Wednesday, July 29, 2009

power outage...

So I'm all tucked in and sound of sleep when all of a sudden there is a gust of wind and some lightning that wakes me up...at 3:30 AM! I got up and took a look outside and it seemed another storm was coming. Had to make sure so I fired up the computer and checked the doppler radar - big storm headed this way from the NW. Next I had to hunt down my flashlight in the dark and pack up all my tools into their storage container. Finally get back to sleep at 4:15.

Woke for good at 7:15 to light drizzle. Lots of cloud cover but could see the sky clearing in the direction from where the storm came from. Only .08" in the gauge. Rain quit by 7:30 just as Benita came in for breakfast. About 10 other longhorns followed her in. Instead of chasing them off, I put out a little food for all of them. Came in to check back in with my online world. Suddenly the modem went dead and I lost power from the wind turbine battery house. Discovered that my power outage was due to a longhorn calf attempting to chew on my extension cord. Not to worry - he just pulled the plug on me and didn't get electrocuted. That's my first real Field Lab power outage. One of the other longhorns in that group comes around every now and then and she is starting to grow on me...I call her Maybelline. She has real purdy eyes...."Maybe It's Maybelline"

Thought I'd get my blog post up in advance for a change. Having an early supper then going to work...welding up the second half of truss #1 tonight since it was too hot to work outside again today.

18 comments:

martha said...

It is all an attention-getting device. My daughter's cat, Samson chews at the power cord to my Mac while I am reading your blog. I read fast and you are very concise so I have had no power outages since Ike! We all need to be loved.

Ben in Texas said...

I keep trying to tell ya.. Cows and especially wild Long horns ARE NOT PETS!!!! You really are going to have to break them of being so touchy and friendly. I know it may seem cruel, but they are better adapted to live alone down than you are. You are not being cruel by not feeding them and pampering them.

just my cattle and horse experience coming through.

Bob O said...

Perhaps it's time for some buried cable conduit?

Nice detail shot of May's eye, and I love animals, but I do think that Ben may have some good advice. Cows are pretty placid...until they get spooked....

Winterchill said...

Ben I have to disagree with you, any domesticated animal has the ability to be a pet. The idea that there is to be a boundaries between certian animals is really all about how we were conditioned to believe in our early years.
And yes cows, cattle and the longhorn have the same capabilities to be loving as a horse, dog or cat.

KE5MIL said...

Yet another great photo John.
WOW, Maybelline is an awesome subject. A powerful reminder on the magnificent effect of the thirds rule. Thanks again for sharing.

Billy Bob said...

Well John, at least your power outage wasn't a New York blackout. And being a 'first' for the Field Lab, your audience applauds you for posting.
This new "cow", are ya gonna keep her?? And what about poor old Benita's feelings when you're out mess'n round with younger women???

Bob from Athens said...

Well Winterchill I'm gionna have to disagree with you, thinking that half wild open range roving longhorns can be domesticated, sorry but not likely. If you think that John has domesticated Benita, then you don't see the whole picture. John has gentled some of the area longhorns to the point that they will tolerate him as long as he provides feed and water. As soon as he was to stop doing that they would pull up stakes and head for greener pastures, if there are any on the open range they call home. Cows can appear to be "pets" until something startles them or until you get between them and what they want or one of their calves, then they will poke a big hole in you really quick. OH, and as far as domesticated I'd like to see a cow that has been potty trained or even house broke.

Allen Hare said...

It might be time to think about an electric fence around your compound, energy supply permitting, of course.

Looking forward to seeing the finished truss.

Baytown Bert said...

Love your photography!

Donald said...

been enjoying your blog for a couple of weeks now. great pic, keep up the good work!

noodles said...

Animals are the greatest. Thanks for caring.

Marlene said...

John, just keep doing like you've been doing, with the longhorns and everything else. Love your blog and the wonderful pictures. Your site is the first one I go to when I fire up my computer.

John Wells said...

I have to agree wih Ben somewhat (and thank you for the advice)...I do not think of these longhorns as pets - I understand that they only come around because of the comforts I provide. However, they are quite used to human contact from the rancher who owns them and are not as "wild" as one might think. 40 around the house was way too many and when I stopped putting out food for the masses - they simply stopped coming by. As for the "chosen few", I practice the same rule as for highway driving....keep my eye on the road at all times and "one horns length for every 10 miles per hour".

Winterchill said...

Bob from Athens, the cows are no different then horses.
Yes they can be tamed, just like horses. Horses can spook and hurt people,just like the cows can. Horses will protect their young just like the cows do.
Again it all comes to how we were conditioned to believe from early on.

denziel56 said...

jw,

i don't think anyone can judge this simple relationship over the Internet that you have with this old Longhorn ,she trusts you, yes ! could she hurt you, yes ! would she hurt you, maybe ! I've spent plenty of time building fences making round up ,rich feeding, kicking alfalfa off a flat bed truck, culling , branding , slaughter and only looked at the dollar side of ranching and befriending / or domesticating was just not going to happen or even talked about .that's just the way of ranching , grow um and sell um as fast as ya can! correct? people got to eat.

You have a very unique situation with Benita. You showed up in her neighborhood one day and have consistently been kind to her and continue to do so ,your not a threat to her. I have seen her in person and "do not" believe this level of trust you have developed will diminish in any way , unless you just quit the very few things you do for her completely.Even if you took away the shade ,quit feeding and giving her a little water I believe Benita would still hang around and keep an eye on ya!

Most likely you have certainly added a few more years to her life and she's certainly not camera shy .and probably very glad you are a friend of the Longhorns, kinda like a unwritten law of nature ,but animals will kill for no reason I know this Ben .
Yes ,there not pets , but can be friends, as I have personally seen at Johns ranch. and with no fear for myself or my family.

But I'm a hardcore desert survivor and always will be! That 20 year old longhorn is not a threat to jw or my daughter my wife or me. I'm only talking about one old cow that I saw , not the whole heard .I guess you just have to see it unfold in front of you in person , then you would see what I saw.

and "that's the way it is"

.bb

Lynette said...

I think Maybelline is just perfect for a name. Hey we can't all go around going hey cow cow cow

Judy said...

WONDERFUL photo of Maybelline....

Off Grid Terlingua said...

I agree with everyone, The downside to this is your pet could end up on the dinner plate , or as a pair of manly foot wear.