Tag Archives: winds

Walking in a field of lace~poetry

I took a walk intent on what I was to see

Tall grass and wildflowers

Mud and toads, grasshoppers and birds

But my intent was not to be

 

Even though each flower had grown spirited and tall

The winds interfered with my view

Grasshoppers hopped under my clothing,

And the mud enticed me to fall

 

I sat in the middle of a pattern of lace

My intent shifted over wind swept fields

I connected within that moment, and

I watched the bees and butterflies race

I Think I Saw A Weather Balloon!~ Or, “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.”~ The Wizard of Oz

Captain Jack Harkness ~ “Wanna know a secret? So did I. And just for a second there I felt so alive.”

Yesterday, in the middle of a thunderstorm, with multiple warnings flashing across the television and of course being me, I stood outside on the deck watching the clouds.

Dolphin?

Stupid? Yes!

It was amazing! At one point lightning streaked across the sky in a vein of pink and white.   Then in the same spot, the lightning flashed again, this time with multiple tentacles stretching outward, looking like a fireworks display.

Silver white and pink!

 Followed a few seconds later by a cracking roll that shook the ground!

 That flash had sent me in for my camera.  I wanted to capture a picture of that lightning!

Ready! Set! Okay sky smile!

Each time I pointed the camera upward, the lightning would flash in a different spot, above, or behind me.

I noticed a low hanging cloud that seemed to swirl all on its own. I thought, just maybe this was makings of a tornado and I should be inside. I turned off my camera and glanced up before I pulled open the door.  A solid object half appeared for a second, as the clouds drifted slightly.   Before I had a chance take a picture, the cloud moved back around the object, covering it and as it moved upward.

Can you see it? Shaped like an upside down triangle with rounded edges. It is nearly invisible behind the cloud cover.

It was solid, not part of the clouds. Any ideas? Guesses? Funny captions?

Weather balloon?

No lights! And it didn’t move fast, it just hovered.

Maybe I witnessed one too many lightning hits!

My eyes were playing tricks on me.

The Jupiter II slipped out of storage!

With all the odd weather we have been having I would guess at a weather balloon. If I were a meteorologist I would be recording these weather patterns.

Ever see anything odd in the clouds and wonder; Huh! ?

“Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.”~ The Wizard of Oz
*
Michael took this picture after the storm. 

Walking With Mosquitoes And Uriah!~I Wonder- A short Poem!~

 

I walk outside and
Stare up into the sky and
Wonder, what you see…

I grabbed a can of Off bug spray and waved it over my head encompassing myself, and Uriah. He sat next to me leaning against my legs panting from the heat and humidity.

The mosquitoes are worse early morning and at dusk.  Right now it was only ten in the morning.  I was hoping for a reprieve from their onslaught.

Last night I had made it to the back path, I pushed past the Bog Willows, as they hung heavy from the rain storm. I stepped out onto bare dirt in the drainage area and I immediately became food.

I heard them first, that irritating high pitch buzzing.  Then I felt them surrounding me, like a piece of cheese cloth, barely touching my skin, yet laying heavy.

 I swatted and waved my arms around my head and muttered to the mosquitoes, telling them to leave me alone.  They followed me all the way back to the house. Uriah was watching from under the deck.  He rolled in the dirt, which seemed to dissuade the mosquitoes from attacking him.

Just for a moment I thought of crawling under the deck with Uriah.  I shook off the thought when I pictured myself getting stuck with a happy wiggly, smooching dog covered in dirt..

I looked up at the large fluffy clouds floating over head in a baby blue sky. I spotted a thickening grey line off near the horizon.  We’re in for another afternoon thunderstorm. 

I set the bug spray back inside the garage door. Picked up my walking stick, and motioned to Uriah to walk. He headed for the Blue Spruce next to the driveway. He pushed past the heavy boughs, wiggling underneath. Turning around he faced me, then sat down.

 I left Uriah to his cool spot under the tree and started walking along the drive way, checking out the grass. It needs to be cut, but with the rains and heat, I keep putting it off.  

I noticed a thin, two to three foot spiky leaved stem pushing up between the grass.  Every year these wildflowers blossom out with some very pretty neon blue flowers, hanging off the side branches like tiny frilly bells

I hope to take some pictures when that happens.

To take pictures of this plant, I need to come outside early, before six or seven. At that time of day, there are flowers that open up and smile upwards into the cool morning sky.  Those same flowers are closed tight by nine to ten in the morning.  

