(I am very sad to report that this gentleman, the last of the mountain men, passed away in his sleep on December 7th. His trailer was located on the property of my husband's house, so he was, in a way, a part of the family. We will all miss him and his sweetly cantankerous ways. Rest in peace, Ray.)
There's a small community hidden up in the hills near here. One house in particular is enveloped by trees, with a glorious view, two bedrooms two baths and a mountain man. Yes, a mountain man. He's an elderly gentleman with a long white beard and waist length hair, who's missing most of his teeth, walks with a cane and keeps his ancient, worn cowboy boots hanging on the fence around the tiny trailer where he's lived for twenty years. As he's quick to tell you, he was born in them thar hills and never left, nor wanted to, and has a million stories he could tell (and does) about the old days before the city folks came up and started throwing up their fancy houses quicker 'n spit. Of course I had to draw his portrait (and his boots, listed in the Gallery under "My Heroes Have Always Been Cowboys"). This is original work, 11 x 14, rendered in graphite, and comes shipped flat, Priority Mail, in a cellophane sleeve, backed with a sturdy board.