That Same Old Drive Again

Last week we drove to California for work again. I tried to keep my camera phone on in case I could snap a shot of anything else of interest besides those beheaded palm trees I posted last time. The quality is poor because of shooting as we drove by, though the glass window and its reflection, and every other excuse you can imagine.

Freeway travel is fast and so often hubby drives in the left lane, which makes it even more difficult.

These buildings are out in the middle of nowhere.

And then we go through a rural area with cow and sheep ranches. Only they aren’t ranches as you think of them. They are FACTORIES to produce milk and meat. The stench is so bad that I have to cover my face with a towel in these areas. Remember those old commercials about happy cows in California? NOT. And as for Land O’Lakes and their sweet little signs on these enterprises, they can kiss my back forty. Today I bought some Irish butter from grass-fed cows. When I go to IRELAND this summer, I’ll check out the situation of the cows there.

(Yes, I am planning to go to Ireland. It’s not set up yet, but hopefully all will go well!)

Most of the landscape is monotonous desert stubbled with cacti or weeds, but occasionally we drive through master-planned chaos and more beheaded trees.

Last time I wrote about our drive, I wasn’t writing. I’ve been tinkering with my memoir manuscript and putting together the bones of my “genealogy” chapbook. It’s not a lot of writing, but it is writing. Β So YAY!!! How about you??

Leaving you with a pic of my favorite shelter cat, Slupe. I couldn’t wait to get back and see her. She’s a prickly little calico/tortie (nobody can decide for sure, but I think she’s a calico), but we have a special relationship. She’s been at the shelter for two years and needs rescuing!!!

Slupe in cave




Filed under #AmWriting, Arizona, California, Cats and Other Animals, Nonfiction, Photographs, Sightseeing & Travel, Writing

45 responses to “That Same Old Drive Again

  1. My eyes would be going in all directions, Luanne. I’ve always been fascinated by old abandoned buildings, houses and barns…wondering who lived or worked there.
    Ireland! That will be a great trip. I’ve always wanted to go there.
    I thought of you when I had a major “red neck” experience while being questioned during a meeting. How can we control this? πŸ™

  2. Slupe is gorgeous so there must be a story or she would have been scooped up!

    • I know. Unfortunately, she’s the one who threw a big hissy fit the first time they took her to PetSmart and PetSmart banned her from ever coming back again. And she doesn’t do herself any favors because she is a little prickly. But she loves it when someone is slow and gentle and let’s her decide how much attention she wants. And she loves boxes and caves of any kind. She needs to get away from being in a room with 14-18 cats. She’s considered special needs because of these reasons. We need ideas on how to place our special needs cats because there are getting to be too many of them.

  3. That stench reminds me of a battery chicken farm I once visited. It hit long before we reached the buildings

  4. Gosh, what a moonscape! Entropy at its best. Still there can be beauty in decay — or at least a story — and you caught it. How about me? I’m doing an editing job this week. Yippee!

  5. Oh poor little Slupe. She’s beautiful. I hope someone scoops her up and slathers her with attention soon.

    The “ranch”/factories sound repulsive, but planning your Ireland trip sounds like fun! πŸ™‚

    • Those factory farms are hideous. For the animals and for the humans. Slupe really needs that attention. she is so beautiful and such a little trouper.

  6. Yikes, I’m glad I don’t live near that factory. A constant nose clip sounds in order.

    I’d love to go to Ireland someday too. I’ve been to England, but never Scotland or Ireland. Hopefully I’ll get there.

    • Definitely a nose clip at least. I like a towel to cover my nose and my eyes at the same time!Years ago we went to Scotland at the same time we went to England. And LOVED Scotland. The people, the land, everything. I can’t wait for Ireland!

  7. I sympathize with your efforts to get a good picture as you drive by. It’s so hard, and often there’s no place or time to stop. But you did well.

    • Thanks, Anneli! They aren’t the best, that’s for sure, but hubby doesn’t even like me to roll down the window. He thinks I am distracting him from driving! haha

      • I go through this when we go to Montana, and it’s SO scenic. I want to take pictures every few hundred feet. I’d love to go there in a car someday so I could pull over quickly when I see …bighorn (or some type like that) sheep beside the highway like we did last year. By the time I had the camera turned on, we were past them. Too late. Again!

