Terlingua Dreams

Terlingua Dreams
CASI Chili Cook-off - Terlingua, Texas

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Another year comes to an end

When I was a teenager it seemed like the year lasted forever, now in my later years they just fly by. This year in particular came and went at what seems like the bat of an eye.

I have never really been into going out on New Year’s.  I usually spend it at home as I will tonight.  Will stay up mainly because we live in the county where the use of firecrackers is permitted.  The neighbors are going crazy popping them left and right.

It is a shame that the man that mother hired to mow her grass never showed back up but of course that was expected.  Mother is a little upset because I blogged about it.  With the grass being as tall as it is, it can easy catch on fire.  The last thing we need is for the house to burn down, so I have the hoses ready just in case.

If you go out tonight please be careful.  I wish each and every one of you a very happy and prosperous New Year.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Joint Problem

To say that I got a good night sleep would be a lie.  Could not go to sleep no matter how hard I tried.  Finally got up at 7:30 a.m. and people in the blogsphere know that unless I am traveling or have some pressing business…this gal is NOT a morning person.

We had beautiful weather and a little bit of wind, which is conducive to doing laundry and actually getting it to dry (we don’t have a drier, we use a clothesline).  However I could not get my mind off of my shared bank account number with an absolute stranger.

Got the phone book out and looked up the gentlemen’s name and thank goodness he had an actually landline number listed.  Debated for a while whether to call him or not and inform him of the situation since I knew darn well IBC Bank was NOT going to do it.

At noon after weighing the pros and cons decided if the shoe was on the other foot, I would want to know about our joint problem.  I must say he was a very nice gentleman and just from talking to him I could tell he was a man of honor, and that was of great comfort to me.

He has not one but several accounts at IBC and informed me that the one we have in common is not a checking account but a CD account.  That is the reason why no money was actually commingled or compromised in our duplicate account. 

Around 3:58 p.m. I got a hysterical call from the little boy who had unsuccessfully tried to help me at the bank yesterday but did not have the cojones to go up to the manager in charge and interrupt his dual conversation on his cell phone and regular phone nor his immediate supervisor who was engaged in a very loud personal conversation with one of his “boyfriends”.

Did he really think I was going to leave it at “Believe me you have nothing to worry about.  If I thought your account would be compromised in anyway, I would be the first person telling you to close it.”  He obviously does not know me…

He wanted to know HOW I had been able to locate Mr.____  I told him “ how do you think?  The phone book of course” his next question was “what did you tell him?”  My answer “why don’t you tell ME what YOU are doing about my problem?”  His reply “I told you your account was not being compromised”. 

Well this little boy better be trembling in his boots (even though he was wearing shoes) because my account may be a little measly one which they can easily afford to lose but I don’t think they want to lose this gentleman’s business.  He must have scared him silly for him to have called me in such a panic :D

This afternoon a man from my mom’s congregation came by because “he had noticed her grass was tall”.  I had not seen him in four years and though I cannot prove it, I think his son had something to do with the disappearance of my beloved 14-year-old cat that mysteriously vanished the last time he mowed her yard. 

Of course mother hired him on the spot.  I would not have a problem with it if it weren’t for the fact that he never quite completes the job.  He will mow one day and then show up two or three weeks later to “finish the job”.  There is nothing I hate more than people who do not honor their word or lack a work ethic, to me they are BUMS.  However, I cannot say anything bad about him or my mother takes it as a personal attack on her friends.  It was hard to keep my mouth shut but I know deep down inside that he is NOT going to show up tomorrow.  Oh well, it is her money not mine.

I would like to welcome the Foot family (Big Foot, Little Foot and Underfoot) for signing on as followers.  Thank you.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Incompetent Institutions

On the agenda today was to go by the P.O. Box, the library, the bank, the county clerk’s office, and the pharmacy.

My life has been a whirlwind since September and I have not had the time to focus on things that really required my attention.  I did find it odd that I had not seen a bank statement in a while.  Decided to go to the bank and inquire.  What I found was a horrific nightmare.

