"Manny" and I spent several days just outside of Apache Junction at a place his parents owned
generally just doing nothing constructive just goofing off ..we had met in Vietnam and as our DEROS dates were close said we'd get together here in May of 68.."Manny" a Chiricahua Apache or as he said it Mimbres Band also had some Mexican blood on his mothers side which caused him to be separated from them..but admitted alcohol was the main reason..I could relate as it was mine also.
One of the reasons we were allowed to stay there during the hot months was that there was stock on the 3 acre spread and his parents spent the summer in Flagstaff where it was cooler.
We had a creek on the property so water wasn't a problem with water being piped in for the horses
there wasn't any to the house however just an outside hand pump and a privy about fifty yards. down hill. Inside was a wood stove and oil lamps for nite time..I got the feeling his folks didn't spend a lot of time here..all the chairs..tables beds were hand crafted and bedding was straw filled mattreses with canvas covers and wool blankets ..all very old and well used.
Home sweet home.
We spent most of the daytime riding off into the Superstitions but always returned before dark
as my companion wouldn't camp out close to the Mountain at night.."bad spirits" he said.
He would tell stories of those who went into the mountains and never came back searching for the Lost Dutchman's Mine reported by legend to be somewhere on Superstition Mountain or depending on who you believed in the Superstition Mountain range somewhere ..many have searched many have turned up missing or found dead with no apparent cause of death.
He said this whole area over to the four corners was a haunted land with many stories told by his people of spirits both good and bad. I didn't know how much of this to believe..but when traveling
this land and having to camp out at night i never had a fire after dark having been told it would attract the Spirits and not knowing what kind I just believed..I always felt I was being watched
by something..or someone when passing through the area.
Around August it just got too hot the booze ran out and a girlfriend of "Manny's" showed up
and a threesome wasn't happening so time to move on..thinking somewhere cool like up North.
My friend depicted in this story
was found dead of alcohol poisoning
with a barbiturate chaser in December 1988
I was one year and one month sober
name withheld at relitives request
SEMPER FI my friend