Terlingua Dreams

Terlingua Dreams
Governors Landing Campground - Lake Amistad - Del Rio, Texas

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Two trips to Mexico in one day

I barely slept last night thinking how I was going to get Oscar to get in the car.  I decided to take him to the veterinarian in Ciudad Acuña first as he is really in bad shape and at least he lets me get near him and I was able to place a collar on him and attach a leash to it.
His face is swollen and infected
I underestimated him, he did not wish to get in the car and instead took off on me.  I was only able to corner him because I got a hold of the leash.  I did my best to entice him to jump in the back seat but failed in my attempt.

He was not being cooperative
Decided to go to Ciudad Acuña anyway to seek the advice of Dr. Chavarria and/or his assistants.  His assistant sold me four pills of which I was supposed to administer two to each dog.  He told me to hide it in a hot dog and to keep a watchful eye on him as they take effect after twenty minutes.

This is as far as he got on my first attempt
It started working sooner and I noticed he wanted to go lay down by the pomegranate tree. This is his and Tammie's safe place as the cinder block fence and the other bushes protect them from predators. He was very drowsy but still fighting me.  I finally got him to the car and had to summon all my strength (which is not much) to get him in the back seat.  A few minutes later he was fast asleep and I drove back to Mexico.

The vet's assistant carried him from my car to the clinic for about a block.  They have a very busy practice and parking is scarce.  The vet told me that it was a good thing I brought him in because he was not doing well and the infection on his face had taken a toll on him.  He immediately injected him two antibiotics and another shot for the inflammation.

I was told that it would be in his best interest to have him spend the night, let the medication they administered a chance to work and tomorrow they would remove the quills.

I felt bad leaving him in an unfamiliar environment but had to remind myself that it was for his own well-being. So, my friends, Oscar is resting this evening in an Animal Clinic in Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila, Mexico.

It all went well as there was hardly any traffic to cross into Mexico or the USA on both trips. Mexican customs did not even inquire about him.

Tomorrow I have to repeat the procedure with Tammie.  She is a bit more problematic given she does not like to have a human touch her.  I just hope she does not bite me!

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

No help for Tammie or Oscar...:-(

Got a call at 12:09 p.m. from a lady with "Friends of Del Rio Animals" who apologized for not getting back to me sooner.  I am familiar with this organization as I had contacted them a couple of years back regarding Walter (the neighbor's horse) but had been informed at the time, that they only worked with cats and dogs.

Thought it strange that they called since I had contacted "A Pet's Wish" Rescue.  Have no idea if they are related or if the other organization forwarded my message to them. I once again explained the reason for my call and if they could be of assistance.

Sadly the only assistance I was offered was the name and telephone number of Roger Cerny who either heads or will head the Health Department for Val Verde County.  There are plans to finally open an animal shelter facility though who knows when that will be.  Just in case I lose his telephone number, I will write it on my blog 830-774-7569.

Aside from being given Mr. Cerny's telephone number, I was also given the phone numbers of two local veterinarians and the location of a new state of the art Animal Clinic that I could have easily found in the telephone book.

I asked if they loaned out crates so I could transport them...no, they do not. Their crates and animal traps are for small animals they rescue like feral cats and small dogs.  Surely they rescue regular and large size dogs?

Inquired about giving them aspirin and she told me that Walmart sells aspirins for dogs but cautioned about giving them aspirins for humans.

I told her that I was concerned about getting Tammie in the back seat...that is, if I was successful in getting her sedated.  She asked how much she weighed and I told her I had no idea, perhaps 40-45 lbs. This lady who does not even know me insisted that I could lift her!  How can she say that?  It is not like I'm on Facebook and post hundreds of selfies.  I have a bad back and have had one for over twenty years.

She suggested I enlist the help of my neighbors.  Told her I don't even speak to them. Her reply "this would be a good time to get to know them".

I ask myself, "What if I was not around for these strays, would they be destined to forever have those quills embedded in their faces, risking infection and possibly death?"  What good are animal rescue organizations if they are not willing to roll up their sleeves and help an animal in need?