Turns out someone (they told me the name but I have no idea who that person is) signed up for e-mail statements for his account and somehow registered mine.  But wait it gets better, turns out that we both have THE SAME ACCOUNT NUMBER.  How can this be?  How can a bank be so terribly incompetent to issue the same number to two different customers?  Even worst is how did they not know?  Do they not have an audit department?

I might add that I did not just open my account.  I have had my account since August 2007 and the other person since July 2007.  If it weren’t because I stopped getting my statement I would have never found out.  I presume that other person already knows or maybe not since he has not notified the bank. Thankfully I don’t have much money but imagine if the bank had deducted his checks from mine or mine from his.  This is just totally unacceptable!!

Yesterday, when I went to the P.O. Box I found another jury summons for my mother.  This is the third summons in five years even though each time she receives one I have gone and personally hand delivered an exemption request and been assured that she will not get another one in the future.


Val Verde county courthouse



For those readers who are not from Texas or are from another country a person gets a jury summons about every two years or so to appear at the courthouse from a pool of citizens whose names are derived from voter registration records and/or driver’s license data banks.  However if that person is over 70 years of age they can choose to exclude themselves.  Theoretically this should only have to be done once, but this will be the third time mother has to file one.

Back of courthouse where the County Clerk's offices are located
 Last week I called in to refill mother’s medications.  The automated service said they would be ready on Dec 23rd but I did not go to pick them up till yesterday.  Only one was refilled because the other two needed authorization from the doctor so the pharmacy sent the doctor’s office a second fax.

Today I went to pick up her prescriptions and no response from the doctor’s office so will have to make another trip.  Guess today did not turn out like I envisioned but heck at least I am alive and in somewhat good health.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Dear Santa



All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth, my two front teeth…hey wait, I already got those back when I was eight…

Santa, I have been very good this year hoping that you would not forget about me like you have in prior years :-(

Here is my list:

  1. I am not greedy Santa, even though there is a lot of acreage in Terlingua, I only ask for 1 acre or less of highway frontage so I can sit in my front porch and watch a car drive by every 15 minutes.

  1. A rebuilt transmission for Terlita (my camping van)

  1. An honest and knowledgeable mechanic

  1. A heavy duty weed eater and a gardener to operate it

  1. A chain saw to cut down Mom’s horrible mesquite trees and a gardener to cut them

  1. A heavy duty zero gravity chair

Last but not least:

  1. A weathered cowboy…preferably with a job :D


Since you are probably sick and tired of milk and cookies, I have left you the following:


Friday, December 23, 2011

Snow in the forecast?

It was a cold, cloudy and gray day so slept in.  Have been going through my mail, filing stuff and doing the kind of things you do when it is ugly outside.

Was watching the San Antonio station KSAT12 news (Del Rio has no TV station) and almost died laughing when I heard that there were probabilities of snow for Val Verde county…yeah right :D

Hope everyone has gotten their shopping done so you don’t have to go out in this awful weather.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

If you passed away, would someone notice?

A while back Ben InTexas posed a hypothetical question “what if one of us bloggers died in our home and no one knew.”  Since he is a daily blogger with updates throughout the day…well we would certainly take note that something was out of place if he did not do his daily post. http://benntexas.blogspot.com/  But how about those people who do not go online or who for that matter do not even have friends or relatives living close by? Worst yet if they happen to be elderly and living by themselves and whose families do not even care about their well-being?

This is a topic that perhaps very few of us care to discuss but one that perhaps deserves our attention.  I was going to post about this two weeks ago when the death of an elderly gentlemen touched me.  He lived alone and apparently did not have family. The only reason they found him was because the mailman reported that there was a foul odor emitting from the residence.  When the police entered his home they found his body in an advance state of decomposition.  They performed an autopsy and ruled he died from natural causes.

