more snow

more snow so I had to fill my bird feeder. gotta feed the birds

heard the weather man say we’ve had more snow this winter than in half a decade. another one said we had more snow this year than the last three years combined. I lost count of how many times it has snowed. other years it dont last long. melts off in a few days. this year it has stuck around for a while.

I fed my chickens inside their house because of the snow. I noticed wild birds were in the chicken yard scratching thru the snow to get at any feed left under it. I thought poor birds got nothing to eat with this snow covering the ground. I filled their feeder up. I had already bought a 40 pound bag of it. it is good mojo to feed the birds.

the snow caused the blood drive to be cancelled yesterday. I was scheduled to donate my red blood cells. I have been getting emails from the blood banks. they say they in desperate need of blood. I imagine they will reschedule. I will still donate when they do.

now they predicting up to 6 inches of snow on Wednesday. dont know what effect that will have on my driveway. it usually drifts on the top of the hill. the snow piles so high that cars high center. that has caused cars getting stuck there many times.

we didnt get to clean the roosters we have. I said we would unless something comes up. something always does. we will still get to them. they are about a year old so it aint like they are tough. they will make good home made chicken soup. with rice or egg noodles. I probably will make tortilla soup too.

the place I buy deer tails from aint selling any right now. I had planned on stock piling a good supply of them. I bought 30 this winter. i already had some on hand. a typical roach may about 3 tails. i might have enough deer tails for about 15 roaches. I am still hoping that place will be selling more deer tails.

I also ordered 5 deer hides from a meat locker. they said they would call when they got them. they were waiting for late season because the hides are thicker and so is the hair. I haven’t heard from the locker yet. I planned on making some hand drums when I get the hides. it is a chore scraping the hair off.

Andrew had six points in his basketball game. I didnt get to see him play today. I was helping get it set up for a funeral I have to help at. I will catch one of his games later. the kid wonders where his misho is.

I will get to watch the K U game today at 3. I am still a fan. when we were gone, they lost 2 out of 3. since then they have won two in a row. maybe they needed this fan to bring them good luck eh. rock chalk.

middle of February

two of the whales i seen

the ideal picture of the hump back whales is of one breaching. I wasnt lucky enough to get a picture of that. we seen many of them come to the surface but none breaching. I am happy that I got to see whales twice in my life. not bad for a guy from the rez.

I seen on the news that the island of maui was hit with snow and high winds. snow isn’t seen there. I am glad that didnt happen while we were there. that woulda been a bummer to pay for a trip away from the snow and then get snow.

it was nice seeing that bald eagle the other day. that reminded me I haven’t heard from the wild life department. I sent in a application for loose feathers about a year ago. there is often a waiting list of a few years because many want feathers for pow wow outfits. there is a faster turn around on loose feathers. usually about six months, or suppose to be. last time it was a year.

I have helped remake 4 of our ceremonial belts. i put many of my feathers on those belts. i have a lifetime permit to have feathers in my possession. that is the bonus when an application is filled out.

we need them on our ceremonial objects now and then. kinda wish more of our members would send off for feathers. if only a handful would send in an application, then we would have feathers when we need them.

it was too windy yesterday to make a fire. I was gonna heat water so we can clean chickens. I watched a couple of you tube videos on skinning chickens. I think I would prefer plucking the feathers. while it may take more time so what. it is my time. we will try to do that today. unless something comes up.

my compost pile is breaking down real good. it looks like black soil. that means it will be usable this spring. I have a big pile of it. I will turn it over a few more times before I put it in my grow boxes. I will have to make a new pile too. I throw my table scraps to the chickens but some go to the compost pile. my coffee grounds and egg shells go to the compost pile. I will save my grass clippings for compost too.

soon enough i will start some seeds. that would be my early plants like onions etc. i have plenty of containers to start seeds in. they would get off to a good start before transplanting time. we got plenty of moisture in the ground this winter. maybe this will be a good growing year. i am anxious to find out.

its not even spring yet but i am making plans. that’s okay. you live long enough the passing of seasons occurs many times.

i have to head to topeekie today. need to replenish our supplies. haven’t been anywhere. time to get off the rez. it will be here when i get back.

missed the ice

got a call from a home boy this morning. he said there was a bald eagle on O Road. just south of 158th Road. that is only two miles from my humble abode. being somewhat of a photographer, naturally I grabbed my camera and drove over there. I managed to get three pictures. one the eagle was sitting on a branch, the next he (or she, I cant tell) was opening his wings and then him flying off.

