Terlingua Dreams

Terlingua Dreams
CASI Chili Cook-off - Terlingua, Texas

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Del Rio sets another record high for this day

I was online and had the TV on as I listened to the six o'clock news.  I actually thought the station had made a mistake when the weather report came on.  I clearly heard the weather guy say that a record was broken today in Del Rio but when he said it reached 103 degrees I had my doubts.

I checked with AccuWeather https://www.accuweather.com/en/us/del-rio-tx/78840/daily-weather-forecast/331111?day=1  and was shocked that it said we had a high of 109 degrees breaking a record set back in 1991 of 83 degrees for this day.  The low temperature this morning was 49 degrees that is a 60-degree swing in temperatures.

With conflicting highs for today, I do not know which site is correct will have to wait for the ten o'clock news.  Either way, it is way too high for the last day of November. 

Confirmed by KENS-5 in San Antonio...Del Rio had a high of 109 degrees today.

Inside of the house, it certainly did not feel like it was that high outside perhaps because it was still cold from last night.  Either way, after the incident with those three creatures two nights ago I do not even want to go outside.

What creatures you might ask?  You will have to read my other blog as not everyone likes to read about my cats.  http://mylittlewalter.blogspot.com/   and I can't say that I blame them that is why they have their own blog.

I went to a website that mutes videos but you can still partially hear me.  The important thing is the horrible beasts I encountered that left me traumatized.  I do not know if I will ever be able to go outside at night.

I have been raking a lot of leaves lately and I recently found another use for my pool noodles as I had a leftover piece after I wrapped the pipes.



This is to protect my boys from accidentally injuring themselves as I already have a one-eyed cat.



Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.



Aunty Acid Saying of the Day



Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Old bookshelves / Betty Boop Care Package

Wednesdays are trash day and yesterday I noticed I only had one small trash bag and as much as we pay for this service forced myself to rake leaves until I filled it up.  Yesterday was a hot day we had a high of 88 degrees.

The other day I almost bought a shoe rack when I remembered that we have three bookshelves from our Austin, Texas days.  I may be dating myself but back in the '60s HEB would issue double gold stamps on Wednesday that you posted to a small booklet and then saved enough to buy stuff at their specialty store that sold a variety of household articles. Anyone remember that?


I took it outside and cleaned it up saving myself a couple of dollars and in the process located three of my high school yearbooks.  Not particular pretty but will work for my intended purpose and will save my back and knees from having to dig under the bed for my shoes.

Here is a picture of the shoe rack I was going to buy when recalled that I had a similar one in the form of a bookshelf at home.


On a prior post, I mentioned that Ms. D (my best friend) eldest daughter Amanda had sent me a Betty Boop care package.  At the time of this picture, I was wearing one of the t-shirts she gifted me so it does not appear here.


Though the AARP bag I think came from Ms. D.  In my youth I would have killed for a BB Diary!
I started writing a diary when I was nine years old

The cold front arrived this morning but it hasn't been that bad. We had a low of 50 with a high of 65 degrees.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, November 25, 2019

Trip to the Courthouse / Darn Flippers / A warm day

It is that time of the year when you start to receive your property tax statements. Val Verde County allows a small discount if you pay your taxes before January 31st.  The taxes were mailed late in October and since as you know I was busy did not get around to it until today.

I stopped at the library first so I could make some copies and decided to stay and write my respective checks there.  During this time of the year, it is difficult to find a parking space around the Courthouse...considered walking and leaving my car parked at the library but was not sure if my knee would hold out.

I was surprised there were very few people there and I did not have to wait in line.  Happy to get that out of the way for another year.

Headed to the post office to pick up the mail only to be incensed by yet another house flipper who sent me a postcard saying this was the third communication he sent me and demanding to know why I had NOT gotten back to him.....grrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!  Tore it up right then and there.  Did it ever occur to him that I do not want to sell my house to a flipper in particular to someone as rude as him?  In fact, I do not want to sell my Houston house at all!

Needed to pick up some spinach but both big HEB, as well as little HEB, were packed and will probably stay packed until after Thanksgiving.

Today it started out as a beautiful and sunny day but by late afternoon clouds started moving in.  I went about setting out my rain catchment barrels.  We are expecting a cold front to arrive on Wednesday.  It will be cool Thursday Thanksgiving Day with showers on Friday.

