Some say the world will end with fire.

Others say with ice.

From what I've tasted of desire

I hold with those that favor fire.

But if I had to perish twice,

I think I know enough of hate,

To say that for destruction ice,

Is also great and would suffice.

Robert Frost


"Good things come to those who wait, but, only the things LEFT by those who hustle." - Unknown (at least by me)

"Life is wonderful, without it you are dead." - Hy "Pete" Peterson - Park City and Kenecott Miner

"Don't worry about those people in your past---there is a reason they are not in your present." - Unknown

"Life's tough - it's even tougher if you're stupid." - John Wayne

"The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary!" - Vince Lombardi

"If you aren’t living on the edge, you’re probably taking up too much space.” ~ Attributed to Jim Whittaker by Doug ‘Swani’ Swantner, Alaska Smokejumper and Air Attack Base Manager (Ret.)

About Me

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I am married and have seven children and twenty grandchildren. I retired January 1, 2010 after working 39+ years for the Forest Service...NEW CHAPTER IN MY LIFE HAS BEGUN!

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I am tickled with how our garden is growing. Everything started without having to be replanted and it is starting to look really good.


Today is the beginning of the two day three southern forest range ride. It is a time for all of the Rangers and Range Managers to get together and look at range conditions and discuss things they have done to make range conditions better on their units. There are many of my friends that will be participating.

It is a very fun and interesting two days. I had planned to go. I debated all night if I should actually show up. This morning when I woke up I called one of the Range Cons that used to work for me and asked him to go for a drive with me. He did. I told him I had decided not to go and that I thought I needed to give the new Ranger a little distance and let him take over. I told him to tell everyone I wanted to go but thought better of it and cancelled my participation.

It would have been a great trip but that is part of the price you pay for a new life. I would never give up my retirement for a two day horse back trip.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Yesterday I took a trip over the mountain with an old friend. It was my first trip on the mountain since I retired. We had a great visit and saw some of the prettiest lands in the nation.

I was somewhat surprised to find that all the snow was gone on the road---but just barely---it was still wet in a couple of places. The part of the road that is under construction survived the winter pretty well. I would think the construction company would start working pretty quick to finish it up.

We had a great trip and a good visit. Lots and lots of talk about the "good old days" and we exchanged a lot of memories from our careers. All in All it was a fun day. THANKS FOR THE RIDE!!!

Guess it is time to take a trip on the other mountain to see the elk---I miss that a lot.

Monday, June 28, 2010


I am definately a poor traveler. I get home from a trip and have an extended recovery time. I used to recover from a fire run in a day or two and be ready to go again. Now it takes several days for me to feel like I have recovered to the point I could go out again.

In addition to the fire travel I have done this month (two trips to Las Cruces, New Mexico) we did a trip south that required driving 320 miles round trip in a day. We ate breakfast and lunch on the road so it seemed like more travel than it really was. I am not sure why that trip took such a toll but I am still trying to recover. I am happy we went but wish I recovered faster.


Tuesday, June 22, 2010


I made another run to Las Cruces, New Mexico today to a fire that started yesterday and was really cranking (meaning burning hot and fast). Last night after the sun went down the humidity came up to over 40% so the fire had a hard time burning. This morning there were just a few spots scattered around the perimeter. They sent the crews to the spots and bombed them, with the heavy helicopters. When I got here they were down to two spots along the perimeter nearest Las Cruces and the rest of the fire burned into the one we put our last week. It ended up burning 2582 acres--pretty big for a one day fire.

Great run---proves the system works very well---down and back over 900 miles each way in two days---beat that all you logistics folks in the military!!!!! We can do it every day!!!! AND SOMETIMES HAVE TO.

Monday, June 21, 2010


I got home late Saturday night from a fire assignment in Las Cruces, New Mexico. It was a great assignment. I worked with some young really energenic people that really wanted to learn how to do logistics. I had a great time coaching them on how to do things and how to get stuff.

The fire was 5160 acres when we left and was contained on three sides. The fourth side was too dangerous to put people in because of unexploded military ordinance and didn't have much chance of going too far so we left it open.

It was a good run for me. Only lasted four days but I knocked a lot of rust off as it was my first run of the year. It is amazing how much you can forget from year to year if you don't use it.