I seen it land in some trees a distance from the road. I came home and down loaded the pictures onto my computer. then I texted the pictures to people I knew. I have seen many eagles on the rez over the years. a few times I seen black and whites. those are young ones. the eagles must be breeding here too.

I got a text last night from my niece asking if I had lights. I said yeah. I guess a car that crashed into a power pole. it knocked out power to parts of the rez. not mine. I am on a different power company. dont know how many power companies there are on the rez. once there were about 5. dont know if it is still like that.

my niece said they wouldn’t have any heat without electricity. that made me glad that I burn wood. it keeps the house warm even when there is no electricity. I like a wood stove because it reminds me of the old rez. not the rez with paved roads, convenience store or golf course. the old rez where we didnt have electricity, running water or telephones. geez I aint that old am I. power came back on so my niece didnt freeze.

there was ice north of here. we didnt get it. some of the schools north of here are closed. no, the tribe aint closed.

I am signed up to give my red blood cells this Friday. the blood drive is at the clinic, I mean health center. I didnt give mine last time cuz there wasnt enough time in between blood drives. I have to wait a certain time before I can do it again. this time I can donate.

instead of working on roaches i decided to work on Andrews bustle. i traded a roach for it. it is big. i think it is man size, not kid size. i think i will shorten the extenders. that will shorten the whole bustle. Andrew isn’t that tall yet. it will fit him better if the bustle was shorter. all i have to do it cut the dowel pins and retape the pins. then i have to add the loops on the end. sounds more complicated than it is i think.

tomorrow the temps will hit 50 degrees. we decided to finally butcher the young roosters we were given. i have been fattening them up for 7 months now. they take up too much feed. i would rather the hens eat that so i can have more eggs. i am only getting two or three eggs a day now. that is better than none.

I have to get back on the tread mill. I did my walking while on vacation. wont explain why a retired guy goes on vacation. vacation from what? any way I logged my miles in Hawaii. i haven’t been walking since i have been home. gotta start again. i have to go to the basement to stoke up the stove any way. might as well work out. gotta get busy.

I wasn’t cold a week ago

this picture makes me think ‘off the rez’

I am getting used to being back in this cold. it dont seem like it but less than a week ago I was wearing shorts and sandals. today I have to toss more wood into the basement. gotta keep the fire going so the house will stay warm.

I have been wanting to sample the 100% kona coffee I bought. our family had a coffee tasting yesterday. I really savored the taste of it. I admit it is good coffee. I read it is one of the more expensive coffees. I doubt I will switch over to it. I cant afford the cost of it. this indian had try at least one pound of the roasted beans though. we made another pot of it to enjoy today.

I bought a conch shell in Hawaii. I wasn’t really looking for one. I was at an artist fair held near the hotel I was staying at. it had a lot of small booths. mary and I wandered thru it looking for gifts.

I seen the shell and picked it up. the lady said ‘you are my first customer, I make you a deal’. she said it sells for 60 bucks. but for me the price would be 29 dollars. I hesitated. I wanted it but didnt. she asked me ‘how much you pay’. I said 25 dollars. she didnt want me to leave with out it. she said okay. so I bought it. many of the Polynesian groups use conch shells. I remember the Aztecs did too.

I was concerned about having room in my suit case for the conch shell. more importantly was getting it home without breaking it. we decided to mail it home to ourselves. I wrapped it carefully with bubble wrap. the conch shell didnt fill up the box so we added my bag of kona coffee beans. mary bought some toys for the grand kids. we toss them in too. we wanted to save room in our suit cases. it worked. all the stuff made it home before we did.

