adventure

Old Man Jones

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I was riddled with rock salt from the old man in Jones’s Field. The big kids in the neighborhood told me about this man who lived in a farmhouse next to the pasture not far from my house. One cold and blustery day I decided to take my moto-ski snowmobile into the pasture and with a curiosity I pointed the snow sled toward the edge of where he lived. I looked up ahead on the trail and I was coming up on the dwelling. I just about got to where the trail opened up to his lawn when I heard a pop sound and something stinging in my chest area. The old man had shot rock salt at me to get me off his property. It was a good thing I had my full face helmet , I would of taken the shot into the face without it.

I turned my sled around real fast as to get a quick escape when out of the corner of my eye I see three dogs running full tilt toward me. I was only about twelve years old at the time I am  about crapping my pan’st at this point. Pop! I hear another shot but this time he missed me. I’m thinking in my head this guy is a lunatic and I’m about ready to get eaten by a wolf pack. I looked back for a few seconds and the dogs were right at the back of the sled and I’m punching the throttle right to the pin when it happened. When I was looking back, I forgot to also look forward and I collided into a cement slab that was probably there from where an old silo sat. I went head over tea kettle and landed on the other side of the slab. The dogs stopped right in their tracks and didn’t even come at me. The dogs sensed that I was done in for and walked slowly back to the farm house.

I stood back up, checking myself, when I looked at the damage on the snowmobile. My god, dad was going to kill me, my quest to be a snowmobile racer was never going to happen. I can see my dad now, Son?  YOU WILL NEVER RIDE A SNOWMOBILE AGAIN!  I knew my dad well. He didn’t take equipment failures and stupidity very good. The skis on the sled were in a v-shaped pattern, or snowplow pattern now. I have skied before and you know with snowplow it is a method of slowing you down. I had about eight miles to get back home with this sled. I started up the snow machine ,very slowly limping back to my home. My chest was still stinging from the rock salt attack. I was so afraid to report to my dad of the encounter with the farmer that I had to make up a story.

His eyes lit up when I showed him the damage to the sled. What in the heck happened? Dad, I went around a corner when going through the woods and smacked into a tree. He didn’t need to know the right story, right? I still to this day will have nightmares about being shot at from this old man. It kind of gave me an “Wizard Of Oz feeling”, he was like a character in a movie. The wicked farmer of the East, all the pigs are singing and the horse’s are talking. I come upon his land and I’m walking up a white road, I presume is salt blocks.

Old man Jones passed away a few years back, I wonder what kind of a person could do this to a young child. I certainly was not out to cause harm to this person. I was not there to steal anything. I was only being a twelve year old kids with an inquisitive mind.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

 

 

 

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Snowmobile Riding North

snowmobilingThis could probably be counted as one of the worst or best trips from hell. The wife and I had planned a trip to Moosehead Lake in Maine. We made plans to go snowmobile riding up there and we rented a room at a local hotel in Rockwood.

I decided it was time to get the snowmobile ready before the trip. I started it up, and took a short ride on the back lawn where I live. Something was terribly wrong with the sled. I could hear metal to metal, and crunching sound. This sled was damaged and we had no time to send it to the repair shop before our trip. My wife and I talked, we decided to go buy another snowmobile. We went to the local sled dealer and bought a used sled. Good one too, with a long seat, and longtrack.

With the sled loaded, we made our way up north. We arrived and checked in. It was still early in the day and we wanted to make our way to Pittston Farms. A place we could go get a cocktail and a bite to eat. We took off across the lake on the pole trail which led us back to land. The first sign I saw stated Pittston Farm this way to the right. I turned and went down the trail, noticing a sign that said snowmobile shop. We went a little further and another sign showed the restaurant going the opposite direction than what the first sign showed. I turned the sled, backing up into deep snow, using the reverse the sled had. We just started the other way when my wife tapped me on the shoulder and said, What is that green stuff in the snow where you backed up? I stopped in the trail to inspect if any damage and anti-freeze was  pouring out of my heat exchanger.

I remembered the sign, snowmobile shop ahead. I made it to this shop and the repair man told me he didn’t have time to work on it because he was so busy. He said, I can give you a bottle of antifreeze so you can get back to Rockwood. We made it back to Rockwood Hotel and the owners were at their desk. I asked if any snowmobile repair shops around. Hang on a minute the lady said. I could hear her talking. Joe, can you work on a sled? She got off the phone and the guy told her, Yes. His shop was a mile down the road. I loaded the sled into my pick-em-up-truck and off we went.

It was time to chill out so we decided to have some cocktails and eat some dinner. It was about 8 o’clock that evening and the owner told us the sled was done and we could pick it up. I brought my truck down and paid the guy. I off loaded my sled at the hotel parking lot and put it back up near the hotel. I went back into the restaurant with my wife and finished dining with her. I was looking outside the window, enjoying seeing all the snowmobilers riding around when I noticed a flash of something out of the corner of my eye. I then saw my red pick-em-up-truck jump about five feet sideways. I knew at this moment a snowmobiler had hit my truck at a very fast rate. I jumped up from the table and started running toward my truck . The owner of the hotel was following me because we wanted to make sure no one was injured. When we just about got to the truck, the owner replied; Oh no that is my son. I was floored with that statement. What really happened was his son’s sled did a runaway when he started it. Maybe the throttle was stuck so when there was ignition it took off at a fast rate. The sled was in bad condition along with my truck. We was glad the son was not injured but the damage was severe. The truck still could be driven, we exchanged names and numbers, and waited for a warden to file a report.

