Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Canyon Chronicles

As we near to three hours left in Judicious January, we feel an urge to add yet another post to this month's musings of mundane meanderings.

For some odd reason we haven't yet understood, a certain individual befriended us on Facebook.  This individual hails from an East Coast Bastion known as Annapolis.  We immediately took to this stranger and promoted his two books right from the "git go" without a clue as to whether they were truly deserving of such blind praise.

You know how we are about intuition.

Well, by and by, this individual posts up on his Facebook that he launched off his book in an e-incarnation on Amazon Kindle.  This was yesterday.

Somehow, we were an instantly smitten kitten.  We dutifully downloaded the Kindle software and then paid eight bucks to buy his book.  As our DF & LBRs know, for us to spend $8 on any one item is a great leap of faith and fate.

Well, we started  reading the book maybe about 7 pm, we can't remember.  I was half past Happy Hour, that's all we remember.  We had read one of the mere five reviews on Amazon for this book and somebody said it was a real page turner.  We immediately figured the author paid that person to post a shill review.

Well, we started reading the book and, LO, it WAS a page turner.  IN fact, we couldn't stop.  We turned electronic page after electronic page.

Meanwhile, we started howling at whatever moon phase it was.  We howled and howled to the point Susun started howling, too, even though she was nowhere near the computer, much less a freaking book.  Meanwhile, Susun started texting her daughter that "Little Yonni's gone feral again," howling with laughter about something she wishes she knew WTF he was laughing at.

Trust me, there's two kind of readers for this book.  People who know and people who don't.

If you know what the author is describing and you were part of that whole scene back in the early 80's Daze of Northern Arizona, this book is a rich, rich gift.  If you never knew those days, then perhaps you might be somewhat challenged because you wouldn't have any way to hang your hat on the author's many major pegs.

I feel this book was written as a direct and personal gift to all those of us who could (and can) relate to some part (or parts) of its all-too-true narrative.  This is Hunter S. Thompson personified and personalized for Northern Arizona between 1980 and 1988.

Many of our Dear Friends know that time period and its excesses and shortcomings all too well.  When you read this book, they all come back alive as if they were standing in front of you at ( fill in your own blank here.........).

For those of us who made our mark(s) and cut our teeth (and other anatomical parts) during those post-hippie, pre-regulatory Glory Daze, this book is for you.

We doubt any other book could possibly come along like this one.  It's a one-of-a-kind-keeper-kinda-book.  People who never knew Northern Arizona "back in the day"  might have a hard time relating to this author's Hunter S. Thompson machine gun style.  I have to say, I feel sorry for people who never knew this phase of Western (Mind) Expansion.  Whoever said "Go West, Young Man," was clearly speaking to the author.  He heeded such advice well.

For those of us who were intimately involved with the lifestyle(s) described in this book, it is like a homecoming and a validation of all we did together during those crazy, way-too-wild years.

None of us will be able to describe our exploits with the Total Recall Caliber of this author, but trust us, we've all "been there, done that" and reading his true-to-form, bare-it-all, no-holds-barred accounts of the good, the bad and the ugly really reminds each and every one of us of all the totally similar circumstances we shared during those totally transitional times.

We will never be able to return to those Glory Daze.  They are history. The bottom line is those days are long gone into the dust bin of history and the person now in charge is our Life's Janitor sweeping clean the hallways and hallmarks of decades-long-gone-detritus.

That's why it was so much fun to read this book.  It brought back to life perhaps one final time when we all believed we were totally immortal and nothing could touch us.  We were gods back then and we loved it--each and every moment of it.

We'd like to close this post with a Huge THANK YOU to Steve Carr.  He barred his soul in a way few men could ever do in his book.  To say he let it all hang out is like a colossal understatement.  I know of no one who could "stand & deliver" a better account of The Good Olde Daze than Steve Carr.

Ladies & Gentlemen, let me present to you---"The Canyon Chronicles."

(Cue trumpet fanfare and drum roll.)

Enjoy & Many Cheers!  jp

PS--I bought the ebook on the PC Kindle platform for $8.  Such a deal.  We sure hope you do, too!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Red Rock Country

This is easily THE finest video rendition of Red Rock Country we have ever seen and may ever see, actually.  It is just absolutely stunningly beautiful! Be sure to use the full screen.  Once the video begins to play, click the full screen icon on the far lower right.

Sedona Time Lapse - Volume One from Cory Bruening on Vimeo.


Here's an intriguing factoid:  My Mom's birthday was January 30th.  Susun's Mom's birthday was January 31st.  As you know, Susun's birthday is February 2nd.

The past few days have been a time for reflection.  We arrived back from Indiana on January 28th and our first day back there last year was January 29th.  The sunset last night (above) was a great Welcome Home Anniversary gift.

We were curious this year to see how long the time would take from December 17th until January 28th.  Last year it seemed like an eternity.  This year it flew by.  Such is the theory of relativity or something like that.

We are happy today to know that Dad's book is sitting comfortably online.  It's a great posthumous birthday gift for my Mom.  She published his book posthumously for Dad  and we got it online posthumously for her. Cool.  One of these days (or years) we will get around to putting the book into different ebook formats.  However, for now, it appears the book works well with all mobile devices, tablets, etc. so we just might "call it good" and move on.  Our total cost for the project was under $80.

All the excitement about the high water is gone now.  This was a fairly typical spike created by the rain on snow.  Here's how it looks when graphed.
Our next Big Thing is the Upcoming party Saturday.  We are busily scurrying about making preparations for this event.  Otherwise, there's not a lot happening here at Second Chance Ranch.

Many Cheers, jp

Monday, January 28, 2013

July camping in January

Site A21 in July 2012
WHEW--We breathed a huge sigh of relief this morning.  In today's modern Age of Camping, you have to be ready to rock and roll months in advance of when you really want to go camping.

Back in the Good Old Days of Ozzie & Harriet camping out of the back of their 1955 Chevy, why heck, you could go just about anywhere and camp.  Not any more!  People jump their favorite campsites practically the second they become available on "Recreaton.Gov."  The gubmint's reservation website had some glitches and we were unable to make reservations until today.  We almost lost out as our favorite spot was essentially already booked  for 100% of the available dates.