Just by looking at their picture isn't the need obvious?  I am so disappointed but I vow to do everything in my power to help Tammie and Oscar.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Friday, November 25, 2016

A Prickly Problem - UPDATED

I swear lately I have been having nothing but bad luck and setbacks. On Thursday morning, Thanksgiving Day I went out to feed the dogs when I noticed something strange on Oscar's face. I did not have my glasses on but I did notice he was walking with a limp...that is nothing new as being a stray, he is always getting into fights.

A very sad looking Oscar.

Tammie was nowhere in sight but that is not odd either as she seems to have set houses which she visits for breakfast.  Like most people I go in and out of the house as I do my morning chores. By now I had my glasses on when I caught a glimpse of Oscar's face.  My goodness, he had all these prickly things on the side of his face.  My first thought was he had a run in with a cactus but these were not cactus needles...they were thicker and white.  He also had quills on his legs.

He already had an injured face from a previous dog fight
and now he went and made it worst :-(

Then I saw Tammie's face and it became obvious that she and Oscar had had a run in with a porcupine and got the short end of the stick.


I went in to get my long nose pliers and was able to pry two porcupine quills off Oscar's face before he ran off.

If you are a long time reader you know that Tammie is a little wild stray that does not allow human contact of any kind. They could not have chosen a worst time to have had a run in with a porcupine.

Even if there had been an open veterinary clinic on Thanksgiving, how was I going to get them both inside the car?  Better yet how was I going to get them inside the clinic, in particular, Tammie?

While I can not be certain, I believe Tammie and Oscar have been strays all their lives. I do not think they have ever ridden in a vehicle and I had no idea how they would react.

Yesterday they were not able to eat. Today I opened a can of dog food and while they did not eat much at least they ate something.

I called the City of Del Rio dog pound Friday morning, but I believe they were closed as no one answered.  While I know they can not help me since we live outside of the Del Rio city limits, I was hoping they could offer some suggestions.

I called "A Pet's Wish" a local non-profit shelter but no one has returned my call.  I decided to Google it and it was strongly suggested not try to pull the quills yourself or you could traumatize your dog. They mention that your dog has to be sedated and depending on the number of quills could possibly have to undergo surgery.  Dang, that all sounds expensive to me and to make matters worst, it will be multiplied by two :(

Good night.  May you have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Good-byes / Sadness / Peace

Post for Sunday-November 6, 2016

The only saving grace for daylight savings is that it gives you an extra hour of sleep on Sunday after pretty much being partied out from a one week stay in the desert. I did not have that problem this year since for the second leg of my trip, I arrived on Saturday.

I had to be more thoughtful of my friends who had been here the whole week and then some. After eating all the food set before me, the least I could do was help in the clean up and packing as they had a long trip back to Houston, Dallas and a shorter trip for some to Fort Stockton.

Though my friends wanted to stay up, I knew they were tired and we called it a night at 2:00 a.m. which with the new time change became 1:00 a.m.  Woke up at 5:00 a.m. when the Guy's Camp started hitching up their trailers and vehicles to their trucks and RV's.

Goodbyes are always sad and I hated to see them go, especially since I spent so little time with them and I know it will be a while before I see them again.

Little by little you see this city that sprung up in the middle of the desert return to its origins and though there inevitably is some sadness, there is also a sense of peacefulness once the majority of the chili heads leave.

Goodbye my dear friends :-(
There was some action, though.  We were surprised to see an ambulance dispatched to an RV.  It was an older man and some young kids.  Since we did not have the facts, we made a movie in our heads (that is what they call it in my Colombian soap operas).  We decided grandpa drank too much and got flashed repeatedly by the young Sul Ross State University co-ed's that he thought he was having a heart attack.

Paramedics heading to Grandpa's

Seriously, grandpa did not leave in the ambulance but it seems they did follow the paramedics. Hope he is fine.

This year I car camped but when I arrived Saturday, I was shocked to see that I was land locked and could barely get to my camp, although  I only had a shower, a table, and a chair!  I was camped next to Frann and Debi and they too were surprised when they got back from running errands in town to find that a village had sprung around them.

These people were not very considerate, they moved my table and placed garbage on my empty beer boxes and table.  My best friend was not happy and told them so.

