Sunday, June 17, 2018

Sow and cub

I was in the bedroom when Indy began to bark. It sounded like her "Deer!" bark but it turned out to be her "Bear!" bark instead. Already knew the bear liked walking the mowed paths since they had left their unmistakable 'calling cards'. The pair looked to be last year's cub and it's mother. They were specifically checking out the salt lick site. I walked out on the deck and started talking. Wanted to reinforce Indy's warning that this was not a place to frequent. They ambled off down the trail that follows the edge of the meadow. Suddenly the cub turned back and started running. A deer had been sleeping in the tall grass and the cub had startled him. He leapt up and took off for the woods. The cub gave chase but mama only turned and slowly walked off after the cub. She knew they had no chance of catching this deer not to mention that it was just too humid to be running around.

Friday, June 15, 2018


It was the morning mania time for the cats. They've woke from a good sleep, eaten, had a drink, eliminated, and are now bubbling over w/ energy. Dunder was chasing Blitzen who made a flying leap onto the back screen door. The frame stayed put but the screen gave way and Blitz made a slow-mo fall out onto the deck. Dunder, who is usually looking for a chance to escape outside, was so frightened he ran back to the bedroom to hide. I went outside looking for Blitz. She had already padded around the corner of the deck and was excitingly mewing at this new world of sights and smells she'd fallen into. A little sad to pick her up and take her out of her Wonderland but she's not yet ready for the role of the Cheshire Cat.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Cinnamon Fern

Tried the air-conditioning and, while it sounded like it was working, it wasn't blowing cool air.  Called up a local Mom&Pop HVAC company.  They arrived in the late afternoon and the first thing the older man at the door wanted to check was my air filter.  He seemed to think he'd located the problem already when I replied to his question that I had never changed the air filter since the house was built.  When he looked he realized no one had even put a filter in when they installed my A/C unit.  He had the younger guy get down on the floor and clean the coils first.  The young guy fished out a small ball of pet hair.  They gave me the dimensions of what kind of filter I needed and told me what to look for.  The older man said I should change the filter every few months.  He backed off on that time frame when I pointed out this filter isn't part of the heating system and the air-conditioner is run at most seven days a year.  Both men reassured me I wasn't incredibly stupid for not realizing there was no filter.  (Assume this is the usual response among any trades people that want to retain a new customer.) The small ball of fur wasn't enough to cause an issue so they moved to the outside unit.  System had a full charge of freon. The electrical wires that turn on the outside unit, however, had been chewed through by mice.  Can't blame my cats for this one since I don't let them out to patrol the grounds.  The guys spliced in new wires and they had some thoughts on how to solve the rodent problem too.  The air conditioner works again - should I ever need it this year.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018


Our library uses a service to provide Children's books and Large Print books.  They send some throughout the year and do a good job based on how often those books are checked out.  The rest of the books are picked by the library.  Our specific clientele prefers the genres of Inspirational and Western paperbacks.   According to our stats 60% of the people coming into the library pick a book off our shelves rather than checking books out from other libraries and having them sent here.  The librarian was making small talk w/ me and asked what kind of books I prefer.  "I like the subject matter of 'Catholics killing other Catholics'." I answered.  Shocked look on the librarian's face.  Figured I should explain. "My sister got me started on an author named Kienzle. He wrote about a priest who solves murders that have some tie to a Catholic doctrine.  My friend Nancy and I had a hoot looking for 'Sister Joan' books about a nun who was also a parttime sleuth.  I collected all of the Brother Cadfael books about a monk who investigates murders as a sideline in the 12th century.  I can only assume I like books where Catholics get killed."  Somehow I doubt there will ever be a new aisle of fictional books labeled "Religious Mayhem".  (But if there was you'd find me there.)

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Photobombed picture of Ragnarok

The librarian asked if I could man the front desk for a short time this afternoon while the library board met. I said I could - it's an excellent opportunity to listen in on their meetings. No gossip this time, though based on the suggestions made I wonder about one of them. Closed up the library at 5 and drove home. Good thing there was no traffic. Crept slowly past a deer grazing at the edge of town. She raised her head and an ear but was otherwise unfazed. Stopped for a little black squirrel trying to make up it's mind if it would go all the way to the other side or turn around and go back where it came from. Stopped again for two geese and a large number of goslings marching over the road. This time of year life abounds everywhere - even across highways.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Red Sky at Night

I removed my crystal from the library display case.  The plan was to put in rocks next since the librarian wanted something to go w/ the summer reading program "Reading Rocks" (or something like that).  However the leader of the program decided to go w/ a musical theme instead and the kids will be making various noisemakers as their activities each day.  (I'm sure their parents will be happy about that.)  The leader and I talked and she wanted to put in a display advertising the Summer Reading program and during the activites she wants to use the cabinet to display the children's handiwork.  Everything will be gone by the end of June.  I'll probably put rocks in the display case after that unless I can think of something else.  Whatever it is it will only be until September when I'm looking forward to a display from the Boy Scouts.

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Black Snakeroot

 It would take about twenty minutes for the pizza I ordered at Glory B's to be ready to go so said I'd be back then and went over to the library. Today is the village-wide garage sale and for the first time the library was participating.  Working at the library allows volunteers the perk of  seeing/buying books before sales therefore didn't expect to see anything else that I would want.  However, at the far end of the tables of books, sitting on the floor was a box filled w/ tomes I didn't remember seeing before.  I picked up  the first book, read the title, and gasped.  It was a collection of the  papers written by Ptolemy, Copernicus, and Kepler.  The next book was the histories written by Plutarch.  There were other books for  Newton, Huygens, Faraday, Fourier, Virgil, Aristotle, Euclid, Marcus Aurelius, Sophocles, Euripides - the box was full of them!  A sale clerk said they had come in as a donation on Friday at almost closing time - no wonder I hadn't seen them.   The sale clerks were uncertain how much to ask for my treasure trove.  Normally it was $2 per bag full of books.  Being so close to closing time everything was now half price (and  they really wanted to get rid of these bulky books).  I offered $5 and they yelled "Sold"!  Tonight I feel a little ashamed at getting such a bonanza at so cheap a price.  It's a feeling I'm sure I'll manage to get over.

