Archive for October, 2015

Landfill Dungeon, Halloween version (and more)

Saturday, October 31st, 2015

I was pleasantly surprised to learn that we were going ta-da-dump ta-da-dump ta-da-dump dump dump again this Saturday. I was Sitting On the Green Couch Watching All the Dogs Go By (and finishing my donut and coffee from the farmer’s market) when the GG asked me to put on my Queen of Recycling Hat and research where we could drop off old paint. YES!!! That led to a side trip into household toxic substance disposal. YES YES YES!!! Turns out the toxic stuff will have to wait until next weekend but we did drop off some PVC pipes (once used for a science fair prodject) at the re-use center and most but not all of our paint at Ta Dump.

I thought the GG was just organizing paint and stuff but when I ventured down into the Landfill Dungeon to move the laundry around, I encountered this! Yay!

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I was headed to the Plum Market, so I didn’t see what he did with the shelves until later. I was a bit disappointed that he didn’t dismantle them and get rid of all the stuff. He only moved them. Still… Here is what is behind those shelves. The “chimbley” that we are going to demolish SOON and our “new” (is 2005 new?) high-efficiency furnace, which does not use the chimbley.

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I caught myself thinking about running Rooomba around down there and then I GOT A GRIP! The dungeon is going to be a construction zone SOON. Why bother cleaning the floor? I also decided that I have washed the shower curtain (cloth) for the last time. Our new tub will have glass doors. I know there will be challenges with keeping those clean, etc., but I am ready to face them. At least we will be starting out with NEW CLEAN STUFF! As opposed to tile that was installed in 1959… … …

So, we have tentatively instituted A New Thing into our Saturdays On The Planet Ann Arbor “schedule”, which is walking downtown for lunch. We have been going to the Grizzly Peak and we *love* the Grizzly Peak but I could tell that the GG was a bit tentative about going there *again* today. So I suggested the Red Hawk and that turned out to be a win! We ate at the bar although a window seat might’ve been fun on Halloween. The Red Hawk was a fave on our “beat” a while back but the river of life has taken us away from it in recent years. It is still a wonderful place and I think we’ll have to re-incorporate it into our lives.

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On the way home, we stopped at DHG and Argus Farm Stop (to get stuff I forgot to get at the farmer’s market) and we encountered this Halloween-enhanced version of a well-known fairyland.

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We were saddened to see the next photo. Why on earth would anyone destroy a Little Free Library? We walk by this one all the time. Actually, they are EVERYWHERE in town now. How can Little Free Libraries be a bad thing? I do not know. I’ll spare you my thoughts about football fans vs. hiking/kayaking/x-c skiing fans even though I know that most football fans do not destroy Little Free Libraries.

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Oh, yeah, it is Halloween. We are lightly decorated (mostly lights) and open for business. It is rainy here and in the upper 40s, so really not too cold or icky for trick-or-treaters. Still, aside from a couple of early “rushes”, it is quiet here. And then, just now, the doorbell rang. I wore the costume below to work yesterday. That is, I wore it for a few sporadic moments, mostly for the LSCHP’s sake. It was a hit with those who saw it, including the LSCHP, who kind of freaked out, mostly because KW was actually wearing a costume and maybe because KW was sitting in the building moom’s seat and the LSCHP might not have been sure if it was KW, since she and Mary and Louie-Louii are randomly sitting in building moom’s seat. I declined to enter the annual costume contest.

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Window on Liberty Street the eve of All Hallows’ Eve

Friday, October 30th, 2015

eve3Our usual seating preference at the Oscar Tango is in a middle table kind of katty-corner from the AACT’s tablebut scoring one of the window booths there is golden and that’s where we sat tonight, since we had one more person than usual. So much humanity happens outside the window seat. For one thing, it is where people go to smoke now that The Great Lake State has banned smoking in bars and restaurants. A good thing in the opinion of kw who used to have to throw all of her clothing directly into the laundry after eating out. Although, I will have to say that back in the day when asked “smoking or non” by a restaurant host, we would always say something like, “We don’t smoke but we don’t care if we are seated in the smoking section”.

I captured a few good photos of folks just outside the window tonight. There were quite a few good photos I didn’t quite get. In the end, I didn’t post any of the photos I *did* get, except for the minions across the street. My theme would have been something like “Halloween costume or not”. Alas, the decent photos I got were of people who were likely struggling in some kind of way. Homeless in one case maybe. A few other weird looking [to me] young people but maybe they weren’t even struggling [and I bet I look pretty weird to them too]. A man who lurched drunkenly down the sidewalk and slumped down onto the bench outside our window. A woman visited him a couple of times and eventually got him to stand up and walk away with her. I wanted to be able to hear their conversation and yet I didn’t.

