Blog 41–Spending time in Texas

​Yes, I have chosen this lifestyle on the road. Has it’s ups and downs, but mainly it is a good thing. Still in Texas, I’ve never seen as many pickup trucks in one area as here. I even saw a cop car that was a cop truck. They are everywhere. 
 
Still trying to get my camera to work right with my computer–photos coming soon. 
 
As my life is evolving I am seeing that a smaller, simpler life, living in the van, is saving me a ton of money, gives me more freedom, more flexibility and less to worry about. Normally, it seems, people want to get more and more and get that “bigger” house and lifestyle. 
 
In the 1950’s the most popular size for a coke was 8 ounce, now it is 20 ounce. Houses in the 50’s used to average 1000 square feet, not they average 2700 square feet (remember, I live in my van.)  Don’t follow the common path, go smaller and your life will be better. Also, this “large lifestyle” is sucking the energy out of real life. Do like I did, downsize, you will love it. 
 
In the US, as people get bigger and bigger they acquire more and more debt, the personal storage industry is a 22 billion dollar industry. People buy and then they store–more and more–what a waste. We can get more and more debt in the form of mortgages and cheap credit with credit cards, which keeps us going, yet sinks us. 
 
Also, we use four times the energy than we used to. Along with that, so many of us use our “smart” phones, constantly. People seem to have to be connected–always. Seems that most everyone has one (I still have the old kind of phone that can only does calls and text, I do fine with that.)
 
Yet, so many remain unhappy, this “stuff” does not bring joy. What I am trying to say is be really conscious of what you bring into your life. If you do this you can assemble high quality stuff, going for the best you can get, because, with less stuff, you can have better things.  
 
Always remember, we get much more out of life from experiences than we do from stuff. 
 
Less, done right, can truly equal more. 
 
Feb 15–As I was exiting the last campground I was at they had a shower, so I did. Feel nice and clean right now.​ Back I go to another city and another Walmart. Even with many locations closing down, the growth of this company is fanatical. Who does not shop for groceries at Walmart? Will they take over the world?
 
After a few days in the city, I  had to get back to wilderness, that pleases me. Back to Radcliff Lake campground in Davy Crockett National Forest. When I am in a forest, I feel like I am home. Not running away from the world, but joining the world and nature. Have to admit, I am enjoying a big bottle of wine right now, a raspberry blend, delightful. 
 
As you saw, in the last post I wrote about God, once again. I will limit my writing of the subject, in that many do hold onto this hope of God, my goal is no to insult you with atheistic views. I would assume that your faith is strong enough to carry you through some different views that you might read on your God. If this idea of God helps you in your life, that is a good thing. 
 
Just this one last thing though, from the book, Mere Christianity, which Steve Harrison bought for me. On page 164 is this: “When you come to knowing God, the initiative lies on His side. If He does not show Himself, nothing you can do will enable you to find Him,” So, what am I to do?
 
Currently I am wearing shorts and no shoes, very pleasant. Back where I lived for 25 years is cold and snowy, sorry guys. 
 
Feb 17-22–Through Facebook I heard from Terry Tidwell, who is married to Chris and is in Texas. In the past he has been a professional juggler/magician in various parts of the country. He saw that I was having a hard time and invited me down to stay with him and his wife in their spare room for a time. What a wonderful thing. 
 
Terry is dealing with many medical complications, one of which is cirrhosis of the liver, he is at stage 3 of a 4 stage illness, so he could kill him soon. At age 45, he tells me he has lived a wonderful life. 
 
I have been trying to encourage him to push ahead, which he does. 
 
Terry is dying, I am not, there is life left to live for me. Recently I had forgotten that and actually wanted death, my view has changed in that regard. We were able to encourage and motivate each other in our short time together. 
 
Feb 18–Just heard from my daughter, April, who sent a link to her latest blog. Have a read, she is quite the writer:
 
Last night I made a Mexican dinner for us, turned out quite good. Terry has been a head chef through much of his life. He told me that he would hire me, no question, after he tasted what I had prepared. When I come to stay with you I will make some great meals, too.
 
My daughter, Jasmine, called me today. I love my daughters so very much. 
 
Feb 21–So many changes, so much loss; somehow I have developed this massive anger. I know I wrote before that I did not want to write these kinds of words, and mainly want to provide inspiration for your eyes, but I just can’t hold back my feelings, which would be like lying. Up and down I go, like most of us. 
 
Remember, you have to taste sour to enjoy the sweet (when does the sweet come though?) 
 
I drove all around trying to find a nice wilderness where I could spend the night. Had to get further and further from Austin. I found a campsite, would have been $15 to stay overnight, $25 with electric. This campsite was so organized, tidy and clean, seemed like a plastic campground to me–did not like.  
 
I asked and he told me there was a more rustic campsite about six miles away–I had to go. This was a free campsite right next to the lake. Hard to get to, but so glad I did. I was the only one there, and slept overnight right at the lake, how nice. In the morning I saw a rabbit and then saw a deer, so, well worth going there. Made me happy to be away in the woods. 
 
Feb 24–Last night I slept in Austin. As you know, I do not like cities, I had arrived two days early, going to see Peter Davison on Thursday night. So off I went today back to the woods. As I was driving out I stopped for a traffic light, there was guy asking for help money wise. Even though money is tight for me, I gave him a buck, as I often do for people in need. 
 