I was reading the free online page of the Del Rio News Herald and I was literally shocked to find that three more have died in the same fashion.  Del Rio is not a very big town.  We have just shy of 50,000 residents and in the past two weeks we have had four deaths of senior citizens in their residences.   The common factor is that they all lived alone. http://delrionewsherald.com/news/article_fceb2238-2b31-11e1-8d4f-0019bb2963f4.html

Do you keep in touch with your elderly relatives or neighbors?  If you live alone whether you are elderly or not, is there a person you are in contact with that would take note if they did not hear from you?  Do you have a trusted friend that has a key to your house and that could get access to your home just in case?  Do your friends have a way of contacting your family in case you became ill or had to be hospitalized?

Food for thought….

On a much happier note, it turned out to be a beautiful day. Since there is rain and a cold front in the forecast decided to take advantage while I could and did two loads of laundry.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Tiny Texas Houses

The Houston Chronicle article on Tiny Texas houses http://tinytexashouses.com/ brought to mind that I have tried to stop there on several occasions but either I have missed the exit heading east or I have been in a hurry when I am heading west or a combination of both.

This time I did not miss the Luling exit as one has a better view of the houses that sit on a hill on the left side of the road when one is headed west on I-10.  Took a couple of pictures but I did not go into the sales office.








Maybe the next time I am out that direction and I am not in a hurry I will stop and see what these houses built with salvaged materials sell for.  My guess is that it is not cheap. These tiny houses would be ideal for my future Terlingua property.

I think I am getting too old for these long distance drives.  I am still recuperating from yesterday’s trip back to Del Rio.  While I was ready to go at 5:30 a.m. the rain prevented me from leaving at that time.  Decided it was best to wait it out even if it meant driving in rush hour traffic.  Of course in Houston it seems like it is always rush hour.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sunny but cool Sunday

Last night my neighbor lady called me at 10:30 p.m. to let me know she was back from her Christmas shopping trip.  She lives a block down from me and she is a very sweet lady who is in the homeowners association board of directors. Told her I was already in my pajamas and if I could take her my keys tomorrow (today).

She agreed since it was late for me to be walking at that hour.  However she is a chatter and she kept me on the phone for 3 hours 20 minutes 12 seconds.  It would not be so bad if she had not told me these stories hundreds of times before.  I would politely say,  “Yes Ms. Josie, you mentioned that to me before” but it would go in one ear and out the other.  She spent two of those hours telling me about her late husband’s funeral.  I never met her husband besides he died in 1991 and she hated him.  Serves me right for misplacing my keys!!

Needless to say I woke up late.  Had a couple of errands to run but decided to read the Houston Chronicle instead.  What a treat that was, it has been such a long time that I do not read the paper cover to cover.  Lots of information and well worth its price.  Can’t say that about the Del Rio News Herald, they can’t even get the spelling right.  You would think a newspaper would use spell check.


Even though it is well worth the $2.00 price I buy my newspaper at the .99 Cents Only Store for $1.50 on Saturday


Had an interesting article on tiny houses and people that design and live in them

It was a beautiful sunny day even though a bit on the cool side.  Tomorrow in the afternoon we are supposed to see rain.  We need it and its welcomed.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Grocery Wars

I love going grocery shopping in Houston because in comparison to Del Rio everything here is reasonably priced specially if you know where to shop.  The long time discount grocery store has been Food Town and in their home delivered flyer they always offer a special priced coupon, be it for $1.00 off a select item or a free item altogether.


About a year and half ago HEB decided to join the grocery wars and opened up a discount store called Joe V’s.  It has all the in-house labels carried by their regular HEB stores as well as national brands but at a great discount.  I should know the prices at HEB, as they are the only grocery store we have in Del Rio.