Good evening with good friends and family (npJane). np drove us home and then came in for a wee nightcap and what little family gossip there ever is. Powderpost beetles anyone?

And so begins another weekend here at the Landfill on the Planet Ann Arbor. We were thinking of heading north tomorrow morning but but but… I dunno. We’d just be driving back again on Sunday. So we’ll be here galumphing around and hoping for trick-or-treaters tomorrow night.

Love y’all,
KW

Taking a cigarette break to pet a porcupine

Thursday, October 29th, 2015

fallcolor2Yes, you can pet a porcupine. If you haven’t already seen the gazillion Cute Porcupine videos out there on them thar tubes, google something like “pet a porcupine” or “porcupine eating pumpkin” or whatever. Some of the people out there are even petting them without glubs.

I think I grok what it takes to pet a porcupine without having to spend hours at the ER (and then having them deny your insurance claim because they can’t figger out that you have legitimate health insurance coverage because you have a different name than your spouse — IN 2015!!!! !!!! !!!! I had fewer problems with this IN THE 1980s when I gave birth to my children! The claim has been resubmitted and that is all.).

Where was I? Oh yeah. First a disclaimer that any unknown aminal should be approached with caution.

Most of the porcupines in the videos I watched are in rescue facilities, where they are being rehabbed and have become accustomed to the people who work with them. The people who are petting them (with or without gloves) are very well trained about how to deal with wild aminals of all sorts. I am not sure I could ever do that kind of work but I do know that if you want to make friends with a porcupine (or dog or cat or small child), you have to gain its trust. You do that by not rushing in, grabbing it up in your arms, kissing, hugging, talking baby talk, whatever. You sit back until the baby or pet or wild aminal decides you aren’t going to make any sudden moves and maybe it might be okay to approach you.

And then there are a few of my facebook high school yooperland friends. They look at these porcupine videos and say something like, “Yeah, those aminals are cute but they are not cute when they are chewing on my shed instead of all of the squash and stuff in the compost heap.” Indeed.

Please do not approach wild aminals unless you know how to deal with them. Especially bears. Of all sorts.

I needed to take a wee bit of a break this afternoon. I told my co-workers I was taking a cigarette break. They all laughed their you-know-whats off. I love them.

Things I am (or have been) afraid of, rational or not

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015

imageLemme see…

Dogs. I am NOT afraid of dogs any more, at least not categorically. I was terrified of dogs when I was a young child. I’m not sure why except possibly because various parental friends and relatives owned dogs that “rogered” everyone they came in contact with including small children who didn’t necessarily like to be touched without granting permission (Fury was not one of those obnoxious dogs, she just fell into the general category of dogs at the time). I lost my [categorical] fear of dogs within about six hours after the arrival of my childhood dog Tigger. I still do not like to be “rogered” or jumped on by strange dogs with insipid owners and I am afraid of one dog in the neighborhood who has tried to bite me.

Lighting matches. New parents? If your baby does not seem to be interested in experimenting with pyromaniac activities, do now freak them totally out about lighting matches. No, children should not “play” with matches. This once-child became terrified of faaarrrr after a very early incident where a crappy old cloth lucky-shuckial frying pan cord suddenly burst into flame. Subsequent admonishments meant to “scare” me from lighting matches only served to instill a lifelong fear of matches. (P.S. If your kid *does* get into pyromania, put him/her on a leash!)

Walking alone in the dark. Yes and no. No, in my nice but not fancy neighborhood, although I keep an eye out [knock on wood big-time]. But yes, if I’m in an unfamiliar area.

And that brings up skunks. Harmless aminals except for you-know-what. I’ll never forget once when my old coot went out to pee off the front of the moomincabin deck at that batscope hour and was startled by a black and white aminal. As it turned out, it was only the cat Muksaslooie, prowling around for small mammals and the like.

A very few species of lepidoptera. I won’t go any further than that. This is not an uncommon phobia, believe it or not. My beloved MacMu aunt Charlotte shared it with me, for one.

Water. Well, water over my head, that is. I am certainly not categorically afraid of water, given that I use gallons of it every day and do not tolerate a day without at least one shower. But I get freaked out about deep water even if I can see the bottom. When I was a teenager, it took every ounce of courage I possessed to swim out to the raft (and I *can* swim).