I spotted a stem full of closed flower buds; I knelt down to take a look. Uriah pushed in front of me and sat on the unopened flower and grinned.

“Uriah you’re a nut!” I rubbed his face and gave him a push.

He took that as time to play and fell flat on his back and started to roll and moan. All over the plant I was looking at….

 I started to chastise him, but when I looked up, inches away from his head was another plant. All the way down the driveway they stood waving at me slightly higher than the field grass, waiting for morning to come.

 Here are a couple of great sites for wildflowers.

http://dnr.state.il.us/education/CLASSRM/grants.htm

http://www.wildflower.org/howto/

Waking Up The Tractor For The Summer Grass Cutting!~ Or, Husband Who Play With His Wife’s Blogs! ~

Dis mornin’ I decidid it wuz time ta git du tracter grass cuttin’ reddy. First I had ta git disel fule.

The above sentence was fixed by Michael when I walked away from the computer, serves me right for leaving it up on the screen:-)

To open the over head barn door I have to flatten my hands against the door and push upwards. In theory that door should slide easily upward. Reality, the door sticks on the inside track and fights back. With a grunt I push upwards sending the door on its shaky flight up. I hesitate just in case it slipped back down on my head. It didn’t and I walked carefully into the barn.

 Hey, it’s not as if that’d be a first time it slipped back down without me noticing.  

The diesel five gallon plastic tank was sitting next to the still covered tractor. Last fall I had set the air tank behind the tractor after I filled the tires with air. Every year I say a prayer of thanks over those big tires that they are still connected and haven’t shredded. Every winter all four tires lose all their air and I have to refill them. They also need to be checked check constantly during the summer.

The empty plastic water jug was tipped over on the cutting platform. I didn’t see any oil or radiator fluid pooled anywhere under or around the tractor. There was a pile of dried grass along the right, along with a number of boxes I had tossed in that need to be burned. I looked up into the rafters; I couldn’t see the paper wasps, yet.

 Just getting the tractor uncovered, oil checked and changed-Oops! Note to self, need to buy oil- The cutting bed will need oil along with the wheels and around the motor. All that will take me half a day to accomplish. First, I have to move all the stuff out of the way and sweep the floor, before I can even move the tractor an inch from where she has been sleeping all winter.
Crippled husbands suck… note to self, trade ‘im in for a younger, healthy model. (Michael added this part I left it in He’s feeling sorry for himself today.)

Uriah ran up to me when I was taking a couple of pictures. I thought he was being very friendly. But when I looked down he gave me a big doggy grin and bumped me again wiping his wet fur against my jeans.  With the warmer air and the heavy winds, Uriah had gotten thirsty and warm, without asking he wandered off and took a dip in the pond. Nothing like the smell of toad water in a dusty barn! 

I shooed Uriah outside and grabbed the diesel container. I left the door open. I hoped to at least clean around tractor today.

I buy the diesel at the truck stop with all the truckers.  I use the first lane for smaller vehicles, but first I need to prepay inside, so I walk back and forth between the huge trucks.  After  having pumped the diesel I went back inside to get my change and receipt.   I took my place at the end of the line. Truckers are very friendly people and soon everyone was laughing and talking about the tornados heading our way.

When it was my turn I asked about the price difference from their sign by the road, which read $3.21 to the price on the pump, $3.28. The lady behind the counter told me, that they took off seven cents per gallon if you pay cash. I pointed out that wasn’t posted on their sign. She just shrugged and handed me my change. What am I missing here?..

When I got back, I parked in front of the Barn and dragged out the diesel can.   I had bought myself a candy bar at the truck stop and tossed it on the front seat.  I grabbed it and tried to hide it from Uriah. That didn’t work ‘cause he’s a dog and all he does is sniff out things to eat -try not to think about it- and then eat those things, regardless of what said things are or where they’ve been.   (Michael added this last sentence. He caught Uriah grazing in the cats litter boxes earlier today.)

 

I shared a small piece of the candy bar with Uriah. It made him happy.

I wasn’t able to clean up the tractor or the barn, because the winds shifted and the storm rolled in.  And I mean rolled in! The clouds rolled out over head, low enough I thought I could touch them. The sky turned dark grey and rumbled, and flashed, as the winds tossed branches and leaves at us.   

