The moment I bought a motorhome.
During a time in the 70s I had joined a health club, total fun and babes, met the owner and wound up running a few of his clubs. After seeing the industry scam laden, I knew I could do it Right and make it work.
Met a girl with drive and a willingness to learn, so in the early 80s I decided I'd open one. First mistake was marrying that chick, that was the beginning of the end, but nonetheless, an integral part of my future.
Long story short, I left the industry, I was sick of liberal women. My clubs had Aerobics and Iron, hence the name of my clubs.
All my clubs were built in Yuppy areas, Folsom, Orangevale, both very wealthy areas, both packed with libs who bailed on the Bay Area. These women are the worst, they are awful human beings, snobby as hell, but worst yet, racist! I was looking for another good employee, they needed experience and a willingness to work.
A young black guy applied, though he came in on time, he badly needed a shower and didn't dress for an interview. Nice kid, but I didn't need green, I wanted experience, so he was not considered.
He leaves, I go into my office and wait for the next appointment, there's a knock at the door, and 11 women burst in and like a murder of crows, start squawking all at once.
I got them to calm down and tell what the issue was, two of them literally said, "You Aren't Hiring A Nigger"!
They all nod in agreement.
I stood looking at them for a moment in a dazed stare. A moment went by and the longer I paused, the angrier I got. I finally said under a controlled and restrained hatred and need to punch someone.
I said Get the Fuck Out, I will hire anyone I want to, people are people!
I grew up in what became the hood, thanks to the policies inflicted on Calif by LBJ, my neighborhood became a shithole as he moved families out of the Chicago projects housing he bulldozed.
Overnight, Calif would never be the same.
But despite ruining literally one third of the Capitol of Ca and getting bullied everyday throughout the 60s and hating all black kid, I got over it. Sure, they were punks, but I still had good friends who happened to be black. So my prejudice was short lived, my real hate was for the Dim party and the destruction their racist policies inflicted on America.
Back to the whiny racist lib bitches. I said, never come back to my club ever again, I told my secretary to cut them all a refund.
All but two apologized profusely, regardless, I was done with the pissing and whining, add to that, the wife cheating, I wanted out. Go d knows I despise liberal women, give me a Christian country gal...
Long story shorter, I bought a 28' motorhome and planned to move to Alaska.
I called real-estate offices up and down the West coast, and land was high, same in Alaska as Ca and Oregon, Idaho as well.
So Sitting in my motorhome with two dogs with my future in Gods hands, I asked God where next? He said drive, so I hit the road, he said turn, I did and wound up in the foothills overlooking the Sacramento valley, and directly below was a large established ranch.
He said drive down there, talk to them.
I pull down in front of the ranch house and a big blonde woman with an Oklahoma accent comes out and say's What ya need?
I explained my situation, that I just needed to park for the night and would be on my way. She said hang on, and walked back in the house.
A guy about 10 years older than myself comes out, tilts his cowboy hat back, looks up at me in my motorhome, and says:
Ever ride a horse?
Yeah, but it had been a few years, "Ever run fence, brand a bull, slept in the high Sierra for weeks at a time?
He stood silent for a moment, looked around, then said, Pay is $1200 a month, park over yonder, there's power and water, you'll start at 8:00 in the mornin and he just walked away....
I swear, that was all that was said.
It felt good, all of my stress just vanished, I thanked God and parked.
Ranching was definitely in my blood, took to it like flies on a cow, it was natural.
We used horses much of the time on the sprawling thirty thousand acres, but much of the time was spent on three wheelers running fence and chasing down strays.
Spent the summer in the high Sierra on his other ranch, beautiful country, I had literally fell in love with the wilderness, bears, lions and coyote, loved it all.
We brought the herd back down to the valley to winter, standing at the fence. looking over all the cattle, I asked John: "How do you know when you're a cowboy?"
He said, see that cow with the bad eye? I pointed and said that one? He said no, the one with the weepy eye, I said you mean the one next to the ugly cow?
He smiled, tilted his hat back and said: "Now you're a cowboy"
Everyone laughed, because once you can tell an ugly cow from a good lookin one, you're definitely a cowboy. We all laughed about that for a week.
Well, I still wanted my own land and asked Gods help, I'm an antsy type, so I started looking again, and after looking for a month a piece came up, it was about 30 miles as the crow flies from where I was standing to the East, perfectly seated way above the foothills in the wilderness.
It was a raw 10 plus acre piece with a creek. I drove out, it was sunny in the foothills, a nice fall day, by the time I got to the land three hours later, it was raining.
This was apparently normal for the area, a moderate rainforest. I parked my motorcycle, and started walking the property, no roads, and steep as hell, I headed down to look for the creek, there were two, so I was completely lost.
Raining and getting dark, I start back, compass doesn't work, I later found out there are high iron deposits in the soil, so a compass is totally useless and actually got me lost.
I found a road, followed it for a ways, and in the pitch black, I hear a generator running and then spot a light.
I knocked on the trailer door and told the guy I was lost. He said he had seen me come in earlier and told me where I had parked down the road a ways.
I asked the agent what the owner wanted for the land, he said 36.5$, I explained I didn't have the much, so he said he'd ask the owner. I called the next day, told me he'd take 28K and carry payments of $400.0 per month.
I signed, thanked God and here I am 30 plus years later.
After living in a motorhome for the last three years, I needed to find a place to park and build. There was an old logging road that went to the lower part of my property, just above one of the creeks, so I drove it in. What a headache, tree branches on one side and a cliff on the other, it was a harrowing drive.
Tree limb snapped against the side, busting out my kitchen window, but I made it to a nice opening, beautiful view, sun hit it nicely, this would be the place, it was Heaven.....
That changed quickly! More, maybe tomorrow?
Addendum: The ranch I worked was eventually chewed up by the town of Folsom, taxes made it near impossible to retain its original size, so they had to start selling off pieces.
I still have a pic of the original wagon tracks from the settlers that used to pass the house. In the Spring you could easily see the cuts going over the hills. The ranch and house are all gone now, as well as the ranch in the High Sierra.... History lost...
Also during all this time, Fuglosi and her vultures were playing a part in developing the area. I remember it well, it was the mid 80s, NorCal was experiencing another drought breaking series of storms, (this happens on a 10 year average of 7 to 15 years give or take) the rains were relentless and Folsom dam was on the verge of breaching, and the call had gone out to blow Dike 8 located on the S/E end of the Folsom levee. Luckily the rains ended in moments and the plan was shelved.
This dyke was built specifically for this purpose, the Dike would slowly erode allowing water to escape to the South, flooding the area located N/E of the old Rancho Seco nuke plant, water would amount to mere inches in depth, ranches were for the most part, built on higher ground over the centuries.
The ranch I was on was just a few thousand feet from the flood plain. And this area would flood every year, the ranchers counted on it for feed for the Spring.
Yes, Fuglosi was able to change decades old rules that managed the flood plains. So remember this when, eventually Folsom dam fails to do its job. It has Fuglosi's prints all over it!