Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘freezing temperatures

Looking Brown

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When I got home from work yesterday, I looked at the thermometer outside to find the high and low temperatures for the day. It ranged from the warmest being 32.9°(F) and the coldest, 32.0°. Yummy.

It’s going to be a struggle sweeping up the wet leaves from the grass if the winter weather that showed up this week decides to stay.

Most of the ground is still too warm for the snow to last. The image of our woods below provides a clear demonstration of the difference between the relative warmth of the ground, compared to the above-ground branches that are cold enough the snow doesn’t melt.

Supposedly, the ground will have a chance to freeze in the days ahead, as the forecast predicts a number of days in a row with high temperatures not making it above the freezing point.

Other than the disaster this will present for me with regard to leaves in the yard, it will be a welcome change from the current swampy conditions on our trails. We’ve got standing water in multiple places. The lime-screenings around the barn overhang are starting to become a mud fest from heavy hoof traffic.

I am ready for it all to become rock hard. The squishing is becoming tiresome.

Look at the color palette of these three pictures. Does anyone else associate November with the color brown?

Last night, I was listening to music on the radio in the house and more than once, Delilah reacted as if she heard something outside. At one point, she barked, like someone was here.

I shut off the radio and let her hear the quiet.

We went to the front door so I could show her there was nobody around. She then ran around to the door to the garage. I’ve seen this routine many times. She was looking for Cyndie to arrive home.

I opened the door to the garage to show her it was dark in there. I made the mistake of turning on the light, which allowed Delilah to see Cyndie’s car and get revved up over what that usually means.

How do I explain to Delilah that Cyndie got a ride to the airport and her car has been parked in the garage for the last eight days?

I guess enough days have passed since Delilah last saw Cyndie that she is beginning to figure mom must be coming home soon.

Just two more days!

That might be all the time needed for enough snow to fall that Cyndie will never know I didn’t get around to removing all the leaves.

Well, never, until next spring, that is.

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So This

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I admit, I have never done this before. I have never been as old as I am today and faced everything that November 2017 is presenting. Is that why this season’s onset of freezing temperatures feels more jarring than ever before? My blood is definitely not winter-thick yet.

Maybe I’m off my game because of how unsettling the last year under the current U.S. leadership has been. The increasing turmoil of extreme storms from the warming planet has definitely contributed.

Sometimes, looking back for reference provides some insight on present day issues, but there are so many unique technologies now woven into our lives, it feels difficult to compare events from decades ago. This weekend, our Netflix queue offered up a documentary DVD about the Freedom Riders of 1961.

I was two years old at the time of those civil rights dramas playing out in the deep south. I suppose the white supremacists at that time were terrified their racist version of society was being threatened.

It has me trying to fathom how history might perceive people and events of 2017 some fifty or a hundred years from now.

The next movie that showed up was a documentary about the Rwandan cycling team that rose from the ashes of genocide that country experienced in 1994. Nineteen Ninety Four. I wish such human carnage wasn’t something that still occurs.

It all serves to put my travails in perspective. Feeling weak against the cold air? I’ll get over it.

I can go out and hug our horses, absorb some of their warmth, and see if I can pick up some of their energy and perspective on the present moment.

They can help me to breathe and get back to grazing.

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Written by johnwhays

November 20, 2017 at 7:00 am

Burdensome Weather

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Our weather has been chilly and wet for a few days now, enough that it is beginning to feel like a burden to face it. I suppose the fact that the temperature is dropping below the freezing point and the wind is picking up to gale force gusts, may be contributing to the desire to batten down the hatches and snuggle indoors under a thick blanket.

Today the precipitation is more likely to be in the form of snow than rain. This is a harsh reality after having been coddled for so many days of autumn with temperatures more akin to the comforts of mid-summer.

On top of that, our chimney liner has not been replaced yet, so we haven’t been able to have any fires in the fireplace. Takes away one of our favorite tools to offset the chill. A little warm air flowing from the furnace vent just doesn’t satisfy in the way a crackling fire can.

IMG_0960eYesterday, Cyndie got a local tree service to send someone out to assess what might be continuing to attack our long-needle pine trees. I raced home through the poor visibility of endless road-spray, a half hour early, in hopes of being here for the visit.

I just missed him.

Cyndie said it was a rather abbreviated visit due to the unfavorable conditions, and that he planned to return another day when he could more readily investigate what critters might be killing the pines.

At least he got a chance to orient himself with our specific areas of concern. In addition to the ailing pines, we are seeking advice on recommended pruning needs of several of the largest oak and maple trees. I don’t expect the assessment to render a very affordable quote, but seeing the cost of professional tree service will help us plan our next move in tending to the precious resource that is the trees on our land.

It is a burden that we are honored to be in a position to bear.

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Written by johnwhays

November 19, 2015 at 7:00 am