Along the Natchez Trace

Monday, May 26, 2014

Monday's Meanderings....

This is a long weekend for the "Brown Shirts" (gov't employees who work here), and the other summer volunteers won't arrive for another week, so Bill & I are in our own "gated community" until tomorrow.   But since we've been here off and on since 2003 we are able to get along just fine.  In fact, before the brown shirts left for the long weekend, they gave Bill a list of things he could do if he wanted to.

You might already know that Bill is a workaholic..  he's been chomping at the bit to get back on the "big toys" and get busy.   I'm not quite as ambitious as Bill, but one thing I did want to do was get my little (and I DO mean little) vegetable garden started.

We bought a plastic bin - maybe 32' X 16" - some potting soil, 1 tomato plant and 3 packets of seeds (basil, cilantro and spinach).  Bill drilled holes in the bottom for drainage and we set it down on the lid so we can drag it back into the garage if it gets too cold.  Not exactly the gardens we used to plant years ago, but if I get one ripe tomato by the end of the summer I'll be happy!

Our bird feeders are attracting more birds now.  A blue jay visits now and then.  And a Ruby-throated hummingbird has stopped by a couple of times, but I'm not sure it's drinking the nectar.  And...  this one came along today...
Y'all can laugh all you want, but I'll readily admit that the first time I had one of these at my feeders many, many years ago, it must have taken me a half hour to identify the little rascal...
She's a female Red-winged Blackbird.
Doesn't look a thing like her handsome husband, does she?  But really, I think she's quite attractive in a very unique way.

There are lots of bird houses around...  mostly to attract bluebirds, but the Tree Swallows like those ready-made homes as well...
They have a gorgeous dark blue head and back.  

Speaking of ready-made homes, we are still seeing the Bald Eagle check out the nesting platform each day...
I'm kinda hoping that the lower right photo isn't her final opinion of the place....
Yeah, it's exactly what it looks like...

I have my game cameras out...  Didn't take long for one of them to get knocked whopper-jawed!
Really...  we did set it up so the photos would be level...  Those 4 upper left show various bear "parts"...  and the upper right and lower left and middle show some real "up front and personal" views of the bruin.  And the lower right ....  guess it wasn't all that interesting so he's walking away.  (and the camera is tilted quite a bit).

We've had a lot of rain here...  and this afternoon the sky got real dark - thunder sounded in the distance...
 This is looking from our motorhome up towards the Weapons Storage Area (where the nuclear bombs were stored during the cold war)...

Wasn't too much later that all hell broke loose...  
Hail stones the size of marbles...  and lots the size of those big jaw breakers...  
Lots of noise on the tin roof of the old maintenance shop.  I pulled the car in one of the stalls because it's a little Scion and it doesn't take a whole lot to make dents in it.  (Don't even ask how I know)....

Anyway, the day has gone well...  I'll catch y'all up on the bridge repair that Bill's doing soon.

I do want to add something here....
Apparently the refuge has had a lot more interest in folks volunteering here than in the past...  and yes, it is a great place.  But I seldom mention the black flies (which are abundant right now), or the mosquitoes - which Bill has already encountered in the wet woods, or the "no see-ums", which you don't even know bit you until the blood runs down into your eyes.  Then come the Moose Flies...  I have photos of them swarming around our heads.  In a couple of weeks I'll have welts the size of quarters on my head and neck.  Bill & I both wear "bug shirts" in an effort to keep the bites to a minimum.  I'm hearing that the ticks are really bad this year.  While there are no poisonous snakes, there is poison ivy.  
So while it may seem like Eden, keep in mind that that poisoned apple is always close at hand.

That's All For Today!


  1. I don't mind rain so much, but hail is another story. Say, won't the critters eat that tomato plant?

  2. Mother nature just loves to play dirty tricks on us humans. BTW, my wife planted vegies in those containers this year. Every time we have had a regular garden, some kind of animal dug stuff up or ate it when it got ripe. Coons, possums, pigs, etc. all live around here.

  3. You just listed all the reasons why I don't want to be anywhere near nature most of the time. Sure seems to be a lot of hail this year around the country. Our son's house got hit pretty hard and will need to be repaired.

  4. Ya, I don't mind rain, but hail is altogether another matter! The bears would keep me at a safe distance.

  5. Stephanie has HUGE whelps on her legs from .. we don't know ... she's going to the doctor tomorrow... red ants most likely ... rat bastards. I stepped into a red ant hill ~ thought I was going to die... I do not like all the above named pests.... they must serve some purpose but dang if I can find one other than feed other pests.

    love the bear! and omg... the Eagle??? how cool is that. guess you decided not to adopt me ~ haven't heard from you

  6. I'm going to Fishing Bridge campground in Yellowstone for 2 nights next week and hope to see some bears. - not too close - just to get a look.

  7. Again you keeping very busy there and having a great time.
    Don'tr care much for the skeeters and black flies. The area we ar right does not have that problem, not sure why but we won't complain.

  8. My knowledge of Maine ends at Moosehead Lake, where they told me summer ends on July 31st. Good luck on those maters.

  9. Hail...not so good!!! You got some great pictures :-)