Sunday evening we enjoyed a nice campfire as we looked toward the east and saw thunder and lighting.  It was eerie but beautiful at the same time and lucky for us, we did not get rained on.

By now the chili head population was down to a few and you could actually feel the peace and quiet. Five-hour one-way drive...twenty hours total, over two-hundred dollar fine, two trips...peace only my favorite desert can afford me...priceless!!!

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

If it wasn't for bad luck I would have no luck at all

Post for Friday - November 4, 2016

I was supposed to leave for my second leg of the trip to the cook-off on Friday morning but due to circumstances beyond my control, I was not able to do so until Saturday.  I barely slept the night before so like it or not I bought a 30 oz coffee refill to keep me wide awake as I made my way back to my favorite desert in the midst of light drizzle.

Just as I was about to enter Sanderson, Texas and stop at Stripes to use the facilities, traffic came to a halt.  After about ten minutes I decided to turn the car off.  Some people from the back of the line went to go find out what was going on. I was informed that two eighteen wheelers had jackknifed and it would be a while before tow trucks could arrive.

Did I mention I had drank 30 oz, of coffee?  Dang, that is when you wish you were a man as I watched the guy in front of me relieve himself...grrrrrrrrrrr!!!

Decided to put on make-up to kill time as well as re-arrange my trunk and back seat.  After nearly an hour the road was once again opened to traffic.  As I entered Sanderson I saw a restaurant to the left with five DPS (Department of Public Safety) vehicles and multiple bikes.  Could it be that the DPS that swarm the cook-off decided to leave early or was it just wishful thinking on my part? Actually,  I have no idea when they leave.

Reached Stripes just in time, as on my way out, the line of waiting cars decided to descend on the store perhaps for the same reason as I.

Right after you get through all the hills and winding turns leading from Alpine and it turns to flat desert land I did not notice a DPS unit.  The flashing red and blue lights brought me back to reality.  I sat in my car for about five minutes before the officer approached me.

"Hello Ma'am, do you know what rate of speed you were traveling at?"  Me "No, Sir."  He told me the alleged speed and said he was going to have to issue me a citation.  Takes my driver's license and insurance card and goes off for another ten minutes but not before eyeballing my car. Thanks to the extra time I had at the accident, all I had on the front passenger side was four gallons of water and my wash bucket. In the back seat, I only had my sleeping bag.

I thought it rather odd that he approached me from the passenger side and not the driver's side. Oh well, what does it matter...a ticket is a ticket.  What really pissed me off is that I know better! How many times have I warned my readers about all the heat (law enforcement) during the cook-off.  Need to take my own advice. I go into a lot of detail so I can re-read this before I head out to next year's event, if I am still alive and kicking. Note to self:  Use your cruise control.

I had never come so late on Saturday before, there was a lot of traffic heading back to Alpine. Trailer after trailer that was obviously coming from the cook-off.  Glad they got an early start so the line won't be so long at the Border Patrol Checkpoint for those that head out on Sunday.

Stopped by the side of the road to take a picture of the "other" chili cook-off.  This is the Original Terlingua International Frank X. Tolbert-Wick Fowler Championship Chili Cook-off...better known as the cook-off behind the store.

Sorry, it is not a very good picture.

Finally made it to the cook-off and got to spend time with my two dearest friends.  One I had not seen since 2012 and the other since 2014 and both times it was in Terlingua instead of Houston. More than close friends they are my sisters, family of my own choosing.

My friends new trailer and their truck
This evening I said goodbye to my diet and indulged in all the food set out before me.  I had real homemade potato salad, beef ribs, fajitas, borracho beans, sausage, shrimp, jalapenos wrapped in bacon and I served myself seconds, thirds and why not even fourths...as I washed it down with several cold beverages...:D

Its first two bumper stickers
Then we danced the night away and enjoyed a big roaring fire even though this year it was not cold at all. Thank you guys for all the food, ambiance, hospitality, but most importantly your friendship. It doesn't all end with this post, I stayed until Monday so stay tuned for more posts from the desert and pictures to back it up.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Short update

Did you all get to see the super moon?  I bundled up Mom and we went outside to marvel at its beauty.  Too bad my camera does not take good night shots.  Would love to purchase a new point and shoot but have not done the required research.

