This extended dry spell has created widespread challenges for many parts of La Brasada and beyond. And with the frequent reminders almost daily all over the media, it is understandable for some of us “elders” to think back and recall “water management techniques” used from earlier days.
I cannot tell you the year my Grand Parents drilled their water well on our Home Place, but it was already there in my childhood days of the 1950’s. I am told it was originally “sweet water”, but all I can remember is that it tasted bad and would ruin a white shirt, turning it into the color of “rusty red” if washed in it. Then and now, we use that well’s water only for livestock and wildlife purposes.
Such a situation meant washing days began by drawing buckets of water from the hand dug cistern just outside the back door into the various wash tubs arranged in a systematic pattern by my Granny along the back porch. It also meant that cistern was the sole source of water for cooking, bathing, and drinking, drawn into the house by a hand pump. Those details will be used for a different tale or two down the road, Lord willing.
Whenever it did manage to rain over the course of time from about the mid 1950’s to the late 1970’s, I can recall the water gathering process was always the same. We would let the water run off the tin roof for a period of time deemed sufficient by one of my Grandparents. This was to remove any of the unwanted deposits found on roofs everywhere in south Texas, so use your imagination as to the specifics that were washed off.
Then, upon command, whoever was around that could help, would form a gutter brigade and move our spouts so the water run off would be directed into that old cistern. Just sitting here while writing this, I can recall either Granny or Grand Dad saying to me…MIND THAT GUTTER BOY. This meant pay attention and do my assigned task quickly and efficiently in order to salvage as much of that precious commodity as possible.
That lifestyle seems rough and mostly awful to many who will read this. But such was the life of dry land, small scale farmers and ranchers during that time and before. All my Grand Parent’s kids and grandkids moved on to live in places like Pearsall and San Antonio, so we all experienced running water piped to our homes by the municipalities. But “out at the farm”, that gutter process just seemed like a normal part of country life for 3 generations of family member over the course of about 40 years.
It has hard to believe that is has been almost 50 years since minding the gutters was part of my duties while out at our little piece of heaven. And I sure enough hope I don’t ever have to go back to that way of getting my water. But having done so sure does allow me to be reminded of the blessings of living like most of us now are able to do.
New Season New Rifle New Location
Not sure how many of your fine readers are counting, but as I sit and write this Tale, it is exactly 60 days until Opening Day of regular white tail deer season in La Brasada. Certainly, hunting will begin earlier on some ranches with varying permits, but the one available to all us nimrods is November 6, 2022 in our neck of the woods.
Even though it has been over 60 years since I started getting excited about that day, I still look forward to it with high hopes and anticipation.
That is especially true this season because of 3 new aspects. The day itself, of course, but also because I will be toting a new fire stick out in the woods and doing some of my hunting on a new piece of ground.
The rifle is because of a separate firearm acquisition in the last 18 months or so. That one was a replacement for a particular rifle I had used for 30+ years and it was plum shot out. I bought a “new used one” and it has proven to be accurate and “fits me good”. It sits kind of on the smaller end of my collection, size wise. But the opportunity came along to get its “bigger brother” and I jumped at the chance. So far so good in terms of my ability to use it. Same design, feel, and fit.
Certainly, there is NO logical reason for this last purchase. But kind readers please understand that we have come to a Peace Treaty of sorts at Casa Rosenauer. I do not question the number of ladies shoes in our Master Bedroom Closet and The Boss Lady pays little mind to the gun cabinets so long as her personal rifle is kept clean, sighted in, and with an adequate supply of the specific ammo that she shoots like a Sniper.
The third aspect comes from what I participated in for 47 years as a ranch broker, and that is my 30 year lease place sold! I admit to being sad when the news of that upcoming event was announced to me from the Trust Officer in charge of the place. But it is an acquisition by a neighbor on two sides and they are putting back together, as much as they can, a big ranch I broke up and sold decades ago. It is going to a “good home”, and I wish them well with those acres.
Given that event I needed to make another deal and with a bit of fortune a new spot has been obtained. It is smaller than the other one, but closer to my own place. And it joins some big country, all low fenced and lightly hunted. As my wise Granny used to tell me as a child, “Stop fretting over that! Things mostly work out. And if they don’t go your way, maybe next time it will”. Wise council.
We are now clearing senderos, making food plots, setting up feeders, and all the “stuff” that needs doing on a new place. Lord Willing it will be a good situation for both me and the owner. And like I told my family, I don’t need to fret about “looking over” that same old terrain I have been seeing all these years. It will be something new and I AM EXCITED!