You can only book out six months in advance.  That means the last booking date is July 28th.  We got lucky and snagged the July 28th date as the first of three nights at Site A21 at Riverside Campground in Island Park.  The only other dates available were July 8th & 9th and we snagged those two nights as well.  Each reservation costs $9 extra for using the online system.  It's the best $9 we spend in our summer camping.  It is just awesomely cool to drive up and see your name hanging from the campsite post.   It's like having your own timeshare already booked.  For those five nights, we own the place. So there you have it.

If you don't jump super early, you can totally forget about getting your favorite campsite.  Some folks we know simply won't play the online game to get a campsite.  They still cling to the notion that it should be the it was in the Good Old Days.  Well, it's not that way anymore.  Those days are long gone and will never return.

If you want the premium spots in the best campgrounds, you're going to have to play the game and hope you can beat your competitors.  Having five nights at Space A21 this coming summer is WELL worth the hassle factor.  We are both very jazzed.

Watter Spotters

The Sunshine Under The Rainbow!

We had a one-two punch storm here over the past few days.  It's been a warm rainstorm with a snow level so high it was irrelevant.  That rain fell on the snowpack "up top" as we Valley People say.  Naturally, rain-on-snow has a pretty predictable result, like it flash melts the snow and all that snowmelt follows the Law of Gravity and runs downhill like a scared cat being chased by hungry coyote.

Naturally, the washes, creeks and our one and only river have responded by pumping gobs of water through their channels.  Susun and we have been out doing what we love--being Watter Spotters.  We spent four hours on the road Saturday and another couple of hours yesterday.  We'll probably go out again today "just because."

Saturday's trip was sopping wet as it was still raining hard and we both got soaked from all the times we leaped from the truck to point and giggle in glee about this or that spectacular piece of foaming, thundering water.  We saw more waterfalls leaping off the sheer cliffs of Oak Creek than we'd ever seen before.  Of course, the Big Daddy Encinoso was in rare form and easily the plumpest, fullest we'd witnessed in over 30 years.

As we write this, the Verde River is trying to peak at "ten five."  That's river lingo for 10,500 cubic feet per second.  We've had a wonderful weekend being Watter Spotters.  It's been years since we've had a great runoff event to fuel our fancy for frothy runoff.  There's nothing like a nice rainstorm on a snowpack to get both the water and our adrenalin pumping.

Susun wanted to make sure she had "a waterfall over her shoulder."

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Encinoso Falls

Photo by Rusty Albertson.  Used w/permission.


Saturday was a great day for waterfalls. Susun coined the term "waterfalls galore-ious." If Saturday was great for falling water, Sunday was arched over-the-top for rainbows. The best one appeared right at the east end of our road. naturally, Susun was "all in" on this photo. DF & LBR Kirsty took one look at that photo and immediately went to work. Below is Kirsty's awesome handiwork with the rainbow. Kirsty also coined the perfect caption (as used in the Watter Spotters post  above) "The Sunshine Under The rainbow." THANK YOU, Kirsty!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Ramping up Dugout Dick

Well, we debuted the Dugout Dick Facebook gig today.  As you know, we've been working off and on since May 2012 to perpetuate Dugout Dick's Memory and Legacy.  Roger Plothow took The Lone Ranger role on this project back in May.  We have played a behind-the-scenes Tonto supporting role.  Roger's been real nice about giving us credit for our role and we appreciate his kind words.  He really had some over-the-top kind words in a blog post he did November 17th, 2012.  We suspect you will get at least a chuckle out of his narrative.

It would have been really difficult to attempt to describe all of the various things we've been doing with respect to Dugout Dick.  Much of it has been frustrating, complex, inscrutable and esoteric, much like the dead man himself.

Dugout Dick will have been dead three years come this April 21.   A little more than a month after the third anniversary of his passing, we're going to be eyeball deep in a BIG ceremony put together to officially dedicate three interpretive signs.  Hopefully, the IDT highway historical marker will be in place by then, too.
There's a LOT more to be done, a LOT more to be visioned and a LOT more wrangling with petty potentates and bloated bureaucrats.  I don't know that I will ever be able to adequately describe this process.  It is one of the more arcane such processes in which I have ever been involved.

I hope that all of our DF & LBRs who happen to have Facebook accounts will sign on to the Dugout Dick Facebook Group.  Roger and we need some tangible showing of support.  It's been just The Lone Ranger Roger and me, Tonto, so far and we're running low on silver bullets so we need some cavalry (you) to ride to the rescue.

You don't have to do anything once you've signed on to that Facebook Group.  Just the mere fact you did it is pure gold.

Well, 'tis been a long and tiring day.  Light misty stuff is attempting to fall out of the sky tonight.  You can't call it a rain.  No way.  It's kind of a heavy dew settling down from the clouds.  It's supposed to get gnarly by Sunday-Monday and should be sloppy wet and cold once again.  Our good times and good temps are already a distant memory.  Oh, well, it sure was fun while it lasted.

Many Cheers! jp

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Viva Video

Yesterday and today each has been a Big Day.  Why?  One word: Video.  We are finally up and running once again with our video production capabilities.  We are positively giddy about the whole thing.

To understand the giddiness we have to step into the Way Back Time Machine.  We're talking WAAAY Back here, folks, like the mid-1960's.  When I first went to Purdue in the fall of 1965, I learned right away the school offered a couple of classes in video production.  Naturally I enrolled and actually dreamed of a career in the early TV world.  Back in those days, video cameras weighed about as much as Volkswagen.  It took two men and a troop of Boy Scouts to wrassle the cables and move the pedestal-mounted monster camera about the studio.  Of course, the studio was freezing cold because of all the heat generated by those old tube cameras and processing machines.  The air conditioning had to run on high just to keep the electronic from destroying themselves.  I did real well in the TV production classes I took and definitely got bit by the video bug at an early age.

When VHS cameras finally came along in the late 1970's, oh, how dearly I wanted "in" on that game.  I had to wait until the early 1980's to find a way to get the equipment without paying for it.  That's a long story.  I tried to make a living doing videos for a few years.  I failed miserably but at least I gave it a try.

As video technology became smaller and smaller, I continued to take a stab at video production every few years, only to continue to fail.  One day in early 2008, I was walking around downtown Idaho Falls and noticed a new business across from Great Harvest.  Some guy was going to give people lessons in how to use Apple iMacs.  Somehow, I got him to give me the lessons free of charge on behalf of the RSVP.

I finally found success in video production.  The iMovie program on an Apple iMac is easily the finest and most user-friendly piece of video production technology ever invented for low level people like me.

