Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Amazing and Unique Quartz House in Rural North Carolina

I am exploring western North Carolina, looking for a place to establish a base of operations.  I have traveled many miles and looked at a lot of the western part of the state.  I always keep my eye out for interesting properties and for me this usually means something with a vintage log cabin on it.  I was south of Franklin NC and came upon a house made of stone.

I was headed from here to there traveling down a back road when I buzzed past this white structure on my left.  At first I thought that is must have been made of regular stone and whitewashed.  

You know those historical markers that you see from time to time as you are driving down the highway.  I used to never stop and see what they were all about.  I must have pasted thousands. I was always in a hurry to get to where ever.  I decided somewhere along the way that I just don't need to be in that much of a hurry.  So I turned around and went back to take a closer look at the house.

 It was not just any stone.  The front and both sides were built from large quartz stones.  I walked around the house and got a close up looking at how the house was put together.  I can't imagine how long it took to find all the stones used in this house.    The rear of the house was made from ordinary stone.  Naturally, I got some pictures.  I didn't have time to ask around for the story behind the house.  This was not a case of a thin slice of a stone attached to an underlying wall.  These were full size and solid quartz.  

Monday, May 8, 2017

Another Mystery Tool Found at the Flea Market

If you have read this blog, you'll know that I buy old tools that I encounter when I do not know what they are for.  I figure that if I haven't seen it before, it must be relatively rare.  I found another.  I recognized that it was a tool from the time before electricity.  The attachment point at the top end of the tool was designed to be held in a brace bit.  There are no maker's marks on the tool.  But that is not uncommon for older tools like this.  It appears that something is inserted in through the bottom and a cutting surface is brought to bare against what ever is in the hole.  The cutting surface can be moved in closer to the center as needed.  There is also a device on the tool that controls how far the material can be inserted in the business end.

After searching the web I found the patent for a Adjustable Hollow Auger.  The Patent was to  A. A. Wood and Sons.  The tool was used in chair making.  The purpose of the tool is to create a tenon on a stretcher.  That is the supports that run from leg to leg of the chair. The tenon fit into a hole in the leg with glue and supported the structure of the chair.

The chair maker would first round off the end of the stretcher and then he would employ the auger.  Using a brace, he would slowly plane down an edge around the stretcher.  I have since found Youtube videos that demonstrate the use of the tool.  Mystery solved.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Looking Out My Back Door.

I remain in Western North Carolina looking for a place to create a base of operations.  I have been everywhere from Waynesville to Murphy to Cherokee to Highlands.  That's a lot of territory.  In the mean time I am staying near Bryson City and I am camped along a river.  Sitting next to the Bus late in the afternoon I am witness to an aerial assault on the local trout population.  Bald Eagles fly up and down the river dive bombing and snatching the unsuspecting trout.  The dive bombing part is hard to get on video.  The Eagles perch on trees next to the river and sometimes they land on a rock and eat.  Here is a video of an adult and Juvenal eagle dinning out.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Ambushed by Dove

Without much thought I go about my daily routine. Its like autopilot. I can find myself dressed and walking out the door without even realizing that I picked out a shirt and put on the right colored socks. I get in my car and it points itself towards my usual breakfast spots and I take my favorite seat. All without thought or deliberation. I look at my hands and discover that I've gotten into something and they need a little attention before I eat. Its there, on the counter of the bathroom, laying in wait for me. A pump bottle of Dove Soap.

Instantly overwhelmed with sadness, I pick up the bottle and I am transported in space and time. To my mother's house. On a street enveloped in the arms of giant oak trees that created a tunnel of foliage as you arrived at Mom's house. The guest bathroom had the pump bottle. Everywhere else it was bars of dove. The aroma was unmistakable. A hug and a kiss always came with the fragrance of dove. The pillows and throws that decorated her home echoed its presence.

Lingering in the moment, I raise the bottle and drink in the aroma. Mom has been gone for years now. I still think of her everyday and sometimes, I find myself surprised by how fresh the loss remains. I stumble upon her from time to time, in the strangest places. Its her pancake batter, her kind of syrup. The recipe for my spaghetti is really hers and yes in a bottle of Dove.   

Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Mountains of Yellowstone Available on Amazon

     The Mountains of Yellowstone is now available on Amazon.  It has been a long time coming.  Stephanie is at a cross roads.  She is looking into her future and searching for a different life.  She decides to work in Yellowstone for the summer and hopes the experience will give her the perspective she needs to chart her way forward.  Jason has already started a new chapter in his adventure and working in Yellowstone for the season is part of that beginning.   They become friends while working at the same campground.  Stephanie and Jason explore the far reaches of the National Park while they reflect on the choices that brought them to the Mountains of Yellowstone.  

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Six Years On Youtube, Four Hundred Thousand Views and More

     My Youtube video channel name is 1willwander.  Today is the six year anniversary of posting my first video on  March 7, 2011.  It was taken on Fremont Street in Las Vegas and is called Hardcourt Hotties on Fremont Street.  It has a total on 308 views to date.  It just 29 seconds of a dance routine performed on Fremont Street.  Don't bother to go watch it, its not that interesting.  Since then I have posted 151 additional video.

     As the name 1willwander may imply, I travel around a little.  I had the idea that the revenue from these videos might one day help finance my wanderings around the country.  I do make a little money off the ads at the front of most videos.  The total for the last six years is $859.13. The ad revenue has gone down in the recent years.  I saw it steadily climb until it reached a little over twenty dollars a month.  Now I am lucky if it reaches ten dollars a month.  You can't get very far on ten dollars a month.  So that part hasn't really worked out.  

     I also reached a total of four hundred thousand views today.  I'm sure that this is just a coincidence. My most viewed video is called SHTF Store Military Surplus Las Vegas .  It has 57,497 views to date.  It is a video of a surplus store in Vegas that I used to love to just walk around in.  My favorite video is the Brazen Bunsen Bandit, Bunsen Peak Yellowstone National Park.    It was taken on top of a Volcano and features a little critter that always makes me laugh.

     I was just speaking with my friend Mike and he suggested I look up the word "inflection" in the dictionary.  You can't really argue with a guy when he's right.  I will continue to post videos of the things in life that interest me.  I hope that people enjoy what I post. And I shall endeavor to use inflection in my voice when I narrate in the future.

     And finally, if you watch YouTude and you like a video, click on an add.  The difference in income for the poster is dramatic.   Its just a way you can thank the poster for whatever value you received from watching the post.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

George Washington, He Was Famous Once, right?

I did it again.  I bought something at the flea market without knowing if it was worth anything.  This time it is something completely out of my frame of reference.  It is a cast iron commemorative axe. It reads "Independence 1776 George Washington Axe".  It's about eighteen inches long and weighs about eight pounds.  Again I will be searching the Internet for information before I try and sell it.  For those of you who are wondering, I known all about George Washington.

A conundrum that arose during this adventure focuses on the question, is it "ax" or is it "axe"?  I always spelled it "axe" but the spell check program is not wanting me to spell it "axe".  So I checked with google.  Yes, google is the ultimate authority on all things.  According to google, I'm right.  The preferred usage is "axe" but in America "ax" is coming on strong.  Now back to the hatchet.  The profile of Washington appears in the body of the business end of the chopper.  However, there is a caveat, to me the figure does not look anything like Washington.  The moniker of axe or ax is something of a misnomer, it does not have an edge.  It is blunt.  Really it's more of a George Washington commemorative club.