Still Winter?

Today’s post comes from Ben

There’s a lot of people reading this blog we don’t know where they’re at. I hope everyone is surviving whatever weather is going on in your area. Snowstorms, tornadoes, cold rain, or maybe you’re somewhere where it’s hot and rainy. Any event, I hope you’re surviving. My chives are coming.

The storms that came through Tuesday night in our area didn’t hurt anything. And then Thursday it was so windy again! Man! I noticed a tree hanging over the road and the trunk is split. I said to Kelly would could wait for it to fall over, or I could call the local tree company. She agreed that might be a pretty good idea. The doors on our machine shed are 20 feet wide and 16 feet tall. Two sliding doors that meet in the middle, one set on the south end, which is pretty well sheltered, and the doors I use the most on the west side. They are out in the open and in a good wind, when closed, they will swing in and out so bad they would rip themselves apart if not anchored at the bottom center. The sides lock, it’s just the middle that moves. When the shed was built there was a metal bracket on the ground that the doors slid into, and that would secure the bottom. This metal bracket was attached to a 6” x 6” post sunk in the ground below frost level. Over the years this metal bracket has been broken and fixed and broken and fixed so many times the top of the 6 x 6 has deteriorated to the point nothing can be attached to it anymore. I really should do something about it someday. It’s on my list. But for the last 20 years, I have been putting a 5 gallon bucket full of log chains in front of the doors to stop them swaying in so much. The bucket probably weighs 80 pounds. The doors will still blow out a bit, but they don’t go in. Except when we have these really strong winds and then it will push the 80 pound bucket back in the shop about 16 inches. which then allows the door to swing in and out much more than it should. I saw another farmer strapped the doors to his tractor, so I do that when it’s this windy.

Lost a poufy duck on Tuesday. It was there in the morning. Later in the day we heard the chickens all squawk and the guineas were making a lot of noise and everybody was taking shelter under the lilac bushes. We didn’t see anything but that night there was only one poufy duck.

Still got a pheasant running around looking for an easy meal. Next day I happen to see out the window a Cooper’s hawk sitting on an electric line. As I stepped out the door to try and get a picture of it, it swooped down and I thought for sure was going to try to take a chicken. But the chickens are bigger than it is. And It thought twice. Flew around the yard for a while. Enough Kelly could get the good camera and get a few pictures of it. 

A G.I. bug went through the house beginning Sunday. 24 to 36 hours later we’re mostly OK.

I’ve been delivering a lot of straw lately. It’s fascinating to me that if you open the rear sliding window of a truck, all the loose straw in the box will blow forward into the cab. Don’t ask me how I know this. It makes quite a mess. Fascinating air currents, but messy.

Got a favorite raptor? What do you think of the Rapture? Or ruptures?

79 thoughts on “Still Winter?”

  1. Ever since this:

    our special sympathies have been with owls.

    I think of the Rapture as coming from the same mentality that drives QAnon.

    No experience, personally, with ruptures, though last fall the neoprene coupling to our sump pump ruptured and the pump burnt out, so I had to replace both the coupling and the pump.

    Liked by 9 people

  2. Rapture is my favorite Blondie song.
    I tend to favor Velociraptors but my Birds seem to rap quite well.
    Earth ruptures ie volcanos are fascinating.

    Liked by 7 people

  3. Favorite raptures: great snow owl, which on rare occasions I would see up north, once with our faces two feet apart; and bald eagles or goldens. Bald eagles have become so common along the bluffs here if you look you can see one just about every day. But I am not tired of them.
    Least favorite ruptures: hernias.
    About winds: I laid our four pieces of metal patio furniture down on cement so it did not blow around. One chair still blew 6 feet away. I woke Thursday morning to a thrumming sound. The metal bench had blown against another chair and they became interlocked. The wind was rubbing them against each other and the cement must have been the sounding board.
    Last week I saw a war between robins and squirrels. About 25 robins were flying into and out of tree tops. Every time a robin tried to land, the 9 squirrels on the ground would chase it off.

    Liked by 6 people

  4. Bald eagles are near the top of my raptor list but falcons may be the most amazing. They do power dives to attack prey that reach speeds of around 200 mph. Hence the use of the name “Falcon” for so many fighter jets.

    Owls are cool too. Who am I kidding? I love all raptors. If there is such a thing as reincarnation, I hope I come back as a raptor. On a windy day, they mesmerize me as they swoop and soar on the air currents. What a life. (As long as you don’t think about hunters, human intervention such as windmills, pesticides, lead poisoning from shotgun pellets, vehicle traffic accidents. But up above the world so high . . .

    Rapture? Not worth my time to comment. Not a religious person in any way. However, I have a serious problem with a God who instantly picks winners and losers at some arbitrary moment that no one has been able to predict so far… and which has come and gone how many times now, according to various wacko groups?

