Castle Gardens

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Even now, so many decades later, David will pass up a cool spring, saying, “If I drink now, I’ll be thirsty all day.” To cut cedar fence posts, they went with a wagon to Green Mountain, near Crooks Gap-a round trip of two weeks. In early fall, each year, they spent ten days going back and forth to the Rattlesnake Hills for stove wood. They took two wagons-four horses pulling each wagon-and they filled them with limber pine. They used axes, a two-handled saw. Near home, they mined coal with their father-from the erosional wonderland tl1ey called Castle Gardens, where a horse-drawn scraper stripped the overburden and exposed the seams of coal. Their father was adept at corralling wild horses, a skill that called for a horse and rider who could outrun these closest rivals to the wind. He caught more than he kept, put his Flatiron brand on the best ones and sold the others. Some of them escaped. David remembers seeing one clear a sevenfoot bar in the wild-horse corral and not so much as touch it. When he and Allan were in their early teens, his father sent them repping-representing Love Ranch in the general roundup-and they zakelijke energie stayed in cow camp with other cowboys, and often enough their sougans included snow. When they were out on the range, they slept out on the range, never a night in a tent. This was not a choice. It was a family custom. In the earlier stretch of his life when John Love had slept out for seven years, he would wrap himself in his sougans and finish the package with the spring hooks and D-1ings that closed his henskin. During big gales and exceptional blizzards, he looked around for a dry wash and the crease of an overhanging cutbank. He gathered sage and built a long fire-a campfire with the dimensions of a cot. He cooked his beans and bacon, his mutton, his sourdough, his whatever. After dinner, he kicked the fire aside and spread out his bedroll. He opened his waterproof packet of books and read by kerosene lamp. Then he blew out the light and went to sleep on warm sand. His annual expenditures were seventy-five dollars. This was a man who wore a long bearskin coat fastened with bone pegs in loops of rope. This was a man who, oddly enough, carried with him on the range a huge black umbrella-his summer parasol. This was a man whose Uncle John Muir had invented a zakelijke energie vergelijken device that started a fire in the morning while the great outdoorsman stayed in bed. And now this wee bairn with the light-gold hair was, in effect, questioning Love Ranch policy by asking his father what he had against tents. “Laddie, you don’t always have one available,” his father said patiently. “You want to get used to living without it.” Tents, he made clear, were for a class of people he referred to as “pilgrims.”

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