Today we had a low of 59 with a high of 85 with a heat index of 88.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.



Aunty Acid Saying of the Day





Sunday, November 24, 2019

Five hours and 39 minutes later...it is finished!

I took me five hours and 39 minutes but I finally finished the blog entry 2019 Terlingua Chili Cookoff - Part 2.  https://terlinguadreams.blogspot.com/2019/11/to-be-written-at-later-date.html

Be forewarned that it is a very long post where I went into a lot of detail as I explained because I could not find my spiral notebooks where I keep copious notes...lol, now I sound like the witnesses in the impeachment hearings :D

Anyway if you care to read it, it is over and done with.

Since it is afternoon I can not wish you Terlingua Dreams so have a great day instead!


Saturday, November 23, 2019

Where has this month gone?

I can not believe how fast this month has gone by.  I often wonder how I ever managed to do all I did when I had a full-time job and now that I do not work I can not accomplish half of what I used to then.

Was checking some Black Friday deals on point and shoot cameras but there were few.  I was surprised that the Kodak camera I bought last year at Walmart for the same event is on sale once more...either no one bought them but dumb me or they were a hit so they decided to repeat.

I am happy to report that I have finally been getting some significant sleep. Last night I slept for ten hours!  Do you know how long it has been since I managed to do that?  A long time!

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.


Spurs Corner

Tonight was the first time I was able to watch a game from start to finish. Glad we finally won one!



Aunty Acid Saying of the Day



Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Ridesharing Webinar

AARP has some good webinars that I often sign up for but most of the time forget about and miss them.  That was not the case yesterday as I have been interested in finding out about Uber and Lyft in case my car dies and I am in need of a ride.

Only one of my friends has ever used it as her daughter was unable to pick her up from the airport and took care of all the arrangements.  All my friend did was get in and get off.

This webinar was pretty good and you could type questions for them to answer as you watched.  I asked how much are you suppose to tip...they said that was a  personal choice it was up to me...gee that was NOT the answer I wanted to hear.  I need to know percentage-wise.

I had no idea it is all done within their app and no money ever changes hands and ride-sharing was cheaper than taxis.  They said how useful this service is for seniors or those that no longer care to drive.

Have any of you tried this service and if so how would you rate them?  Is there one you prefer over the other?

Today has been gray, gloomy with light rain.  We had a high of 71 and a low of 64.

I finally finished the first part of my 2019 Terlingua Chili Cookoff - Trip 1 and hope to get to Trip 2 soon.  Sorry, it has taken so long and that the pictures and video are not that great.  Here is the link https://terlinguadreams.blogspot.com/2019/11/to-be-written-later.html

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Lack of organization / Official grand opening of Harbor Freight

I do not know what has happened to me...I used to be so organized...I had a place for everything and everything in its place.  I need to go take my nurse practitioner the result of my labs both the ones I had done in Ciudad Acuña as well as those I had through Life Line Screening.

I have to find all my little notes and pieces of paper where I have my blood pressure readings written.  That has become problematic as I do not know where they are all at.  Last year I bought five calendars to keep up with different things and I can only find one of them.

I really need to keep up with these readings daily and not allow them to pile up.  Then, of course, I tell myself the same thing every time I have to go through this. When will I learn?

The official grand opening of Harbor Freight was Saturday but it has been open since late October.  I'm crazy but not that crazy to go anywhere as popular and looked forward to as this store was. The girl clerk told me there were hundreds of people there and they ran out of the free measuring tapes given out to the first 500 customers in record time.

I was going to buy one of their 14" electric chain saws on sale for $39.99 use my 20 percent off coupon for a grand total of $31.99 plus get a free bucket or at least that was the plan until I learned that you have to buy a separate machine to sharpen them...had no idea chain saws had to be sharpened!

I was hungry so went next door to Walmart to buy one of their $4.99 rotisserie chickens but wanted to pick some other items first.

I just had to take a picture of this HUGE...would you call it thermo bottle?  Feel free to correct me.



Here is my cart at the check out counter...


Unfortunately, by the time I headed out, it was already dark and I have poor night vision. Walmart had the cheapest gasoline price in town $2.159 a gallon for regular unleaded.


This cold spell has really helped me sleep though now the junkyard dog that guards his owners' lot in the corner has taken to barking late at night making all the other dogs do the same.