Uriah hates lighting and thunder! He can sense when a bad storm is coming and he would rather stand in the middle of the yard than come in the house. I don’t understand it, but catching him can be frustrating, especially when lightning is flashing overhead

This morning, the sun was shining bright in the blue, blue sky. White wispy clouds gently floated over head.  I stood out near the barn and listened to the frogs singing. They sounded similar to a person whistling with a warble. Their pitch rose and fell as if they were singing a song and only they knew the words.

I contemplated opening the barn and trying again to clean up the tractor.  Then I looked out over the sea of dandelions and tuffs of grass and decided this was just too pretty to cut:-)

At that moment a gentle breeze swirled over my head and Uriah spotted a rabbit and took off ..

Winds Blast Across Illinois Farm Land~Or, Are These Political Winds? If Yes! They’re Kicking Up A Lot of Dung

 

This afternoon we had a small dust storm. The farmer across the road from me had turned over his field during the past week. Today the winds picked up the dirt and manure from his fields and ran it straight north.

The wind tunnel was an interesting sight. So I decided to Video tape it for you. I was really glad the wind didn’t shift and come out of the west and head east. That would have brought all the dust down on me. 

 Check out the video. I add a short poem.

Winds blast
across the open field
Pushing in from the south
tearing to the north
Too close
Yet, just far enough away
I should head back 
to the house
If the winds shift
I will be covered
in dust and manure
A powdery layer
That will coat everything
This Place is
Dubbed…
Tornado Alley
Not that one ever hit the house
They all seem to jump over
to somewhere else
As political winds do
Unless they want to cost you money
Then they stay, and
rip your roof off
For now I watch
I lean against my car
It convulses
as the wind
beats against it
in an attempt to push it
and me
off this road…

My Rat Is A Cross Dressing Opossum~ Or, Can I Get A Gun To Match My Shoes!~

This weekend was beautiful one of those perfect, mid-western spring days. The skies were baby blue with nary a cloud to be seen. The birds were singing. The winds were just a gentle breeze, and the trees were all budding lime green with a sprinkling of leaves waving as I passed by. The air held a slight chill so I had to wear my orange coat unzipped, I never broke a sweat.

Uriah ran up to me panting. He had his worried face on. His eyes bulging out as he tried to walk as close to me as possible, without actually jumping into my arms.

“Come on Uriah!  What’s wrong with you?” I patted him on his head and he paced then leaned into me.

I stood up and looked around not yet getting what the problem was. Then I heard it. The call of the, Warm-Weathered-Mid-Western-Gun-Owner and  my main reason for wearing a bright orange stylish coat all-year-round.  Avoidance of bullets! Add in the fact that I could be seen from miles off. Unless they think that deer, coyote and raccoons shop at Fleet and Farm, I should be safe.

The sound of a gun being fired caught my attention, along with the immediate high pitch ‘Peeeyuuu!” sound traveling behind it.  The bullet must have ricocheted off something then headed in my direction.

Sort of ruined that safe feeling of wearing my orange coat!

I continued on with Uriah around the back path, enjoying the warmer spring air, just a little more leery.

Yesterday when we took the same walk I saw one of my neighbors, standing in the farmer’s air field, at the back of the path. He and his two young boys were digging a hole. When I came close we exchanged pleasantries. Then he explained the farmer gave him permission to shoot the chipmunks. He then told me that the coyotes hunt the chipmunks and dig holes making it unsafe for the farmer to land his planes. Okay..

 Then he added. “You shouldn’t be walking around without a gun!” He nodded looking around.   “There are Cougars in Illinois that sleep in the trees! Just like in California and they will jump out at you. Or grab little kids, like my boys here,” He pointed to his sons and mimicked biting at the kids, “and then they’ll drag ‘em off” He hesitated for effect then added. “And there are Wolves here now. I know a hunter who saw their tracks just on the other side of town.” Hand on hips, he gave me a few seconds for that to sink in then he continued.  “And a Wolf pack will hunt you down if you’re walking alone!”  He pointed to the gun slung over his boys shoulder. “That’s why you should never walk around here without a gun.”

 I responded back.  “Wolves eat rodents! Rats, mice, rabbits, chipmunks… not people!’

“They will if they get hungry enough!”

There are certain points during conversations where I think of Lucy and Charlie Brown, the Peanuts Cartoon characters. This was one of those times.

 

Lucy had told Charlie Brown, the reason a Palm tree is called a Palm tree is because you can get your entire palm around it. Charlie Brown reacts by clutching his stomach in pain.