Eventually, he went out of business and we were able to buy one of his iMacs for a great price.  We put the computer in our office and for the next two years I was in Hog Heaven, making little videos left and right mostly about Senior Centers and EICAP Staff and so forth.  We're guessing me made more than a couple dozen such videos.

Well, by and by, as you know, life circumstances changed and we retired from the job and became Snowbirds, etc.  The computer sat in our basement in Idaho Falls.  We took it down to Arizona last year but  it had grown old and balky and we couldn't get it working correctly.  Time passed.

Finally, we were ready to use the iMac for target practice a few weeks ago when Goatherder rose to the occasion and said he would rejuvenate the computer.  He waved some sort of a magic wand over it and sprinkled holy water on it and brought it to Second Chance Ranch yesterday.  By golly, whatever he did made the thing behave like a custom hot rod computer.  We were shocked and overjoyed.  Giddy, in fact.


We've been messing with it ever since and can't hardly take our hands off of it.  We found all sorts of old 2009 unprocessed video and have already put up three short YouTube videos using the old files.  That's why we are giddy.  Then, by pure chance, we found 18 of our old RSVP videos online!  YEA!!!!!  This is really fun.

We embedded a short video of a piano player here.  She was Virginia Laird and would have been 97 at the time we recorded her in 2008 playing the piano in the Clark County Senior Center in Dubois, Idaho.  Virginia died in 2011.  The Senior Center has faded into history as well and no longer exists in any form.

Here is a link to Virginia's obituary:

Here is a link to those 18 videos--we will try to find the other ones:

Here's a bunch more on a different account

Here's a link to where we put the three we've uploaded so far today.  They are just for archival purposes--not very good but we didn't want to trash the files.

LIFE IS GOOD!  Many Cheers, jp

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Matter Over Mind

In our distant genuine physical youth, the "Mind Over Matter" motto played well and helped us all do stuff to extend our personal envelopes sometimes beyond our normal capabilities.  Now that we have grown into the age of "well seasoned youth," the Mind holds minimal sway over Matter.  In fact, Matter mostly makes Mind behave.

Therefore so it is that our we will not be traveling to Globe today.  Our youthful imaginations conjured up the idea of this high speed trip without much matter for Matter.  Meanwhile Matter scoffed at the Mind's Eye and put a stop to this plan late yesterday.  We are simply too tired and moving too slow and have far too little motivation for a trip of such distance.  Neither one of us wants to sit in the vehicles for 8-10 hours per day for two days, especially when one of us is still on the edge of coming down with whatever crud it is that's been affecting big chunks of the local population.

Ah, it was a fine figment of The Mind--that Payson-Young Road-Globe Trip, but it will simply have to remain part of our imaginations for some time to come.  Hopefully, we can take that trip during this Arizona Season--it's been on our Bucket List for years.

Susun enjoyed two great hikes.  Her Sunday Stroll Sisters convened once again for their weekly get together.  Sunday strolls are more or less "talkin' the walk. However, yesterday Susun and two Friends hiked 7.5 miles!  That's definitely walkin' the talk! (Photos coming soon.)

Meanwhile, Little Yonni was fully consumed with his bi-weekly Montezuma Marksmen duties.  Two new Dear Friends attended, Nancy and Michael.  They both did exceptionally well.  It was the first match at a new (and USFS-approved) location and the proverbial good time was had by all.

We received a call yesterday from DF & LBR Dave E. (AKA: Siegfried).  It was great talking with him.  Dave and we go back to 1980.  Dave was on our Way Too High 1983 River Trip.  We talked about how we might work together to get the 30th anniversary of that trip up and running.  We're looking forward to that project, Dave, thanks for your interest in it.

We're reluctant to put this into a blog post because it's definitely not something our Dear Friends in Idaho want to read.  We apologize profusely in advance.  OK, here goes:  It's going to top the 70 degree mark here today and tomorrow.  There, we said it.  Yep, it might even break a high temperature record or two here in the Verde Valley over the next couple of days.  We love these January high pressure systems.  This is Classic Chamber of Commerce Weather.  Yesterday was warm enough for a short sleeve shirt most of the day.  The next couple of days will require a lightweight poly shirt--cotton will probably be too warm to wear.
Sorry' bout our weather here, Idaho Friends.  It is what it is.

That's about all we have to report.  Have a great day & Many Cheers, jp

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sweet Duty

Dear Friend Peter Corbett has some sweet duty each year when he is "assigned" to cover Car Auction Week in Scottsdale, Arizona. Over the years, the mid-winter classic car auctions have become THE place to buy and sell some of the world's most desirable collector cars.

During the past few days, Peter has been rubbing elbows (and presumably tradin' paint) with some of the most valuable vehicles on earth.  Below are three photos of Peter with captions.
 Here's Peter looking real professional and business like in The Batmobile.  It was hoped this one-of-a-kind relic would edge into seven figures and, Holy Smokes, did it ever, selling for a no joker $4.25-million!
 Here's Peter looking professional and business like next to a 1958 Ferrari.  This one was projects to sell for perhaps the low side of $2-million.  However someone in the "What Recession?" crowd upped the ante a little bit and this puppy went for $8.25-million!  Peter attemped to get his Facebook Friends to "crowd source" a private funding pool to attempt to buy the car.  Rumor has it he was actually allowed to sit in the car, too.
Here's Peter showing off his "Inner Reporter" at The Spirit Room in Jerome, December 29th, 2012.  Way to GO, Peter--you've got a HOT hand writing about Car Auction Week!  Keep up your great work.  Many Cheers, jp

Saturday, January 19, 2013

How cold is it?

It's C-O-L-D!  We're talking the type of deep, bitter cold that just seems like it never ends.  Where?  Salmon, Idaho.  So, how cold is it?  The best way we can relate to you just how cold it is there is to talk about The Salmon River Ice Jam.  This thing is like a weird monster, a strange creature, and it just keep growing and getting bigger and more dangerous.

So, how big is it?  Well, are you ready?  It's TWENTY FIVE MILES LONG!  It's clogging the river from an area known as Deadwater almost all the way upstream to the Salmon, Idaho City Limits.  It started growing last Sunday-Monday and it hasn't stopped spreading.  Unless the temperature releases its grip on the area, the ice jam is almost certain to cause some flooding problems in Salmon, Idaho.