I tried blowing thru the conch shell and made a sound with it. so did the grand kids. I laughed remembering this kid at the hotel in maui. his job was to run around the courtyard of the hotel and blow thru the conch shell. I think to the 4 directions. then he would shout out a greeting. the guests would all holler ‘aloha’ in response.

one day I was out on the patio listening to the surf. the guy blew thru the conch shell below the room I was staying in. I whooped at him. it startled the kid. he stopped and looked up to where I was. I had to laugh. too native I guess.

I missed lotsa things about home. today we are having indian corn soup cooked with commodity buffalo. we are also having cowboy bread. all the different foods I ate in Hawaii made me think of corn soup. my grand son Andrew likes it too. he helps me plant our corn. we both get to enjoy some of what we grew. he asked for a second bowl.

dont know what this week holds in store but I will go with it. nice to get away and nice to be home.

back to the routine

had to pose with these two statue

how do you keep an indian down on the rez once he been to Hawaii? dont know but I am about to find out. it is time to get back into the routine. or as much of a routine as a retired guy can have.

I was listening to the news this morning. the weather guy said temperatures will be in the single digits tonight. they will reach the high 30s later this week. what? I got used to the 70s and 80s. I would often be sweating because I wasn’t used to the warm temps.

just got back from weighing in. I lost two pounds over all. i will take that. especially after going to two luaus. at least i am going in the right direction. i will try to continue losing weight. doing that for my health.

didn’t come straight home. we went to the casino for the $5 breakfast. after eating healthy for the past 8 days, i need to get some grease back into my diet. my niece seen me and said i got browner. so i did tan. but not the bright red that the turistas had.

my wallet definitely became lighter. no doubt. tourism is the number one industry on the islands. everything cost. one breakfast at the maui resort cost us 60 bucks. one supper there cost us over 90. not all meals cost that but i remember the price of those. we paid $3.48 for a gallon of gas. we had to fill up the car rentals after driving around two islands. I passed on paying $35 each for some cool t shirts.

i bought small, cheaper souvenirs. i bought the $22 t shirts, not the cool ones but still neat. and i got more refrig magnets. i have some from many of the places i traveled to. i also bought some giveaways. mostly jewelry. i give them away at our ceremonial dances.

i noticed one guy at the last luau. he had his plate piled high with food. probably tryin to get his moneys worth. luaus at resorts cost over a hundred bucks. i only ate one plate full. the waiter urged me to go back for more. i didn’t. i got my moneys worth by enjoying the show.

today is the birthday of my older brothers, Larry and Gary. i miss them. we spent many years together. i still have to get my book done to join theirs in my library. they would be 68 today. man, they old guys. that means i will be 67 in May. damn. i will take that. didnt think i would i see 30. now i am a great grandpa.

my grandkids ran up to me and gave me a hug after i got home. that made me feel good. even my dog, konugish came up to me. he musta missed me too.

i have been editing my pictures. i delete the out of focus ones. and the ones where i was spacing out and shot a picture of the floor or something. i have some good pictures. once my brother said after seeing some vacation pictures of ours “these are all of you”. i replied who else would they be of. we wouldn’t take pictures of people we dont know. he said yeah. i do have pictures of dancers, surfers, artisans, etc.

i posted this picture on my blog. it is me acting crazy. i was posing like the statues i was standing by. they were at this restored 1700s village. there are something like 38 chiefs buried there. i like to see places of history when i travel.

i finished reading one book while traveling. one plane ride was 8 hours and the return one was 6 hours. that aint counting connecting flights and wait time. that gave me time to read. i even started another book. i will have to finish it some time.

some time i will put on a pot of kona coffee. it is 100% kona coffee. wont say how much it cost but hell i am worth it. i will slowly sip it. there was coffee advertised as Hawaiian coffee but was actually a blend that only contained 10% kona coffee. i bought the good stuff. this indian will enjoy that coffee. i have been a coffee drinker a lifetime.

gotta get back to the routine. my vacation is over.

back on da rez, uh huh

me at akara falls

we made it back to the rez. the temperature was colder than the 70s and 80s we got used to while island hopping in Hawaii. it rained a few times while we were there. we seen many rainbows. we had good weather too. rain on one part of the island didn’t stop us from walking along the beach on another part of the island.