 

I know how he felt…

To be truthful he had me a little nervous. I remembered how Uriah was frightened a couple of times at night, and I mentioned that. (see  link #3 below)

“Yeah!  Probably a Cougar!”  This guy is good. He will nod yes, when he wants you to say yes. And shake his head adamantly when he wants the negative reaction. Right now he was nodding and looping his thumbs in his belt loops. ”Yeah! Cougars!”

Okay I have to stop here. I tried to call the county to ask them about this. But no one called me back.  Gee! I wonder why…

A couple of Cougars were sited a year or two ago and they were shot. Illinois doesn’t have cougars on the endangered species list because they are so few. Cougars were exterminated in Illinois before 1870.

As for Wolves, according to ‘Defenders of Wildlife’ site (see link #1 below) Wolves; “were killed in most areas of the United States by the mid 1930s”

The difference being, Wolves are on the endangered species list.  (See the link #2, below)

Back to my walk: Uriah was bored he wanted to keep walking he didn’t want to stand around and talk. He kept glancing at the guns, then looking away.

I had to ask this question.” How do you know that a coyote was digging those holes? Could’ve have been anything!”

He answered with a wave of his hand. “Well there are coyote tracks all over the dirt. They are really good diggers.”

“I was just wondering, because we have a lot of holes made by Muskrats.” I pointed behind me, about fifty feet away there was a visible mound of rocks.

“Muskrats? Huh!”  

After that answer I was wondering if he knew what a Muskrat was.

“We also have a couple of irritating rats near the outside kennel that dig a lot!”

“Rats! You sure it’s not a opossum?” He gave me that I don’t believe you look.

“No! It’s a rat. A nice fat county Rat!” I held my hands about half a foot apart.

“Could be a raccoon.” He mumbled.

“Coon! No it’s a rat!”

 He kept shaking his head, as if I would change my mind and agree it was something else.

“It’s a rat! I have a picture of it. Unless it was a opossum, and it dressed up like a rat!”

Luckily his phone rang and his wife summoned him to dinner.  Or he was bringing it with him. I don’t know!  I didn’t look at what happened to the chipmunks they had shot.

When I got back in the house, I told Michael we needed a gun to fend off Cougars and Wolves. He wanted to know what I was drinking on my walk…

#1: Information on grey wolf:

http://www.defenders.org/wildlife_and_habitat/wildlife/wolf,_gray.php

#2: Endangered species list:

http://ecos.fws.gov/speciesProfile/profile/speciesProfile.action?spcode=A00D

http://ecos.fws.gov/tess_public/pub/stateListingAndOccurrenceIndividual.jsp?state=IL

#3:

http://gerardinebaugh.wordpress.com/2010/03/15/something-was-in-the-fogor-take-bets-on-who-pees-first/

Poem…I Was A Perfect Stuffed Monkey~

I was a perfect stuffed monkey

Reddish fur with a beige tummy

face and feet

Until an animal got to me

Now, I lie here without arms, legs or ears

Even my tail was chewed off…

Maybe it was coyote

A raccoon

A fox

or possibly… a skunk  

Could have been that rat

                                    That rat

That steals Uriah’s food and rawhide bones

                                    That rat

that digs the holes around the kennel

under the garden, and

tunnels alongside the horseradish plant

One day the hawk will come by, and sit

Quietly on the railing

waiting for that rat to make a mistake

when he is dancing

on the top of the kennel

Just under the floor boards of the deck

He will scramble up

to look in the kitchen window

at that point, the hawk will strike…

And that rat will be no more

To late for me, I lie here without arms,

or legs, and ears… even my tail is gone

I have all the time in the world

To wonder

Now what..?

Check out everyone at Jingles Thursday poets rally-

http://jingleyanqiu.wordpress.com/2010/03/24/thursday-poets-rally-week-11-march-24-30-2010/

Winter Edges Out As The Vernal Equinox Nips At It’s Heels~

Yesterday I opened my curtains to a heavy snow storm. I stood at the window for a second, then turned away to make a cup of coffee. When I came back the hallucination was still out there.

The day before it was in the middle sixties, warm sunshine, trees budding, birds singing out ,”Spring! Spring!” 

This was a big surprise; I knew the temperatures were dropping. When I took Uriah out for his nightly walk I had felt the cold air moving in.  But I didn’t expect this! Three to four inches of snow on the deck and a beautiful holiday scene cascaded down in front of me.

 I needed another cup of coffee.

Uriah ran outside happy. Very happy! He loves the snow. I pulled on my boots and zipped up my coat.  Grumbling, I grabbed my knit hat, shoved it on my head and walked outside.

