November 5 – Sweet 18

Thursday I took the environmental class out to Lowell’s.  We all squeezed into the Taurus–6 people total.  We put up some bird boxes and built up some rabbitats by cutting down saplings, mostly the invasive exotic autumn olive.  It was Savannah’s 18th birthday.  She had to go to school and work, but at least she didn’t have chemistry.  I went to visit her at work for a little while.  She was serving an Amish gentleman, her favorite thing (not).  Her friends brought her Subway for lunch and a birthday cake at school.  So it was a good day overall.

Friday I went in to the office.  I had my picture taken for a piece I wrote that will go out to some alumni.  Then I was showing some of my Ruby pics to our PR guy, and he seemed to think they would look good in our hallway display cases.  When I got back to my office I put together a dozen good ones and wrote captions for them.  I wrote a narrative to go with it and sent it all to him.  I went to a meeting on main campus.  I had to defend some changes I wanted made to our curriculum.  I managed to make the others see things my way.  From there I went straight to Lowell’s, changed and climbed a tree.  I took a couple of shots at a squirrel.  The first was so close I thought I hit him, but he jumped up on a little cedar log.  The second hit the log.  It’s a good thing I used an old beater broadhead because it’s permanently buried in that log.  I heard one deer, at least the distinctive snort and sound of hoofbeats.  It must have smelled me.  The wind was swirling and gusty.  I did see a doe just after sunset.  She walked in from the east and disappeared over the ridge.  I also saw a turkey fly up into a tree to roost.  For the first time ever, I used a scent lure for deer.  It was “Active Scrape”, a mix of urine from does and bucks.  It absolutely reeks.  It didn’t bring in the big bucks this time.   At least it was on sale.

Savannah’s funny/creepy story of the night.  She accidentally hugged a lesbian.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  She just didn’t know the lady was a lesbian at the time. 

Saturday I finished cleaning out the garage.  I mowed the front lawn and raked the leaves.  I tried in vain to start the Honda 70 again, I installed a battery maintainer on it and another on the lawn mower.  I took the metal detector to Nancy’s to look for a boundary marker.  At one point the detector went off strongly.  She got a shovel.  I said, “If it’s a silver dollar, I’m keeping it.”  I turned over a shovel full of dirt and extracted a prize.  I held it up in triumph, a square of aluminum foil, shouting, “We win!”  We never did find the boundary post.  There was a nice garter snake sunning on a rock by her pond.  I collected some grasshoppers for lizard food.  Stacey and I went out to dinner at the local Mexican Restaurant. 

Sunday I got up early and went out to Lowell’s.  I sat in one of my favorite trees, but didn’t see a deer all morning.  When I got down, I took a little saw and cut the segment of cedar log that contained the broadhead I had shot on Friday.  It was fairly impressive penetration.  Lowell and I went fishing, after, that is, using planks to get to the pontoon boat dock.  The lake is still very high.  I caught five bass and Lowell caught two, though he caught the biggest one.  The average fish size is definitely bigger that just a few years ago.  We went to LaBelle for lunch and ended up having the same thing–a big hamburger. 

Monday morning when I got to my office I saw a little, white mouse walking down the hallway.  It zipped under the door into my lab.  I caught it by hand and put it in a nearby cage.  After I got settled I was working at my computer when I felt something crawling on my ankles.  It was another mouse!  I caught that one with an insect net and put it in with the other.  They were my colleague’s mice for her class.  When I got back to my desk, I still had the occasional sensation of crawling on my feet.  I’m not afraid of mice or anything, but that’s creepy!  After class I went to Hannibal for the open house at Douglass where Stacey works.  On the way there was a really cool sunset, but it was gone before I could pull over anywhere to shoot it.  There was food and some friends, and I learned something of the history of the agency.

I found out that I had placed a photo in a competition I had entered, the 2009 Mississippi Valley Salon of Photography.  I had submitted 12 and had one accepted.  That’s not bad for an international competition.  I was surprised it was not the bat photo that got in, it was the hawk with the bullfrog.  All the photos accepted are shown in galleries at the links below.  When you have some time, or want to waste some time at work when no one is watching, and you want to see some very nice photos, take a look. 

Open/generalcolor section

Theme(Monochrome or Monochrome with one color) section

Open/generalnature section

This week’s blog photos, plus some from the recent past, are here:

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