Tag Archives: border patrol

SNIPPETS (10-21-18)



It’s political season. I’m a permanent California mail voter. I voted yesterday. All done.

2018 Winter Gardens ballot

For the first time in my life, I voted a straight Democratic ticket, including the Democrat recommendations for propositions, utility districts, judicial courts, etc. 100% no-questions-asked Blue ballot, albeit we don’t get to vote on a lot of stuff out here in the East San Diego County Boondocks. I did get to vote FOR Ammar Campa-Najjar, so that was exciting. I don’t expect him to win simply because of the territory (I live in a very red area in this very blue state), his name, and his opponent’s advertising attacking his name.

Sadly, the Democrats did not make a recommendation or endorsement on everything on the ballot. When that happened, I checked the Republican recommendations and endorsements because they do seem to have an opinion about everything; then I voted the opposite

Delivery to the Registrar’s office will occur on 10/22.


Men have been effin up the nations and world for thousands of years. I’m wanting to see a complete takeover by women. They can’t possibly do worse.


Sad and depressed, I am. I no longer living in the Earthquake State….

Oklahoma is the new earthquake state


I have always been a sucker for injured plants (and animals), so I bought this last-one-on-the-table injured golden barrel cactus (Echinocactus grusonii). Notice what’s happening all around the injury, though. Lots of little pups! I will enjoy watching this one grow.

Echinocactus grusonii (golden barrel cactus)


I love PB&J sandwiches. I love bacon. On these four items, though, I’m thinking No, No, No & No. Seen at BevMo.



Zoey the Cool Cat has comfy beds to sleep on, nice carpeted floors with sun spots, chairs, a love seat…………. and yet this is her choice.

Zoey the Cool Cat

Zoey the Cool Cat


They don’t look happy to see me. Maybe it’s my red car. Dash cam video.

Border Patrol


Finally found that fish out of water.

Fish out of water


Poor bird. Lost on a desert island with no music to listen to.

Bird on a desert island


A couple of weeks ago I stopped by Green Thumb Nursery Super Garden Center in San Marcos CA. I had never been there. Doesn’t look big from the street, but it is huge.

As far as a complete nursery, it tops the list. You name it, they have it. Lots of plants, lots of pots, tools, soil, fertilizer. Lots of interesting garden sculptures that I had never seen at a nursery before.

Garden sculptures

Garden sculptures

Garden sculptures

Garden sculptures

Garden sculptures

Garden sculptures

Garden sculptures


Zoey the Cool Cat, what do you think of President Pinocchio?

Zoey the Cool Cat


If this is the type of car that student drivers get to learn in, I’m thinking about becoming a student driver again. I bet I could pass parallel parking this time!

Student driver Mustang


My best sunrise/sunset picture from the past week. East San Diego County Boondocks. October 16, 2018 sunrise.

Sunrise in the East San Diego County boondocks


I saw two new (to me) cactus species last week! So excited.

Cactus camera equipment


When I was in Fresno back in July, I saw a wild Fresno State Bulldog on the street. I kind of feel sorry for any little child walking past this thing.

Fresno State Bulldog


“Look! Over there! It’s the sun!”

There's the sun!


One of my favorite plants is Stapelia gigantea. It has huge, star-shaped, hairy flowers that can get up to 14 inches in diameter. They also are smelly flowers, smelling somewhat like rotting flesh. Hence their common name: Carrion plant. Their smell draws billions of flies, which then pollinate the flower. Nature is wonderful….

I have learned the signs of when they are going to pop open, so when my largest plant had 21 buds on it, I decided to practice time lapse photography. Following is my best time lapse video of one of these flowers popping open, created with 1,471 pictures taken every 5 seconds over the course of 4 hours and 11 minutes.


I was an abused child after my father committed suicide. My mom remarried, and she and my stepfather, both alcoholics and drunk every day, regularly hit my oldest stepsister and me. My mom even picked me up one time and threw me threw the sliding glass door. Still have the scars on my legs from that one.

I found the following poem on Facebook. Author unknown.


On Monday, Billy didn’t have his homework
And when the teacher asked him why
He said, “Because a monster ripped it up,
After I told him a lie.”

“You know monsters don’t exist,
And if you don’t turn in your homework
No recess you will get.”

On Tuesday, Billy had a stomachache
And when the teacher asked him why
He said, “A monster took away my dinner,
even my cherry pie.”

“Billy, I’ve told you once before,
Monsters are not real.
You’ll have to wait till lunchtime
Before you get a meal.”

On Wednesday, Billy had a bandage,
Which covered his right eye.
When the teacher asked him how it happened,
This was his reply:

“A monster was running after me
When I ran into the door.”
“Billy please,” the teacher said,
“I don’t want to hear any more.”

