‘Twas a wonderfull weekend at the GR3 rally as we followed our instincts and again became “free range” humans, ignoring the showers, diets, bedtimes, etc.. Heck, seemed like we even had a competition going to see who could make it the weekend on one T-shirt.

But at the cackle of dawn sunday morning domesticity called, with most of the assembled riders quickly packing and riding off. Now there was ample supply of coffee although the pastries may have been a bit depleted a bit by our saturday breakfast excesses. Reinforcements were available just a couple blocks away at a local restaurant and C-Store, and a few miles further pleasant twisty road wanderings would easily yield dozens more breakfast opportunities. Our hosts, the Village of Soldiers Grove, was in no rush to lose us. And given that I rode a measly 330 odd miles there and was about the 5th highest mileage rider, most of the riders could have easily hung around to noon, settled into a huge brunch and dinner as well as a brewery or winery tour on the way home, and still have gotten home by sundown. Whats the rush?

Traditionally, the “honey do list” was to blame for this sudden sunday morning recovery of domesticity.  With the liberation of women and a few smart men too, housing inspectors and similar grouches have taken on the job of insuring that we mow, paint, and de-garbage the built environment to the point where outsiders won’t assume we’ve gone feral, even if we pretty much have. At the encouragement of Minneapolis’ latest class of summer intern housing inspectors I had a lawnmower for ballast in the ‘hack all weekend, and took the long way home via Minneapolis.

Having gotten but 5 hours sleep between my polite withdrawal from the fireside chats ’round midnight and the aforementioned cackling, singing, roostering etc. at dawn I was rather grumpy with the prospect of a lengthened day in the saddle whilst sleepy. I was already yawning upon arriving Minneapolis bit after noon, and was contemplating a nap in my “cabin in the hood” AKA sorta furnished garage after completing my lawn mowing “duties”.

I woke right up when I noted that someone had assembled my cot and put it to use in my absence. Checked again to make sure I was currently the exclusive resident of the place and was assured of that. The doors dead bolt was locked but not the regular lock, which looked like it had been freshly pried… So the trespasser had a key. Perhaps the neighbor I let use the garage for storage got kicked out by his wife… No, he’d have moved into the relative luxury of his truck camper sitting in the driveway. Did the CSI thing and found nothing of value but an Rx pill bottle whose label I collected for future research- Would have looked it up then but my phone and tablet were kinda low.

So I mowed the lawn, locked up the mower, relocked every door, and changed out the padlocks on the gates and garage door. Now wide awake, I mulled over the probabilities on the 180 mile ride home, supplemented by a Costco raid to fill the mower size empty space space in the ‘hack. Was this a wanted felon hanging out in my garage? Or just one of my keyholding neighbor’s workers who’d gone bad?

Got home and googled… My uninvited lodger’s name pops a couple recent arrests for driving sans license and insurance and a cease and desist order for playing contractor without a license. Pulled his criminal record, and up pops a pageful of further unlicensed and uninsured driving, minor drug and paraphernalia possession, etc. and no court appearances on the two most recent arrests. Clearly, if this is a career criminal, he needs a better business plan! The Rx is for a generic antidepressant… E-mailed my neighbor and he replied back, my “guest” used to work for him and had thus gotten a key.

The exception that proves the rule, this guy needs help in the domesticity department! Heck, all he has to do is ID himself to any cop and they’ll give him free room and board at least ’til his court date. Heck, get himself a Social Worker and he’ll get an efficiency in at least public housing if not Section 8 and an EBT card. Damn rank amateur, he’d not even touched the two 7 gallon water jugs right next to his bed and busted out the window on the wood stove, probably trying to jam long wood scraps in when there’s a hand saw hanging right next to the wood stove.

So maybe we need to impart a bit of domesticity on the level of basic camping skills in our youth like this one. But mowing and painting… We got prairie restorations and aluminum siding for that!

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