The Green Slime. After watching that movie with older teenage friends (I think I was 13 or something), I remember being out on the afore-mentioned raft, looking for the green slime, even though I KNEW it wasn’t there. It’s kind of like looking for The Cylinder. Of all things, the GG and I watched the Green Slime movie on our wedding night, in a beautiful Holiday Inn room in Sault Ste. Siberia, Ontario. I wasn’t afraid of it by that time.

The Cylinder. I am still afraid of that. Brother where art thou.

Flying. Yes. It’s complicated though. I went on many childhood Sunday afternoon after-church expotitions sitting in the passenger seat of a small Cessna with my WWII Army Air Corps dad piloting the plane. Yes, he let me take the controls. I loved when we left the ground. I know I am overthinking the flying fear, worrying about the small percentage of planes that crash or disappear. When I actually do force myself to fly, I tend to be okay. Go figger. Of course, now I have Titanium Pinky, which will likely be a TSA problem and that does not help with the overall anxiety level. Sigh…

I am not afraid of my back yard (pic) and I am not afraid of letting service people into the house, at least not categorically. The yard looked like this one long-ago year when we were having internet problems. Comcast sent out a serial killer. Oh not really but I was afraid of that guy and when the GG came home, he understood how I felt.

I have not told you about all of my fears. These are only the ones I don’t mind broadcasting and only those that I am thinking about at the moment. I have others 🐸. What are your fears? The ones you don’t mind talking about, of course 🐸.

Love you all. KW

The dark days of muon thermography

Tuesday, October 27th, 2015

oct1As much as I love the midnight 11PM suns of northern Great Lake State summers, I also love when the dark days roll around again.

By the time I took the pic on Sunday morning, it was 8AM and my fitbit had totted up 9,885 steps. Since my daily goal is set at the default 10,000 steps, I was almost there and the sun had just reached high enough in the sky to light the trees up the Huron River. When I started my walk from the Landfill at 0-skunk-30 that morning, it was dark enough that Venus and Jupiter shone brightly in the eastern sky. The plan was that the GG would get up after I left, text me when he was ready to leave, I would text back with my current location, he would pick me up, and we would drive down to the Barton Dam trails. I got the text a block or two before I turned westward up Arborview and almost as soon as I turned onto Arborview, I saw the Ninja’s headlights heading toward me and heard its beautiful engine’s hum.

We started our river walk in the dark with Venus and Jupiter easily visible throughout most of the walk. In the end, as we were crossing the bridge back to the Ninja, the sun had taken over and I got this pic. I didn’t take extra steps to meet my 10,000 step daily “goal”. I knew I would easily get enough steps throughout the day and, indeed, my total for Sunday ended up being 24,995.

This dark morning was also beautiful but I didn’t get any pics. The planets were still spectacular and the full moon was making its descent throughout my entire walk and then I met my Mouse for an early breakfast at a new (to the west side of town) cafe. The Songbird, a lovely little place with KW-sized breakfast sandwiches (aka small). I got the Florentine – egg, goat cheese, spinach, and a tomato slice.

A minor KW-type kerfuffle began our dining experience. The kind where KW is trying to multitask at an inopportune time: 1) Fussing about the fact that the DOME LIGHT was still on in the Ninja. This was the result of an indescribable fight with the sunroof control that you do not want to know about. 2) Unthinkingly elbowing an “older” man out of the way of his position ahead of us at the counter. He seemed to think it/I was funny and I hesitate about calling him “older” because he was talking about getting his son to school and there I was with my (lovely and poised) adult daughter. But who knows?

I went outside and figgered out [sorta] how the damn dome light worked. I’ve been driving the Ninja for seven years, so go figger. And then we sat and ate our breakfast watching the sky get light and various traffic situations involving double trailer gravel trucks holding up traffic waiting to turn onto the eastbound I94 entrance.

For so many many many years, breakfast with the beach urchins was not all that fun. That’s how it goes when you have children. They are not always on the same damn program as you are on or think you are on. That’s okay, just that life isn’t always easy for either parents or children even given the best of circumstances. On our best mornings, I would read chapters of the Narnia chronicles or Indian In the Cupboard or various Roald Dahl books or whatever while they were eating (or not) but I also remember when we got to the point that they would get themselves up and ready for school (and *to* school when they could drive) while I took a walk in the dark. Now? An early morning breakfast with one or both of my lovely adult daughters is just about my favorite way to begin a morning. We certainly can’t always do that — and that’s a GOOD THING — but when one of my kids wants to have breakfast with me, I am all for it. Now if they would just read Indian In the Cupboard to me while I eat breakfast 🐸.

