Random Gulchy Stuff…

I spent the majority of my time here in the Gulch living on the economic edge. Which means scrounging, which is all about access to tools.

Up till about five years ago I went without refrigeration at all, which really limited the ways I could eat in summer. Then somebody was throwing away an old cooler and asked me if I wanted it, and I decided to try an experiment…

Ian’s place has a fridge, which I never used to use at all. But I stuck some old icepacks in his freezer and then put them in this old cooler to see whether and for how long they’d keep beer and condiments cool. That worked pretty well so I filled some empty juice bottles with water and froze them which worked better yet. But as a cooler, that old cooler really isn’t much. Doesn’t really matter in winter but here in the first heat wave of the summer I’m replacing those ice bottles twice daily.

And that got me to thinking, since I now have a little more money to play with…

…what if I got a better cooler? We’re going to see if this works substantially better, or if I just wasted some money.

Speaking of summer and water bottles…

I have learned through painful experience to pay attention to how much water I drink once it gets hot. Dehydration will sneak up on you and do nasty things. The cabin gets mid-nineties inside by mid-afternoon so one important function of that cooler is to let me have at least one bottle of cool water at all times because drinking warm water gets old fast. I try to empty at least three of these daily, not counting tea and coffee.

It looks like Phoebe might be getting a neighbor!

She’s still on her nest, I’m starting to think she has started a second clutch of eggs. But now lately a second nest started forming, though I’m not sure I’ve seen a second bird. We’ll see how this goes – it’s kind of late in the season for nest-building and I found it surprising.

I’m still getting over that series of allergy attacks suffered late last month but it is getting better. Haven’t been getting my assigned projects done, but I will. Except for that I’m in good health and spirits.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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11 Responses to Random Gulchy Stuff…

  1. Anonymous says:

    Just curious but how much water does Tobey go through in a day with those conditions?

  2. Klaus says:

    Not sure why i was Anonymous?

  3. Mike says:

    90 degrees in the afternoon? Oh boy, that’s hot. Since you have retired the old cooler, maybe you want to turn it into a swamp cooler.


  4. Joel says:

    Tobie goes through approximately half a gallon of water on a hot day. Sometimes a little more. He never drinks well water, I already made that mistake. He only drinks the same water I do.

    Except for an occasional visit to the toilet bowl, which is no fault of mine.

  5. ka9vsz says:

    Dehydration is a sneaky beast. Us old farts need to practice constant vigilance. Good for Uncle Joel taking it seriously.
    A coworker (NOT an old fart) has been admitted to the ER multiple times cuz drinking water is so hard to do (insert eyeroll emoji).

  6. Anonymous says:

    Absolutely love the “Beware here lie dragons” sign.
    While I’d normally decry plagiarism, I may have to snag that puppy 😉

  7. Joel says:

    🙂 Go right ahead. Wasn’t my idea, it was a gift from a friend.

  8. Ben says:

    Mike: Technically that’s an ice cooler, not a swamp cooler. Ice coolers might work great, but they require access to large quantities of cheap/free ice. To do the same as a small air conditioner, you would need 35 pounds of ice per hour!

    On the other hand, a swamp cooler works by evaporation of water, usually by drawing air through a damp filter medium. It only works in low humidity conditions, which Joel should often have in the high desert.

    I seem to recall that Joel tried a swamp cooler once without success, but maybe gave up too soon.

  9. Joel says:

    I tried an ice cooler once and found it useless. I’ve never had access to a swamp cooler.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Referencing the swamp cooler, here’s an article you may be interested in (the whole Kollenborn series is very interesting) about a home made swamp cooler built by a man in Apache Junction for his family in the forties. Looks pretty simple, maybe you’d give it a go…


  11. Anonymous says:

    Haul more water

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