As I have mentioned previously my culinary skills are nil to non-existent so I buy quite a lot of can goods.  I found a great bargain on ravioli (my favorite can product) a 40 oz can for .88 cents this is what you would typically pay for just one can.  I bought 8 cans, so I am set for next year’s chili cook-off :D 

For size comparison a 15 oz can of peas and my 40 oz can of ravioli


I would have bought more but I forgot that Joe V’s only takes cash or debit cards. No credit cards, no checks in order to keep their prices low.  For my safety and because I plain do not like to carry cash this is all I was able to buy.


Saw this homemade trailer on the road bet he saved a lot money doing that

I am happy to report that yesterday morning I was able to find my keys, they were in my car the whole time.  I barely slept Friday night worrying about them.  Yesterday I was watching the six o’clock news and fell asleep.  Woke up at 8:00 p.m. and decided to go to bed until the evening news.  Unfortunately did not wake up till 11:15 p.m. so I just said the heck with it and turned around and went back to sleep until this morning.  Guess I was really tired.

My neighbor is going to call me as soon as she gets back from Christmas shopping so I can go take her my spare set of keys, hope she comes home early.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Close but no cigar

This morning at 9:18 a.m. I went to check out John Wells’s blog  http://thefieldlab.blogspot.com/ to see if he had reached the one million mark yet, but it was at 999,968.  Decided to keep a close watch and see if maybe I could be that person.  But alas it was not to be, I was:

999,998


999,999


1,000,001


Congratulations to John as well as the winner from Boise, Idaho who only stayed for –0- seconds.  Maybe if he/her doesn’t materialize, I can claim his/her prize?

I am in a quandary tonight.  My Terlingua friends know that I am famous for losing my keys but in Terlingua the factor of alcohol is involved and I usually end up finding them before my departure.

I am sober as can be.  After the news I went to the grocery store then came home.  The thought of having to eat cereal for dinner did not sit well with me so decided to go buy me a patty melt at Whataburger.  I usually carry my house keys with my car keys on one of those plastic wristbands.  However, this trip to Houston I have been carrying the house keys separately.

The thing is that I lost the darn keys between my house and Whataburger.  Went back and asked if anyone had turned in my keys and searched the parking lot.  Searched my car but no keys.  It is a good thing that I gave a spare key to one of my trusted neighbors and that she was home or I would be spending the night in the driveway of my house.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Man’s Word

Last time I was in Houston was back in September and as you might recall if you were reading this dribble back then was that I was sick as a dog.  I have an electric lawn mower and it doesn’t cut well when the grass is high.  I mowed the front yard pretty good to keep from getting a love letter from the homeowners association.  I did not do a good job on the backyard and since the HOA can’t see the backyard I was not too concerned about it at the time.

Fast forward two and a half months and you can imagine what my backyard looks like now.  As soon as I saw it I knew I had to hire someone.  The neighbor on the corner has a yardman and I asked him for his telephone number.  Called the man Friday and he assured me he would be here today.  Even made him take down my phone number so he could call me in case he could not come. You guess it…he did not show up nor did he call.  I called him a while ago and he said, “He did not feel well today” when I asked him why he did not call me, he said, “he forgot”.  He assured me he will be here tomorrow…I won’t hold my breath on that one.

There is no way I can tackle this with my little eletric mower

This Grasshog is the best weedeater I have ever owned but it bit the dust a year ago and the new models pale by comparison. 

My father always told me that a man had to honor his word and just because I was a woman did not mean I was exempt from that rule.  I can still hear him telling me “don’t ever give your word and then not keep it, a person without a word is not worth a plugged nickel and you would be disgracing your mother and I if you did so.”  So why do I keep running into people that don’t keep their word?

Yard work is seasonal, I would have imagined he would be glad to have a new customer.  Will give him the benefit of the doubt…

It was a cloudy and gray day.  Spent most of it cleaning and sorting through stuff.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Virginian

For some inexplicable reason I have been going to bed before eleven o’clock and waking up at five o’clock in the morning.  Of course today that I needed to be at Target when they opened, true to form, I woke up late.  One good thing about Houston, if the store you are at does not have it, you can always drive to another location.  Took me three stores but I finally tracked down what I needed.

