Don't Do It Again

Brought Chewey and Bishop out to Base Camp with me. Living at 4,000 feet above sea level instead of 400 feet, not being able to get on the beds or furniture, and the heat, it took them awhile to find a place they felt comfortable with but they did.

Most days when it cools down Kobae wants to go for a walk and when Kobae wants to go, everybody goes. As we’re heading down the driveway to go hiking a jeep pulls up. Guy gets out and wants to know if he can take some pictures of the lodge. I tell him no problem but I’m leaving, so if he would hurry. He takes several pictures and then says

Him: “You want to buy some pictures of your lodge?”
Me: “No thank you. I know what it looks like.”
Him: “They’re really good pictures.”
Me: “I’m leaving. You need to leave also.”
Him: “But...”
Me: ”I’m going to hook up the hose and wet you down if you don’t leave.”
Him: “Can I at least give you my card in case you change your mind.”
Me: “If it will make you leave quicker, sure.”

He gives me his card and drives off. I put it in my pocket.

We’re out hiking in some rock formations east and above the lodge. Kobae thinks he’s a rock climber. When we leave, we set out water and gas for people lost, thirsty, and out of gas, and it happens a lot. We also leave a walkie talkie on the front porch with instructions on how to use it if you need to contact us.

I look down from the rocks and see a guy racing furiously around the lodge looking in all the windows. He didn’t seem to notice the walkie talkie. I help him.

I get on my walkie talkie and say “Pick up the walkie talkie on the orange cooler on the front porch. He stops and looks around trying to figure out where the voice came from. I say, “Pick up the walkie talkie on the orange cooler on the front porch.”

I see him pick it up and stare at it.

Me: “Push the large button on the side, speak into the walkie talkie, release the button when you are done speaking.”

Dude: “Dude, this is so cool. Dude where are you? I can’t see you. Can you see me?”

Me: “Yes I see you. I’m up in the red rocks directly to the east of you.”

Dude: “Dude, I can’t see you. I’m looking at the screen. I don’t know how you see me.”

Me: “It’s a walkie talkie.”

Dude: “Dude, this is so cool, but I can’t see you.”

Me: “What can I help you with?”

Dude: “Dude, my friend broke his collarbone and needs a ride to the hospital. Can you take us?”

Me: “I need you to open the front door and grab the key ring with three keys on it. Take the middle key and drive the truck to the bottom of the driveway and turn left until you see me.”

Dude: “Dude, you trust me with your truck? This is so cool.”

Me: “I’ll meet you on the road.”

A few minutes later “dude” pulls up in the truck and sees the dogs coming over the hill behind me.

Dude: “Dude, I see why you needed the truck, to bring the dogs back.”

Bishop and Chewey jump in the back seat and I walk around and open the tailgate.

Dude: “You got another dog?”

Me: “Sort of.”

He looks past me and sees Kobae coming up over the hill and down the dirt road towards us.

Dude: “Dude, no way. A turtle dude. A turtle. In the desert. Holy cow. Dude, I mean dude, this is so cool.”

I pick Kobae up and put him in the back of the truck and we head back to Base Camp. I put Bishop, Chewey, and Kobae in the lodge and we’re off to rescue his friend at the abandoned oil well.

When we get there it’s not him and his friend, it’s him and four friends, all with bicycles. We get five bikes and five guys in the truck and I put on the emergency blinkers and head to the hospital over some pretty memorable terrain. As we’re passing the lodge I ask the broken collarbone guy if he wants some ice out of our freezer and he does.

I run inside to get ice and everybody comes walking in the door.
Me: “Get back in the truck.”
Dude: “Had to see the turtle dude.”
Me: “I’m leaving. You can either be in the truck in 30 seconds or be here when I get back in two hours.
Dude: “But Dude...”
Me: “But Dude, I’m leaving.”

Everybody piles back in the truck. After a torturous ride over Hurrah Pass and down Kane Creek I get them to the hospital. Everyone else leaves to go with the injured friend into the hospital. Dude stays to help me unload bikes.

Dude: “Me and you, we’re gonna be best friends.”
Me: “Yea, that’s not gonna happen.”
Dude: “We need to get together.”
Me: “0 for 2.”
Dude: “Today was the best day of my life.”
Me: “Really, how so?”
Dude: “First there was the walkie talkie that could see people.”
Me: “Well that’s true.”
Dude: “Then there was the turtle in the middle of the desert.”
Me: “Also true.”
Dude: “The ride to the hospital, that was like being on a Disneyland ride.”
Me: “Glad you had a good day. I gotta go.”
Dude: “How we gonna get together?”
Me: “It’s a tragedy. Two ships passing in the night.”
Dude: “Don’t you have a card or something so I can get hold of you?”
Me: “I wish I did but…..wait, I do.”

I reached in my pocket and gave him the photographer’s card.

Me: “I forget stuff a lot so when you call, remind me of what a great day we had. It might take me awhile.” Dude: “All right. Cool dude. I will.”

Back to "Stories"