I ended up driving about 38 miles to a state park in the hills and wilderness which I stayed out. On the way out, so much traffic, so many people. Once again, I was the only one at this park, Turkey Bend Campground right near Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge. This was right on the Colorado river, very nice. 
 
A sad thing, the first thing you have to do when I arrive at your campsite is clean up the previous people’s trash, especially because they use the fire ring for a trash can–idiots.  
 
After arrival, you know the routine, first to gather much firewood. Fortunately there was plenty of dead and dry wood available near by. As I am walking through the forest collecting wood, I feel right at home. This takes a lot of work, but good work, I love it. I even took my sweatshirt off because I got too warm. 
 
As I was gathering wood I reflected on the beauty of nature. 
Much nicer than any Walmart of McDonalds, I must say. 
 
Being the only one here, I felt free. Strange, to be able to pee anywhere at anytime brings on a strange freedom in my mind. 
 
There was a flying bug who landed on the table and was checking everything out, I watched for some time. I remember when I was a kid, like we all did, it was like a game to slap the bug dead. Now do not kill anything, disturbed that I would ever do such a thing.
 
So, I built a huge fire with the wood I had gathered. As I was taking care of it I was stepping over some logs and lost balance. I fell to the side and put my arm out to catch my fall.
 
Since my brain injury in 1982 I have never been able to land right. Say I jump off of a four foot high wall, I often forget to bend my legs at the knees as I land and land straight legged (as they say, white men can’t jump.) So strange. I used to be able to jump and land quite well, having pole vaulted over 18 feet 6 inches, a school record. So, this is exactly what I did when I put my arm out to the side to catch me, the straight arm effect. 
 
After losing balance and falling to the side, then landing on with my arm straight to the ground, I knew that something was wrong. I just layed there for a time wondering what I should do. As I started to move I thought I had broken my shoulder; I got scared, as you know, I was the only one there. In my mind I figured I would type in GPS to find the nearest hospital. 
 
So, I started to move my fingers first, then wrist, still laying where I landed. As I tried to lift my arm and move the limb and I felt the joint pop back into the socket. That seemed to do it, I was somewhat better. The pain was much and I took three aspirin. Of course, woke with severe pain in my shoulder, but I was ok to drive out. 
 
Drove out this morning, mainly using my good arm, and here I am back at a McDonalds writing to you. 
 
A couple days ago I heard from Gianna, who put together my fabulous website for me. She is sent the blog I write and she  wrote:
“Kit, don’t forget—You’re on the Hero’s Journey!” 
Those were good words to read. I often forget that I am not on this journey alone, I am taking you along with me–thanks for being there. 
In fact, I would love to hear from you, also, please write to me. 
 
Feb 27–Arrival in Austin for the juggling festival. Peter Davison (poetofmotion.com) and I took a long walk around Austin, a very nice city (as far as cities go.) We sat on a bench at the Colorado river and talked for a time, a good friend in Peter. He has a room at The Austin Motel and allowed me to use the second bed for two nights. We had a good time in Austin. 
 
Feb 28–Happy birthday to me . . . The juggling festival was superb. There was a show on Saturday night that was one of the best juggling shows I have witnessed. Somewhere between 200 and 300 people at the festival, it made for a great time for everyone. I sold some books, ran two workshops and walked around helping jugglers. So happy I was there. 
 
To my surprise there was a group of about ten jugglers who sang that birthday song for me, how nice, and I thought no one knew. 
 
The streets are set up quite well here in Austin. Most streets in other cities that have parking on the street in angled spaces along each side have it so you pull in forward and then have to back out into traffic when you want to leave. In Austin each space is set up so they are angled so every car backs in, then, when they want to leave they just pull forward into traffic, ingenious. Normally I like to back into spaces, so you are facing the way you will be driving when you leave. 
 
Feb 29–Yesterday, through email and Facebook, I heard from over 100 people wishing me a happy birthday. Thank you, I am glad you are there. 
 
At the juggling festival I met Martin Hill, https://www.facebook.com/martinthill, who performs each year at the Texas Renaissance Fair, http://www.texrenfest.com/. We drove through the empty fair and I can see how it would be excellent. I contacted the Manager and suggested I sell my salsa (summerssalsa.com) at the next fair, waiting to hear back. 
 
The land where Martin owns is phenomenal. Trees and land, I suggested he build some tiny houses and rent them out during the fair; he could make a lot of money. He loves the idea, I would love to return to help him build and run these. 
 
Next on to Houston to see more jugglers. 
Their juggling club meets on Thursday night, I will be there. 
 
March 3-5–Staying in my van (because of their cats, I’m allergic) at home of Jim and Julie Mackenzie — https://www.facebook.com/JimsShow/timeline
Last night, Thursday, we went to the juggling get together meeting of the Houston jugglers. About 15 jugglers were there and I did my 3 club juggling trick workshop. Jugglers picked up many ideas for tricks and advancement, they told me so. A very nice evening. 
 
Back on the road tomorrow, I miss the wilderness.
Everytime I get back on the road I have fear of new things, and also excitement. 
On to — Galveston, oh Galveston (you know the words.)

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