Tuesday, June 15, 2010


I got a call a few minutes ago to see if I would go to Las Cruces, New Mexico to do the Logistics on a pretty good sized fire there. I debated a couple of minutes then told them if they could work it through the dispatch centers I would go. I got a call a few minutes ago and they have placed the order but it won't come through until tomorrow morning now.

My last post was about being an adrenaline junkie---yup I am one---it is pumping like crazy and it isn't even a sure thing that I will get the call. Wonder how tough it will be to sleep tonight.

It is really nice to have people out there who remember you after you retire.

Monday, June 7, 2010


Todays blog is going to be about my first fire on a Type 1, National Incident Management Team. It was in August of 1986---and the Nevada/California border was tinder dry. Our team got the call to go to the east side of California to a major fire that was burning houses as it ran out of the mountains in Nevada into the flats of California. We organized quickly and they flew us out on charter flights---as that was how they got folks there fast back in my early career when we could rent vehicles at the airports because they kept enough on hand to deal with a 50 person team. The car rental agencies don't carry that many anymore which makes charter flights tougher.

I was sitting across the aisle from the Incident Commander and as we started into the airport he asked the pilot to make a pass around the fire before we landed. It was awful---you could see houses burning and see the fire approaching another house. He made the comment "that house will be gone before we land." We landed and started through our briefing. It took about an hour to get everyone there and another hour to get through the briefing and then we went out to the camp site to set up for the next days operatuions.

On the way out there I passed a D-7 Caterpillar idling along the road and as I got closer to the fire I passed a house that had it's porch just beginning to burn but had a lot of fire on it. I turned my rig around and got the Cat, drove it to the house and pushed the porch off the house and out into the brush. Then I walked the Cat back, parked it and drove my rig into camp.

I can't remember for sure but I believe 26 houses burned that night, but not the one I pushed the porch off from. The fire was tough to fight and was very fast moving so we set up for a lot of structure protection since we really couldn't get a safe place to start suppressing the fire. We sat up a pump and sprinkler system on a house and used their swimming pool for the water source. We had to activate the sprinklers and abandon this area of the fire for a few hours. When we came back all the houses we sprinkled were still standing.

We worked this fire for several more days and got it controlled and got ready to come home. As we were wrapping up the owners of both the houses mentioned came into camp and filed claims for the damage we caused---the swimming pool pump burned out when the water level dropped below the pick up point and the porch of the other house was destroyed by being pushed off the house and away from it. I could not believe what I was seeing---both houses were saved by our actions and now the owners were claiming we caused damage to them.

The lawsuits from this fire went on for years but the final outcome was that we were liable for the damage to both houses and therefore had to pay for both the porch and the swimming pool pump system. I was mad--guess I still am--if the two houses had burned that would have been an act of God but since the porch was pushed off and the pump took the water from the pool which caused the pump to burn out and both of these actions were acts of man therefore we were required to pay.

I have thought about this fire and these two incidents associated with it a lot during my career, and have since pushed other porches off houses and ran pump systems in other swimming pools where the owners did not file claims. However, I knew every time we did there was a big chance that we would have to pay the damage. So the point to this whole blog is who would be stupid enough to file a claim against someone that saved their house even though some damage was done to keep the entire structure from burning....


Saturday, June 5, 2010


I began fighting wildland fires in 1968 on a fire in Southern Utah. I was one of the pick up crew members that they used to fill out the crew to 20 people. My fire training lasted about two minutes---basically it was if it is burning throw it in, if it's not throw it out, now here is how you dig line and what you are responsible for---1/20th of a completed line, NOW GET TO WORK.

The fire was making a pretty good run toward a guard station so they sent our crew there to prepare it for fire to come to it and not burn it. We worked hard and removed most of the fuels around the structures. We got the culinary water started and got the hoses sprinkling. We would put each of two sprinklers on a section of fence and wait for it to wet the fence and vegetation pretty good then move them along. After a short time of doing this the crew was called to go to a different part of the fire but were told to leave two of us there at the Guard Station to protect it when the fire came to it.

Not a big deal right?

Well probably not if you have communications (which we didn't) and a way to get away from the fire if it got there (which we didn't) since the crew took all of the vehicles when they left for the other part of the fire.

