There’s an old(er) movie with Steve Martin called My Blue Heaven. And there’s this line that has stuck with me since I first saw it, almost 30 years ago. Holy crap, it’s been almost thirty years already. (Sorry, I just had a “moment”). I don’t know why but it just resonates with me. It’s very Daoist. He says, “Into every life, a little rain must fall. Even in San Diego.”
I’m very keen to the fact that I shit sunshine. Or at least I try to. I’m an imperfect person, but I always try to find the beauty in everything, regardless of the outcome. But every now and again, I need that rain to slap me in the face and say “hey asshole, find the beauty in this.” Today was one of those days.
So with the older dogs onboard, they have to sleep in the front of the RV, where the tile floor is easy to clean-up, if you know what I mean. Rudy, Laura and I alternate nights sleeping up front with them. Every 3rd night, is my turn. Last night, was my turn.
Stardate 96314.04 My nose, knows. Even Laura is amazed at how I can sleep through an earthquake, but wake to a fart. I can literally go from REM stage 4 sleep to wide awake, in 2 seconds, if I even think I smell dog crap. Yes, Scratchy took a crap in her bed, at 2am. And let me tell you, old lab poop smells like death.
Stardate 96314.21 WTF is that smell, again? Wait! The aroma is just a little different. Still deathly but with a hint of coconut. LIBBY!
Stardate 96314.35 Libby, you need to go out again? Thank you for waking me this time.
Stardate 96314.43 The hell with it, they’re both up again? I’m never getting any sleep tonight. Let’s check some emails….
Final Score: 3 dog poops (2 inside): 1 unusable blanket (mine), 1 smeared bed sheet (mine), 5 hrs of random sleep (mine), 2 K-Cups of French Roast and 6 emails.
Just like Billy Mayes always said, “But wait, there’s more.”
So after a lovely breakfast, that included a giant Bloody Mary, Laura and I proceeded to take a drive and explore the area. About 5 miles out of town, on the 14W headed into Yellowstone, the Cruiser started to loose power. A moment later, engine died. On the side of the Shoshone River, at a scenic turnout, we hit a new low.
Now, I’m a mechanically inclined guy. I can figure out most devices, given enough time and without much pressure. But when emotions take over, they cloud the mind. I’ve known this. And thankfully, my ninjas skills kicked in and reminding me of this. After 5 minutes of staring at the engine and wondering if this trip was cursed, I took a deep breath, a step back and tried to objectively evaluate the situation.
Bonnie Tyler, thank you. Willie Nelson, thank you. Dalai Lama, thank you. Just then, a local hunting guide named Matt Dowd, pulled-up and offered a hand. Now I know I made a cowboy reference in my last post, and I hope you found it funny. But today, this actually happened. The universe has a very funny sense of humor, if you’re given the opportunity to see it. This cowboy gentleman had the clarity in his mind and metric sockets in his tools box, to recognize that I just overheated, as he pulled the engine thermostat, to see that it had malfunctioned.
He was in his mid-50’s, had an ashtray full of dead butts, two cans of generic Skoal on his dash, a 24-pack cube of Busch beer (unopened), 4 hunting rifles, a 30y/o Craftsman tool box (thankfully), a 12-day beard, Stetson straw hat and a Cool Hand Luke sense of confidence. Yup, I’ve got a man crush.
Eventually, we made our way back down the hill into town, where we found an auto parts store and ordered the new t-stat. He followed us the whole way. Even gave us a ride back to the RV, after we left the cruiser in the lot for the night. I knew he would never accept a dime for his help, but I had something even better. Brand new and unopened, this man deserved my finest bottle of Rye Whiskey.
Cheers to you Mr. Dowd. 🥃🥃 May you forever find green pastures and great hunting. Thank you for your help and kindness, wherever you may roam.
Now here I am, celebrating a really unique day. One that won’t soon be forgotten. One that reminded me of lessons forgot and kindness to be given. Cheers to y’all too. Pay it forward.
(Yes, I’m drunk typing 🍻😂)