Nature takes its course

Monday, October 26th, 2015

oct4Yesterday, I alluded to a certain natural incident that we encountered while walking in one of Washtenaw County’s beautiful nature preserves. It involved a certain reptile and amphibian. It was a pretty interesting event but last night, I was too busy having too much fun to properly blahg it, so I punted with cryptic little twitter plays.

I also did not post a photoooo (although I have one, albeit it a little fuzzy). You do not want to know. Or maybe you do. If you do, I recommend asking the GG if he would share his video of the event. The rest of us moved on, knowing that there was nothing we could do to save Mr. Toad’s life and a snake has gotta eat. We eat aminals in this household. Somebody has to kill them in order for that to happen. Nevertheless, I didn’t want to watch Mr. Toad’s last moments on this vale of tears. I think it was probably not as pleasant as how humans kill chickens and cows, etc.

Can I just say *bizarre* though? I was galumphing along the trail and was startled by a small commotion on the ground immediately to the left of my feet. A slithering, rustling little commotion. I thought Snake! I am not afraid of snakes, at least not categorically. It’s easy for me to say that because there is only one poisonous snake in the Great Lake State, the Eastern Massasauga Rattler, and it is rarely seen although there have been two rattlesnake bites in the last couple years over at the Matthaei Mechanical Botanical Gardens, a beautiful uMich facility over to the east of town. The only snakes I have ever seen in the wild are Garter Snakes and Grass Snakes (they are grass green) and I am not afraid of them. In fact, when I was a child, I would pick them up on the moominbeach, although mostly to show the world my cuzzints et al that I wasn’t afraid of snakes. I *am* afraid of poisonous snakes and so are you.

I was a little freaked out when I first looked down at this snake. I wanted to think “garter snake” but something about the head wasn’t right. It was kind of bulged out, like a poisonous snake’s head might look, in my mind anyway. A closer look revealed that the snake was doing its best to pull a live toad into its mouth and down its throat. I expected the snake to slither off quickly but it did not (hence the GG’s video). I think that it needed to focus on swallowing that toad and can only guess that the struggle to obtain food trumped the danger of being trampled on by large galumphing mammals wielding pocket computers equipped with cameras.

Anyway, a [garter] snake got fed yesterday. I did not watch. We are eating beef pasties tonight (from Uncle Peter). Somebody killed the cow who provided the beef. Yes I have heard the latest recommendation not to eat red meat. Blah-de-blah. I’m sure the “authorities” will eventually figure out that broccoli will kill you if you eat enough of it. Everything in moderation and BTW, broccoli is a wonderful antidote to a garlic hangover. Learned that way back when I was in high school. Try it.

Sunday Landfill Twitter plays

Sunday, October 25th, 2015

oct2What was the highlight of your last birthday celebration? I will bet you anything it was NOT an encounter with a snake eating a toad. Sorry your life is so boring!

Anyway…

Twitter play #1:
Setting: The Landfill [one beach urchin eating a samosa]
@tmotu: Samosa? Are you guys drinking?

Twitter play #2:
Setting: Burns-Stokes Preserve
KW: Where’s dad? Is he still back by where the snake was eating the toad?
Beach Urchin: Yes.
KW: Is he video-taping it?
Beach Urchin: Probably.

Twitter play #3:
Setting: the landfill after witnessing a snake eat a toad.
A beach urchin: Where is dad? Is he still out at the telephone pole?
The other beach urchin: I dunno. Is it eating a toad?

P.S. He was actually out by the telephone pole because Morning Glories seem to be growing like weeds out there and he was inspecting them. Wonderful visit tonight by a beach urchin friend who often stayed with her grandparents next door as a child. Love love love.

Channeling Hillary

Saturday, October 24th, 2015

By the time I got down to the farmer’s market at 0-skunk-30 this morning, it was raining cats and dogs. My umbrella protected my hair, which was still wet from my shower, but not my feet or skirt or backpack. It was a warm day (for October) but I got a bit chilly so, when I got home, I changed outta my wet clothes and washed my feet. I was good to go. Here is what Sparrow Market looks like at 0-skunk-30 at this dark time of the year.

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We walked down to the Grizzly Peak for lunch and encountered these penguins along the way.

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We both wanted to buy goat cheese from White Lotus Farms today. We didn’t see them at the farmer’s market today. That doesn’t mean they weren’t there. Both of us forgot to look for them. So, after lunch at the Griz, we walked over to the farm stop on Liberty and picked some up.

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At the end of the day, I needed some more fitbit steps so I walked over to the schoolyard and woods. We have had a warm fall and these morning glories look like they want to bloom again. Not sure that’s gonna happen. And I don’t really need any more fitbit steps. 60 miles of walking this week?