Had to clean out the car as we had a doctor's appointment in San Antonio.  When going to the desert it helps to protect your upholstery with old sheets and towels. Less dirt and easier to deal with the campfire smell.  Need to make a trip to the laundromat soon!

Yesterday had to drive in heavy fog that lasted until pretty late in the morning.  Though we arrived on time, there were so many cars even on the top level of the garage that I had to wait around until somebody left.

While it may take a while to see the doctor, you usually are ushered right in for your lab work, that was not the case on this occasion. I asked the receptionist why there were so many people, she said they had taken in more patients.  That is not good news as this is an Oncology Center.

Took my tablet so I could put my time to good use but their Wi-fi connection is poor.  I did notice that they have added more electrical strips so people can charge their electronics, with as much time as we have to wait, that was a good idea.

We spent four hours there and with the new time change decided to hit the road and see how far I got before sunset. Considered getting a hotel room in Uvalde but with the added illumination from the super moon pressed on to Del Rio, but went 55 in a 70 m.p.h. zone just in case I had a deer encounter.

I will try to finish the last leg of my Chili Cook-off trip but I was hoping to get some pictures and a video from my Houston friends.  However, they are just as technologically challenged as I am but at least they have children and grandchildren who can show them the ropes unlike myself :-(

Since it is morning, I  can not wish you a good night and Terlingua Dreams, so have a great day instead.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

First leg of the trip to the 2016 CASI Chili Cook-off

This year as in 2014, I had to make two trips in order to be able to attend the Chili Cook-off.

I had expected to leave at the latest by Friday, October 28th.  However, I had ordered an Instant Canopy that was supposed to arrive by October 25th and never did.  It was a small 7 x 5 canopy that I could put up by myself as the larger ones would have required assistance. Before I left, I had to do early voting amongst many other things that delayed my departure.

I did not arrive until Sunday, October 30th and by that time it was too late to get my favorite camping spot. The people that got my space had arrived on Thursday, October 27th.  Seems that each year chiliheads get there earlier and earlier to secure their prime piece of real estate.  Even the Guys camp that traditionally arrive the Sunday before decided to come a day early.

The Guy's camp was very popular this year as they had a big screen TV with the Cowboy's game and later the World Series.  It may not be politically correct to say that baseball bores me...but it does...I actually fell asleep during the transmission of the last game...and I welcomed the sleep even in the mist of all the hollering.

This year I once again decided to car camp as I never did find my tent, only the poles, and rainfly.  I did, however, take my shower tent, my folding four-foot table, and one chair.

MsBelinda's 2016 camp. Photo courtesy of Frann.

I have been known to misplace keys, cameras amongst other items.  Most I find, others not so much. This year I misplaced my camera so I lost a lot of photo opportunities.

Monday, October 31st was Halloween but there were not as many Trick or Treaters as in prior years. The locals bring their children as there are more people here than in Terlingua, Lajitas or Study Butte combined.

I had to return home so I was unable to attend El Dia de los Muertos celebration at the Terlingua Cemetery.  Frann, a well-known area resident was kind enough to share her pictures with me so I could post them on my blog.

In a way, it was a good thing the canopy I ordered did not arrive and that I never was able to find my tent.  The night of the Day of the Dead celebration a fierce storm took place complete with lightning, severe winds and flash flooding.  I do not think either one would have survived.

I am told that everyone was running for cover to their vehicles and all you could hear was car doors opening and closing.  The next day there were a lot of destroyed canopy and shade shelters along with some ripped tents stacked by the trash bins.

Back in 2013 we also had a rain event and I remember getting water inside of my cheap tent. This year it rained a lot more and in a shorter amount of time.  Another one of my friends said it was ankle deep and she barely had time to react. She grabbed her little dog and sought shelter in her car.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, November 7, 2016


I got back from Terlingua late this afternoon.  This year I had to break it down into two trips.  Last night I misplaced  my camera for the second time.  I know it is somewhere in my car but I have not had time to unload all my stuff yet.

I am tired but glad to have been able to attend my 20th cook-off.  Thank you to the bloggers that came by my camp.  I have no idea who you are as my friend forgot your names.

As soon as I find my camera, I will try to make another post.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.