we checked out of the hotel at eleven a.m. they gave us a farewell gift. it was a native made necklace that held a lot of significance for them. a native lady sang a song for us. our flight wasn’t until late evening so we had most of the day to find some adventure.

we decided to go hiking in the Iao valley. one of the biggest battles in Hawaii was fought there. so many warriors fell that they “dammed up the creek”. we got our hiking in.

we passed a cold stream. I usually have to soak my feet in cold water when I travel. it felt invigorating as it always does. we went to a garden park after that. we walked some more.

we passed a food truck on the way to the airport. i like to support small businesses. i pulled over to get some eats. i ordered the lemon pepper shrimp plate. it was served on top of cabbage with two scoops of white rice and some crab macaroni salad. it was good.

i will miss the food i had in Hawaii. i ate lotsa jumbo shrimp. and lotsa fresh pineapples, mangos and papayas. i have poke several times. it is raw fish. i ate cooked fish too. i had fresh juice almost every day. i drank Hawaiian coffee every day too.

before going to the airport i had to take the rental car back. while there i had to change my clothes. i was used to wearing t shirts or Hawaiian shirts with shorts and sandals. i knew i couldn’t wear them when i got back to kansas.

we didn’t know what the weather was gonna be like here. I got text messages from the airline saying I might have to adjust my trip. we left maui last night around 9:30 in the evening. for the first time we didn’t get the tsa pre pass thru the lines at airport security. luckily there were no lines. we arrived in Denver bout 7 in the morning.

our plane was late in Denver. we were delayed bout an hour. when we landed we caught a shuttle to our car. the driver said the ice was coming. we got home without running into any bad weather.

we took over 960 pictures in Hawaii. i will edit them this week. i went back to the blogs i wrote in Hawaii. i didn’t get to down load any pictures there so i added pictures to those blogs.

while i was walking one day in Hawaii i was thinking about how fortunate i am to do some of the things i do. i felt happy that i get to experience life. i know i am lucky. i never take that for granted.

i met many native peoples there. i got to talk to many of them. i admired them for maintaining their culture. i was happy to hear that they now have more people speaking their native language.

i enjoyed their singing and danceing. we listened to radio stations that played Hawaiian music while driving the rental car. their language sounded so beautiful. all the streets and place names are in their language.

i told an older lady i only knew two words and i used them a lot. mahalo (meaning thanks) and aloha (meaning hello, goodbye and love). she told me they are two of the most important words i could know. i liked that lady.

if i was asked what my favorite part of the trip was of course i would answer ‘all of it’.

i missed stoking up our fire. i will do that while sipping on the 100% kona coffee i bought. i will savor the taste while i feel the warmth of our fire. good to be home.


Aloha neshnabek

I had to add a picture of the whale tour.

the locals might be thinking this indian turning native on us. every where i go i greet people with ‘aloha’. most are friendly back. just a few grumpy tourists arent.

it is hard to believe these past eight days have gone by so quickly. i will be flying home tomorrow. i have a late flight. i leave out of here at 9:30 in the evening. i will be in denver at 7 in the morning. then on to kansas city. then back to the rez.

this afternoon mary and i are going on a whale tour. we get to see the whales up close. we have seen them from the beach by our hotel. we were just walking along the beach a while ago with our feet in the water. there was a sea turtle swimming around. it got the tourists all excited.

yesterday we drove the road to hana. it is called the most beautiful drive in the world. we only covered part of it. it was raining and some drivers were passing on the narrow roads. it is full of curves and one laned bridges. we said hell with it and turned around.

we did stop at the beaches along the way. one place was a breeding ground for the sea turtles. we took pictures of them. there were at least a dozen of them. i thought it was pretty neat. we didnt get to go to jaws. the famous surfing place of maui. it was wet and i woulda needed a 4 wheeler to get back there. that was alright i did get a picture of some surfers though. gotta have a picture of that.

sea turtles on the beach

on the road we stop at a road side store. it had some spam musubi. i had to try one. i have already eaten poi, poke, kalua pork and fresh fruit. i have eaten alot of fresh pineapples. they taste sweeter here. same with the fresh juices i have daily.