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Can I just say TGIF?

Friday, October 23rd, 2015

Not sure why exactly since this week kind of flew by. Mouse and the GG were eating bagels and mobilizing to go hiking as I was working on getting out the door to *work* this morning. They went out to the Discovery Geology Center in western Washtenaw County to walk out to the floating bog and its environs this morning. I so wanted to join them on this beauteous autumn day and here is Mouse up on the lifeguard station on the lake more or less adjacent to the bog.

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I stuck work out for the entire day and then I walked downtown to the Oscar Tango. The colors are gorgeous at this time of year.

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These hands of porterization are retired hands and, in another six months or so, I will be the only person at the table who has not pulled the “R” trigger. I love my job. I could pull the “R” trigger any time I want to. But not sure that I want to. My old coot pulled the “R” trigger when he was my age. The Commander waited a few more years. What to do? I dunno… Anyway, good friends with beautiful hands and no goddamn broken fingers. Or polydactyly, for that matter. (Does anyone else obsess about polydactyly as much as I do? Sheesh!)

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And then I went to use the Ladies Powder Room and encountered this sign. It’s a one terlet bathroom so you do have to lock the door but why the heck did someone who works at the Oscar Tango feel the need to make a sign like this? All I have to say is that people who serve the public at bars and restaurants are not paid anywhere near enough for what they do. Jeebus. That’s why I am a big tipper.

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Last but not least, yet another year has gone by. Where does the time go?

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G’night, KW

Trail/road hazards

Thursday, October 22nd, 2015

roadhazardA few dark mornings ago, I was walking through the wee bitsy woods behind my house when I encountered a HAZARD! It is dark when I walk through the woods these days, even though it is at the end of my trip and so I use my iPhone flashlight to watch for hazards like this which could easily trip someone who is galumphing around through the woods in the dark and cause them to fall and break their pinky. The one on their dominant hand (although KW’s Left Hand is pretty damn good).

Anyway. A few dark mornings ago, I encountered these sticks on either side of a log that I cross every day. I know where the log is but, if I hadn’t been using my iPhone flashlight to light the trail, I could easily have tripped on those loosely laid sticks… And fallen… And broken a finger/arm/ankle/whatever.

White Hot Anger tried to take over my brain for a split second. Who had done this? Don’t they know that trails need to be kept clear for hikers (albeit “hiking” is way overkill for walking through the wee woods behind my house). I let myself get all Off With Their Heads about those sticks and I spent 30 seconds or so picking them up and flinging them off the trail. How dare those kids do something stupid enough that it might trip some baggy old bag who is walking around with the skunks and possums at 0-skunk-30 in the morning?

Oh, it is kids. The sticks were back the next day. I did not fling them again. KIDS did this. We want/NEED kids to spend time outdoors, especially in the woods, even the teensy tinesy wee woods behind my house. Small that it is, it is a woods and I always feel better after I walk through it. I don’t know what the kids are doing with these sticks but I know where they are and I can see other hazards with my iPhone flashlight. Oh yeah, and trees fall down in the woods sometimes. Sometimes because the wind blows them down, sometimes they just fall… Kids need to hang out in the woods or whatever passes for the outdoors near their house.

That was the trail hazard. The road hazard? Today when I drove into the “business park” where Cubeland is, I encountered a couple of sandhill cranes along the side of the road. I did not stop to try to take a pic. When I got into my Cube (M held down the foyer today, thank you!), I checked fb and my “memories” showed that EXACTLY one year ago, several cranes were hanging out by the pond next to my parking space and I got a photo of them then. It would’ve been cool to get a photo of today’s cranes. I thought about it and there was not any traffic behind me but I figgered if I stopped, I would spook them and they would fly off.

Love y’all, KW.

Looking for something else, I found this

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

garThings in this pic. Milk bottles. Remember those? Did your family have milk delivered in bottles? We did when I was a small child. Both at home on Superior Street and out at the moomincabin. I don’t much remember when the milkman delivered on Superior Street but I do remember the milkman coming down the cabin road. My dog Tigger hated that milkman and pandemonium would ensue whenever he came. Eventually The Commander discontinued milk delivery in our house in town when she began a new career as a teacher and the milk either spoiled or froze depending on the weather.

A very shabby old front door. I think we eventually changed that thing up into something a weeeee bit nicer.

That shelf unit? I thought that it was my grandma’s shelf. My Fin grandma, that is. It is in my house as I write this. I now think that either my mother bought it somewhere or it came from her family’s house in Garden City. I don’t really remember it being in the front entry. I do remember the shabby door. I didn’t care. We were safe and warm in that shabby old house.

