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You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em
Written By: O.C.fotoguy
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You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em
You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em
You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em
You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em
You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em
You Got To Know When To Fold ‘em

    I’m here enjoying the sunshine in March in Cibola NWR (www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/CibolaNWR) south of Blythe, Calif. where there’s a large wet land, mountains, the Colorado River, Lake Cibola, high desert overlooking it, and Bureau of Land Management wilds surrounding everything for miles and miles. I’ve seen a bobcat, Avoset, coyotes, hawks, and many water birds. There’s a gorgeous landscape for photos in every direction all the time.
    This is my eleventh day here and I’ve loved it. Something in the back of my mind keeps throwing up this thought:  Is there really enough to keep me occupied for four weeks like I planned? I’m also being annoyed by the stones in the dirt roads that I can feel through my sandals, and when I tried to use the bicycle the dirt roads were either too washboardie, or there w too many stones, and I was generally losing interest in what I was experiencing.
    I decided to go a restaurant that was just north of the village of Cibola, which I’d passed when I arrived. Maybe a good local texmex meal would restart my desire to keep looking for those natural phenomenons. I found the faded sign along the road that said Red Dog Cantina with a reopened note. Both were rather weather beaten. I parked my truck and walked across the dirt road surveying the building for an indication that the restaurant was open. There were three vehicles at the road’s end, but I couldn’t see any activity.   I walked up the driveway and saw a Great Dane-sized dog. He was paying no mind to me and going the other way - Good! I walked around the front porch; the windows had plywood or something on the inside. I kept walking, and turned the corner. I could see a TV on inside, tables and chairs, so I went on around to the back.  There was a door with a shot gun leaning against the wall just to one side, whommmmm!!!  I opened the door; all was quiet inside, so I closed the door and went on my way. The shot gun and dog just didn’t make me feel welcome and surely wasn’t what I needed to rekindle my interest in staying.
    I drove towards the Colorado River, had plenty of food I could cook, and took a walk along the river. I was near where I’d overnighted several times, and seen a big horned owl, and as I walked I contemplated where I was going from here. This morning I had a delightful walk along some alfalfa fields and then along the wet land. On the way back, Mother Nature gave me the opportunity to photograph a pelican that was flying in front of a mountain peak and I nailed the picture.  That was fresh in my thoughts.  I’d also seen a lizard, that appeared to be dead, but proved to be alive as I transported it on a stick and observed that it clenched its claws around it so it didn’t fall. I put it back on the ground, decided to check on it later, and thought a harrier would surely get it if it stayed in the open, but when I returned it was still there! I put it in an indentation in the ground, put a log over it, and let it alone. I wanted it for a display in my nest where I have lots of shells, rocks, and relics of critters. I’d planned on checking on it the next day.
    As I walked along the river my thoughts got a little deep. I’m sure we think our conscious mind is in charge, but I’m not so sure. There’s some other subtle maybe unconscious thought processes going on that are over powering, like the reoccurring thoughts I’d been having about would there be enough activity here for four weeks and the reason the stones and dirt on the  roads were irritating me. I began to wonder about how many miles it would be from Calgary, British Columbia, near the end of the Canadian part of this Adventure to Ocean City. My mind latched onto that and I returned to the nest (slide-in camper on a Ford F-150 pickup) and I got the maps out and charted a course. I got a huge satisfying feeling about planning the way home. So satisfying that it was obvious to me, as in other years, that when I get to the three and a half month point in my meanderings, I start to lose interest in all these natural phenomenon. I’d accomplished what I came to Cibola for. I wanted to evaluate it to know if it was worthy of including as a week or more stop in future Adventures. I’d done that and, of course, it was. Was there any reason to stay then?  Those thoughts escalated.
    I’d planned as an add on to this Adventure taking a ferry from Seattle/Vancouver to Prince Rupert, almost to Alaska. I found out that I couldn’t quite do that and I’d have to drive to the north end of Vancouver Island to get a ferry to there. So my thoughts jumped to the worthwhileness to me of the ferry to Prince Rupert. I’d already determined a plan B of driving north east from Seattle to the Canadian Rockies and the Iceland ParkWay and being satisfied with that. I decided to sleep on it.
    Today I awoke, decided being at Cibola was wonderful, but I was done with Cibola, and so I left for Kelso Dunes. Here I can contemplate what I would do next as I looked at the huge sand dune mountains which are unparalleled in anything that I’ve seen. As I enjoyed the view, that voice in the back of my head got going again and started questioning the whole going to Canada thing.  The fact that I’ve been traveling for three and a half months kept ricocheting around in my head. Of course I’d like to go to British Columbia and Alaska.  That wasn’t the issue… That I’ve been doing this for three and a half months was, and going home is very attractive.
    As I walked around the dunes taking photos of the textured sand in the foreground of the huge dunes, I decided that British Columbia and maybe someday Alaska are just too huge an undertaking to add onto one of my Adventures. They need to be the main event. I’d had an outstanding time traveling since December to mid March, seen lots of incredible things (an octopus wrapping around my foot, a panther that posed for me, changed my own truck’s oil, craw fish claws in the desert, and more), and that’s enough. It’s time to fold ‘em and  take a leisurely ride back across the country, stopping at many thrift stores in little towns after enjoying the buffets in Vegas and watching the ACC Basketball Tournament on TV, and give it another go next year!
Bob R  o.c.FotoGuy
more photos @ picasaweb.google.com/o.c.fotoguy2009
& facebook.com/OCfotoguy
PHOTOSAsYouWantThem.biz, articles @ Coconuttimes.com

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