Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Behind the Scenes at the Ranch

The Ranch, my husband’s family’s homestead in Northern California and the fabulous place where we were married, is an incredible place. I could spend all day staring off into the golden fields (if it’s summer) or lush pastures (if it’s winter), being completely absorbed by its serene vastness. And although I would generally opt to do nothing while we are up at the ranch except relax (with a cocktail of course), this is often never the case. Usually there are things to do, such as the following:

Trailer improvement. This time we planted a tree! Rolling Thunder wouldn’t be a proper home if it didn’t have landscaping. At the very least, it takes away from the fact that there are still tires sitting under the house from when we first moved it. 

Listen to country music. NON-STOP. Wes bought this portable, rugged boom box so we could have music no matter where we are on the ranch, which means we listen to music NO MATTER WHERE WE ARE ON THE RANCH. This is nice most of the time, but by the time the weekend’s over and we’re heading back to LA, I’m reeling from a country music overdose and have visions of killing anyone who has the name Garth, Toby, or Taylor, and says “yeehaw”.

Pest control. Cocoa does a good job getting rid of the most heinous pests such as lizards (insert sarcasm), but the rest of the suckers, like the locusts (as in Old Testament, Moses and the Ten Plagues of Egypt locusts), have to be chemically eradicated.

Natural selection got these ones (the little yellow dots floating in the puddle underneath the cattle guard). Turns out locusts can’t swim. Silly little locusts.

Tend to the animals. So this one's not really true because the cattle on the ranch are taken care of by the cowboys and Wilhelmina here… well she's a pig. She takes care of herself.

She might take care of you too by biting off your finger, but that's just a hunch I have. Feel free to stick your finger in her pen and prove me wrong. I was too chicken to try it.

And let's not forget: Stay cool. During the summer, the temperature at the ranch reaches the high 90's and low 100's, meaning you don't want to spend much time outside except if you're in the pool. I chose to stay inside and enjoy the air conditioning. A picture of me in a bikini might make you faint, so went with this one: the view from inside Rolling Thunder.

We'll be heading up to the ranch this weekend, as it's that time of year again: blackberry picking season. I'm sure your mouth's watering in anticipation of our delicious Blackberry Holiday Hooch. It might even get better this year if we pay attention to what we’re doing. Here’s to hoping!

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