    I truly believe the end will come when “Mother Nature,” a.k.a. the unknown forces and destiny of the universe, decides that homo sapiens were a bad idea, doomed to extinction, and wipes us off the face of Earth. An asteroid is my best guess. But it’ll probably come thousands of years in the future if we don’t destroy ourselves first.

    Rupture? None I’ve had to worry about in my life. I know several people who’ve had hernias repaired. A garden hose springs a tiny leak every ten or so years.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 5 people

  5. I’m partial to owls too. Once, when I was in an unhappy and unsafe situation, a barred owl perched on the branch of an oak tree that extended out over my deck. I happened to look outside in the evening, having a sense of foreboding, and there was this barred owl. It simply stared back at me and it didn’t leave. If an owl visits you, it is said to be an omen of something coming to an end or a shifting of energy. I believe that to be true. Everything changed the very next day. Some changes aren’t actual physical deaths, but the effects of that change included loss, stress, pain, and finally release.

    I think the Rapture is possibly a rupture in the fabric of common sense. I’ve seen a button or bumper sticker that read something like, “When the Rapture comes, can I have your car?” I guess that’s a good description of how I think of the Rapture. No offense intended to anyone who believes this might be in their future. You might be a better human than me.

    Liked by 6 people

  6. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    I just wrote several sentences about the rapture and deleted it for fear of the unsolicited attacks that can occur on a public forum. I am not waiting for any kind of predictied spiritual rapture such as the oft-predicted End of Time, but I certainly enjoy the raptures available in life. Last night we watched the first episode of Obamas “National Parks” on Netflix, so we were treated with some rapturous photography of nature and scenery. We plan to watch some more. Meanwhile, ruptures, whether physical or emotional tend to be painful.

    Raptors cause rapturous ruptures. Hah—Make up your own sentence using all three words.

    I cannot name a favorite raptor because they are all so interesting. They sure keep the rabbit population down in my neighborhood, for which I am grateful. It is a thrill to have witnessed the return of Bald Eagles. I am most surprised with their co-existence with us here in an urban center. Five or six years ago on my drive to work, I was part of a traffic slow down on 62 caused by a Bald Eagle hunting something in the median. That was a scenario that was better than fiction.

    Liked by 6 people

  7. No deep dive into theology.
    The Rapture (a word not found in the Bible), as part of Christian exegesis, has many theories and speculations that mostly revolve around the timing of this great disappearance and the ensuing chaos. The Left Behind stories give me the vibe of science fiction.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. I couldn’t even get through the first of the Left Behind series. Not even thinking of a science-fiction helped me. Although I thought it was very interesting that the whole series was based on the flawed people left behind and not on the people who were “raptured”. (Unless the rest of the series that I didn’t read took a strange turn.)

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Well, I am home. I could have been in an episode of Ice Road Truckers the last 50 miles. This is the most snow we have had since we moved here.

    Liked by 6 people

  9. Can’t say that I have a favorite raptor, though I might be slightly partial to owls and peregrine falcons.

    When we lived in Inver Grove Heights there was a redtailed hawk pair that hung out in the area. I’d often see them perched in a certain evergreen on our property. I’m sure there were plenty of rodents for them to feast on in the half acre of tall grasses and wildflowers that sloped down to a park behind our house. I could sit on our couch or deck with my binoculars and enjoy watching birds for hours on end.

    Liked by 5 people

  10. The Rapture, with capital R, I have no use for, but the occasional lower case rapture is welcome.

    Ruptures, not so much. My most serious rupture was back 1970 while in college. One of my fallopian tubes ruptured due to an ectopic pregnancy. I came as close to death that day as I’ve ever been from internal hemorrhaging. Thank god it wasn’t Paula Truly on duty at the ER that day, or I probably wouldn’t have lived to tell the story.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Thanks, Jacque. We knew I was pregnant, and we also knew it was a problem pregnancy, but didn’t know until the tube ruptured that it was ectopic. My rapidly plummeting blood pressure prompted my OB/GYN doctor to do exploratory emergency, and that saved my life. Another half hour and I would have been gone.


    1. My sister had an ectopic pregnancy as well. She was initially misdiagnosed as having a kidney stone. She didn’t know she was pregnant.

      She was really lucky. After she had been in the hospital for hours, growing weaker, the OB/GYN doc who had delivered my older niece became aware that she had been admitted, and came in to check on her. He looked at her blood pressure and turned to a nurse and asked, “Have you done a pregnancy test?” and then, when the nurse said “No”,, he barked, “Get one done NOW.” After the test came back positive it was like a scene from one of the hospital dramas on TV, with the medical team running down the hall with the gurney, getting my sister to the OR. She had lost about a quart of blood.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Huh. Who knew? I can’t even think like that. I must not be one of the righteous. I plan to leave instructions for caring for my pets if I pass on though.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You might want to restate that, Jacque. You need to replace the “if” in that last sentence with “when.” Pretty sure none of us are going to get out of here alive.

