December 07, 2019

A Little Different Post Tonight

This post tonight is for a couple of online friends that I hope to meet in person some day along with their dog. Some of you will figure out who I am talking about but I'll keep their names off this post for their own privacy. I have followed their blog since October 2011 and for too many times that I could count ... their photos on their blog of this area pulled me through some dark times, some days where it was below zero degrees for a high temperature and led me to this area.

When I was looking at houses last winter/spring in this town she was very helpful answering my questions because in their travels they had driven literally two blocks away from where I live today. When I was searching through 150+ houses to buy, she suggested using the keywords "mountain view" to narrow my search for what I wanted.

So these photos are for them tonight because they love and miss this area this winter. They are also for all of you, that continue to come back to this blog even when I don't have a lot to say or nothing exciting to report on. Thanks for stopping by.

After my last post on December 6th good weather was on the way and this was just 24 hours after the photo at the top of the post. I am not bragging about where I live but I am very thankful to see what I can from my patio and backyard everyday. I am also thankful for the good health that I have to enjoy it. It's just amazing to me that I don't have to drive anywhere to see what I see in these photos tonight.

I'm very lucky.

Like I have said many times since moving here, the wide open skies of the 'wild west' really put on a show. For a camera habit like I have it's hard not to take hundreds of photos at a time. Now, I know that no matter where you and I live, every day is different, sunrises and sunsets ... but after looking through years of photos I took back in the 'tropics' of Southern Indiana, skies like these were few and far between. Yet every area we all live in is beautiful in it's own way.

Some might be asking with all of this great weather, where are the blog posts about the local trips I was talking about. After all, bike riding only takes 1-2 hours per day, another hour to clean up and I should have plenty of time to do some local exploring. You are right ... the time is there. But I was warned by the doctor just this week "there will be days like this" no matter how many miles I ride my bike and no matter how good I feel ... "there will be good days and there will be bad day when it comes to your healing hip" ... "you did break your femur in addition to a hip replacement and that has to heal"

I forget that all the time until I have days like I have had four days this week.

With scenery like this in the month of December, the pain seems to go away and I can get lost in my thoughts while I sit outside. Sometimes I am not even close to a camera when I spend this quiet time with a couple of napping hounds nearby.

When you step outside and see a day like this, temperatures getting warm and maybe a little wind it sure hurts not to be able to ride one of my bikes. I realize that is just the way it is right now and things will continue to improve each day as the healing takes place. I am in much better shape than what I read from others who have had the same surgery. I'm very fortunate in my good luck and my healing.

Consequently with the pain I have been feeling, driving a car or a truck just a few miles to take some photos would not do my hip any good. Wasn't it just a couple of weeks ago I posted here that my hip was no longer going to be written about, that I had forgot about the problem? Well I guess it decided to remind me and tell me when to take a break. I'm taking that break now.

It's hard to sit around though in an area like this. These mountains can draw you out toward them like a powerful magnet and all the hiking trails that are available are large in numbers where I might not have time to hike them all. There are just that many of them. Those don't count the other areas 30 miles or more away.

Friday morning's sunset ... Stella was snoring in the corner of the computer room so I figured an early morning walk was not a huge priority with her. We ended up walking later in the day just after lunch. BTW, those are the Mule Mountains to the left and Mexico dead ahead. I can't remember the name of that mountain that sits on the other side of the border. My memory isn't the best when it comes to names.

The mornings have been pretty cool, low 40's. That is cold now but nothing compared to what the hounds and I walked in the past twenty one years in 'the tropics'. Honestly, I don't miss the snow one bit but I do enjoy the beauty of it when I see it on someone else's blog or in an email I might receive.

I am putting my iPhone camera to max zoom here ... I wonder what it would look like taken with a camera that has better sharpness at distance ... the Canon Powershot SX70 will do that from what I read and see. There is someone posting photos using that camera on a Facebook Group "Chochise County and Its Wonders" of birds at a long distance away. They are so sharp you'd think she is standing within 3' of it.

My view when I stand from my chair on the patio.

This has turned into Stella's favorite winter spot for afternoon or late morning naps. Heidi also likes this area and slept most of the afternoon away there yesterday while I was enjoying my own siesta inside.

With the cooler temps and the back patio door open at all times so they can come and go as they please ... I find her outside as much if not more than she spent on the green grass back in Indiana. She likes the warm stones when she lays down. Plus I swear the small stones have cleared up her allergies as has the high desert environment.

Anytime you see the frame of the house in these pictures I am taking them while sitting in a chair on the patio.

Stella cannot see the puppy but she has formed a friendship with the black lab puppy next door.

After a restless night of sleep Friday night I was up early Saturday morning with the help of Stella nudging my hand hanging over the edge of the bed around 4:10 am. Of course she wanted to eat breakfast kibble at that time but breakfast wasn't served until 6 am ... I took this with the iPhone camera, kitchen light turned off and only the street light reflecting off my fence just as the sun was rising. That's looking towards Bisbee AZ.

By the time Stella and I returned from our 7:30 am walk ... the day was starting to shape up. I knew at that time I was going to have to take another day off. I reached for the bottle of Advil. At least I had a few football games to watch and one basketball game. Otherwise I'd fit in a siesta due to my early arrival this morning and enjoy the day. Of course the day that I am not riding a bicycle there is zero wind and the temps were going to climb to 71° by late afternoon.

It was late afternoon I really got interested in the sunset going on while I sat outside. I could tell this was going to be a better one so I went back inside and grabbed my phone. I find the iPhone 11 Pro with that new three lens camera takes better photos of the mountains than my Nikon D3500 in the late afternoon lighting.

Enjoy the photos that I follow the setting sun for little over an hour this afternoon.

Stella never barks to get anything she wants. Whether it's food or to go back inside, she will just stand like a statue with her head lowered and eyes barely visible. She did not have to stand there long before I opened the door for her.

I kept going back and forth between the Mule mountains you see here and the Huachuca mountains you see the sunshine falling behind in the western sky.

Each time I was about to leave ... the sky would give me something else to add to my photo library.

The hounds finally came outside toward the end of this photo shoot but only because they heard the puppy next door. Notice Stella's weird shaped ear.

After this final shot I walked back inside to enjoy a large glass of ice water along with a few more Advil tablets. It's hard for me to believe it's December 7th and having weather like this. It is also a day I will never forget, Pearl Harbor. I always remember on this day the overwhelming emotion I felt each time I walked around that area and visited the Arizona Memorial. I could almost feel what had happened each time I was in the area.

It was also a surprise the last time I was there 25 years ago with my nephew ... we saw two Japanese destroyers pier side flying their Japanese flag on the fantail. They didn't understand English and we didn't understand Japanese but they knew we wanted to take a tour of their ship. After a few minutes of hand gestures they led us on a very detailed tour of their ship.

I was told just this past week by the surgeon there will be days like I am having and to expect them at least for the next five months, based on what past patients have told him. 8 months after hip replacement seems to be the magic amount of time to feel normal again. Some say it will take longer than that. In the meantime I will ride with the waves it brings and enjoy this beautiful SE Arizona area.

Thank you to a couple of online friends for helping decide that this is where I really wanted to live. I had always driven through the area on I-10 but was always in a hurry to get to my destination whether I was driving east or west. It is just as nice as they said it was on their blog and in their emails.

A beautiful day today in the 'Wild West'.

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