every where i go i see someone that reminds me of people around the rez. i guess natives have some resemblences. kinda like the old stereotype that all indians look alike. mary and i would notice someone at the same time.

i have been on the beach a number of times. i am not doing any sun bathing though. dont need to when you already brown like this guy. some people spending lotsa money to come here to tan and be brown like this.

they have a luau here but we passing on it. we have been to two of them. we got front row seats at the performance at polynesian islands. it was a great show. we werent allowed to take pictures for some reason. sacred or something. it made me wonder why we aint got someone doing a sacred fire dance at our performances. eh.

i have seen rainbows a number of times. got a few pictures. i cant wait to see my pictures when i get home. i was a photographer in a past life. i can take good pictures.

i dont like seeing this trip winding down. i really enjoyed being here. it rained a few times but the weather was nice. it beat being on the rez where i heard the temp was 8 below. i was sweating here at that time.

i have to get ready for the whale tour later. maybe i will head back to the beach. i like the feel of the water and sand on my feet.

Maui wowee

the hotel I was staying at didn’t have a business computer. so I haven’t been able to blog. i am now in maui. i have to pay 6.95 for 15 minutes worth of computer time. every thing costs here. i will be here another 3 days then i am flying home.

the hotel is oceanside. my room has ocean view. same with my room on the big island. we were sitting on the beach watching whales come up. we will take a whale watching tour on monday. i hope to get many pictures. i have taken over 400 so far. i havent been able to post any. sorry.

we ate breakfast right by the ocean.

yesterday morning we watched dolphins swimming and jumping around while we ate breakfast. we are drinking fresh juice and eating fresh fruit every day.

the other day we went to the volcano national park. I was amazed at all the lava every where. I kept thinking I could have a sweat lodge with these stones. we hiked across a lava field to see ancient petroglyphs. it was my hiking for the day. I am getting in at least 3 miles a day of walking.

the petroglyphs we hiked across a lava field to see.

we went to a restored village by the ocean side. it dated back to the 1700s. it was considered a holy place. i put my feet in the water there.

there was no canoe ride to the polynesian villages. it was on land. inside the park was a waterway where we did ride a canoe. the water was only a few feet deep. after we toured the villages we went to a luau.

when i hear luau i think on the beach with natives dancing etc. this one was actually a gloried buffet line. we did have roasted pig that was cooked in the ground. it tasted good. i have been to two luaus on this trip. i didnt over do it. i tried the local foods. i like how they cook.

i talked to many people. they knew we werent like other tourists. when they found out we were indians they really talked with us. it was nice to see so many people trying to maintain what they could of their culture. they were happy to hear some of our people are trying to do the same thing.

we have done alot this trip. and we spent some time doing nothing. we could hear the surf outside our window every night. it was so peaceful. i liked hearing it.

while out and about we would see homeless people. that surprised me kinda. they didnt bother us.  i nodded to a few.

on the way to the airport this morning i was stopped by Five O. he said i was doing 64 in a 45 mph zone. i said sorry officer. the speed limit here is around that in many places. laid back people are in no hurry to get any where. the policeman said he would let me go with a warning. i told him mahalo.

i am glad i got to come on this trip. i have been telling people i have now been to all 50 states. they say i am lucky to be able to travel. i agree. some of the travels i had were during rough times. not this time. i am doing this purely for the pleasure.

i love being here but i miss home. but i feel like i am home where ever i am at. aloha.


aloha from Waikiki beach

I cant down load a picture to post so I will just blog. I will post pictures later. I left my laptop so I have to use the business office computer in the hotel lobby.

we had an 8 hour plane from Houston to Honolulu yesterday. we got here about 2:30 in the afternoon. we unpacked and hit the street. we are 300 yards from Waikiki beach. we had to go to the water first thing.

people seem to know we are the typical tourist. they ask us where we from. they kinda figure we indian or something. we get into a lot of conversations with people. most are friendly.

after checking out the beach we walked around. we are on the main drag of Waikiki beach. I was hungry. airplane food aint really food. we stopped at a place were I had a loco moco. it is bison burger on top of rice. it has an egg and gravy on top of that. it also had on mushrooms and fries with fried kale. it was filling.

mary on Waikiki beach

we walked at least 3 miles. I plan to walk every day. I can only estimate my miles I log. aint got a fit bit or pedometer. it don’t matter. main thing is to log the miles.