The snow was perfect for snowmen, snow angels and snowball fights. None I planned on making or getting into.

The birds were silent in the heavy snowfall. The water on the path had drained off.  With the coating of snow, my boots never touched the mud.

Directly in front of me a mole popped out of the snow. He was very surprised to see me; even more so when Uriah grabbed him and tossed him up like a squeaky toy. Ouch! Quickly, Uriah stepped back afraid that the mole was going to bite. The mole never got back up…

Today- the sun came out and started melting the snow on the deck. Water poured into the outside dog kennel. Uriah sat out in the yard in the sun and watched the snow disappear over the chipmunk holes.

 I shuffled over to the garden and pointed at the large hole next to the dog kennel. “Stare at this hole!”  I poked the soft dirt with my ski pole. “And when he comes out, toss him up in the air!” 

Uriah glanced at the rat hole.  With a heavy sigh he walked back to the chipmunk hole and sat down and waited.

Earthquake In Illinois~ Michaels’ Cat Knew Before It Hit! ~

I woke up early this morning to my husband’s voice.  Tomoe, his black half Siamese was standing on his head and pulling his hair. Her intention was to get him up, now! Just minutes before she was sleeping at the end of the bed.

I could hear, Uriah barking.

Michael sat up and started cooing to Tomoe, who had moved away from him to the end of the bed. 

 At that moment the room started to rattle! Then a booming sound hit the house! Immediately the bed started to shake…

  I jumped up yelling, “Earthquake!”

My husband was trying to get Tomoe out from under the bed, where she launched when the first rattle started.

Everything settled down almost as fast as it hit.

He stood up, “It’s the blizzard not an earthquake!” Irritated, he couldn’t reach his cat. Michael spoke slowly, for my benefit.  “The wind hit the house.”

 I hate when he does that…

Michael walked around to his side of the bed where he crawled back in. “You’re scaring Tomoe.”

“Where’s she at?” I asked grabbing my robe.

“Under the bed.”  He mumbled, as he yawned, and pulled his blanket over his head.  

“Uriah’s still barking.” I stood next to the bed confused. Something felt off.

“Uriah’s an idiot! It’s only the wind.”  Michael rolled over; his part of the conversation was over.

The house was quiet. I could hear the wind blasting the outside of the house. It did not sound like that booming blast that hit a few minutes before.

Not one of the three house cats appeared, as I wandered around the house.

 Pictures were off kilter. I noticed my purse had slipped off the table.  Other than that, everything seemed normal.

When I heard we had been hit by an earthquake. I was able to say to Michael, “Told you so!” I can’t do that very often…

http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/02/10/illinois.earthquake/index.html?section=cnn_latest

When the sun was up, and today it did shine very brightly in a blue sky. I headed outside to check around the house. The only thing I could see was some loose siding and a couple of storm windows were crooked. If any major damage happened I may not see it until we thaw out, in spring…

Last nights blizzard covered everything with a bright, white snow.  Anywhere from four inches to fifteen inches of it whipped around the driveway and off the roof. I could see some higher drifts along the trees, I wasn’t going anywhere near them.

        I wanted to get back in where it was warm.

Winter Walk In Illinois~

Yesterday afternoon I trudged out back with my camera. The sun was shining brilliantly and I thought I may just capture a picture of that Pheasant.

The snow was still brightly white. Not like in town, or further out on the highway, where the snows have changed to a dirty grayish black.

I walked over the low, beginning section of the path and followed the slight incline to the back.

It never dawned on me that there was even a breeze, until I walked past an evergreen and was pushed backward by the wind.  Looking at the icy snow ahead of me, I cut across the field; following Uriah’s paw prints and connected to the path heading back home.

The ground tilted upward, so I was just under the line of wind, slightly. That wind wasn’t skimming across the ground it was higher up in the trees. I watched the tree tops move when the gust picked up.  The wind was bitter cold. I was glad to be shielded by the trees.

Oddly, when I wasn’t in the wind, the air felt like spring. I even found some green moss  shining through the snow.

I stopped and decided to search out the nest of mice, that were living  in the tops of the Bog Willows. I wrote about them in an earlier Blog:

http://gerardinebaugh.wordpress.com/2010/01/02/hickory-dickory-dock/

 I was happy! The nest was empty…

As I headed back home, I turned on the video, which I really need to learn how to edit..

I found the Pheasants tracks and ironically followed them back towards the house. I didn’t see the Pheasant. Little bugger was probably watching me from the trees…