They say to buy one acre or a hundred but nothing in between. There is some wisdom in that. I have a little over four and it is a lot of work. Of course I practice my own version of benign neglect, let a certain area look good and forget about the remainder as much as possible. Not like I am trying to impress the neighbors or anything.
My ranch was created in 1970 by a retired Navy electrician, Jasper Lalli. It is your basic fifty three year old spartan farmhouse, lacking in most modern accouterments. And parts of the irrigation system are also unfortunately fifty three years old too, those that I have not replaced anyway in several major re-pipes.
Still, you own a ranch, pipes are going to break. It is my job to fix them. Leslie alerted me to a riser that got hit by the tractor that mowed my place last month. I dug up the break and saw that it was broken at the tee.
I was out of 1/2" pvc pipe and drove into town. I only needed a little bit, like 18". Grangetto and Fallbrook Irrigation were closed so I went over to Hanks/Joes/Ace. There is a little bin with short lengths and I grabbed the short 18" pipe section that I would need to finish the job. I figured a buck or two.
I brought it up to Judy, my favorite checker, who I have known since Fallbrook Pharmacy and she looked at me and said $6.49. Our eyes met and I said, "I can't do it." She said that she understood. I am pretty sure that I can buy an 8' length for that at my normal haunts.
Ace may be the place but not in this case. What a rip. I went home and bastardized some old pipes and fixed the break for nothing.
It was not a great morning in the household, both principal combatants not in their finest of form, so I took off. Drove out to my sacred spot the San Jacinto Wildlife Area. No matter that it was hot as hell and mid day. Sometimes you just have to split and screw the time of day. I had water and I had a box of graham crackers.
I could survive anything.
Or so I thought anyway. Somebody at Eastern Municipal turned all the spigots off out there. Things are different since Tom retired. Place was dry as a bone and there are few birds.
I took my customary short hike but had to cut it short, there being not much visually interesting in sight. I got back to the car and had a big swig of water.