I learned my first Hawaiian word. it is mahalo. that means thank you. I use it every where. the locals appreciate that. I bought some trinkets already. got my usual refrig magnet. I have one from most places I have seen. this one is a surf board with Oahu, Hawaii on it. I will get more of them.

today we are going to the Polynesian villages. we will take a canoe ride over to the island. we get to tour 7 villages. later in the evening we will attend a luau. after that we see performances by 200 dancers. I will get plenty of pictures of that.

tomorrow we are heading to the big island. we will have a car rental to get around. we will go hiking to waterfalls over there. we haven’t decided whether or not we will take the helicopter tour.

I have to get ready for the village tour. later. I will keep writing a blog when I get the chance. aloha

aloha

yesterday I went to Andrews first basket ball game. kinda had to. he asked me ‘are you going to my game’ in such a way that misho had to answer yeah. occasionally he would glimpse over to where me and his dad sat. he had to know if we were watching him.

they dont keep score at these kiddie games. something to do with not teaching them to be overly competitive. I agree with that. they have 10 players. since it aint about winning at all costs every one plays equally.

I knew guys that were competitive in every thing. they didn’t like to lose. that took the fun out of every little trivial thing. little did they realize that we all lose some time in our life. we lose jobs, some times our home, maybe our mother, money, etc. I wonder how they take those losses.

good thing they dont keep score. andrews team got beat badly. it looked like they were out coached. I know it aint about winning but if you gonna do some thing-be good at it. andrew had fun though. I teach my grand kids to have fun. kids should be kids. there will be plenty of time for life’s seriousness later.

we will drop the boys off in Lawrence on the way to Kansas City. I know I will miss my grand kids while I am gone. I like to see them as much as I can. 10 days is a long time to go without being able to hold them or make them laugh. maybe I will take some toys to scatter all over the hotel floor. that will remind me of them.

tonight we are staying in a motel near the Kansas City airport. the reason is two fold. we wont have to get up early in the morning to make the hour and twenty minute drive to catch our plane at 6:30 a.m. plus we will have to be there an hour or so early.

the other reason is we get to leave our car in the motel parking lot. we wont have to pay parking at the airport. the costs of the motel and the parking fees cancel each other out so we dont save any money. it is about the convenience of not getting up early and driving in the dark.

I already checked in online and printed my boarding passes. we get to go thru the tsa pre approved line. maybe as a sorry you were put thru so many ‘random spot checks’ eh chief.

I am taking two bags. one carry on and one checked. I dont like paying the $30 rip off fee for a checked bag. that’s legalized robbery. a carry on wont hold all I want to take for a week and a half trip. we pay all that money for a ticket and extra for a bag. then if I get hungry or thirsty they give me a small bag of peanuts and half a drink.

I want to have extra bag space to bring souvenirs back. I might buy a Hawaiian shirt from there. I will also buy some kona coffee beans. dont know what kind of gifts I will find. I like to buy give aways for our seasonal dances. the boys already asked if I was gonna bring back presents. little brats.

one thing I wont be packing is a mahomes jersey. chiefs aint gonna be playing in the super bowl. I noticed the jersey is selling for a little less when I went to the sporting goods store for my swim shoes. I had to buy my water shoes a size bigger. I will wear them at the beach. dont wanna step on rocks or shells. that sounds funny coming from a rez guy who grew up going bare foot all the time.

I was planning on taking a KU t shirt to show I am down with my team. now I am disappointed after the loss to Kentucky yesterday. what the hell, i will pack a Jayhawk shirt. I am a die hard KU fan but for the first time I dont think we have it this year. we are a player or two short of going far. perhaps I will start the ‘wait til next year’ chant early.

this indian about to leave for a much anticipated trip to the last state he aint seen. maybe just maybe I will stop at the mall for a massage. loosen up for the trip. aloha everone.