Cabin Drought


If you read the scoop loop last week you will remember that wife Tammy was gone for a little over a week. You might also recall me telling about when a few years back, being gone and coming home to some bulls that were locked off water. I said I new immediately something was wrong.

Well she flew in to Billings at 10 p.m. a few nights ago and we got home about 11:30 after waiting for luggage and the drive home. I was bringing things into the cabin and making sure old dog Huckleberry was alright I went into the kitchen and Tammy was watering her plants. They looked pretty thirsty, and they were cactus.

I couldn’t believe it, and felt terrible. I never gave them a thought, and never even noticed them the whole time I was home alone. As soon as Tammy came in she could see something was wrong. No gate had blown shut, I had just not even seen the needs of the plants.

How much am I missing in this world, if I don’t even notice something in my own house that I spend lots of time with? We don’t have TV, so that’s not taking all my time. I read a lot, but I also spend a little bit of time just looking at the cabin and how it’s built and all the stuff we have in it like some nice bits, some rawhide, and the is a real nice Will James painting I study sometimes. But the only living thing in the house that really needs my care I missed.

So a valuable reminder that I need to become more aware of everything around me, especially the things that require my care and observation.

I don’t know if cactus have feelings, but I do, and I am not satisfied with my Stewardship abilities in the cabin. I didn’t do what was important. I didn’t “see it”.

It’s interesting how water or the lack of was the important thing in both scenarios.

The bulls recovered fine before, and I guess the plants are too. I’m not sure what they looked like before, but I’m figuring out what they should look like from here on.

5 thoughts on “Cabin Drought

  1. John Carpentet

    Thanks for the lesson in “mindfulness.” The most important moment of our lives is the immediate one!

    I hope that y’all will travel to New Mexico soon.

  2. Lynda Thurston

    So true Kurt! Mindfulness doesn’t just happen, it take two elements. A willingness to engage in the present and then an observation. I think this is much harder to do with people or animals because we tend to project our feelings into the situation. Observing surroundings can be easier. A gate is either open or closed, a light is either off or on but relationship comes with layers of things that we project back at. Kind of reminds me of face value and true value. Thanks for the reminder.

    1. curtpate Post author


      Exactly. That is right on. I think being married to a bronc rider has really helped you to “see it”.

  3. Michelle Holden

    This is a great lesson. I usually spend too much time out with the creatures, or hiking the hills, or away selling my wares, and I have overlooked my own cacti to the point that I don’t think they will recover. it has given me a new outlook. Take more time and be more observant of what’s going on around me. If I am unable to nurture the living things I have taken responsibility for, perhaps I need to take on less. It has slowed me down. Thanks for the reminder.

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