All was going pretty well when all of a sudden we realized that the fire had burned across the only access road to the Guard Station and there was no way for anyone to get back in there to remove us if they needed to. Then the fire front started a good run across the sage brush flat that the station was located in. We could tell from the dark black smoke that the fire was really hot and could tell it was heading right for us. So we went to the hoses and prepared for it to get to us. We kept sprinkling the fence and vegetation hoping to get it wet enough that it wouldn't burn or at least would burn slow enough that it wouldn't hurt or kill us. We worked pretty hard on that and then---we could see the flame front---it was about a mile wide with flames over thirty feet high---and it was coming right at us. There was no way it wasn't going to get to us and there was no way anyone was getting in to remove us from where we were.

The guy they left me with had a couple of years of fire experience and we planned how we were going to attack the fire when it got inside the fence. We were going to stay back from the high vegetation until it crossed the fence then we were going to take it down inside the fence where we had removed a lot of the high vegetation. We were both quite confident we could do this without a great deal of personal risk. The fire front got to the fence and it sounded like ten jet airplanes taking off all at the same time. The ground pulsed with the sound. I had never seen or heard anything like this - NEVER. I was scared almost out of my wits.

The fire bumped the first edge of the fence and slowed down a bunch from the wet vegetation. It kept roaring past us as it continued across the flat in the vegetation outside the fence. We moved both hoses over to where it crossed the fence and worked clear around the perimeter to keep it from burning into the Guard Station. After about three hours of this the sun went down. In a few hours the head of the fire had laid down and rescuers were sent to see what had happened to us. When they got there everything was good. The fire hadn't got to the Guard Station and we were alive and well. Although we were both pretty scared. We made it through the fire and the crew got an excellent performance rating.

As the years went on I learned a lot about fire. The one thing I learned for sure is that I would never leave anyone in this situation. There was nothing of value at that Guard Station that was worth the risk that was taken with our lives. From that day on I vowed that I would never again be in a situation like that but I knew that I could stand my ground and come out safe.


I had many other experiences during my career where the adrenaline rush was pretty high and had some close calls, one when I was a crew boss where the entire crew nearly got burned over but we were always---ALWAYS---aware of our escape route and knew how fast we could make the rigs or a safety zone. And the one thing I learned from my first fire is that there is no shame in yellow---that's why we wear yellow shirts is to remind us it is better to run than to risk your life. Many times when I was crew bossing we were in the rigs and heading away from the fire when the Division Supervisor would call and say you guys are in trouble you need to get out now. We would call back and say we saw that coming a couple of hours ago and we're in the rigs headed south...

Last week I had a phone call from the guy left there with me at the Guard Station---we had a great visit---very early on in our conversation was how scary it was to have been left there. Those memories never die. Those friendships are very dear to my heart.

Friday, June 4, 2010


Actually this should be part 0.5 because it was before and during the bull riding portion of my life.

When I was in Junior High School I was invited to participate in a wrestling match. The reason I was invited was because my older brother was participating and it was no secret in town that we fought---A LOT---and I won most of these fights. I was warming up for the wrestling bout and I can remember having this hot burning sensation in my stomach. It eventually led to me throwing up and then I was ready to wrestle. It was an adrenaline thing---it did it to me at that match---at every other match I ever wrestled---and it still does it to me if I can't get right into whatever is causing the adrenaline to build.

Adrenaline is not necessarily a good thing. It is given to us to help us through crisis situations. It is a necessary ingredient for our bodies to go through the fight or flight stage when faced with an adversary. It can cause huge stresses on the heart and stomach. In my case it always affects my stomach---always, it may affect my heart too but I can't see or feel that.

Back to wrestling---I won that first match---it was tough but I was able to pull out the win in the last few seconds. I loved the feeling of winning. I loved the fact that I couldn't blame or give credit to anyone else if I lost or won. I loved winning. I was pretty good in High School. I won two trophies, one for best beginner when I was a sophomore and one for outstanding wrestler for the year when I was a senior. I never got to go to state because when it was tournament time and you had to wrestle three times in a day I never had the training or conditioning to get through it. I forgot to mention that we didn't really have a wrestling coach when I was in high school. We had a great guy that took on coaching the wrestling program just so we could participate in it. To this day he is my very favorite teacher. I loved the sport then and I love the sport now. It is awesome to watch a kid do his best---win or lose---if they do their best they are a winner in my book.