Since I went to bed early I was not able to make this post until today.  So have a great day!


Saturday, November 16, 2019

November 2019 trip to Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila - México

The arctic blast that engulfed a large part of the country finally lessened its grip on this part of West Texas. Mind you it was still cold this Friday, I wore a sweater, a jacket, and a coat.  However, I could not put it off much longer as I needed to get my lab work done so I can take them to the doctor.

I forced myself to go to bed early on Thursday but for some reason that is all too common...whenever I have to go somewhere important...I oversleep or do not want to get out of bed.  This morning I remembered that I had my sleeping bag and clothes in the trunk that I need to take to the laundromat whenever I pass by and see a few people...so of course those had to be removed before crossing the border.

To make a long story short I did not leave the house until 9:00 a.m.  I apologize for this blurred picture...I hope to purchase a pocket camera soon...I was so surprised to see that they have not finished demolishing the old toll booths.


As I got closer to the official USA/Mexico line of the International Bridge the line into Mexico slowed downed.


The concrete blocks and barb wire were there last time but not with the barbed wire mounted on them.


Most of the International Bridge is on American soil.  The line painted yellow and with a roof to keep the pedestrians dry is on the Mexican side of the bridge.



I made this short video as across from the picture up top US Customs was stopping some cars mostly cab drivers and while others with US plates totally ignored them...guess it is not important for the American drivers as they still have to show their US passports at the main station.


Finally, I was able to take a picture of the Bienvenidos a México banner.


The last time I was here they were building more booths and that project has been completed but today they only had one lane open.


By that time there were a lot of people at the lab I figured I would have a long wait but they told me they would be ready by noon.

It is difficult finding a parking space in that area because it is next to a private hospital and also a large medical practice.  So I left my car parked there and walked instead to run several of my errands.

I am still having problems with my cellphone ringing to let me know I have a message when I do not and when I do not even have cellphone coverage in Mexico.  So I just turned it off and left it in the car.

I wish I hadn't because there were many photo ops along the way.  I have mentioned my beloved uncle that lives in Mexico City many times.  He is what you would call "thrifty"  he sends letters and small packages to the home of a dear friend in Acuña to avoid international rates...not a criticism...love you Tío :)

I sat in the town square otherwise known as a Plaza and read his letter.  I do not know why so many people that I know and love are having medical issues,  so many have passed away this year.  I was headed back to my car when I passed the main church.  No one that knows me would describe me as "religious"...but for some unexpected reason, I felt compelled to go into that church.

I always stop and talk to my favorite Exchange Rate vendor.  I had noticed as I walked down Exchange Rate Alley that there were signs on many establishments saying they were out of dollars.  He told me that it always happens just before Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Christmas.

While they will sell you dollars in small quantities they cut it off at the $200.00 dollar level or at least he does.  Not a problem, I am not looking to buy dollars but to sell them but I will wait until the dollar ratio is $20.00 Mexican Pesos to one US dollar.

I had not planned on stopping at any grocery stores but got lost due to several detours as they were fixing water or sewer lines and I ended up by Gutierrez.  I needed serranos but ended up buying jalapeños, carrots, calabacitas, cilantro, canned beans, tetra cartons of milk, hot sauce, toilet paper, Clorox, deodorant, and lotion.

Gutierrez is a large store and just like Bodegas Aurrera the last time I was here...there was not a single bottle of Kahlua to be had!  This time I was even willing to pay the $3.75 US liquor tax as I did not feel like driving to the Amistad Dam International crossing.

The line was long and slow.  Stopped and took pictures which made others do the same!

Long line to reach US Customs

Me

Looking back to the end of the line
Here is a better picture of the toll booths that have not been demolished yet.


Just my luck I ended up in the slowest line as there were only three open.


Several cars were switching lanes because of it.  I just knew it had to be a female agent probably the one I went to high school with that hates me.  I was wrong it was an elderly male agent. He looked at my passport then at me several times asked me for another ID...I have never in my life been asked for additional identification. 

I said "You are kidding right?"  he did not reply so I gave him my Texas driver's license.  He kept on looking at it and the passport photo then at me.  He said they don't look like you...I told him "it's called AGING, I am NOT going to look like I did eight years ago"!