  8. We have cows that run loose on our front lawn now and again–all cows should be allowed that every so often. We milk our goats but it’s really hard work πŸ™‚

  9. I’ve been on drives like this Luanne and after hours and hours I feel like cutting my own throat! (not really that bad, but close). I really feel for those poor animals. I think if more people visited these ‘farms’ they would quickly change their minds about what they eat.
    Ireland sounds fantastic! Some wonderful person has done our family tree and it goes back to a Norseman who hid in Ireland and then went to Scotland and married a daughter of a chief. They had a son called Kenneth where the name MacKenneth and MacKenzie comes from (in 1270). It’s really interesting stuff!

    • Yes, those poor poor animals. People need to stop hiding their hands in the sand. Wow, you were really lucky to reap the benefits of all that research! What an exciting story! I’ve been working on my family tree for years and only go back about 1700 so far. There are more records, but it all a lot of work and I like to move from branch to branch. I used to feel an affinity with the Scots, but knew my ancestors were from the “continent.” Imagine my surprise when my DNA test says a significant % does come from the British Isles. Definitely before 1700 though!

  10. I often want to stop during these drives and capture pictures. Taking photographs through the car window can be frustrating. Abandoned buildings always makes me think of stories that are left behind.

    • It is so frustrating and hubby says not to roll down the windows because it’s too distracting. He thinks just snapping the photos is distracting. I think he just hates the drive! I love abandoned buildings. They are so full of stories and so interesting to look at.

  11. I’ll bet you loved that drive through the desert Luanne πŸ™‚ Great derelict buildings, but I would have been saddened having to drive past the cows. It must be so hard leaving all those cats at the shelter, I’d want to adopt every one!

    • That is the trouble: I do want all of them. But usually I focus on one or two and try to do some extra work for them, knowing something is better than nothing. The cows devastate me.

  12. If you keep posting pictures of Slupe, I might have to drive out to AZ and rescue her myself πŸ™‚ She is beautiful. I wonder if she would fare better with just 3 cats around????

  13. What a beautie! And you’re going to Ireland? Wow! You’ll be so close to me. Do you know my paternal grandmother was Irish (making me one quarter Irish of course) but I’ve never been to Ireland? What’s with that? You’ll love it, it is as green and beautiful as England and here the butter is locally produced by local cows which eat grass in fields. At least in Somerset, where I live πŸ™‚ I remember Land O Lakes. Looks so appealing… but so sad when the reality is really nothing more than an animal factory πŸ™ Hope you enjoyed your CA visit πŸ™‚ xoxo

  14. You make the best of the drive and I think the photo with the pretty yellow golden field offset the negative part of the cow and sheep ranches. Are the animals not able to roam and graze in the West? I understand how people want better conditions, but the stench definitely would be a sign of a “bad” kind of farm. Wondering if the heat created the worse smell then when I drive past dairy farms in Ohio?
    The trip to Ireland sounds wonderful!! I read this post awhile ago but must have had to get back to work, while I had been on break. Today, spending time with youngest daughter, including a lovely spa found in a a Victorian home owned by an African American mother and two beautiful daughters. I had my first facial here last November for my b’day. Will keep better in touch I hope once our busy schedule ends in the Fall. I worked, for example, this Wed from 6:55 am to 6:34 pm. Everyone picks up parts at Advance Auto, while in our warehouse we pack up store orders and ship with UPS trucks out of our warehouse.
    Blessings sent to you and your husband, Luanne. Let me know if you ever head towards Michigan since my newest idea is to purchase five signed books, one for my Mom, each of my granddaughters Lara, Marley, Makyah and me! Full price, pick up when we meet or let me send check to you. . . I realize it will be about a hundred dollars but I really cannot wait to get library to order these. If I went through Goodreads, would they be personalized?

  15. You have managed to get some great pics on what otherwise sounds like a boring drive. Glad to hear you are back writing. I have returned to revising/rewriting my pirate novel as I try to keep my mind off what on earth is happening with my agent and The Bone Trench. πŸ™‚

  16. Enjoyed the captures Luanne very sparse land out there. I love Ireland only been once to Dublin and down the coast a little but one of my favourite trips. Get your camera ready for green hills and gorgeous old buildings. Kitty looks adorable.

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