this past weekend…

buggs and i picked up a giant german shepherd named, lucious…in norman, oklahoma and transported him to lincoln, nebraska.

it was a fun trip. i was delivering lucious to a former professional football player (for the san diego chargers). who is now a coaching assistant for the nebraska cornhuskers.

it was rather exciting to drive right up to memorial stadium…home of giant college games that i have seen on tv so many times over the years. it was beautiful and grand.

lucious’s owner was such a nice guy!! he gave me a big hug when we met and when i left. the reunion between him and lucious was a magical moment. he may have shed a tear or two.

buggs and i spent the night in belleville, kansas. we stayed in a hotel run by the nicest family. our room was nice and the bed fantastic. i had the best night of sleep that i’ve had in years there.

we arrived back from our quick trip yesterday afternoon. we were greeted by very hot and humid weather. the temperature was 94°. we went inside and cranked on the a/c.

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it’s all just a blur now…

life has changed radically for me. i have gone from being dependent on others, heavily medicated, unhealthy, and really not doing much…with a lot of free time on my hands to write…to being completely independent of others, not heavily medicated (went from 26 meds down to 5), healthy and able, and doing so much with my life that i don’t have as much time to write as i once had.

i live independently of others. it’s just me and buggs. while we help others in my family…mainly my sister and dad…we no longer live with them. i come and go as i please and i am accountable to no one else but myself and buggs. i have made many new friends and we do stuff like plant a garden, play cards and games, go out to eat, go to the free movies, and more. it feels good to be beholden to no one.

when i was in washington…i was on 32 different medications. in montana, that amount was cut to 26. in nevada, that amount was cut to 24. and now…here in oklahoma, i take a total of 5 different medications. i no longer fall asleep, when i am supposed to be awake. i don’t feel at all sleepy when driving. i feel alert and alive and it feels so much better than being overly medicated.

i walk and workout each day, being mindful of burning 1000 more calories than i consume. i am eating a healthy diet and lots of protein. i am building muscle and losing fat. i am strengthening my core and gaining endurance. i am stronger and more able-bodied than i have been in 10-15 years. i am proud of myself.

i am always busy here. there is always something to do. i’ve had five dog transports in the last 4 weeks. i have visited arizona, new mexico, texas, arkansas, kansas, and nebraska as of late. i’ve been busy helping with my nieces and running errands. i’ve been going all over taking photographs. buggs and i are having one adventure after another.

i am happy being independent, fully alert, healthy, stronger, and able to choose my own adventure each day. i feel vital, capable, useful, and free. those are good feelings to have. i like me much better now. i know that i am worthy and deserving of love.

busy…

lately, i haven’t had a moment to stop, slow down, catch up, or breathe easily. the last few weeks have been filled with new journeys. while still struggling to write about our second journey, buggs and i have completed journeys number four, five, six, and seven.

in comparison to our first three journeys, these have been rather boring and uneventful…perhaps that’s because they have been shorter trips and trips to places that i’ve already been and really don’t interest me.

for the first of these trips, we transported a rottweiler/pit puppy from norman, ok to tucson, az…from there we drove down to odessa, tx and picked up a terrier going to cookson, ok. next, we picked up a bulldog in moore, ok and took to hardy, tx. then we went right back and picked up a bengal kitten in edmond, ok and dropped off in kansas city, mo.

there was really no time to do much photography, except for a half an hour in hatch, new mexico. my driving team was in place as always…my co-pilot buggs and my co-co-pilot j**s…however, as i said these were all fast, long trips…the last one was seventeen hours round trip.

once buggs and i arrived back in oklahoma, we were extremely exhausted and crashed hard. we both woke up feeling worn out and sick. buggs with allergies from all of the pollen in the air and i have been laid flat by the flu. the only time in several days that i’ve been outside, is to take buggs potty.

i have been laying on top of my bed, under my blanket watching house hunters on hulu and going in and out of consciousness. i can’t seem to stay awake for very long. my head is full of snot…i have a fever…and i just basically feel like shit.

i have fallen behind on my blog and i feel bad about it. as i begin to feel better, i want to get back to posting daily and eventually back to posting several times daily. life never really seems to turn out how i plan it, so we’ll just take it as it comes.