He gave me both back and said "have a nice day"...guess he figured he had riled me up enough and did not ask me what I had to declare.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Preparing for the Arctic Blast

In preparation for the Arctic Blast that will arrive this afternoon, I spent yesterday putting my pool noodles to good use. Considered going to go buy the regular black insulated ones used to protect outdoor pipes that the cats and Tammie's puppies have destroyed over the years but why? I have about six new pool noodles that I bought some years ago to keep from tripping over guylines when camping so decided to use them instead.


Could not for the life of me find my new is it called blade? I bought this year for camping that I brought back home on my second trip since I had no use for it this time around. So used this little pocket knife and an old kitchen knife instead.


It could have gone faster but Nico insisted on helping me.  This time I did not yell at him because I am still dealing with this http://mylittlewalter.blogspot.com/2019/11/i-am-very-sadsonny-is-missing.html


It was an easy solution.

I need to find a newer koozie to replace this old one covering the faucet.


Earlier in the day, I went to pick-up my high blood pressure medication that I misplaced somewhere in the house and have yet to find as well as my glasses...I am using my old ones.

While there I picked up some items to make caldo de pollo and caldo de res during this cold spell and keep the kitchen warm...we will see if I follow through with that :-(

There is a small store close to the house that recently installed gasoline pumps, on my way into town I noticed their price was $1.199  $2.199 for unleaded when I reached HEB their price was $1.299  $2.299 for the same thing.

Why the ten cent difference?  I have no idea since I have not been keeping up with the news the last time I drove into town it was going for $2.189 a gallon.  Thinking perhaps the lower price was a mistake I nonetheless stopped at the small store and it was a good price so saved me a little money.

I can not decide whether or not to give this plant a chance or toss it.  I have had it for years but it is not looking good now.


Likewise with this supposedly avocado tree.



I finally finished airing out my camping gear and putting it away by dividing it amongst the three dead cars we have. Though the smoke smell from the campfire is hard to get rid of.

I fell asleep during the ten o'clock news last night so I failed to make a post I, therefore, can not wish you Terlingua Dreams...so have a great day instead and bundle up in anticipation of the Arctic Blast.

2019 Terlingua Chili Cook0ff - Part 2

I am glad I stopped and picked up the food, camping items and gassed up before heading home so tomorrow all I had to do was just drive back to Terlingua.  I filled up at Walmart at $2.189 a gallon for unlead gasoline.

Like I mentioned in Part I...I brought home a lot of items I did not need and picked up some that I did like my reclining zero gravity chair and a smaller ice chest.  Boy, I sure do miss Terlita (my old camping van) and her spacious interior even though she was a heavy drinker (gas guzzler)...jajajaja!

I decided to display my Terlingua Dreams sign on the way back (Friday) as this is usually the day a lot of people head to the cook-off after work or after school as is the case with the students at Sul Ross State University in Alpine where I went to college.


Realizing that I forgot to take a picture of the interior I stopped at a rest area to photograph it for reference for future trips. I am sorry if I am going into so much detail but since I misplaced my spiral notebooks to document it all I have to do it here in my Cyber Journal.

Back of the passenger's side...



Back of the driver's side...



Then I covered it to keep my frozen water jugs from melting and I am proud to say I still had ice four days later.


The passenger's side...


The driver's side,,,



The trunk...where I remembered to throw in a small broom which came in handy when I broke camp.



I could actually see out my back window!


On this trip, I was able to stop in Alpine and have a late lunch.


It was so odd that on the road between Alpine and Study Butte (80 miles) there were not a lot of cars and stranger still that I did not see a single DPS (Department of Public Safety) squad car when they usually swarm the area.



If you are new to my blog you might not know that I was issued a $260.00 speeding ticket back in 2016 on Trip 2.  With that still fresh in my mind, I drove under the speed limit of 70 at 60 mph as I was in no hurry to get there.

Camp behind me

When I arrived one of the elderly gentlemen that were camped in an RV behind me said: "You're back, where did you go!"  I told him "I went for a ride" with a smile he said, "that was a mighty long drive".  It felt good to know I was missed by a perfect stranger.



I was quick to incorporate my zero gravity reclining chair into my camp and sat there gazing towards Krazy Flats which is the official area for spectators to camp. When I first started coming to the cook-off that area did not exist. They opened it up mostly to keep the younger crowd who party all night and make a lot of noise from bothering us older campers but you can still hear the noise.  Though if you are looking for peace and quiet perhaps this is not the event for you.