On Thursday, Billy refused to sit down,
And when the teacher asked him why,
Billy said, “A monster whipped my bottom,
Because I started to cry.”

“Billy,” said the teacher,
“this is getting out of hand,
And if you continue with these stories,
In the corner you will stand.”

On Friday, Billy didn’t come to school,
And when the teacher found out why,
She said a little prayer to God
In hopes Billy would survive.

For a monster had beaten Billy
and threatened him with a knife.
Now Billy lay in a hospital bed,
Fighting for his life.

So teachers please remember,
That monsters are for real.
Listen closely to kids’ stories,
A wounded heart, you may heal.


It’s a good thing I had lots of practice in my youth in coloring, drawing pictures, and building things because I sure as eff don’t know Chinese.

Instructions in Chinese


They say it’s expensive to live in San Diego. Some apparently call it the “San Diego Package”………

San Diego Package

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Out & About—The border fence & dead buildings

Out & About

I thought I would finish today with my driving tour of Old Highway 80 in the boondocks of east San Diego County.

Old Highway 80 takes you very close to the U.S. border with Mexico, and since San Diego County built its wall back in the 2000s, it’s already complete and ready for pictures.

United States-Mexico border fence east of San Diego

Border Patrol agents like to hide and watch you from afar through their binoculars. Several agents were hiding on the bluff with these structures….

Border Patrol lookout

….and descended upon me when I got too close to the border fence. I had parked my car just off the shoulder of the highway, got out, and climbed down under this 1931 bridge to get some pictures.

Old Highway 80 bridge built in 1931

I was between the bridge and the border fence, and that’s when the Border Patrol agents descended on me like vultures on road kill.

Once the Border Patrol agents were satisfied with my explanation for being out there in a brand new car with temporary license plates, the head honcho radioed his agents and told them, “Stand down. Local tourist.”

Once I left them and continued heading east, I discovered lots of dead buildings. I could find no history about the following dead building, but I thought it was quite beautiful in its death and thought I could make a nice piece of Photographic Art out of it.

Dead building near Jacumba Hot Springs, California

Dead building Photographic Art

Next stop is Jacumba Hot Springs where there are all sorts of dead buildings to explore, such as this dead building in front of the Jacumba Elementary School:

Dead building in front of Jacumba Elementary School

It’s a good thing there were no dead buildings in front of the elementary school I attended. I never would have been in school. Of course, the principal would have known exactly where I was after the first couple of truant days….

Also on the south side of the highway is a dead chimney from the long-gone Hotel Vaughn:

Dead chimney of the Hotel Vaughn in Jacumba Hot Springs, California

I found a picture postcard of the Hotel Vaughn that was sold on eBay back in 2013.

Hotel Vaughn, Jacumba Hot Springs, California

When you get into Jacumba, it almost seems like the whole town is full of dead buildings, the largest of which is the old Jacumba Hot Springs bath house:

Jacumba Hot Springs in Jacumba, California

Jacumba Hot Springs in Jacumba, California

Jacumba Hot Springs in Jacumba, California

The hot springs became a destination spot in the 1880s, and Jacumba became a happenin’ place, a premier destination, in the twenties and thirties because of the Jacumba Hot Springs bath house. It was even attracting Hollywood celebrities.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

Did you know?

Do you know your rights as a photographer?

Did you know?


Taking pictures out in public can sometimes become a legal or ethical issue.

For example, a few years ago I was down near the border where the United States was building a huge fence to keep out the Mexicans. I found the fence interesting and was taking pictures. The Border Patrol stopped me and made me erase all the pictures on my camera. For all he knew, though, I could have had some other memory cards with additional pictures on them.

As far as I know, taking pictures of goverment buildings and such while on public property is not a crime. However, you have to make a decision at the time whether or not you want to argue with an officer. I chose not to.

While standing on public property in the United States a couple of weeks ago, I took this picture of Mexico with the new border fence in the foreground:

Mexico from the United States


My purpose in taking that picture was not to get a picture of the fence but to get a picture of the buildings in Mexico with that beautiful church being the focus.

Mr. Border Patrol Office probably would have made me delete that picture.

For an interesting quiz about photography law, try this link: U.S. Photography Law. There are way too many typos in the quiz questions and choices. With today’s spell checkers and grammar checkers, I always think that if someone misses typos like those, what else did they miss? For the record, I scored 80%, but it’s obvious that one question (the one about basically interfering with police while taking pictures) is broken because it doesn’t matter which answer you choose, it marks both as wrong. Makes a good case that if you’re going to post tests, quizzes, and links for the public, you ought to test them to make sure they are correct and working.

Have fun taking the quiz but brush up on your rights as a photographer. Here are two good resources:

Happy photographing!


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