yesterday at this time 20:18…

yesterday at this time…buggs and i were on foot walking. we were walking laps and with each lap, the sky changed. the combination of the clouds, the howling winds, and the historic backdrop worked together to create some highly dramatic photos.

here are the photos that we took yesterday at this time 20:18…

irony…

so, buggs and i went for a drive the other day and we saw a sign that said, “cemetery” and had an arrow pointing eastward. ever since s***h and i were in digital photography class at wsu-v, whenever i see a cemetery…i generally stop, drive-in, and explore looking for the unusual and unexpected.

s***h and i used to do this often. we had a night photography assignment once and we went into an old vancouver (washington) cemetery and shot. it was exciting and fun and spooky. we never knew what we were going to encounter. it was interesting to go to school the next day and see what we had captured.

i remember staring at my computer screen one day and taking in a phenomenal image of a headstone surrounded by radiant, glowing, orange light. i was both surprised and fascinated. the light seemed to be emanating from the grave and behind it…through the tree line. it was amazing.

i have photographed cemeteries in washington, idaho, montana, nevada, iowa, and oklahoma. every cemetery is different and holds it’s own mysteries. i always feel as if i am drawn there for a reason, as if there is something there that i need to see and photograph. as i go, i feel kindred spirits all around me.

this particular day, buggs and i were drawn to the lawnview cemetery in cordell, oklahoma. we drove through stopping to photograph points of interest. three quarters of the way through, i found what it was that i was supposed to see and i let out a chuckle. i reveled in it’s dark irony…it’s fantastic.

our second journey, part fourteen…laurel, mt to bozeman, mt…

before leaving laurel, i mapped out our journey back to henderson. i knew that we would be heading west to bozeman and then heading south through the gallatin gateway to yellowstone national park.

i knew that time was of the essence, because a big storm was moving in. the clouds were dark grey and the temperature began to drop. we were wasting daylight and dry roads waiting on a motherfucking, moronic liar.

of course, i’m me and it’s my nature to be rebellious and spiteful at times. sometimes, i make bad decisions and end up doing stupid things. the moron pissed me off by wasting my time, so i wasted his. i “poked” the “bear.”

by the time i finished making a report at the police department, the sky was dark and night had fallen. i really don’t see all that well at night. buggs and i were headed west for the pass and it began to snow. the wind whipped the snow around making it even harder to see.

we hit the pass and i watched the outside temperature gauge change, as we climbed the mountain. i was shocked when my car began flashing a word on the speedometer. it read, “icy.” i panicked because i knew that i was driving on a sheet of ice.

as i drove, i remembered and repeated to myself…not to slam on the brakes. instead, i kept my speed down and when i needed to go slower or stop…i pumped my brake lightly. the drive was tedious and scary, but i did it. i did it myself!!

once over the pass, we could see the lights of bozeman a little lower down. i was so relieved as we made our way to our room in the super 8 hotel, that we booked along the way using booking.com. we were very fortunate that we got the last room.

more tomorrow…

life is strange…

…i find myself still in oklahoma, after having arrived on thanksgiving day last year…two thousand seventeen.

i guess that i am making my rounds of living in states ending in the letter “a”…california, montana, nevada, oklahoma…the odd one out is washington. washington is my home.

i am taking a break and sitting by the window. i am watching as ice pellets hit the glass and ricochet off. the street is slick and thick with ice. my car’s windshield is frozen.

coming from the desert this is very foreign to me…however, i do prefer the cold to the hot. i like having changes in the weather and seasons. it makes life more exciting and adventurous.

i spent the morning looking at instagram. i saw all of the lovely and beautiful photographs of my talented, pacific northwest peers. now, i am completely homesick.

i long for trees and forests…for clean air and fresh smells. i miss portland saturday market, saint cupcake, thanh thao. i want to go camping and drive on the beach.

buggs is snuggled up on my chest, as i stretch my arms out trying to write this. he is very comfortable…sleeping soundly. i am not. i need to shift. i do and he lets out a low growl.

the wind is howling outside like i have never heard before. j**s told me that the wind was howling at the fort and that it sounded hopeless. well, the wind here seems to be calling buggs and i to mystery, intrigue, and adventure.

life is strange…