|photo by David Chapple
photo by Court Tefft
|Carpentry business operating out of the barn
|Inside the Barn- photo by Michael Emrys
|Inside the Barn|
Another view of the Barn, this time on a foggy day. This is what you saw as you came
around the corner after driving "up the Hill".
photo by Michael Emrys
Leslies store in the barn on a snowy day in 1973 - Daniel, Diddle Ken Z., ?, Sonny and Jody
|photo by David Chapple
(Most of my black and white phtotos are from the early seventies. Neil)
BILLY, CARL WATCH A PORTABLE TV OUTSIDE BARN
It was either a presidential election, a Mohammed
Ali fight, Nixon resigning or a world series game. Or something else
I completely don't remember. Neil
THE BARN TELEPHONE, EARLY FREE STORE
THE BARN FROM INSIDE MARK'S TRUCK
BARN INTERIOR, OCT '72
BARN MEETING, NOV '72
KENNY, ZEM AND AMY IN THE BARN, NOV '72
ELYA'S HORSE, JAN '73
Elya won his horse at our County Fair when the owner said that anyone who could stay on the
horse for three minutes could take him home. Mark
Mark has this a little bit wrong. A couple who lived in a teepee down the road from my first little hexagon plastic house (before Gay gave me her teepee) said that they were going to the Reed's Horse Auction in Hayward. "Want to come?" I grabbed all the money I had, $80, and hopped into their truck. At Reed's sitting in the bleachers around the small square ring, we were being obnoxious, and I was bidding $80 on every horse. They brought out a young horse with no saddle, on a halter. For some reason I cannot understand, I was inspired to shout out "If I can stay on that horse for 10 seconds will you let me keep her?" The auctioneer, who was thoroughly annoyed with me by this time, answered "Buddy, if you can stay on this horse for 10 seconds she's yours!" I'm certain he thought I would be taught a rough lesson. But its after midnight now and so I'll finish this story later.
Here I am again :)) So I vaulted over the wall, topped with a pipe railing, into the ring. The young man holding the halter said "This is dangerous. Do you know what you are doing?" I told him not to worry and grabbed the halter. But The horse's back was about as high as my neck and I couldn't vault up onto her the way they do in the Westerns. All the cowboys in the bleachers, about 100 of them, were laughing. I pulled down with both hands on her halter thinking it might get her used to my weight (that was stupid!) She lifted her head and me with her. I remember swinging around in a circle, skipping a bit in the ground as I flew, and staring into her big brown eyes. She stopped and I had another inspiration. I led her over to the wall and stepped up onto it. She skittered a step away, so I leaped out onto her shoulders, wrapped my legs around the bottom of her neck and my arms around the top end, tucked my head into my arms and hung on.
She went all rigid and shivery, as if some mountain lion had jumped on her, and then bucked around the ring. Well, she was young, and I guess tired from being trailered from wherever, so she didn't buck for very long, only a few seconds. Then with a shiver she dropped her head down to the ground. Clinging to her neck the way I was, I was also pointed down towards the ground. Just to make sure there was no dispute I counted to 10 and then slide down her neck till my feet touched the ground (like when you touch your toes) and stepped off. All the cowboys were cheering "Its his horse!! Its his horse!!" What a rush!! :)))
My friends had bought a horse and one of the cowboys lent us a trailer saying "I know you're honest and you'll bring it back", another a hitch ball. I think the cowboy ethic is if you make a challenge and live up to it you're a real man :)) So we trailered their horse to The Land and I came back the next day to get mine. The auctioneer told me "Boy, you did a damn fool thing! Do you know that they can kick their neck with their rear feet?!!" I didn't know :)) Anyway, I trailered her back to The Land, returned the trailer, and spent the next few weeks chasing after her whenever she got away. Then a tall cowboy visiting us told me to get a book "Breaking and Training the Stock Horse" by O. Williamson. "You follow every step in this book" he said "and you'll train your horse." I did and he was right. The book broke down everything into tiny steps that the horse would get accustomed to without panicking. If I skipped a step all hell broke loose. Six weeks later I was riding my horse.
We became good friends. I built a ring next to my teepee and "lunged" her, which is having her go in a circle on a rope while I gave commands and used a long switch to show her what they meant. So I would say "Whoa" and hold the switch in front of her so she would stop. Soon she would stop at the command "Whoa". I taught her voice commands for each gait. "Git git" meant trot, '"Ghiahh" meant gallop. I forget what I said for cantor. Sometimes when I would whistle for her, she would pull her lips back in what seemed like a big grin. Maybe in horse talk that's something else? I had trouble in the saddle when we went down hill, and she would slow down for me. She would come when I whistled. I named her Gently.
When I left the land Billy and Maria drove Gently and I up to Canada where I hoped to buy land for a new commune. I have a photo of me and her in that truck on The Land. I'll post it when I find it. Later I gave her away and felt so sorry about it for years. But that's all another story.
ELYA, FEBRUARY '73
I remember looking up at the camera for this photo :))
SOCIAL MOMENT, MARCH '73
PHYLLIS IN LESLIE'S STORE, FEB '74
BIG SNOW, FEB '74
THE BARN AND FRONT HOUSES, APRIL '74
MICHAEL, MARK, TOMMY, SUSAN, NOV '78
PATSY, KATHY, SUSAN OUTSIDE THE BARN
photos by Neil
Thanks so much for these photos Neil!! I would have no pics of these memories without them!!