Midian Ranch Blog

This is the web log for Midian Ranch, an isolated homestead in rural Nevada. It is owned by Jason and Tina Walters, whom are also its regular posters. This blog is exclusively for the enlightenment and edification of our friends, family, and colleagues.

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Location: Gerlach, Nevada, United States

Friday, June 24, 2005

Weekend of June 18th

Painting. It’s not the most exciting work we do out in the desert but its rewards are some of the most profound. As my old friend Nick the Raging Cajun is fond of saying “A little powder ‘n a little paint makes those babies what they ‘aint.” Certainly a nice coat of paint helped to transform our battered, tin-patched double-wide into a pretty nice looking ranch home. I sincerely hope that a nice coat of paint will likewise turn “the shack” into “the outbuilding.” I am almost certain that it will help me transform our old General Electric Modular Office Space into, well, the second “wing” of our home.

Tina managed to get the washing machine working, which leaves me to puzzle out certain voltage questions relating to dryer.... assuming I didn’t fry the damn thing screwing around with it. #Sigh# I’m pretty sure that I did. In any case I think I’ve figured out a way to run 240 volts safely into the house rather than the 120 volts I’m using now. I’m still not much of an electrician but I am learning more as I go. Tina’s not a real big fan of line-dried clothing; neither am I to be honest, so I had better figure out what I’m going to do really soon.

The new 6500 watt Coleman generator we picked up (at a reasonable price if I do say so myself) seems to function nicely. It’s considerably more fuel efficient than our old Porter Cable unit, not to mention a good deal quieter. BTW back in the Bay Area mechanic and electrician extraordaire David Grover over at Bay Air Services (510-215-1170) fixed the Porter Cable generator in about sixty seconds, which means that we now have a generator for both the upper and lower portions of the property. Dave warned me that I’ve been running stuff on “dirty power” that varies between 45 and 65 amps in its output rather than “clean power”that stays at a flat 55 amps, a situation that could apparently damage electronic devices if I fail to put some sort of unit in the works that flattens out that spectrum of amperage down to an even 55. Don’t know if I’ll actually do it as I haven’t had a problem yet, but its something to think about.

Tina, Chris Johnson, and I drove out to Hidden Valley (which is about 35 miles west of Gerlach) where we looked at a piece of property he is thinking of buying. The land is breathtakingly beautiful. There are actually two plots for sale that are literally in the middle of that vast, apparently uninhabited vale that looks like something out of a Zane Grey novel. It’s so empty that it makes Midian Ranch seem like it’s in the middle of the financial district! Chris is interested in a 40-acre plot that has already been partially homesteaded. We think that some Burner's (Burning Man People) began to build a compound there two years ago and gave up when it got hard. There is also a 20-acre plot that seems to an old cowboy homestead that was abandoned back in the 1950's. It's pretty much firewood now. There is a chicken coop, rabbit hutch, and goat pen might be salvageable but nothing else is. Lucy Ramos has shown some interest in purchasing that lot as well.

The four of us went swimming in one of the Fly Geyser’s bigger pools. Snap, who genuinely enjoys swimming in the ice-cold Pacific Ocean, isn’t a very big fan of bathing in hot water. There was a lot of frightened yips, excited barks, and mournful sighs as he skittered around in the shallows building up the nerve to submerge himself. Finally Tina decided to swim off into the deep end of the pool, which panicked him completely. Fearing for her safety, he plunged in and swam along beside her to make certain that no pond monsters got her. Apparently hairy fools tread where canine angels fear to go.


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