both Jeanie & Ray fell in love with this little place just as we did.  It’s not new & it’s not fancy schmancy but we sure do like it.  Fits the dusty old Bayfield Bunch to a tee.  We sure had a lot to talk about today regarding our future.  Nuff said about that for now.


About 6 o’clock tonight I was moving a box off a table on the front cement porch when an electrical cord snagged my D50 Nikon with my new 300mm lens attached & dropped them to the concrete floor.  The lens separated from the camera & I immediately saw broken pieces.  I won’t bother to tell you the feeling I had in my stomach.  The front part of my camera had snapped right off so I knew immediately that was the end of my old faithful Nikon D50.  My main concern was the lens & I feared it was finished too.  After a 3 foot drop onto hard concrete, that kind of equipment generally does not survive.  From all outwards appearance the lens looked undamaged.  Snapped it onto my other Nikon & hit the shutter button.  The lens auto focused OK & when I later downloaded the pics they still looked sharp.  Tomorrow I will run the lens through all it’s functions & keep my fingers crossed.  As for my D50 I figure trying to get it repaired would cost as much as another camera body so I will now begin the hunt for another Nikon DSLR.  Maybe new, maybe used.  I’ll have to start reading reviews & see what I can find.  Anybody out there selling a Nikon body??

DSC_2811 DSC_2833 DSC_2815

Jeanie & Ray think the donkeys were stolen to be used as pack animals for the drug runners.  It’s a common way of moving heavy drug bundles at night through the Valley & over the Mountains here.  There have been other horse & donkey thefts in the area over the past few months.  But, none of us has given up hope that they will be found…………..


GROANER’S CORNER:((  Did you know Submarines are safer than airplanes. Proof in the fact is there are more airplanes in the water than submarines in the air!  And how do you sink a submarine full of blondes?  A: Just knock on the door of course.


Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.

The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails -William Arthur Ward
The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...... AL.


  1. I really like the looks of your new place, but nothing goes off without a hitch. Sorry about your camera.

  2. Al, I am intrigued by your new banner photo. How did you get that angle? A nearby tall mountaain & telephoto lens? You seem to be too high for that, and the hike would have been a real struggle. A hang glider? I guess I could go back in your archives and maybe you explained it. But then I wouldn't have an excuse to post. Sorry about the D50. Someday I will tell you about dropping my Nikon 35 Zoom years ago. The first camera with a zoom lens.

  3. Just spent some time exploring your site and looking at your pictures. You really have a good eye for color and your pix. Sorry to hear about your camera. I have a Nikon 6006 SLR you can have for nuthin - oh darn, you don't want a film camera?? Good luck and hope you find just what you are looking for.

  4. glad you are all enjoying your new place!!..nice work on the drive..must have been exhausting..and I am sure traffic was horrible!...too bad about your camera!!

  5. Looks like a great new spot, you've got there, Hope it might be in your future plans.Sorry to hear about the mishap with your camera, I think I would cry for two weeks if that happenned to me, the bad part is those things always happen when money is tight or other circumstances make replacing them right away difficult. Hope you have good luck with your quest for another. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  6. The “Flying W Ranch” looks and sounds great. I am very sorry about your camera, hopefully the zoom will check out okay today.


  7. So sorry to hear about the camera and it breaks our hearts to hear about the donkeys--if they are being used by drug runners may all three donkeys develop an ornery kicking problem! Can't wait to hear what the Bayfield Bunch has up their sleeves next!

  8. OK, now you've got us all wondering...

    I hope your lens is undamaged. :)

  9. I hope the drug runners LOSE them fast. Just in case, maybe a note to the ICE folks who patrol that area to be on the lookout. They patrol by helicopter at night often and so might see some animals.

    Sorry to hear your camera is broken. You took some mighty good pictures with it.


  10. Oh, sure know that sick feeling when you drop a favorite camera! Love the photos of the birds...

  11. "Traffic was light" Ha!
    Is there even another internal combustion engine within 10 miles? Well, besides the Jeep that is?
    Got a knot in my stomach when I read the part about the D50. Gah! Dropped a camera back in '79, but fortunately it was a Nikkormat, and was a heavy kind of thing. Mostly metal parts. Survived with only a dent. I still have it and it still works, not that that counts for much since I haven't used a "film" camera in quite a while.
    Funny you should mention about the jacks. We had HWH on our motorhome and I always had trouble. Even after the dealer replaced the rear two under warranty. Ultimately I would carry around a big ole piece of oak that I'd use to "help" one of them along. It was the farthest from the pump, and was just dead slow. Never did figure that one out.
    Hope the new digs works out just fine. Looks like there was a lot of really hard work going on there....

  12. Glad to see you got moved to your new site safely with no problems.

    Sorry to hear about the suspected fate of the 3 donkeys too. I still hope someone finds them soon.

    Too bad about the camera too but at least the lens may be o.k.

  13. I hope you are not having the kind of self recriminations I go through when I damage stuff. Of course, those are still not bad compared to the grief my better half is likely to impose. In the case of a trusted camera, that I have learned all the functions, it is even worse. Lost one in a canoe rollover, I obviously still think about that.

    How did you find these great places to stay? It is such a great opportunity to be able to spend time like that.

  14. Glad you like your new digs, you look so "at home" on that porch. Something tells me that we are going to get word that you are negotiating a buying price for that place?
    Sometimes these things fall in your lap and you just have to jump at the chance before it slips away forever and you regret you didn't get it then!

    So sad to hear about the donkey's, it's hard to lose a pet, especially when it's stolen for such a horrible purpose. Maybe someday they will just wander back home and all will be well.


  15. Sorry to hear about your camera. When I read the part about the camera falling, I felt it in my bones. I watched my computer fall out of my bag 4 feet onto the concrete. There's a dull ache as it hits the ground. Ouch!

  16. We missed reading any blogs yesterday --surprise visitor in the morning, appointment out, afternoon visitors, and afternoon meeting. Our social calendar is really booked! So your move came as a surprise, and we are anxious to read more about it. We'll go back to yesterday, and eagerly await tomorrow!

  17. Tough break about the camera. I hate it when that happens. Hope you find a replacement.

    I'm still bummed about the donkeys. I can't even think about that sweet little donkey family being used by drug runners. I don't expect they would be treated very well. Hope they are found and returned.

    Love the banner pic. I could spend some time in a place like that.

  18. Hey Al, sorry about the Nikon but I bet all will be forgotten once that new camera body arrives. (LOL) I have a new blog site setup for the Tumbleweed Photo Group at I did have a problem in using Live Writer but it seems I have it working now. Hope to see you tomorrow at group and I'll bring the tissues for the other members to have a good cry. We always hate to see a good camera go down for the count.