Now, folks, when your city is threatened by an ice jam stretching as far as from Rimrock to Jerome, Arizona, hey, you've got a problem.  We're not talking a garden variety ice jam here.  We're talking a monster!  Idaho Falls has been in the same grip of the cold weather, too, but at least it doesn't have to worry about an icy creature coming out out of the Snake River and wrecking havoc on the city.  YIKES!

Below is the 14 day temperature chart for Salmon, Idaho.  Note that the weather was actually quite nice until a week ago.  That's when the bottom dropped out of the thermometer.  Temps are progged to warm up late tomorrow.  It remains to be seen how this will affect the Ice Jam.

More Williams coverage

As you've read below, we had a mighty fine trip from Jerome to Williams and back via Perkinsville.  We will be posting up stuff from that trip for the next few days.  Here's a nice dose-o-Williams for your Saturday morning.

First, we made a YouTube video from a slideshow using about 124 photos of our 20 hours in Williams.  You can see the video here:

In the video, you can see some scenes of The Highlander Motel and the Marilyn Monroe Room in which we stayed.

As promised, we did do some interview work with the Belgium couple who own the place.  We put up a couple of video interviews with them and let them give us an OK to post which they did yesterday.  So, here is where you can find their interviews.  Alan is soft-spoken so the audio is a little weak on his narrative.  Those who still have good hearing will have no problem understanding him.

We did get some great Route 66 photo ops but Susun doesn't want to release the video and photo products until her birthday in a couple of weeks.  The one above has been approved for public consumption.

Many Cheers! jp

Copper Canyon Reprise

Sam Cam records the usual suspects celebrating their safe arrival at the top of the  infamous Copper Canyon Hill.

Back on January 4th, Wayne Ranney and we went for a fine Friday hike down the old General Crook Trail and along the bottom of Copper Canyon. (Click here to read the blog post about it.)  As we were walking down that fine country back road, two things kept coming to mind: A) The road would be great for the Samurai and B) Susun would love to see it, too.

We were so enthusiastic about the awesome attributes of the road and the adjacent tiny creek and riparian area that we almost turned right around and drove it the very next day.  Then we came to our senses and realized it was a Saturday and the place would be teeming with "yahoos" running amuck in ATV's and bubba boy jacked up trucks.  Nah, little Samurais don't mix with that crowd.

So, time passed.  The historic cold spell came and stayed for days.  Meanwhile, we were chomping at the bit to take an official Road Trip and off we went practically the minute the cold weather began it head east to molest other parts of America.  As we were returning on Thursday, the topic of conversation came around once again to Copper Canyon.

Practically no sooner than we arrived home and unpacked, we were packing once again for the Copper Canyon day trip.  We took off at 10 am from here at Second Chance Ranch.  The little Samurai doesn't like driving even those four miles on I-17 and our top speed might have been 50 mph.  We had to hit the shoulder a couple of times to let high speed traffic blow past us.

Anyway, we arrived at the new Copper Canyon Trailhead and took off on our little adventure about 10:45 am.  Not even a quarter mile up the rough road, we encountered some old silver-haired "yahoos" in various vehicles including a totally inappropriate Subaru. They had all turned around to leave when they encountered the road's first gnarly portions. The guy in the Subaru stopped briefly to shout out to us, "ROUGH ROAD AHEAD!"  No kidding?  What was your first clue, dude?

Well, by way of disclaimer, we must say that if we hadn't personally hiked the road two weeks earlier, we might have turned around, too.  The nice thing about hiking a road first is you get to see each and every one of the itty, bitty routes between rocks and ruts and how you have to place your tires and so forth to navigate the dicey parts.  Without the benefit of scouting on foot, the idea would have been considerably more daunting.  Anyway, we forged on without mishap or peril.

About two miles into the trip, we reached the stretch of beautiful perennial flowing spring water.  What a wonderfully lush riparian area lies there unseen from the interstate's speeding vehicles high above on the canyon wall.  It's a very slow going road and about 98% of the length of the narrow route requires use of 4WD Low.  As you know, driving in 4WD Low is, by definition, the epitome of slow going.

By and by we came to the spring from whence all the beautiful water flows.  You really can't see the actual spring as it is overgrown by wild blackberries and nobody but bears dares wade into them thorny canes.  After leaving the upper end of the two mile stretch of lush riparian vegetation, we came to the photo rocks.  These are the same rocks Wayne was smitten with a mere two weeks beforehand.  And, wouldn't you know, the very same mean old bull blocked the road at the very same way-too-narrow-place.  We honked and bluff charged the bull and he didn't budge.  Finally, we squeezed his huge bulk between the passenger side and the rock wall.  We're surprised he didn't crush in the right side of the Samurai.  He was close enough for his hide to buff off some of the dust on the side of the Samurai.  His spine was as high as the top of the Samurai window!  Odd feeling to be that close and personal with such an ill-tempered animal.

We thought we were going to pull over and debate whether to make the final climb out of the head of the canyon.  That didn't happen.  We missed the last place to pull over and you know what that means--there's only one way out and you can't stop and think about it.  You just have to go and keep on going and hope it all works out OK.  The road narrowed even farther and the precipice on the driver's side became much steeper and deeper and edged closed to the track of the Samurai's wheels.  YIKES!  That last mile up that hill was definitely white-knuckle for both of us.  Luckily, neither of us blurted out any unsettling words or statements.  The steep hill and the slick unstable surface of the so-called road was right at the limits of the Samurai's capabilities. There were a couple of spots where we wished we really didn't have to navigate them but, of course, in a situation like that there is no choice.  There's no place to stop; no place to turn around; and no place to kneel and pray.  One simply kneels and prays in their mind's eye.

Luckily, we made it to the top totally OK without mishap and we could exhale and celebrate.  It was one of those types of hill climbs--the ones you love ti talk about AFTER you have climbed them.  Trust me, we won't be driving that hill again in this lifetime!  That was a one time thing.

Then, of course, we had to get back down OFF the hill and there's really only one practical way to do that--drive down I-17 (AKA: The Kamikaze Highway)  We got real lucky and didn't have a gaggle of high speed traffic bunch  up behind us.  Our Guardian Angels definitely must have played a role in such good fortune.

All-in-all, we were very happy to return home Friday.  SuziQ The Samurai is now resting peacefully awaiting her next call of duty.  Meanwhile, our next official Road Trip will commence Tuesday when we take off in the Nissan for a 365 mile round trip to Globe via Payson and Young.  We will spend the night at Globe's El Rey motel and return the same way on Wednesday.