Fun comes in many ways. We took a bad experience but still had a lot of fun. Everything was taking care of at the end, and I would recommend going to Moosehead snowmobiling to anyone. Just make sure you bring lots of lucky charms. We never did make it to Pittston Farms, Bad Omen! Make sure you take the Black Fly Loop. This trail goes all the way around the lake. Just Beautiful.  http://www.pittstonfarm.com 2011TrailsSwett
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Minus What?

outhouse-1024x768It sure can get cold in these hills in Central Maine. Waking up this morning and getting ready to cook breakfast for my spouse and I decided to look at the outside temperature. I have a LLBean unit that records the inside and outside temperature. I see 8 degree’s showing, no, -8 degree’s F, which is very cold and it is not even winter yet. Cold temperatures like this can really cause havoc around here. We did get a ton of snow, wait a ton? That is 2000 pounds and I bet we received more than a ton. It is the snow factor that insulates things around here. The exposed items like car batteries and outside toilets get the brunt of the cold temps around here. You ever hear of kids putting their tonuge on a cold pipe and sticking right to it? Well, sitting on a cold seat in the outhouse has the same effect. If you are ever at the beach in the summer look for people with rings around their buttock region. They are probably from Central Maine. The cold is only good for one thing around here and that is making ice or making snow. We need ice for our drinks when we are ice fishing. We also need ice when making snow at the local ski areas. Sometimes when you reach temperature’s like this around here, you think there is car accident’s all over the place. One car head on into another but with no damage. Usually this means someone’s battery has died and they are jump starting the other car. Another thing you see around here is a lot of nostrils stuck together. I listen to the scanner and all day there is 911 calls for stuck noses. When you breath out of your nose moisture is built up around the inside of your passages and when you inhale back through your nose the insides stick together. It takes a heat gun at a hospital to get those stickers back away. So when we see digits like that on our thermostat it really makes people think what would it be like in Alaska. I am sure the hooch  they make over there keeps the blood thinned out. There is a cure for everything. I have to go get some wood into the stove so I can try and mend this ring around the butt problem for my trip to Florida. Good Day Everyone. Happy Holiday’s 
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Beer Making Business-Failure or Success?

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Years ago I tried making beer. I bought a kit that included the 5 gallon jug and all the beer making stuff included. The first part told me to boil the stuff in this bag and add water and sugar. No problem I could do this I had made a pie before. So the stuff started to boil and I was really not paying too much attention until it hit the critical temperature and Mt St. Helen’s erupted and made the biggest mess I have ever seen on the stove top. My wife wasn’t too impressed with this adventure. I brought the temperature down a little and things started to look much better. When this process was done it told me to add water and put this brine into the 5 gallon jug and to put a stopper on the top with a bubbler. I would watch these bubbles until I fell asleep every night. Bubble Bubble! I’m thinking how long does this take, come on, 2 weeks and still bubbling. Well, finally one day after getting back from work I checked it and the bubble process had stopped. The book told me that it was time to start bottling. I went down to the local bottle redemption center and asked for nice green bottles. You know Heiny or something like that. I also wouldn’t mind having those Corona bottles there. I looked into the bottle and there was green mold. I asked the clerk what the heck was in them. He told me people put lime’s or lemon’s in them. Ok, I figured I could clean them out with a little work. I got home and cleaned up all the bottles that night. I’m thinking this beer making business is not really that easy. The next day I was ready to bottle the beer and cap them. I had a long plastic tube which I was using as a siphon. I would put the bottle on the floor and bring the hose down into the bottle and fill it up. The problem that exsisted was I had no way at the time to really stop the beer from flowing once I started. The best method was to put the hose in my mouth between fills and exchanges of the new bottle. It was about halfway threw that I started to feel funny and a little giddy. I think by the end of the bottling I had consumed about one third of what I had made. I was finished with the process and had one hell of a buzz. I guess this beer was potent because I woke up with one heck of headache. I realized after making this beer that buying it at the store was much easier, really. I give it up to the real beer makers that don’t even use sugar and probably have a valve to shut off the flow. Bottles Up Everyone!

We Dont Talk Funny In Maine

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Funny growing up here in Maine. We have picked up different slang from all over the state. I still wonder where all these words came from. One saying comes to mind. He went off into the road, right into the pucker brush. This in reference to going into the raspberry bushes. Another is Ayuh, which in our language book refers to yes. I know different parts of the country have their own slang. I have to tell you that Maine, in general, has many depending what part of the state you live in. The Maine coast has what we call the downeast accent. You can’t get lobstah from hee-yahhhh. And Ayuh probably came from that region. The extreme north has been influenced by the Canadians so they speak with French twist. The central part of the state there is a lot of farming. The accent there is a little different than the North and South. Here is some other slang. Cocker- Meaning it was a grand event. Usetah- It used to be that way. Mired- Stuck in the mud with an off road, or even and on road vehicle. Bier- Beer. You cant get there from Hee-yahhhh! I really think that a lot of the slang here came from our forefathers that didn’t ever go to the dentist. Teeth was an option, beer was not. So if you ever come to this State enjoy the language which we have developed. AYUP!