When I went to college I decided I would take a beginner wrestling class for the easy A. The second day of class the coach asked if there was anyone that had participated in wrestling in high school. I raised my hand and he picked me and another kid to do an exhibition round. I made a big mistake here---I soundly beat the kid---then I was informed that he wrestled on the college team and had done very well the previous year. The coach asked me if I was interested in wrestling for the college. I WAS---VERY INTERESTED---and the invitation came with a scholarship.

In college I had an outstanding coach. OUTSTANDING. He told me thousands of times that if I worked hard at it I couldn't be beat. After the first year I began to believe him. I had all of the confidence in the world that I could win. I tell people all the time that he convinced me that I couldn't be beat---when I went out on the mat there was never any doubt in my mind who would win. I also tell them that the second time I met an individual we both knew who was going to win. I never had a second match with any individual in college go past the second round.

I won enough matches and tournaments that I was invited to wrestle in the National Championships. I also got my orders to report to basic training for the Army at the same time. My coach went to work on the Army and was able to convince them to put back my reporting date for two weeks so I could do the Nationals. How'd he do that? Why would the Army negotiate? I have no clue but I look back at this time and it is amazing to me that I ever got to participate at this level because of the military thing and because of the small college I went to. BUT I DID.

I did well at the tournament. I won all of the matches leading up to the championship by pinning the opponent. I was psyched---I had the National Championship in my sights. It was great to go onto the mat for the championship---when we were introduced I looked across the mat and my mother and dad were sitting on the front row straight across from me. I had no clue what so ever that they would be there. It was awesome for me to have them there.

I wrestled one of the best matches of my life that night. I was ahead 18 to 2 in the third round. I looked up at the clock and there were fifteen seconds left. I decided to try to pin my opponent so that I could say I won all the matches in the Nationals by pins. I quickly put him into the guillotine, he was double jointed in the shoulders, he rolled through the hold and pinned me with a head lock. I was devastated. I couldn't believe I had made that stupid mistake. I was angry with myself. I was angry at the world.


Wrestling gave me a sense of being---I knew who I was and what I was capable of---I have never had any fear of anyone doing me bodily harm. I have used wrestling in several bad situations in my later life. The adrenaline is still there and I still throw up if I can't get right into the fray.


Thursday, June 3, 2010


I always loved race horses, ALWAYS. My grandfather owned some and a lot of my friends parents owned some. I always wanted to be a jockey. I started galloping horses when I was 21 getting them ready to be trained. I loved it. They are so big and strong and the workout you get from riding them is like running a mile for every half mile the horse runs. It is a tough sport. You have to be in really great shape to ride them. Just to give you an example of how hard it is squat on your haunches and bounce up and down for three minutes in a squat that resembles how a jockey sits on the saddle. Remember you are just doing the minor part of riding. In my opinion jockeys are the toughest athletes---bar none.

The very first horse I galloped they put me on to have a little fun at my expense. He was an old horse from the California tracks and he knew what he was doing. I was young and dumb and didn't have a clue. We went out on the track and I let him start galloping, at which point he just took off and ran away as hard as he could for a mile and a half. By the time we got there I was just trying to hang on and keep from passing out from lack of oxygen and had decided I was just going to hang on and hope I stayed in the saddle until the horse got tired, died or quit running.

I had just settled in to catch my breath and ride him out when he stopped, turned to the infield and stopped (saluted the track), and finished his turn and trotted back to where the winners circle is and stopped again. I slid off and thought I was going to die from lack of air. Everyone there was shocked that I had made all three rounds on horse that was in such good shape and was so hard to hold (just for the record---I rode him---I didn't hold him). The second time I rode him I figured out that if I responded faster on the reins pulling him up than he responded coming out of the turns I could hold him down the straight of ways and he just loafed around the turns so I got better at it. After several weeks of that they began to let me ride the better horses. I loved it.

Every week we would blow some of the horses. A blow is a race from a given point on the track to the finish line but without a starting gate and you try to keep your horse fairly close to the horse you are blowing against. That was always fun to let one go full out for a little distance. I can remember after this one of the owners standing by the track fence watching us gallop and yelling "Dee Ice---you get ahold of that colt---get hold of him." I always like to give them just a little faster gallop than everyone else tried to give them. I loved the speed, the wind, and the sounds of the hoof beats and the sound of the movement of the liquids in the horses stomach. All in all I just loved the sport---and I loved the horses---and I loved the adrenaline rush you got riding a turn at full speed on the back of a 1200 pound animal that you (at 115 pounds) were controlling with two little leather reins.