Naturally, we mounted the GoPro camera on the hood of the Samurai yesterday and took 499 photos of the Copper Canyon trip.  We've been calling this arrangement a "Hood Cam" but have since changed the name to "Sam Cam."  We edited out about 100 photos and used Windows Movie Make to create a slideshow of the other roughly 400 photos.  We then uploaded it to YouTube for a 6:36 video of the trip through Copper Canyon.  You can see the video and read a little bit more about it here:

Many Cheers!  jp

It had to happen

We're surprised this hasn't happened to us before now.  Back in December down in Phoenix, we bought two Sony Class 10, 16 gig SDHC memory cards.  Well, naturally, both of the cards looks precisely the same.  We've been using one in the Fuji long lens camera and one in the GoPro camera.

Lately, as you know, we've been fooling around using the GoPro as a hood cam and we're now calling it a "Sam Cam."  On our Jerome-Williams trip, it took 2600 photos and yesterday it took 499 photos.  Well, that amount of photos takes up a huge amount of memory, even on a 16 gig card.  Sooo.....what's a guy to do but wipe the GoPro card clean to get ready for the next road trip. you know where this is going.  Anyway, without double checking, we picked up the wrong SD card last night and wiped ALL of our Year 2013 photos off the SD card we use in the Fuji long lens camera.  POOF, gone!  We're sure you've all experienced that unique sinking feeling with you realize you've just destroyed hundreds of digital files with no earthly hope of ever getting them back again.  It was a very stupid and dumb, lame brain thing to do, that's for sure and we have been beating ourselves up pretty badly about it ever since.  How much extra time would it have required to double check the content of the SD card before wiping it clean?  Um...maybe a couple of minutes, max.

On the brighter side, we did offload all of the Jerome-Williams pix from the card 12 hours earlier so they are still alive.  Also, now we no longer have to wonder and worry about what to do with all those other hundreds of photos taken  from New Year's Eve to January 18th!

Moral of this story--take time to double check what you are deleting before you hit the "Button Of No Return!"

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Road Trip Report

We had a wonderful Road Trip in every way.  Yesterday was wonderful.  The overnight at The Highlander was wonderful and today was wonderful.  I mean, gee, did we say it was wonderful?

We returned home about 3:30 pm and had everything totally de-rigged in under an hour. The whole process was totally casual--no stress whatsoever.

Our only "problem" of the trip was a flat tire.  However, it was a wonderful flat tire.  Oh, come on, John, how could a flat tire be wonderful?  Well, the tire went flat overnight while we were sleeping in a warm cozy motel room.  We discovered it this morning.  So, we had a warm cozy room from which to change the tire at our leisure using a floor jack on smooth asphalt.  That's pretty wonderful as far as flat tires go on a Road Trip.  Meanwhile, we took the tire a few blocks to an Old School tire repair place and returned to the motel to spend time interviewing owners Alan and Sandra who are restoring the place.  So, there was no lost time as a result of the flat.  Meanwhile, we returned to the repair shop and the guy said there was nothing wrong with the tire and no repairs were necessary.  Therefore, no repair costs were necessary. We put the tire back on the Samurai, left Williams at our scheduled departure time, drove it home today and it performed fine.  So, I guess that qualifies as a wonderful flat tire.  Would you agree?

We have a genuine ba-zillion of photos to deal with.  The hood cam took over 2000 photos.  We added maybe 100 or so ourselves and did a few videos, too, plus an MP3 audio snippet.  We've kind of made a deal with ourselves that if we can't process everything by Sunday, we will delete it.  We will see how that promise works out.

Nothing much else to report.  Have a wonderful night and many Wonderful Cheers!  jp

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Road Trip Time!

It's not only Road Trip Time today but Road Trip Time forever as we have created yet another new blog with that title.  As you know, we list "blogging" as one of our primary hobbies.  Some would say it is a "primate hobby," but we won't go there.

Here is the Road Trip Time blog:

We've set a bucket list goal for ourselves of 500 blog posts in Year 2012 with a base of 300 here on Live Simple.  We're doing well  here since we have 18 posts already in January and are certain to exceed to the 25 post-per-month average necessary to reach 300 by year's end.

Meanwhile, we've put up two posts on The Salmon Thang; six posts on the new Road Trip Time; four on the blog for Dad's book and four more on our Montezuma Marksmen blog.  That's a total of 16 blog posts, just one shy of a pace to log 200 per year on blogs besides this one.  Oddly, the geekweather blog has not received a new post since December 1, 2012. Perhaps we tired of saying the same old thing--"It's COLD!"

Speaking of cold, this morning's low is a wonderful 13 degrees.  Morning temps in the teens here bode well for the day ahead. Today's high is going to be in the mid to upper 50's here and it will just get warmer every day.  Let's hope the pits of winter are past.

If you read or listen to the news, you know the flu is making its annual rounds.  This season's flu is taking on various personalities, from typical symptoms to a mish-mash of other behaviors.  We're pretty sure we actually have the flu right now.  It came on in a rather stealthy manner, simply making us bone-tired enough to sleep 10-12 hours non-stop.  By and by, we started to lose our voice and that's where we at right now.
Can't hear.  Can't talk.  Great combination, eh?  We don't seem to have any other least yet.  We might have a low grade fever but we don't have a thermometer around to check and what good would it do anyway?   We're going ahead with our Road Trip over the next couple of days and hope for the best.  It will be interesting to see what affect (if any) the process of the trip has on our well being.

We've received quite a few RSVPs to Susun's birthday-Ground Hog Day-Candlemas-Anti Stupor Bowl party invitation.  Unfortunately, one invitee was deeply offended  and actually insulted by us calling the Stupor Bowl for what it is.  The couple will not attend the party and demanded an apology.  Hey, we've nothing against football--we've been football fans since we were old enough to know what a football was.

