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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Nature Is Never Static


Last May biblical storms ravaged ths area and took down several trees. A triple-trunk Wild Cherry tree was spared--sort of.  Its roots, loosened from the earth and sent the tree listing eastward at about a 45 degree angle.  In fact, the only thing actually keeping it more or less upright is a dead ash tree it's leaning against.  Since Sunday the cherry tree's fate has become even more ominous.  I know that another strong storm will send this tree which is utilized by a variety of birds crashing to the ground.  I'm pretty well set on firewood, so another windfall will mean a lot of labor to stockpile cordwood for years to come.  It makes me weary just thinking about it.

The drought has left leaky pond basically without a drop of water, but filled with weeds, some of which tower nearly five feet tall.  The weatherman's Saturday prediction for storms was the impetus for frantic weed clearance, something that I should have started long ago. 

The weeds were quite easy to pull, but the sheer size of the area was daunting.  I began pulling from the south end of the pond, loaded them into a cart and dumped them in the woods beyond.  After several hours I'd only cleared about a 30' x 20' area, so I called for help.

Al, my super handyman arrived armed with a heavy-duty weed whacker and began the assault.  As he whacked I raked and loaded and hauled to the woods.  This method was much more difficult (for me) than pulling the plants, but progress could be seen.  Then it happened.

Without warning I began to sink in the very center of the empty pond.  It felt as if a giant magnet were pulling me to a mucky grave.  It was impossible to free myself and my descent was intensifying.  Meanwhile, Al was busy with the noisy machine working toward the north, away from my southerly position.

Like a really bad dancer I'd fling my upper body toward his direction and scream at the top of my lungs, "AL!!!!"  He heard nothing.  Only when he ran out of fuel did my dilemma become apparent.  By then I was mired up to my knees.

Although Al was able to pull me from the muck, my favorite sandals are history.  A century from now some archeologist will discover them and wonder at the strange footwear his predecessors wore.  As for the weed situation we still have 2/3 of the pond to clear and now there is about a foot of water in the center.


A feathered oddball has decided this is a good place to call home.  I've named the turkey vulture Eldin.  When he isn't perched, wings extended to soak up the morning sun atop my neighbors' telephone pole, he's here, often lounging on the leaning cherry tree, but sometimes he flies right over the terrace between the two porches which enrages Tess and freaks out the hens.  Tess' eyes bulge as she watches the brazen bird.  Then emitting a low growl just before racing from the porch she attempts to run Eldin off her property.  Since he's always alone maybe it's not true that birds of a feather flock together.  He seems to want to join the chickens.  Poor Eldin.

6:38 pm edt          Comments

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