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Uncle Markie out and about.

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Thu
29
Sep '11

My Birthday With Strangers.

This post is split between end of yesterday and the end of today.

I got to Quemota around 1:30, which left me enough time for a bun-less cheeseburger at the cafè before the 2pm shuttle to “The Birthday Place With Strangers” (the name I’ll use since we weren’t supposed to photograph the place, and well, we all did).

By 3pm we were 45 minutes on rough roads to get to the remote site, not another house within sight, just the random windmill. My companions are a late-twenties early thirties couple from Brooklyn (both architects but with different firms) and a couple of German woman travelling the US in their mid-thirties, but I’m bad with ages.

It being the heat of the day, I wandered a bit before retreating to the porch to stare out at the masses of stainless steel poles:

Here is a great shot to illustrate how remote a location that we are staying:

I was standing in the installation when I shot this, and as you can see (or not) the porch faces the installation.

During the mid-day sun, the poles are washed out, but as sunset arrives, they glow in the dimming sunlight:

Photos do not convey the mesmerizing effect that the field has, even just staring out from the cabin porch.

The staff left us a much better evening meal than any of us were expecting — a enchilada casserole (so much for my low-carb diet), with a crook-pot of beans, tortilla, sour cream, onions, all the fixing. The Architects brought fixings for a kale salad and wine, which was a nice edition. The Germans brought beer, me wine and whiskey.

I passed along some of the whiskey to the caretaker when he came to light the pellet stove to keep us warm. He has had this gig for 34-years, starting with helping to build it. I had a little space heater in my room since I was sleeping in the “shed” section of the ranch house:

It’s on the back side, but has the advantage of having its own private bath.

It was a fun “Birthday With Strangers”.

But that was yesterday, and today is today — I saw a minute of the sunrise as I got up to pee, but went back to bed. Everyone else was up and out wandering early. I think I made the right decision — the opinion was that the sunset was better on the poles. I rolled into the kitchen at 8:30, just in time for the second pot of coffee for the morning.

Breakfast was a U-Fix (and you clean) affair with fresh fruit, granola, bacon, eggs, toast, trail mix, cereal — lots of stuff in the metal mouse-proof pantry. The German girls weren’t big on breakfast, The Architects and I had bacon & scrambled eggs (and they added toast on the rest of the beans from last night).

We left the kitchen clean and tidy when the caretaker’s daughter showed up at 11am to take us back to town.

We said our goodbyes back in Quemota, and headed our separate ways — The Architects to Colorado, the Germans to Texas to see another art installation by the same folks. As for me, I’m headed to Grants for a bun-less green chili cheeseburger and a mining museum tour before headed back home for my mother’s home-made tacos. The route back to the freeway is stunning, with this natural arch just seconds off the road:

And the mining museum as fun because it’s a recreation of a mine done in the basement of the Chamber of Commerce that is really well done (and only $3):

Got home a little before 5:30, by 6 we were in taco-ville and by 7 I was back to work trying to clean up the Wine Stocking List from Jimmie and turn it into an Access database. At least I know what I’m doing with my five hour layover at LAX tomorrow. That spreadsheet is rife with typos, un-accented French words, and abbreviation that I have to spell out as this will be the basis for printing all of our wine description cards. At least it’s something that I can do on the road!

Sorry for the long post, there was alot to cover.

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