Note: All my posts on the ’60s are gathered under “The ’60s,” above. Being a blog, these posts are in reverse order. If you want to read them from the beginning, scroll down. Chapter 1 is at the bottom, chapter 2 above that, etc.

Coyotes on the Rise

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Last night, on the way “over the hill” and back, I saw 5 coyotes and 2 foxes. This guy was by side of road at about 7 this morning. It let me get within 15 feet. Not good. I believe clueless people are feeding them. Bad idea. Makes them beggars instead of hunters. Also a death sentence for some, as they get hit by cars. “A fed coyote is a dead coyote.”

As the Miwok knew, they are special.

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This little beauty down a side street in Torrey, Utah, stopped me in my tracks. It’s in our book Home Work. The log work is perfect — a master builder at work. (Check out notched-in log partition in center, and notched-in cross-ties — look at second horizontal log below eave.) Perfect proportions. No architect in sight. Shot in 1989.

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3D Laser Model of Vintage Trailer

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At this late stage in life I’ve forsworn acquiring more tchotchkes, but this little computer-generated 3D laser model I picked up at Builders’ Booksource in Berkeley was irresistible. Took a while to snap all the pieces together. Interesting how accurate the tabs and openings are. They have to fit perfectly and snugly to hold everything together. About 8” by 5.” Made by onemanonegarage.com

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A Week in Baja California Sur with the Most Gregarious Person I’ve Ever Known

I just spent a week in Baja Califonia Sur — San José del Cabo, La Paz, and the east cape, mostly with my friend Chilon and his family. Was refreshing not being in touch with any Americans for a week.

Chílon is a chilango, a native of Mexico City. He’s been in Los Cabos now for 35 years. Back in the ’90s, he had a children’s radio show on Sundays that was wildly popular, especially with kids on the ranchos. He called himself “Paraquin” (pair-ah-keen), a parrot, and he would trill his voice. He’d say, “OK, Maria and José, you mind your parents and study hard in school and now — here’s “Start Me Up”  by the Rolling Stones…

Everywhere we went in those days, kids stopped him on the street. People would trill at him across the street.

It’s been incredible hanging out with this guy. I’ve known him for 31 years now. We’ve gone fossil hunting, cave art exploring, camping in lush canyons, visiting old missions out in the desert, to remote ranchos, to small town fiestas. We’ve eaten (and cooked) together a hundred times. I’ve watched his boys, César and Daniel grow from little kids to grown men (lawyer and artist, respectively.) Everywhere he goes, he radiates good will. It’s like he moves along in a bubble of good cheer, and I’m tagging along for the ride.

On this trip, I watched him work his magic over and over — in almost every encounter. He’s got the gift of gab, and he jokes, smiles, laughs, says just the right thing. His words in Spanish have a rhythm, a singing quality.

We were in Cabo San Lucas, checking out the Disneyesque part of Los Cabos one night, and he asked if I was hungry, yes, so he turned down a street in the real part of town and we went into a dimly-lit taco stand. No one there. Waitress comes over and he’s got her laughing in 30 seconds. I end up getting small bowl of delicious bean soup and 2 of the best fish tacos I’ve ever had. Norteño music playing, Chílon starts singing along, with shouts of Órale, and pretty soon the women are singing along.

One of these years I’m going to do a book on my 12 years of off-and-on exploration of Baja Sur; working title: Deep in the Heart of Baja. Meanwhile, I’ll post photos from time to time. Here are some photos from last week:

Little outdoor restaurant in hills south of La Paz, owned by Daniel’s novia’s parents

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