After a few months of this I graduated into competition on the bush tracks (and never graduated to the large tracks) and got to ride in the races. I'm here to tell you that when the open the gates to let the horses out your adrenaline level is higher than when you are riding a bull. You have no idea how the horse will break and if one of the other horses will bump you or knock you out of contention. You know that you have got to ride as fast as you can for the first 200 yards and then get your postion for the run around the turn. There is a lot of bumping and brushing as you do this and that is all in the game. At anytime during this your horse could have the front legs interfered with and you could go down. The back legs are not so critical and if they get interfered with just result in knocking you back a few lengths.

I had many good and bad experiences riding race horses. I am only going to share a couple.

I was riding a horse that was nicknamed big and ugly because he was really tall (over 17 hands) and had a head that was unusually long. He could run with about any horse but he didn't like to pass (and usually wouldn't). I rode him a lot and won a lot of races on him. I would push him up to the lead horse and push him to pass, knowing he wouldn't, and just before the finish wire I would reach down with my bat and bump him on the chin. He would raise his head to avoid the bat and we'd win by a nose. I did this time after time. His owner loved me. The other jockeys never figured out how to do it.

I was riding a really nice quarter horse (he eventually won the All American Futurity) but I hated him. Every time I touched him to do anything he would hurt me. I was treating a cut on his rear hoof once and he kicked the bottle of medicine out of my hand into the wall of the stable---the entire content of the bottle went into the wall in a spot a little smaller than a dime. There were no drips down the wall, all the liquid went into it. That will let you know how hard he kicked my hand. Anyway back to the race. When he broke from the gates his bridle hooked on the right side of the gate and broke the leather strap that runs from the ear to the bit. After we cleared the gate his bridle fell off. The bit was on his neck down by his front legs, I had hold of the reins but had absolutely no control. The horse was running his hardest. I was trying to stay on and not handicap him. He ran a perfect race and won it easily but I had no idea how I was going to stop him on the back side of the track. Not to worry--he stopped himself, saluted the track, and trotted back to the winners circle. I have laughed about this race a hundred times since because all I did was stay on---I didn't help in any way to win the race.

A couple of weeks ago Inklings and I were talking to a guy who has been my friend most of my life and he said "I remember a race with you and (another bush track jockey) were riding down the home stretch just whipping each other and the horses were doing whatever they wanted to do." We all laughed but that happened a lot with me and that other jockey--he unseated me once with a sharp rap to the front of the head with the handle of his racing bat as I was making a pass on the bottom turn--all the other horses in the race jumped over me when they passed. Just after that I forced his horse to jump the rail into the inside of the track for the pay back. Neither of us were called for a foul---BOTH OF US SHOULD HAVE BEEN.

I did this for five years and used it to bolster my financial situation---which wasn't all that good during that time period. I was married and had two kids when I gave it up. But I didn't give up adrenaline highs as you'll see later.


Inklings told me that I should do a post regarding my addiction to adrenaline. I've thought about it for several days and have figured out that it'll take more than one post to cover it so here is the first.

My first year of college a whole group of us went to the Alamo, Nevada rodeo. Now this isn't just an ordinary rodeo. They gather their cattle off the range in the fall and put all the bulls in the town rodeo arena so they can sort them out by owner. But before they do that they have the rodeo and the cowboys get to ride the bulls from the range. So they are not rodeo bulls just rank bulls from the range.

I was really wanting to see my friends (the real cowboys) do well at this rodeo. I had absolutely no desire to ride a bull and didn't even have any of the required equipment. BUT--them being the good friends they were told me they would loan me everything I would need if I would just ride. Well it was pretty tough on me at that age to be called a chicken so I paid up my entrance fee and drew my bull and got ready to ride him. He was a little (and I do mean little) black angus but he was as mean as they came.

