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Archive | August 5, 2018

Canyon de Chelly: Flowers & Flora (Part I).

by Anura Guruge


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They are in the midst of the pretty severe drought. For the first time in living memory they had no snow during this last winter. The lack of snow melt has made a huge difference. The land is parached and bone dry.

It rained at night the first two days we were there. But, it wasn’t much. There was much more rain to the North. You could see that on the horizon and when we visited Monument Valley later in the week it was soggy!

The last of the big pictures illustrates the how parched the ground is. But, the water table, even this Summer, is within 3′ of the surface. That is pretty amazing and that is without factoring in the huge aquifer on top of which they sit. So, ‘they’, the Navajo, are not too worried as yet — though quite a few ferrell had died from the lack of water!

I thought I could get all my ‘flowers and flora‘ pictures into one post. Wasn’t going to happen. All of this was from Day 1!


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Search ‘Chelly’ & ‘Navajo’.


by Anura Guruge

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Beauty Of Social Security: Payments In Arrears, Medicare Premiums In Advance!

by Anura Guruge


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Got this letter from Social Security yesterday and its obvious irony made me smile.

That Social Security pays one month in arrears is legendary. So, the month you are due to start getting ‘Social’ you don’t get paid. You get paid the following month. I think this means that YOU miss out on a month while still alive but your estate will get that month when you die. Nothing you can do.

So, you would think that the same rule would apply to Medicare premiums, i.e., they will collect in arrears to stay lock-step with their payments. No, Siree. They collect premiums one month in advance! Talk about nickel-and-diming folks.

Only in the U.S. of A.


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Check Category ‘Healthcare’.


by Anura Guruge

Canyon de Chelly: The Navajo Nation’s Guide To The Canyon.

by Anura Guruge


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This is a modified version of ‘Planning Your Visit‘ information included in the National Park Service Guide.

The Navajo Nation has added the ‘Visiting Navajo‘ section right at the start. The first sentence of that is IMPORTANT. Canyon de Chelly, like the rest of the Navajo Nation, is on New Mexico time rather than Arizona! That can be confusing. My Garmin Fenix 5, which gets its time (when it can) from GPS, took it in its stride. But, for the first few hours I was never sure whether my Fenix 5 was right or wrong.

This guide, in photocopied black & white, is on the back of a b&w map of the Canyon — again taken from the National Park Service Guide, which, however, is in color.

They have this guide in the small Navajo Nation Office, adjacent to the ‘Thunderbird Lodge’, that you have to visit to get backcountry permits to enter the Canyon with a Navajo guide, either by jeep, horseback or on foot.

Hope this helps.


Related posts:
Search ‘Chelly’ & ‘Navajo’.


by Anura Guruge

‘Huggins Fair 2018′, Wolfeboro, N.H. — SODDEN, Saturday Evening, August 4, After The Deluge.

by Anura Guruge


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I have been going to the ‘Huggins Fair‘, invariably without fail, for 26-years. It is one of our cherished annual events — going there late on Saturday evening and staying till late.

I have never seen anything like what I saw today. It was beyond sodden. I have, in Ceylon, seen drier paddy fields! Folks were walking in the mud in bare feet — but even then there were places you did not dare venture. The book tent was a mess. I just couldn’t go in. It was way, way, way too muddy.

We had seen the rain and expected that it would be a bit soggy. Nothing prepared us for what we encountered. I had taken the precaution of wearing waterproof shoes. That was not enough. You needed tall Wellington boots.

Though it did not rain while we were there and I met some folks we knew, I was not amused or happy.

The mud just sapped away my enthusiasm. I did NOT buy a single book! That is a record. I just bought two hand-grip exercisers for $1 (and I was being generous) as I could have got them for 25 cents and $7 worth of braised BBQ beef. That was it. I came home with a fair chunk of money in my pocket. That never happens. Typically I spend $60 to $120 at this Fair.

That they were so unprepared was strange. It isn’t like rain is a stranger to this Fair. They should definitely CHANGE their sign. That bold ‘Here RAIN or Shine’ seems like a challenge the rain can’t resist. And to think that they have a severe drought around Canyon de Chelly.


Last Year’s Storm.


Related posts:
Search ‘Huggins’.


by Anura Guruge

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