We will continue to call the Stupor Bowl for what it is in America--a giant food-based party where football is secondary to consuming vast excesses of junk food and adult beverages while actually looking at TV ads on purpose and pretending to watch a typically mismatched pair of teams run back and forth.  The junk food industry simply wouldn't know what to do with the Stupor Bowl.  How in the heck would they be able to sell as much of their stuff in the middle of winter otherwise?  Once the junk food industry realized the intrinsic value of the Stupor Bowl, the rest was history.  Only Thanksgiving and July 4th can give the Stupor Bowl a run for its money in terms of the sheer amount of food and beverages consumed on a single day.  If we had to bet, we'd bet that America consumes more "Little Smokies" on Stupor Bowl Sunday than any other day of the year. Somehow, our intuition tells us a certain company probably sells more Laz-Y-Boy recliners leading up to the Stupor Bowl than any other time of year, too, but that's purely conjectural.  Anyway, if a spade is a spade, Stupor is as Stupor does.

Ace Reporter Steve Ayers is leaving his journalism career behind to become the Economic Development Director for The Town of Camp Verde.  We're sorry to see Steve's fine writing drop off the radar but we're also excited to wonder what rabbits he will pull out of the Camp Verde cowboy hat.  Steve's capable of counting real coup and there's no doubt in our minds that he's going to shine in his new position.

Well, we will be out on the highway soon this morning and don't know if we will be able to get online in our littl' ol' motel in Williams tonight.  We'll try, but ya never know.  Have a great day and Many Cheers!  jp

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Home arrest ends

We've been under Home Arrest by the Weather.  It's been really darn cold here in Rimrock.  Our lows for the past four days including today have been 6-2-4-4.  Normally, it warms up during the day.  This time?  Not so much.  In fact, some of the afternoons seemed bitter cold.

Yes, I know our Idaho friends will make fun us of but, hey, cold is cold.  Once you are here in Arizona for any length of time, you get acclimated to the prevailing temperatures.  When something comes along that's the coldest spell in at least FIFTY YEARS, well it smacks you real hard.

As many of you know, we use an outside cattle tanks for much of our water supply.  Well, we haven't even been able to get through the two-inch-think ice on the water there unless we use a sledge hammer to break through it.  And then it refreezes just about as fast as we break it up.  We've been wearing four to five layers and still been cold.

The cold spell lasted much than any previous cold spell any of us so-called Old Timers can remember.  January 1963 is the last time a spell like this might have come along.  Well, hallelujah, the cold spell finally snapped during the late morning.  The barometer jumped way up and by early afternoon, we were stripping off layers and singing "Happy Days Are Here Again."  Out own thermometer says it's in the mid-50's and it sure feels like it.   Oh, how nice it is to have our typical Arizona. Winter Afternoons back again.

Call me a wimp, call me what ever you want but this particular episode really taxed our patience and positive perspectives.  This one was a bear!  We're so glad it's over.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Road Trip Ahead

Susun and I have had a particular item on our bucket list for a long time--driving from Jerome through Perkinsville to spend a night in Williams and then driving back along the same route.  A map of the route is below.  Last time I drove that road all the way to Williams was more than 20 years ago in the late fall of 1992.  That's back where there was serious talk about making it a real highway.  I was riding in a van load of elected officials, politicians and Chamber of Commerce types.  I did my best to talk about the "value" of that road and how keeping it the way it was would be a good idea.

As Loyal Blog Readers know, we had just ran in the 1992 election for Yavapai County Supervisor, specifically to attempt to keep Carlton Camp in office by taking votes away from his newly independent opponent Mister Tommy.  As I recall, we rec'd around 5,000 votes and it was just enough to tip the balance to Carlton.  Carlton was very well aware of what we did so he was very agreeable to listening to what I had to say during that road trip in December 1992.  Carlton listened well enough to basically forget about putting the county behind the idea of improving that road beyond what it was then and continues to be today.

Ever since then we've talked about doing the drive again and the years keep on slipping past us.  Honestly, it's pretty hard to believe it's been 20 years since we drove the road.  Strange how time plays its tricks, eh?

Anyway, we dutifully put it on our Year 2013 Bucket List.  Well, we woke up today and started thinking, "Why Not?"  "Let's just do that road this week, what do you say?"  Susun was "all in" for the idea right away.  She didn't even hesitate.

I did some checking into various lodging facilities in Williams and discovered some fun news about a 1950 Route 66 relic motel called "The Highlander."  Click here to go to the motel's website.  A 1954 postcard of the place is shown below the map graphic.  A Belgium couple bought the motel in 2011 and are restoring it for those of us who love "all things retro."  Now we are looking forward to both the "up and back" road trip and also to talking with the new owners to learn their story.  For all of us who go way back with Williams, this has potential to be an intriguing story in its own right.

We are also going to use this trip to take our GoPro Hero2 camera to another level.  You may recall when we did the time lapse YouTube video of the walk around the Old Field on Montezuma Well National Monument in front of our house.  Well, we've been watching as the GoPro segues from "hey, look at me" stuff into a piece of technology especially useful for documenting vehicle and bicycle road and trail trips.
So, that's going to be a new fun thing to test out.

We're planning on taking our time on this trip so that we can photograph each aspect of the trip.  Those are our plans and you know how plans change.   It will be interesting to see how it all shakes out in reality this week.  It looks like the weather is cooperating and we are leaving behind the Arctic deep freeze and moving back to normal January Arizona weather.  By our return trip Thursday, the weather ought to be shirtsleeve and delightful.


Nothing lasts forever.  Records are made to be broken. Our morning temperature here is 3 degrees.  That's three degrees below the previous lowest low temp here in the past 20 years.  It might drop another degree before the sunrise.

(Editor's Note:  Yes, it dropped to 2 degrees shortly after 7 am and has been stuck at 2 for about 30 minutes.)

Most of Northern Arizona is colder than yesterday and might be even colder tomorrow morning, too.  The Grand Canyon South Rim is twenty below zero.  Looking at other people's lower temps doesn't do much to warm us up.

Well, at least we do warm up somewhat during the day.  Our high here reached 41 Saturday before falling back into the mid-20's during the evening camp fire.  By comparison, Idaho Falls reached a high of 7 degrees yesterday.  This morning, all of Eastern Idaho is hanging out below zero, as you can see from the graphic below.  Stanley's Saturday low was -33 and we bet it will be lower than that this morning.  The Snake River at The Falls in Idaho Falls is completely frozen and looks like some Currier & Ives etching chiseled in white ice.

Nothing lasts forever. Late this week a warm up is expected.

Saturday, January 12, 2013


About 15 minutes ago when we started this blog post, the temp was 7 and the title for the post was "One Degree Away."  Now, just a few minutes before 7 am, the temp dropped to six degrees and we're TIED with our All-Time low temp ever recorded here at Second Chance Ranch.  YEA!  Let's here it for a tie ball game.  Does this mean we go into overtime?