I watched as my room mate rode his bull and got a pretty good score (mid 70's if I remember right) and the rest of the guys I was with either rode or bucked off and then it was my turn. I was scared---bloody scared---I didn't have a clue how to ride a bull other than what I was told behind the chutes during the bull riding. With all that coaching anyone could ride a bull---right? Well probably not---but I was so scared I wasn't about to buck off---I got this unbelievable high as I settled onto the bulls back and wrapped my hand in the bull rope. I knew I was going to ride him. I did---for a score in the mid-80's---which was enough for me to win the bull riding and the money. Man you can't believe the high I got. As soon as the rodeo was over we went to Vegas where we promptly lost all the winnings.

That was just the start. I went to the arena with my room mate every night after that and rode the practice bulls, the bareback horses and the saddle broncs. I wasn't a good cowboy but I could ride all three types of bucking stock a little. I was hooked. We went to all of the rodeos all over the south west. I won some and lost some but I did win the all round cowboy at three rodeos for getting the best score for riding all three. I was sad that year when the rodeo season ended---the last rodeo of the season was at Alamogordo, New Mexico. Six of us went down, three of us came home with some pretty good money. I was one of those.

In the spring we went to a few rodeos and then school was over for the year. That fall we picked up where we left off and rodeo'd like crazy. I was also wrestling at college so there was a lot of conflict regarding meets and I had to drive late into the night every week after we got home from wrestling to make it to the rodeos. I won a few more rodeos on individual animals but never won another all round cowboy. In February I wrestled for the National Championship and lost so got second. I was ahead 18 to 2 and decided to pin the guy. He was double jointed in the shoulder and rolled through the guillotine---if you know anything about wrestling---when the opponent does that there is no hope for you.

The day after the wrestling meet I reported to Basic Training for the Army at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. They extended my reporting date two weeks to allow me to wrestle in the Nationals. I look back at that now and am overwhelmed that they did that.

To end this little post I will tell you that this was the end of my rodeo days---but my college room mate continued to ride bulls and do well for over thirty-five years. Now that my friends is a real cowboy. Today he raises bucking stock and produces his own rodeos from Tulia, Texas. He has always been my hero. ALWAYS.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


What an unlikely title....but we went shopping today and ran into a friend that we haven't seen or heard from in about 35 years. She recognized Inklings or we wouldn't have recognized her. She and her husband were good friends while I was going to school at both universities I attended after we were married. We had a lot of fun together and killed a lot of weekends.

After we graduated he went into a business where he developed a bacteria (I think---may have been a fungus) that ate oil. It was used in oil spill clean-ups all over the world. It took him lots of tries and a lot of time to finally work through and come up with his discovery. About the time he started to make a lot of money (and he made a lot of money) from it he found out he had cancer (caused by his experimenting) and he died within a couple of years. He left a young family of wife and three children. It was sad.

She told us today she married one of his employees who helped her run the business but she finally got fed up with him and got a divorce. After that she went to nursing school and was a nurse for a lot of years. She said she retired this year from nursing but still has to work two days a month---I don't know if this is to pay her insurance or what.

It was good to see her and get reacquainted---she owns a house about 30 miles south of us and said she spends about half of her time there. That will make it easy to stay in touch with her from now on.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


Tonight right after dinner our doorbell rang. I could see it was a small boy but couldn't tell for sure who it was. I opened the door and one of the boys we teach in Primary, his little sister and his mom were on the porch. He handed me a plate of snicker doodles (which by the way were really good) and a thank you note for me and Inklings for being his teachers and for the handouts we give him every week. This is the best kid. We have never, ever seen him do anything wrong. When the other kids get rowdy in class he just moves over next to one of us so he can continue to pay attention to the lesson. We both love this little guy---we should be thanking his mom and dad that they let us teach him. Here is the card---the heart is for Inklings the Bull is for me---he knows I rode bulls when I was in college---Inklings says that it is because deep down he knows I am full of BULL!!!


Tonight is a celebration for me---we got the garden and the flower garden planted today. That is a great accomplishment for me. I am always happy when we finally get them planted. This year so far we have planted in the garden two rows of pole beans, a cherry tomato, a roma tomato, six better boy tomatoes, six green peppers, one jalepeno pepper, a crookneck squash, a zukeni squash, five hills of cucumbers and a patch of green onions about 3'x6' (not in a row but an oblong patch---and I probably forgot something but this is all I can remember.

I like the feeling of having the garden planted but I don't like that as much as when we start picking tomatoes and cucumbers and things from it to eat every night---I like that better---much better.