 Kroger (local grocery store) offers a .03 cent reduction on your gas purchase if you have a store card.  The closest store to my house does not have a gas station so decided to stop and fill up at $2.96 a gallon at a Kroger I do not frequent and that was across the street from Target.  I needed cereal so went in to buy it and got in line in the express check out. There was an elderly gentlemen in front of me in one of those electrical store cars for handicap people and he had more than the allowed 10 items, no big deal I was not in a hurry and at his age he deserves to get in whatever line he chooses.  The cashier, a girl in her late 20’s was very nice and attentive toward him and had to repeat some things to him since he obviously had a hearing problem.  The guy bagging the groceries was equally attentive and offered to help him to his car but he declined and said he could manage.

The guy bagging the groceries was not a “ bag boy” he was older, nicely dressed and looked to be one of the store managers.  He told her “ do you know who that is?” She said “No”.  He told her he was _____(blank failed to catch the name).  She responded that she did not know who that was.  Then he said he used to be in “The Virginian”.  She replied she had never seen the show but perhaps her dad would know him or her husband since he was into westerns.

Now I have to admit that I never even heard of that show.  As a kid the only westerns that I used to watch was Bonanza and Big Valley.  So I hurried outside to get a better look at him without being too obvious.  He was parked in front of the store in the handicap section but he was busy arranging his trunk and had his back toward me so I did not get a look at his face.  Ran to my car and got my camera and drove by slowly but as you can see, it is not a good picture. 


He had his trunk raised and he appeared to have a suitcase as well as other items inside


Wish he had looked up so I could of gotten a shot of his face

He was reading something and gave the impression that he was waiting for someone who was still inside the store.

 Wanted to welcome Suerte for signing on as a blog follower.  Thank you.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Home Again

Finally after postponing my trip for the umpteenth time due to the weather, left early this morning.  Got to see a sunrise something I don’t always get to do.  Even the agents at the Border Patrol Check Point were in a good mood and did not bombard me with questions.

My only regret is that I did not get to meet Ara and Spirit who were going to be coming through Del Rio…maybe next time.  I did however visit a mom and pop eating establishment in Sabinal, Texas called Nora’s Tacos which he featured on his blog http://theoasisofmysoul.com/?p=16289.  I told Nora he had sent me.  Lucky for me they were celebrating their 6th anniversary of being in business today and I got my choice of pozole, cabrito or cake.  I chose pozole and just heated it up a while ago, it was as delicious as their tacos.

Dang, there were tons of DPS troopers on I-10 from San Antonio to Houston.  Was surprised considering it is not the weekend.  Had no other choice than to follow the speed limit.

Glad I filled up after my visit with Billy Bob because Monday gas went up ten cents from $3.09 to $3.19 and I don’t know why.  It was $3.06 in San Antonio and $2.98 a gallon here in town.

Remember my rant about Time Warner Cable?  When I got home I scanned my TV converter box and I have 80 free channels here in Houston and they don’t cost me a dime!!

It is freezing cold in the house, need to go buy me an electric heater for my bedroom.  Only had four hours of sleep last night so I think I going to turn in early.

Good night and may you have Terlingua dreams.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

No Electricity

Short post tonight.  The lights went out in our area around 9:00 p.m. and it is now around 12:48 a.m.  Do not know if this is just in the county or if the city is also affected.

This would not be an issue if tonight were not going to be the coldest night in the season.  It is expected to be 28 degrees tonight or so that is what the weatherman is saying and you know how I feel about weather forecasters.

One good thing about being a procrastinator is that I still have not put away my Terlingua stuff so was able to find my flashlights and camping lantern without too much problem.

Wanted to welcome long time blogger friend Tffnguy for signing on as a follower.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua dreams.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Car Problems

Woke up to cloudy skies, wind and cold.  There was rain on the way to Houston so decided to postpone my trip yet another day.

