I have been here in Rockport long enough to fill my gas tank twice: about a month and a half. The life is enjoyably slow, with no hustle and bustle whatsoever. Any work that gets done doesn’t need to start til around ten o’clock, and the few cold snaps that came through were cast off as workless days. My neighbor to the south, Tom on the “Tomandra”, has been allowing me to use any tool that I need, for which I am eternally grateful. He hurt his back last week, and I was lucky enough to be able to return the kindness by taking his dog for a walk while he was in recovery, staying on the boat. Craig, my neighbor to the north, on “Cat Man Do” has also allowed me to use his wheel and palm sanders, and when I needed to clear the zinc blockages from my raw water system, he had a tub of muriatic acid at the ready to do the job. All the boat owners around are full of endless advice, and are a great bunch, despite their tendency to start drinking well before noon.
Muddy is adjusting well to the routine, often with a morning walk and ball chasing in the shallow salt water bay. He spends the hotter time of the day under vehicles, as the combination of shade and concrete provide the cooling he needs. Certainly he is missing playing in the snow, as am I, but there will be time for that another season. Muddy will often take off when I’m down below not paying attention. Usually he heads straight for the cement tables which are on the waterline a hundred yards away. He can nearly always find a crumb or scrap of food there, and the locals which hang out there have taken to him. Muddy is a people puppy.
Yesterday I raised the American flag on my boat, union down. I have never seen a time in this country that we were in such dire circumstances, and feel that we are certainly under duress. The corporations which have inundated this country’s law books are out of control. They have been out of control for a long time. Eisenhower warned us of the military industrial complex. Today we tear countries apart, often using private contractors, mercenaries, then build them back up (government contracts for Halliburton and Bechtel). We have allowed a corporation to be a person, giving them infinite donation capability, and effectively destroying the democracy we thought we had. In fact we live in a kleptocracy. Members of the house and senate rely on donations from profit making corporations to get the advertising revenue they need to be re-elected. Congress members also have a disproportionate success rate in the stock market due to inside trading. Yet we all continue to go to the ballot box misguided, disillusioned, and disenfranchised. Only once we figure out that our success as a country comes from our ability to work together in harmony will we “make America great again.” We are in fact a republic. We were built from the ground up, and should be ruled from the ground up. Local decisions should be made locally: decisions such as whether or not to frack upstream of organic farms as in the North Fork Valley of the Gunnison river, or if we want another pipeline running under our water supply as in North Dakota. The fossil fuel paradigm must be changed. Not by mandate of the government for better fuel mileage
or electric cars. Not by government mandate that oil companies produce less oil, or natural gas companies cut production. It must be from the ground up. YOU have to want to see the change, even if it means drastic changes in your lifestyle. Maybe don’t drive three hours to the mountains this weekend. Instead of flying to Central America or the Caribbean, try going to visit your parents around the block. I may be shot for flying a flag upside down in south Texas, but we should be ashamed of ourselves for how far we have let this country fall off track.
Well, off today to plant some trees and flowers at Wayne’s house. Just something that I can do today to help the world be a more beautiful place. By now you probably understand my opinion on gardening and self sufficiency as paramount to the changes that need to take place. We can rebuild this country from the ground up.
As far as the boat goes. My head is in shambles as I fiberglassed in some supports for a new waste tank. I can’t figure the wiring for the refrigerant compressor, so we may be eating canned goods and coconuts the whole trip. Some of the fire extinguishers work (we have six but only are required to have two). The cut I got on my foot over a week ago putting the zinc on and scraping the bottom has just barely started to heal itself. Overall a little closer every day.