Another from Thoreau

Part of a beautiful essay by Henry David Thoreau

Nowadays almost all man’s improvements, so called, as the building of houses, and the cutting down of the forest and of all large trees, simply deform the landscape, and make it more and more tame and cheap. A people who would begin by burning the fences and let the forest stand! I saw the fences half consumed, their ends lost in the middle of the prairie, and some worldly miser with a surveyor looking after his bounds, while heaven had taken place around him, and he did not see the angels going to and fro, but was looking for an old post-hole in the midst of paradise. I looked again, and saw him standing in the middle of a boggy stygian fen, surrounded by devils, and he had found his bounds without a doubt, three little stones, where a stake had been driven, and looking nearer, I saw that the Prince of Darkness was his surveyor.

Read the rest of Walking here.

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Excerpt from “Walking”

Part of a beautiful essay by Henry David Thoreau

Living much out of doors, in the sun and wind, will no doubt produce a certain roughness of character—will cause a thicker cuticle to grow over some of the finer qualities of our nature, as on the face and hands, or as severe manual labor robs the hands of some of their delicacy of touch. So staying in the house, on the other hand, may produce a softness and smoothness, not to say thinness of skin, accompanied by an increased sensibility to certain impressions. Perhaps we should be more susceptible to some influences important to our intellectual and moral growth, if the sun had shone and the wind blown on us a little less; and no doubt it is a nice matter to proportion rightly the thick and thin skin. But methinks that is a scurf that will fall off fast enough—that the natural remedy is to be found in the proportion which the night bears to the day, the winter to the summer, thought to experience. There will be so much the more air and sunshine in our thoughts. The callous palms of the laborer are conversant with finer tissues of self-respect and heroism, whose touch thrills the heart, than the languid fingers of idleness. That is mere sentimentality that lies abed by day and thinks itself white, far from the tan and callus of experience.

Read the rest of Walking here.

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Topper Update

Here are a few images to clarify some questions about the wooden topper.  It is not a work of art.  It was to be used for a single field project last summer but now I really like it so it will be a permanent part of the rolling home.

topper1Here’s the overview sans roof rack.  It has received about five more coats of spar varnish after a good sanding.  It is built from recycled lumber so there is some small shrinkage checking and a little discoloration from some mold or fungus but it hardly visible.

topper2Tacomas really suck for attaching racks and toppers for a couple reasons.  The top rails of the bed are plastic over some fairly unsubstantial metal and there are no stake holes.  There is however, the nifty rail system inside the bed that is secure.  To attach this topper, I used some construction straps from the Big Box Store which are screwed in behind the rails.  This is the forward view, blemishes and all.  The rope is for hanging up wet stuff like towels, swimsuits, etc.

topper3Here is another strap at the aft end utilizing one of the bed bolts in a reenforced spot.

topper4And finally, here is an image of one of the knee braces that are screwed and glued to the frame to strengthen the door area.  I hope this helps if someone else wants to construct something like this.

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Vardo – Topper Makeover

Because there’s always room for improvement.  In my case, a lot of improvement. snail2
Rehung siding, new paint, fresh varnish, little fixes, and lots of cleaning.  We’re hooked up to get out of town for a bit.

snail1Dietz lanterns, Kelly kettle, fuel, and lamp oil packed away in the pan box.  The steel disk serves as a heat shield to minimize ground scarring under the fire.

snail8A view from the bed.  Still more to pack up but things are looking good and nearly ready to go.

snail7The new windows are great and really perk the place up.  Bright and airy makes for a pleasant space.

snail3Still, the little Snail is far from perfect; made on a shoestring budget during snatches of time between work and bad weather.  Although I don’t live in it full-time currently I have come to see this as my home.

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Cycling

Late 19th century style.

cycling

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A Vardo and Bender Camp

vardoandbender

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Mid-Cut Huaraches From Tuxpan, Jalisco

Paleotool:

These are beauties.

Originally posted on Huarache Blog:

Tuxpan in Southern Jalisco is a small town well known for its Tacos “Tuxpenos” and less known for its unique Mid-Cut Huarache style.

That being nowadays said their is so little demand for the Tuxpan Huarache “Tejido con Talonera Alta” that it can only be made on to order by the only remaining Huarachero in Tuxpan, Armando Ortiz, whose other styles can also be seen in The Huarache Directory HERE

tuxpan side 34

tuxpan back 34

tuxpan multiview  Huaracheria Ortiz

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The History Of Sidecars

Originally posted on Retrorambling:

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A sidecar is a one-wheeled device attached to the side of a motorcycle, scooter, or bicycle, producing a three-wheeled vehicle. A motorcycle with a sidecar is sometimes called a combination, an outfit, a rig or a hack.

History

Mr M Bertoux, a French army officer, secured a prize offered by a French newspaper in 1893 for the best method of carrying a passenger on a bicycle. The sidecar wheel was mounted on the same lateral plane as the bicycle’s rear and was supported by a triangulation of tubes from the bicycle. A sprung seat with back rest was mounted above the cross-member and a footboard hung below. A sidecar appeared in a cartoon by George Moore in the January 7, 1903, issue of the British newspaper Motor Cycling. Three weeks later, a provisional patent was granted to Mr. W. J. Graham of Graham…

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Stone Walden Cabin

A beautiful stone cabin essentially based on Henry David Thoreau’s retreat.  As seen on Tiny House Swoon.  Check out more of this great blog HERE.

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Looking Inward

And men go abroad to admire the heights of mountains, the mighty waves of the sea, the broad tides of rivers, the compass of the ocean, and the circuits of the stars, yet pass over the mystery of themselves without a thought.

St. Augustine of Hippo, The Confessions

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