What the heck was my brother smoking? It was a ‘gar, of course. My dad was not a big smoker but he did frequently light up a cigar, in keeping with his Veteran Greenhorn traditions. My brother emulated his dad’s esteemed cigar smoking habit by “smoking” Crayola crayons. I think he has a crayon in his mouth in this pic. I’m not sure which crayon this is. I’m wondering if it is the Blue Crayon. That’s the crayon that he stuck into my cottage cheese the time I had Scarlet Fever. That put me off cottage cheese forever and it’s a good thing that I did not throw up the time the well meaning harpy of a camp director made me eat a spoonful of it but that would be a whole ‘nother story. Let’s just say I did *not* like being called her “cottage cheese girl”.

My brother’s fave ‘gar was yellow. It was one of those fat Crayolas. It hung out of his mouth as he toddled around the Old Cabin the summer he was two or three or whatever. It rolled around on the floor collecting whatever and, when he lost it (as he sometimes did), the Old Cabin denizens would help find it, giggling the whole time.

The Commander looks a wee bit taaarrred in this photooo. She may well have been but I’m also thinking this might have been a “resting” face.

P.S. I don’t have a *clue* about what I’m wearing! 🐗

October Sky in a garden city

Tuesday, October 20th, 2015

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This was the sky when I walked out of the Plum Market this morning after a simple coffee and breakfast with my beloved older beach urchin. I don’t have a lot more to say. We’re watching Downton Abbey (thank you npJane) tonight. So, g’night! Love y’all.

Thunder Bay Coast Guard Radioactivity

Monday, October 19th, 2015

rusticlifeWhoof! Being a Building Moom is hard work. I am not really a building moom but as there is currently a temporary issue going on at work, I was drafted into service to baby-sit the foyer until the issue is rectified. The LSCHP sidled up to my cube late last week and I could tell by the look on his face that he wanted to ask me for something but was a wee bit nervous about it. What the heck, sit in J’s old space next to the foyer and deal with one or two (or three) interlopers a day? Sure. But hey? What about the phone? Uh, the phone? … … … Duh? There’s a phone? What *about* the phone? Turns out that when you call that phone, you get a busy signal. Scratch one task off my list.

So I got to work today and after about five minutes of sitting in my regular cube, I remembered that I was supposed to be filling in as building moom, so I moved. Exactly *three* strangers entered the foyer today. 1) A guy who needed to “install” some sort of “line” or something. 2) A solicitor with promotional info about a food truck. 3) Someone asking if we had any “backup tapes” for him to pick up. It wasn’t until later that I wondered if I had fallen into a time warp of some sort. (October 21, 2015 is coming up, roight?) Backup *tapes*? Whaaaa?

For the most part, it turned out that my main responsibility was to hit the Magic Button every time the LSCHP walked out of the building and back in and did not want to bother using his badge to get in the interior door. Fortunately, most people didn’t ask me anything about food or menus or how to fix something or locate something because I was USELESS. Because that’s not the kind of stuff I am *paid* to do and I was not *asked* to do that stuff, thank you very much. Hopefully, a new building moom will be on board sooner than later and I can crawl back into my loverly, [once] dog-poopy cube.

It’s late and I’m taaaarrrred. I am now baby-sitting Lizard Breath’s laundry [and hoping I haven’t ruined anything!] while she and Mouse attend a concert downtown tonight. Liz and I walked downtown to meet the GG for dinner at the Griz, then hit up Literati, then Mouse’s work, then a wee nightcap at the Oscar Tango, where we were greeted cheerfully with something like, “What day is this?” by a bartender who knows us as Friday regulars. I love that photo of me galumphing along through Miller Woods on the way downtown. My rustic life, as a facebook / childhood friend referred to it 💜💚💛

It’s a Football Sunday somewhere but not here, at least not exactly…

Sunday, October 18th, 2015

fall3I hear people saying something like, “uMich is playing *football* this year.” That means that they have a different coach and that is as far as I will go with that. I think they were probably playing football yesterday although I wasn’t paying attention because… They lost in the last possible nano-second by some kind of miraculous event that I couldn’t explain if I tried because, even if I had been watching the game and *understood* football beyond mindlessly yelling “first and 10, let’s do it again”, I wouldn’t’ve understood. I’m sorry that uMich lost. They’ve had some rough years. Even though I went to MooU, if I am a fan of any college team anywhere it is uMich. I was a childhood fan and have been a tax-paying denizen of the Planet Ann Arbor for most of my adult life. uMich is not the be-all or the end-all but I will always root (root root) for the home team, whether or not I am watching/understanding the game.