Krazy Flats
Junior, from the guys camp, took me for a ride in his brother's Jeep. Thank you!


Sadly most of the pictures I took I had to delete as my cellphone takes terrible pictures or perhaps it is the user?


I love Terlingua skies they are always so blue.


 It was a cool breezy day.  Wow, this camp took a lot of ice chests.


Maybe these tent campers are like me and prefer a small tent where they can have their privacy as opposed to staying in an RV with their friends.


Tent campers are a dying breed.


I wish I could have asked this gentleman in what city he was able to rent this RV.


I have to give kudos to the company that serviced the port-a-potties this year. They did an excellent job. They start servicing them at 4:30 a.m. and they were always clean and had more than sufficient toilet paper.


The chili judging lest you forget there is an actual chili cook-off competition takes place at high noon on Saturday. While the judges do their thing, there are showmanship teams putting on shows as well as having the public participate in a variety of games for prizes. You can get all types of trinkets, souvenirs, and T-shirts if you care to participate.

Here is one of the guys with a prize he won
I did not go this year because I did not realize that on Thursday the morning I could not get up and even after using my hard seat cover and a pillow to protect my knees in that attempt, I ended up hurting my right knee and it was painful to walk.

Besides I was hoping Sandy, Charlie and Jeelbare would drop by and have a cold one with me...but they never showed up :-(

My best friend Ms. D got all dressed up to go to the Día de Los Muertos celebration held at the old Ghost Town cemetery.


I met some new friends and had a blast talking about every subject imaginable including politics and finding that despite our age, social-economical background, and race we had so much in common.  I finally ended up finishing off my wine box.


This year I took three 30-packs of beer and two wine boxes.  I brought back 2 1/2 30-packs and one wine box. It is better to have enough than to run out.

The last day is very busy as people are trying to cook up the last of their food and start packing to be able to leave tomorrow morning.  Usually, there are big parties everywhere.  The guys camp was going to have "Steak Night" but since I had too much vino I went to bed at 8:30 p.m. and did not wake up till midnight.

What was my surprise but that all the lights in the camps around me were off and you could only see two vehicles riding around Krazy Flats. Other than that everyone appeared to be asleep...we are definitively getting old!


Sunday - November 3, 2019 

Today we set the clock one hour back for Daylight Savings. The guys camp left before sun up as is usually the case.  Unless you are in an RV or have noise-canceling earphones there is no way you are going to be able to sleep on Sunday morning.

My best friend and Max (her boyfriend) stayed a while longer and enjoyed breakfast then she came over to help me take down my shade structure because there is one button that is difficult to press and neither one of us possess enough strength so Max helped out.


They were headed to Marfa for a couple of days then they thought about heading to other parts before going back to Deer Park (a Houston suburb). I decided to try the new camo tarp I bought for shade but it did not work out.


I was sitting in my zero gravity chair when the daughter of the man in the RV behind me came over. We had had a long conversation the day before and when she found out I was going to stay a few more days she offered to give me all the left-over food they cooked yesterday.  How could I say no?

She gave me three huge steaks, sausage, ribs, hamburger patties, baked potatoes, corn, cut up salad still in its packaging, toasted jalapeños, cut up onions, tomatoes, lettuce, and some homemade potato salad. That was very nice of her and her husband who cooked it all.  Thank you guys!

A lot of people still here as those attendees who do not have to be at work tomorrow would rather stick around instead of being in a long line at the Border Patrol Checkpoint Station before you reach Alpine.

I had a wonderful dinner and was in bed believe it or not by 8:00 p.m.  Making sure that I strategically placed a cardboard box under my steel chair so it would not move in case I once again could not get up.




Monday - November 4, 2019


Debated whether or not to stay another day as I had plenty of provisions but it was going to be a warm day without a shade structure.  So took my time to pack up as I did not want to stress my back once more. I even moved my car closer to the tent to make it easier to pack.


You are probably tired of seeing my packing configurations but I need it as a reference of how NOT to pack,






When I left there were still people around...



.
I look forward to it all year long, I savor my days there and then there is always the sadness once it is over. Yet you still have the illusion of returning next year.


Hope you enjoyed the virtual trip to the desert. Now you can breathe a collective sigh of relieve, that I will not be mentioning it for another year :D