RHODY LIFE

We get to watch 'Mountain Men'

Posted 1/21/21

Hubby's favorite show on television is "e;Mountain Men."e; The show demonstrates how people can live in the wild and survive. Ambitious souls, they have taken to living off the grid to become one with nature and to live a simpler life. Simple? I think not!

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RHODY LIFE

We get to watch 'Mountain Men'

Posted

Hubby’s favorite show on television is “Mountain Men.” The show demonstrates how people can live in the wild and survive. Ambitious souls, they have taken to living off the grid to become one with nature and to live a simpler life. Simple? I think not!

In an episode the other day, a mountain man wanting to stock his freezer for the winter, tracked a heard of buffalo. He stood on the sidelines, respectfully watching and waiting for the opportunity to shoot one of the furry creatures. An enormous animal came directly towards him, looking every bit as regal as the buffalo on the old five cent coin. As it came menacingly closer, he took a shot and hit it right between the eyes. The buffalo fell over sideways, instantly dead. The mountain man was gleeful at his conquest and proceeded to take it apart to meet his many needs. Of course, there would be tons of meat available, some of which he would share with his mountain neighbors. The hairy hide was laid out like a room sized carpet, to be used in the future to make blankets or coats. The fat was set aside to use as cooking oil or to be smeared on his body as insulation. The horns would be used to make cups. Tools and weapons would be made from the bones and, surprisingly, the stomach would be cleaned out and used as a watertight container for water. Like the mountain men, I, too, will enjoy eating meat, use oil for frying, (but not wearing), drink my hot tea from a cup, drink water from a Bubba cup, and wear a furry coat, but my essentials will be purchased at a local store. The most effort I will put in is the actual driving to the store.

I thought I could never be a mountain man because of my obsessive love for salt. Then I learned that they regularly made salt by going to the ocean and boiling the water in a pot until the water evaporates and the salt is left behind. My kind of guys!

Mountain men are rough and gruff and sturdy. One man hiked up a mountain 10 miles to get to an area with goats, slip sliding all the way up. He returned home without one, only to plan to go up again the next day.

Mountain men regularly cut their way through branches and bushes, and plow through snow so thick it is reminiscent of my walks in the waist deep snow to elementary school pre-bus. Sometimes, they fall through ice that is not completely frozen, also a joyous adventure of mine when, as a child, I would play on the lake behind our house when it was not completely frozen.

In another episode, the mountain man made a stove out of a fifty-five-gallon drum. He sawed a round hole in the top and a square hole at the bottom. Inserting a chimney out of the top and up through the roof, the stove was properly ventilated. Sitting in the middle of the floor, it was placed precariously atop several large stones (so as not to burn the house down). He had to go out to chop and gather wood, then drag it home to put in the wood pile. This stove kept his make-shift home of plywood and nails lukewarm. What keeps my home toasty warm? I do not have to lift a finger, and our furnace keeps a balmy temperature of 68 degrees in the house.

The mountain men look to be in their 60s and 70s with their gray hair and beards and chiseled, wrinkled faces. Hubby was surprised to see that one of the men was only 42 years old!

Like mountain men, we eat meat, wear (fake) fur, cook in oil, drink tea, salt our food, and enjoy our warm home. Our life is easy, but theirs is not. Fortunately, we get the enjoyment of watching THEM on TV.

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