What I did *greatly* enjoy was a marching band pic that someone posted on facebook. It wasn’t MooU or uMich. It was a bunch of high school friends who ended up at *both* of those universities and met at the big house this weekend. They posed for a pic with alternating uMich and MooU band members in their uniforms. I dunno who any of them are and I can’t even remember who posted the photo.

KW? I spent today doing a Clothing Cull and kind of looking around perusing some future flinging prodjects. And then after lunch, I was bored and it was a gorgeous brilliant sunny day and my feet started getting restless. I did not have a built in hiking pardner today so I faaaarrrred up the Frog Hopper and drove down to Barton Dam Park to take a beautiful solo urban hike. And then my Mouse came over for a quick little visit that ended up with us galumphing down for a little hike in Miller Park.

Our little hike was interrupted a few times by text messages from the GG, who was at the Lion’s game today, which is why I didn’t have a hiking partner, at least not until Mouse showed up. uMich lost yesterday. The Lions WON today. That is usually not the case. Happy dance here although I could not care less about team sports in general and am now doing the Sunday night thing of listening to whatever folk music public radio serves up while dinner is in the hopper.

Action shots on a Football / Work Weekend

Saturday, October 17th, 2015

I neglected to take a farmer’s market photooo at 0-skunk-30 this morning, even though there was plenty of eye-candy down there at this [somewhat] late date. Local corn available until Halloween? Okay. I’ll be buying it until then. Fortunately the GG got a photooo. It’s sort of an ugly but I don’t really care. Let’s refer to it as something like KW, Woman In Action!

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Last night our recycle bin was pretty much empty. Today? The GG spearheaded an effort to get rid of all of the Apple packaging that has been stored in The Landfill since about, oh, I dunno, 2005, maybe? He did the initial sort and I triaged the paper/cardboard/boxboard stuff into the recycle cart, throwing out a few (very old) boxes that had various forms of foam firmly attached to the paper. I have been wanting to get rid of this stuff for YEARS now, so this was an unexpectedly productive morning. Happy happy happy dance! 💜

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The GG found a snake. I am not sure about the species. The neighbors did not want it but I *think* the re-use center did.

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We sat in Football Traffic for quite some time trying to get ta-da-dump ta-da-dump ta-da-dump dump dump, which is one of my fav-o-rite places to go on a Saturday morning. We eventually bailed and took a townie-type route around the Football Traffic. Home again via a tricky non-football route and then we walked downtown for lunch at the Grizzly.

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Of course, the Grizzly doesn’t care who the heck you root for as long as you buy their [micro-brewed] beer (or cab in my case) and eat a bit of lunch (crab tostada appetizer for me and mac/cheese and hearty coleslaw sides for the GG). That is about all. Love y’all, KW.

Schadenfreude

Friday, October 16th, 2015

Can you believe I once posted this smug little tweet on Twitter? I think we were at St. Cece’s. You can see it below along with my humble response almost a year later.

shadenfreude

I *am* doing well but who the heck was I to tweet such a snarky little comment? At any rate, this afternoon/evening, we were gifted with a lovely visit from our Atlantian friends, Sam (archaeologist, not dog) and jcb. They brought whine and food and helped engineer a feast. And they brought something else. Money that we obtained at the Buford Highway Farmer’s Market last April.

money

Money that we were supposed to BURN while we were down in Atlanta. For good health. Hahahahahahaha! We didn’t burn it then. Why not? We never got around to it, of course. Hahahahaha! Titanium Pinky and Surprise Appendectomy ensued. Our buddies brought the money up here to the Hardland of the [almost] Winter today and I made sure we burned it.

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That’s about it except that we have a Find My iPhone app but I think we also need Find My Whine, Find My Corkscrew, and Find My Glasses apps.

Love y’all and g’night, KW.

P. S. Mus musculus is running wildly all over the back room!

🎃👻💀👺💩👀

Thursday, October 15th, 2015

ratty

Here’s Ratty and that is about all. I mean I don’t have a heckuva lot to say today. I realized I was passing Ratty’s yard early this morning and it is Halloween season and I hadn’t seen any rats or skeletons yet, so I backtracked a bit. The rats are out but not the skeletons.

I actually have a lot to say but none of it is blahgable. It also isn’t all that earthshaking or interesting unless you are into gossip or middle school drama. Gossip I am *definitely* into. Middle school drama, not so much. This week has felt like one big long day in one way but in another way, it has felt like eons since Monday.