          Liked by 2 people

        2. I don’t understand why anyone thinks pets would be left behind. I think dogs and housecats would go first. I think they’re much more deserving than most of the two legged folks I know.!

          Liked by 6 people

        3. I am named in a good friend’s will as the person to take care of and/or rehome their critters should the four leggeds live longer than their human companions. One of their former cats may not have survived rehoming, so glad for that little kitty that she lived her long full life with the humans she tolerated best.

          Liked by 4 people

    1. My view of this is that it’s something of a Catch-22 – if you are the sort of person who would register their pets to be taken care of because you felt really confident you would be among the chosen in a potential rapture, you very likely wouldn’t make the cut in the event there were an actual rapture.

      Then again, some good and modest people could think that they might not be rapture-worthy, but be so worried about the well-being of their pets that they might sign up, just to be on the safe side.

      I’m not a believer, so I don’t see much downside to signing up as a volunteer. If I am wrong and there’s a rapture, pets may be included in it. And if not, I’d be willing to take care of the pets of someone who was deemed by some higher power of being rapture-worthy.

      The only reason NOT to volunteer is if you suspect that there IS a higher power who would reward the most smug and sanctimonious among us, and leave the kind-hearted behind.

      Liked by 6 people

  11. Rapture? Came close once with a tiramisu that leaned into the cocoa in the most wondrous way – it was a standard tiramisu, but managed to get the bitter coffee and cocoas to hit their notes just right with the sweet of the mascarpone. Just heavenly.

    Raptors? They are fabulous beasts. Hawks, in all their variety, hold a little more draw for me. There was a kestrel in the neighborhood a few years back (likely more than one) – beautiful bird. That little bit of blue is so striking.

    Ruptures? Only that tiny one in the time-space continuum under the stairs. So long as I keep tossing tupperware lids and single socks at it, it seems pretty stable.

    Liked by 7 people

  12. i am a ale eagle guy
    i am so happy to see them everywhere
    i take it as an omen that everything g will be better each time i see one
    i can’t not follow them as long as i can
    i get turned around driving to watch them as we intersect
    i pull off sometimes to get as much as i can

    when i was a teen ager pre hippy used to be in situations where fights happened occasionally friday nights at the drive in or a football game
    getting kicked in the nuts it’s was a rupture like no other that teaches you quickly to do preventative posturing when in a rumble
    i experienced it on multiple occasions and there is no response other than curling into a ball and waiting to return to a manageable level of existence

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Straw tim, but, you’re welcome. (There’s a big technical difference between hay and straw and if you’re not careful you’d get the wrong thing).

      It was a good drive; just over 200 miles total and had a good visit with son, DiL, and their dog Wilma.
      Good luck to all the gardeners this year!

      Liked by 3 people

    2. My college workstudy keeps calling screws “nails”. I’ve given up correcting her and she knows the difference, but I really wish she’d get that right. It makes me clench me teeth every time she does it.

      Liked by 2 people

  13. This is slightly OT but still a farm report OT. After having gotten bales and eggs yesterday, I had Ben’s eggs for breakfast. How is it that I survive the other 11 months of the year with regular store-bought eggs?

    Liked by 5 people

    1. The chickens sure get a lot of compliments about their eggs. I haven’t had a store eggs in a few years so I don’t know. And one lady tells me she prefers the blue eggs over the brown. Honestly… I don’t know how she can tell.
      But thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m so very sad about the loss of another poofy duck.

    I don’t have a favorite raptor. Yesterday was the annual worlds most over engineered egg hunt, and there was a hawk that was circling around above us. So beautiful.

    Liked by 4 people

  15. Jacque mentioned Anna’s postcards from Minneapolis in a comment above. Since Anna is apparently has no intention of mentioning it here, I’m going to: She has a new book of postcards about ready to go to the printer! If anyone is interested in purchasing one, it’s a good idea to get in touch with her ASAP. Anna, are there any details we should be aware of – like price, deadline for ordering, delivery/shipping? Don’t be shy, just tell us.

    Also, and this is completely OT: The American Swedish institute has another exhibit named “Paper Dialogues” that may or may not be of interest to some baboons. Here is a link to some more information about the exhibit and the artists:
    A bunch of baboons met up at the ASI back in 2014 and saw the first exhibit of Karin Bit Vejle’s work.The exhibit is on display until July 10th.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am not great at self-promotion… I plan to put an order in by the end of April. There are a few more pages in Volume 2 – so guessing that will bump the price a bit, maybe $20 before postage (and like last year, if I hand-deliver, I get to say hello and you don’t pay for postage). Let me know if you want a copy. 😎

      Liked by 1 person

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