Naturally, at times such as these, we are fond of seeing just how bad it is for everyone else.  Flagstaff Airport is -9; East Flag is -10 and Mormom Lake is -20.  Grand Canyon's South Rim is "only" six below zero.

The "Hard Freeze" warning came true for Tucson where it is now 27 degrees and it's 24 in Sierra Vista.  Twenty-four there probably feels like 7 here.  Mass quantities of ornamental desert landscape plants are being frozen to death even as we speak.

In Idaho Falls, it's -13, slightly warmed than the overnight low of -15. The high in Idaho Falls today is predicted to be equal to our low of 7.   By comparison, our high here today will be pretty chilly, too, not even making it out of the 30's.  Flagstaff is progged to have high temps of 22-23-22 over the next three days!  Yes, it is one of those patented January cold spells.  However, based on history, this just might be the coldest episode of the winter.

Take a look at the two mind-numbing data sheets below and you can easily see that mid-January marks a dividing line of sorts.  Temps tend to be warmed after the middle of the month. Below are the historical climate summaries for Beaver Creek Ranger Station and Montezuma Castle Nat'l Monument.  Notes are below each.
Above is the Beaver Creek data.  
The Ranger Station is several miles upstream (and uphill) from us. 
 Note that the "lowest low" is one degree recorded in 1963.
This data site is a a higher elevation that we are.
OK, above is Montezuma Castle National Monument.  "MOCA," as it is known to the NPS, 
is hundreds of feet lower in elevation that we are and roughly 10 miles downstream.  
Note how much colder it gets there than the higher elevation Ranger Station.
That's because cold air sinks.  It's physics and definitely about the only physics I know.
Note that in 1963, MOCA recorded one below zero.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Susun's First Car

You aren't going to believe this but what you see above was the first car Susun ever drove.  No kidding.  Somehow, our dinner conversation morphed into vehicles and, by and by, it morphed into this--what you see above.  Susun's Mom, Doris decided to buy THIS vehicle brand NEW off the lot in 1959.  Being The Hot Mama Susun's Mom was, Doris opted for the Muscle Engine and "four on the floor."  This is the first vehicle Susun ever got to drive.  Can you imagine that?  I mean like, YIKES!  Susun's been sitting here in front of the computer telling me stories about driving this car down Mesa, Arizona, Main Street in 1963-64 and I am like, mesmerized.  Really?  Tell me more, Honey.  Somehow, I hear Todd & Buz in my head tonight. Get Your Kicks ON Route 66 anyone?


We're "Wimpolas!"

We're not sure the Mexican Language has a term for people like us but we think it would be "Wimpolas."  A singular wimp would be a "wimpola" and plural wimps would be "wimpolas."  If you know the Spanish language, you know how to accent those two new words.

Here is how I would try to describe their phonetic pronunciation:  "weem-POLE-ah" and "weem-pole-AHS."  That's kind of approximate, of course, but it's a pretty good start and, if you are having as much FUN on a Friday night we are are, perhaps you can experiment with a whole new set of ways to say both of those words.  When you live in Rimrock, you can have a whole lot of fun with a mere two words.

Well, I digressed.  That's what happens now and then here in Rimrock.  I started out trying to tell you we were "wimpolas."  Why are we Wimpolas?  Well, here's how it happened.  It was a pretty cold day, as far as days go here in Rimrock.  The wind blew and the temperature dropped.  As the sun set on the western Verde Rim, we sat around in our warm cozy little straw bale house and said to each other, "Oh, we won't build a camp fire tonight, it's too cold."

Of course, by local standards, it WAS cold, maybe 40 degrees around about sunset.  Meanwhile, we had been communicating with folks we know in Idaho Falls, Idaho.  Well, if it was 40 degrees there, they would have a spontaneous city celebration.  Forty is like tropical and they won't see 40 until maybe April, if they are lucky.  We had this one plaintive email saying tomorrow's HIGH in Idaho Falls would be 7 degrees.

Then, we looked at the NWS current conditions in Idaho Falls and realized it was 10 degrees with the wind gusting to 25 mph.  You know what that does to wind chill, people?  Well, maybe you don't want to know.

Anyway, that's when I told Susun, "We are WIMPS if we can't go out and build a Friday Nite Camp Fire tonight. Do you want to be a wimpola or what?"

So, this January 11th camp fire is in honor of our Dear Friends in Idaho.  We wish them warmth and happiness and much Joy.  We ain't wimpolas no more.

Many Warm Cheers to ALL!  John & Susun

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Sky Fire

No, the sky isn't on fire, it just looks that way.  Our January 10th sunrise is easily the best morning light we've seen since our arrival here almost two months ago.  The light show started shortly before 7 am and just keeps getting better and better as the sun approaches the lip of the Mogollon Rim.  Our tiny little point-and-shoot camera just barely captures such a magnificent vista.

Remember that old saying: "Red sky at morning, sailor's warning?"  Well, the adage is apt today as there's a BIG storm rolling in --big as in a return of C-O-L-D weather along with a dose-o-snow.  This morning's Flagstaff NWS Discussion says: "BITTER COLD IS TO BE EXPECTED ACROSS NORTHERN ARIZONA INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK."  The whole Phoenix area is all a-twitter with expectations of a hard freeze that could last all weekend.  Lots of tender plants will be lost there during this event.  If the forecast comes true, this will be the hardest, longest freeze they've had in years, dating to well before the housing bubble.  So, we'd expect the botanical "survival of the fittest" to be the rule of the day down there in the next few days.  Three graphics for this storm are below the sunrise photo.  You can easily see we are on the southern tip of a very large storm system affecting most of the US West.

Many Happy Early January Cheers!  jp

Wednesday, January 9, 2013


And so it is that a new word was born tonight amid the flame-flickered darkness.

John is a Fireopractor.  When perhaps the light may dim, John makes Fireopractic adjustments to the skeletal embers of his flaming clientele.  Once all the various parts are feng shui, flames flicker.  Fire happens.  Life is Good.