G’night y’all. I think we’ll watch more of Downton Abbey tonight (thanks, npJane!). So much fun.

Keep on truckin’

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

fitbitThis is not my first Fitbit. I was gifted with one a few Christmases ago. It was a thoughtful gift for someone who loves to walk. Alas, I wasn’t “ready” for it at the time. I had been using an iPhone app that kept track of steps and mileage. It was accurate and simple and it worked for me. I stashed the Fitbit Somewhere Safe and promptly lost track of where it was and never found it again…

At some point in time, my iPhone app failed to survive an iOS upgrade. I was sad but I was aware that this app was basically a one-man operation (more on this at the bottom) and I figured something had happened to him or maybe he had simply gotten bored and moved on to other things. Sh*t happens and people change and I moved on. I tried out several other pedometer-type apps but never quite fell in love with any of them and eventually stopped bothering to track my walking activity at all. I walk. So be it.

I’m not sure what suddenly got me “hot” on getting a Fitbit [again, since I can’t find the original one] but last Friday, I trucked on over to REI and picked up a Fitbit Flex, which I am tolerating wearing on my wrist. I don’t really *need* a Fitbit or any other fitness tracker. Walking has been a part of *every* day of my life since I was in college. Actually, since before college but, as a kid in Sault Ste. Siberia, it was a means to get somewhere – school, Laurie’s house, Helen’s house, Grandma’s house, Aunt Marion’s store, downtown, Minneapolis Woods (schlepping downhill ski equipment) wherever. In college, it was a means to stay thin (and get to class), or so I thought. Thankfully, walking evolved into a lifetime habit and I am convinced that it is a major factor in my overall good health and lack of [frequent] communicable diseases, allergies, and arthritis.

Don’t be too impressed by the number of steps on my Fitbit screenshot. I get these steps by taking a long walk every darn morning, plus various walks to the Plum Market and wherever else I need to go that I can walk to. I think that anyone with a non-sedentary job might end up with similar steps. If I did *not* have a sedentary job, my steps might be double what they are. Or not.

Returning to my loverly old iPhone app, it was called iTreadmill and something *did* happen to the developer. Fortunately, he survived with minimal damage. On a quick perusal of the website, I can’t tell if the app will work on my new iPhone 6S. Whether it works or not, I may download it *anyway* (99 cents) to support this wonderful person. What a story!

Love y’all and keep on truckin’,
Kayak Woman

Overachiever

Tuesday, October 13th, 2015

ghillieSo, how did your morning begin? Mine began with a standoff. My opponent? The cutest opposum ever. Mrs. O. My weapon? An iPhone flashlight. Her weapon? A pair of very sparkly eyes. (Randomly assigning a sex to Mrs. O. I certainly do not know the truth.)

Now that it is dark throughout my entire morning prowl, I use my phonelight in the woods, so as not to trip on anything. I do *not* want to re-injure Titanium Pinky. I now consider her to be *formerly* broken but still. Anyway, when I am walking through the woods in the dark with my phonelight, occasionally the odd Henry (aka rabbit) will skedaddle as I approach and scare the beejeebus outta me. More often than not, I am spooked by my own shadow aka I am passing a tree and the leaves momentarily cast a shadow. For a split-second, I will imagine somebody in a ghillie suit sneaking up behind me. Then I remember it’s just leaves. In another month I will not have this problem. The leaves will all be down.

Today there was this white aminal with sparkly eyes who ran onto the trail and stopped dead in its tracks as it encountered me and my phonelight. We looked at each other for more than a few seconds. Neither of us moved a muscle. After about 10 hours 20 seconds, I began to walk slowly toward Mrs. O and eventually she moved off the path and I hope she had as good a day as mine was, which turned out to be stellar.

I am an overachiever because in the four days I have been wearing a fitbit, I have exceeded my step goal every day, usually by a *lot*. But we’ll talk about the fitbit later. Or not…

Long interesting day with an unusual start. With any luck, tomorrow will be an even better day. Fingers crossed.

El Capitan at long last and good night.

Monday, October 12th, 2015

2012

I was gonna post a whole bunch of pics from October days gone past but then I decided to [finally] install El Capitan and it took such a long time to install that I didn’t manage to get back around to all of the pics. Here is one from 2012 though. We arrived to this wee little bit of October snow back in 2012 after driving up from Gaylord amid black ice warnings. The temperature inched up a bit throughout the weekend but it was not the warmest or dryest weekend. It reminded us that messing around with Mother Nature does not always work out very well. Here’s what Neko Case has to say about it. And I am done done done for the night. Love y’all.