Had totally forgot that I needed to renew my drivers license and I sure as heck don't plan on spending all day standing in line in Houston to do so.  Since my car is all packed and ready to go decided to drive mom's car.  Right away I noticed that it was having the same brake issue problems that the worthless mechanic was supposed to have resolved.  Really should not have driven it but since dad's old car won't start (another issue mechanic can't seem to fix) and Terlita (my camping van) has transmission issues decided to chance it.

It was a good thing I took the back roads and that there was not much traffic.  I kept on pumping the brakes to see if I could get them to catch.  As soon as I got out of the DPS office I headed back home and thankfully made it safely.

Wanted to mention that there were only two people in line in front of me and it took me 20 minutes to get in and out.  A friend of mine is coming down for a visit and I asked the lady if she could renew her license here even though she lives in Houston and she said she could. She mentioned that a lot of hunters and fishermen from Dallas and Houston like to drop by and renew their license because of our relative short lines.

Spoke to a friend in the Midland and she said they had three inches of snow on the ground with more on the way.  Our weather channel which has a bad track record in my book claims it is going to snow in Langtry (Judge Roy Beans place) about 90 miles away.

Get bundled up and may you all have Terlingua dreams tonight.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Cable Rip Off

If you live in Val Verde or surrounding counties if you do not have cable you basically have a blank TV.  All of our local channels that are FREE in other cities like ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, etc… come from San Antonio, Texas a city 144 miles away including local news as there are no television stations out here.

Just opened up Time Warner Cable e-mail saying our statement is ready to be viewed and I will be darned if they did not raise the price again.  All we have is basic cable and it is now $63.72 a month, it would really be $64.73 but if you sign up for e-statements they knock a dollar off, they are so generous.

I will take that back, if you have a TV in Del Rio even the old analog type you can get Mexico’s two main networks Televisa and TV Azteca that are transmitted via satellite from Mexico City. Of course that does not do you any good unless you speak Spanish.  Ciudad Acuna (border city with Del Rio) as poor as they are have a television channel and reporters but again you have to speak Spanish to be of any benefit. So I guess we have no choice but to keep paying their ridiculous prices or turn the cable off.  Ok, I will get off my soapbox now.

I certainly had Terlingua dreams last night, so much so that I did not get up till noon.  It was a cool, drizzly and cloudy day so conducive to sleeping in.  I have been running around in circles this whole week so today was a “do nothing day”.

It drizzled this afternoon but nothing like the rain they forecasted.  However it is raining on the way to Houston and that is interfering with my plans.  I do not drive in the rain unless I absolutely have to and if I have waited two months, I guess one more day wont kill me.

Have a good night  and may you all have Terlingua dreams.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Erroneous Forecasting

I am really beginning to loathe weather forecasters.  For the past two days we were supposed to get substantial rain by their account and to date I have yet to see a drop.  I was worried because I had to drive to Eagle Pass, Texas (about 60 miles from here) to take my mom to her doctor’s appointment yesterday.  I am not a morning person but I woke up at 4:30 a.m. and could not get back to sleep thinking I was going to have to drive in torrential rain, yeah right…turned out to be a beautiful day.

I had a lot of errands to run this afternoon but luckily finished with still plenty of daylight left to pay a visit to Billy Bob at the San Pedro Campground on Lake Amistad.  Usually this campground has few visitors but today I was happy to see that there were quite a bit of people including a Boy Scout Troop.



Sweet Sadie Mae barked alerting her daddy of my presence but since I was a welcomed guest (or at least I think I was) she just laid by his feet and listened in to the conversation.  Mr. Billy Bob is such a character; I don’t think two hours is sufficient time to spend with him.  I would need a couple of days, weeks, months just to scratch the surface.


I asked him if there was something he wanted to say to his bloggers?  He said yeah, tell them “Boy, howdy”.    Message relayed…

Have a good night and may you all have Terlingua Dreams.