Many Cheers from The Fireopractor!  jp

Maravilloso desayuno y bebidas

Dear Friends Maria Elena and Tim hosted us for breakfast this morning.  What a wonderful and delightful morning event they staged!  Tim, of course, is a world class barrista and started us off with coffee several light years better than Starbucks.  Maria Elena served up a genuine world class tortilla.  You see, in Spain and South America, a tortilla isn't a flat, thin piece of wheat.  Nope, Maria Elena's tortilla is a rich meal of eggs, potatoes, vegetables and more, all blended into a finely done package that delights the eyes as well as the palate.

Maria Elena also served up a memorable medley of pineapple and grapefruit juice while finishing the meal with her special homemade blend of rum and cream.  Tim's Special Scones were served to compliment the fine morning repast.  Tim's Scones are easily the best scones we've ever had.

We four enjoyed fine friendship along with our fine dining.  Maria Elena and Tim regaled us with captivating stories of their three-week trip to Baja.  Thanks Maria Elena & Tim, what a great breakfast on a fun January morning.  Many Happy Trails and Many Cheers!  jp
 A hearty morning "Howdy" from Tim.
 Tim's barrista equipment is equal ot or better than anything you will find in a gourmet coffee shop.
 Here's my espresso.
 Maria's Elena's cheese plate and her special morning citrus juice.
 Maria Elena is all smiles as she served her tortilla.
 It's nothing like a thin, flat piece of flour.  Nope, this tortilla totally redefines the genre.
 What a great plate!
Thanks, Maria Elena & Tim, for a wonderful morning and a fabulous breakfast

Guest Appearance

We had a really fun surprise on Saturday.  Elson & Cindy appeared at the end of our road.  We hadn't seen them for many, many many years none of us could remember when it was.  We think the last time we saw them both was down at Elson's Place in Puerto Lobos on the Mexican Coast.  It sure was great to visit with them and and get caught up on where our lives have been going in, oh, those many years since we last enjoyed each other's company.  

Susun's Sunday Strolls

Susun's Sunday Strolls are becoming quite popular with her girl friends.  This past Sunday saw ten Dear Friends join in the Red Rock Ramble.  Susun says the only problem is that she isn't get a workout, except for her laugh muscles, of course.  Her friends say they welcome Susun's return to Arizona because they know she will get them all together.  You could call the weekly occasion Susun's Sunday Strolls or Susun's Sunday Socials.  Either way works.  Here's some photos from the past two Sunday's (December 30 and January 6th).

The objective of the last hike of Year 2012 was to reach Oak Creek from Susun K's. house.
And what should the adventurers find but a busted up, abandoned Coleman canoe perfect for their repose.
 The objective of the first hike of Year 2013 was roundabout Chimney Road.
 And what should they find but a giant stupa.
 It's a Buddhist Thing.  Can you tell?
Onward, Ladies, ONWARD!

Rube Goldberg Lives!

Way, way up in the cold, polar, deep frozen tundra of Idaho Falls there sits a Dear Friend and Loyal Blog Reader, Terry M.  He sits and stares at the cold, blowing snow and thinks of the biting winds and, during those ;long months of winter hibernation, his creative spirit begins to course once again through his veins.  As he peruses this blog, DF & LBR Terry M. spies out yet another post about a camp fire.  Rather than throw up his hands in disgust, Terry diligently deploys his keenest and utmost creativity like a laser beam to the topic at hand.  A little tinkering here, a little tweaking there and, behold, he unveils yet a new wondrous, dazzling camp fire device for all the world to see.  Thank You, Terry, for letting us all know that the Spirit of Rube Goldberg is Alive & Well this winter in Idaho Falls.  Carry on.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Dad's Book is online

Today just called out to be a day when something special gets done.  First, we thought we were going to drive the Copper Canyon portion of The Crook Trail.  But the circumstances changed and we decided to devote our entire day to finding some way, somehow to get Dad's book online.

Frankly, the whole process has been a real bear from the git-go.  We did find a reasonably-priced book scanner and he delivered the scan files late last week.  It didn't take too long to realize that messing with most of those files would require weeks of work to render them into an ebook format.

Meanwhile, we started messing with the POD People.  POD= Print On Demand.  If we thought the eBook world was a jungle, we hadn't seen anything yet.  The POD People make sharks look tame by comparison.
Not only that but just hacking our way through the POD jungle required a lot of skills that seemed beyond our grasp.

As the day wore, we must admit we were becoming exceptionally frustrated, if not deeply perturbed.  For one thing, "they" say it's easy to provide a book for free online.  Well, what "they" don't tell you is that is it NOT easy and you have to jump a lot of hoops because why would they want to help you give a way a book free in the first place?  There's no money in it for them so there are roadblocks aplenty in that seemingly simple picture.  Meanwhile, the POD People scoffed at trying to make the book free.  It's not possible so fuggetaboutit.

All of this weighty reality was weighing me down as the day worn on.  Finally, sitting here in front of this computer, the light bulb went off and I found myself asking questions I've often asked throughout my life, "Why do I have to deal with these people in the first place?  Isn't there some way I can do this myself and bypass all those people?  Isn't there a better way?"

Well, simply asking the questions cheered me up considerably and it wasn't long before the light bulb went off and we had at least an interim solution to the whole thing.  Granted, it's not the most optimal solution but it works and it provided instant gratification and it totally changed my day from one of frustration to one of success.

The book scanner created both a small and large PDF file for the book.  The big file is 150 megs but the small file is 21 megs.  I spent time comparing the two files and realized there was essentially no significant difference between the quality of the two files because of the rather low quality of the original product.  The type face in the original book was light and, sure enough, it shows up light in the scans.  Some of the photos were dark in the original book and, sure enough, those same photos show up dark in the scans.

So, I decided the small PDF file just might offer a window of opportunity.  I placed it on a state-of-the-art cloud-sharing website and, voila, the embed scripts actually produced a version you can read online without even having to download the file!  Amazing but true.  Meanwhile, the cloud sharing outfit makes the download process insanely fast.

Just to be safe, we uploaded the 21 meg PDF to Google's Documents (AKA: Drive) so we have a redundant download source.

What we have here now is that the book is available free online instantly today.  No waiting.  No wondering.  No nothing.  Somebody wants the book--they got it.  Just like that. POOF.  Free.

We want this book to live forever, that's the plan--we want it to live way past our own lifetime.  We think we are "on to something" here and this book now has a fighting chance to survive into the foreseeable future and beyond.  This is a good thing.

OK, trumpet fanfare and drum roll please.  Here is my Dad's book sitting online and free!  YEA!

Many Cheers!  jp