Friday, June 08, 2018

Yellow Hawkweed and Columbine

I picked up groceries today but not eggs.  The Farmer's Market started up again on Friday's and I prefer the eggs I get there.  I buy them from Maple Hill farm and the proprietor saw me coming.  "Sorry," he said, "I don't have any eggs."  I thought I was there early enough that he shouldn't be sold out already.  "We are having an eagle problem." he continued,  "They've already taken a few of the girls and the rest are too frightened to go outside.  We only get about 10 eggs a day."  (Note: He always refers to his laying hens as "the girls".)   Not a lot he can do about an eagle problem.  Eagles are protected so he can't harm them.  The chickens roam free outside so he'd have to find a place to build a screened in cage for them.  I thought about my neighbor Wester's 'cannon' that makes a loud booming noise periodically.  Figured that might scare the eagles away but the noise would probably also traumatize the rest of his livestock.  The poor girls would be positively catatonic.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Blue Bead Lily

Had signed up to sort the books for a big sale this weekend at the library.  However, yesterday's workers had gotten everything done so I opted to man the desk for awhile in order to give the librarian a break.  I looked over the stacked books for sale.  Hopefully no one will notice that the V.C. Andrews books are all in the 'V' section.  I would have moved them to the 'A' section but the books were tightly packed and there was no working room to make the move.  A lady came in and complained about a book she had failed to return on time at another library.  She had an accident, operation on both knees, and, while she had finally returned the book, that library wouldn't waive her late fines.  This all occurred over nine years ago and she still was upset about it.  Didn't help that the other library keeps dunning her for payment. It wasn't our library so we couldn't waive her fines.  Personally I think after this amount of time the whole incident should be forgiven and forgotten by both parties. Of course our president still blames Canada for burning the White House and that was over 200 years ago.  (Not to mention that it was the English that did it.)

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Arcus Shelf cloud

Forecast said showers in the morning so I woke up at 5:00 a.m. got things started around the house and by 6 Indy and I were out looking for wild flowers.  My peonies aren't open yet and I hoped to find enough buttercups, yellow hawkweed, and bird's foot trefoil to make a flower arrangement for the library.  I stopped and watched the awesome shelf clouds coming in from the west.  Too bad I didn't bring my camera.  Indy wanted to turn toward home every time we came to a path intersection but since I knew exactly where the flowers I wanted should be figured it wouldn't take long to get them.  However when the storm's gust front hit I knew Indy had been right.  Immediately turned back and almost made it home before the rain started.  We didn't reach the hawkweed but by using a small white vase and frog the rest of the little yellow flowers made a quaint and charming bouquet (or at least I think so.)

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Four-spotted Skimmer dragonfly

Indy and I went off through the swamps today.  The place was alive with predators and prey.  The mosquitoes and small biting flies were out in abundance.  They were the predators and I was the prey.  No worries though since my neighbor Anita gave me some of her bug spray and I carry along a bottle in the camera case.  Damselflies and dragonflies were flying too. Now it was the mosquitoes who were prey since a dragonfly likes nothing better than a 'McBug' sandwich.   Since I was trying to get a decent picture for identification I became a dragonfly hunter and they became my prey.  (Fortunately for them I don't find the idea of dragonfly 'filets' appetizing.)

Monday, June 04, 2018

Crepuscular Rays

It had been a busy day.  Around 7:00 p.m. when the Friends of the Library meeting broke up I went home and decided it was time to relax a bit.  With my crossword puzzle and a bottle of pop, I and Indy went out to the deck.  Oops, the hummer feeders were almost out of fluid.  Indy laid down and I went inside and quickly made some up.  While I waited for it to cool I filled up the seed feeders too.  Once all of the feeders were refilled I sat down in a deck chair.  Oops, hadn't brushed Indy today.  Back inside for her brush and spent sometime working on her fur.  She still looks more like a fluffy bear than a lab. Noticed the broken cloud cover was causing long yellow rays as the sun set so back inside for my camera and snapped a few shots.  Sat back down on the deck and watched as the bright white tops of the clouds turned to pink.  The bird calls lessened while the insect and frog noises increased.  As it got darker the solar lights started popping on.  Never did get to my crossword puzzle but it was a nice way to end the day.

Sunday, June 03, 2018

Golden Barrel Cactus

I planted an American Fly Honeysuckle in an area I reserve for native plants just outside my bedroom.  The one I planted last year came back and is doing well.  Put in a daylily  on top of the septic system mound.   That's where all of the other daylilies are and I had to look a bit to find an empty spot.   Then dug a hole at on end of the deck for an Autumn Fire sedum.  The fall insects love the sedum planted at the other end of the deck so thought I'd put in a matching set.  Mowed the lawn but didn't get to the trails before it started raining.  Nice that it's cool enough to do things outside again.

Friday, June 01, 2018

Tree Swallows

Temps are finally back to normal: highs in the 70's and lows in the 50's.  Did the usual stuff today.  Washed clothes and hung them on the line.  Watered the plants.  Filled up the bird feeders.  Delivered the attendance figures for the library to the librarian this morning.   Picked up my mail.  Wrote the Prime Minister of Canada.  I told him I was sorry about the metal tariffs the U.S.A is planning to impose on our closest neighbor and best ally and, come next election, we would do our best to rectify that situation.