Monday, April 10, 2017

Phone, Car and Nature Calls

On Monday, Apr. 10th I was awake at 6 am and stayed put until Bill and Clemson moved at 7. I’m sure I dropped off in that hour for a little extra shut eye. It was another windy day up here in God’s country and fairly cloudy. The overnight low was only 12C so we put our blue flame heater on the lowest setting and had a nice sleep with only the duvet over us.
Woody looking for a tree to peck this morning
By 7 it had already warmed up to 14C (that is 57F for our American friends). I hopped in the shower after my tea and had a yogurt for breakfast while Bill had his toast. We were on the road into Hanover at 9. On our way through Durham, we stopped and renewed our post office box for 3 months. We need to consider how to handle mail for the upcoming winter, the cost is ridiculous just because we aren’t living in town.
Clemson joins me for a walk
The pond is very clear at the dock

Clemson runs

Well, hello there!

"I'm done talking now"
First stop was at Murray Fleming’s farm to pay the storage on my car. I was so happy to see my ptootie. Murray had her stored in his warm barn covered in a blanket and a tarp to keep her cozy.

There is my Ptooties (in case you can't see it, that is what the plate says)
We then dropped in on Gerry to pick up a satellite dish he and Mike had for us and a chair and a couple of other things from Mom’s cleanout when she moved to Rockwood on October 31st. I had forgotten about those things!
Donna and Gerry's home

Heinz Auto Body

From there we took the truck to Heinz’s Auto Repair shop for them to have a look at the damage to our bumper, from the incident at the casino. These guys were really pleasant to talk to and let me tell you, hearing a grown man say ‘you got an oopsie?’ just added to the experience.

My Samsung phone was at Donna’s for the winter as we needed a one-time communication on it to keep it active. I got the phone with our mail on Saturday. I needed to reactivate it and find a suitable plan instead of the pay as you go deal I had in the past. So, with a visit to Bell, I know some of you shudder at this company, we were happy with Amanda who made it a pleasing quick experience. I’m good to go, yay!
Following Bill down Baptist Church road
Funny getting excited about these material things, but I missed having them at my beck and call for the last 5 months. I accept the way things have to be when we travel south but Bill and I are always open to new and cheaper ways to get what we want, especially in terms of back home communication.

I think that was it for our running around this morning and we scooted back home, me following the black beauty back home. I was on a bit of a high, my car, my phone, my camera. The clouds are playing games with us today but it is a beautiful 19C/64F with or without the sun.
My car is home now
We poured ourselves a third coffee and sorted through a bit more paperwork. I love watching the geese floating on the pond and tried without success to capture them dunking their heads under. With their tails in the air, it makes for quite a picture from the back end. Snap, snap, snap!
Across the highway and down the road a bit, our neighbours are building a huge driving shed/barn
Before we left this morning Clemson and I walked to the road and I noticed this little guy at the edge of the laneway. Of course, when I got close he closed up shop and went inside. He was working his way to the other pond, at least I thought, so I picked him and his house up and put him on the opposite of the road so we wouldn’t run over him when we left. No sooner did I walk away and the little fellow was working his way right back where he started! Well, that was a fine howdy-do!
Why did the turtle cross the road?

To get to the pond on the other side

Again, he runs

Which explains his long periods of resting
We puttered around outside enjoying the warmth. I swept out the Ridge Roost and dusted and swept the Ridge Restroom, no more dead flies laying around.  Bill reinstalled the solar sensor light on the Roost (this is our bunky) so it will light up when we walk beyond the Suite. I like this since it gets pretty darn dark up here!
Sensor light installed for the season

Before 2 pm the sky to the west darkened up and prepared for the thunderstorm that was expected. We were captive under lightning, thunder and a downpour for about an hour. That’s okay by me, with my late night last night and early start today I was ready for a snooze. Did I sleep? Nope, but I rested up on the bed with Clemson for a good 45 minutes.
The storm is coming

Our neighbour took advantage of a warm windy day prior to the rain
By 3:30 the sky had cleared for the most part and the sun started to come through. With the rain and storms coming for the next couple of days we didn’t bother getting the Weber Q out yet. I can continue to cook inside for a bit longer.
Goose the Spruce survived the winter without us

And after watching the geese all day, I spotted this beautiful mallard and either a mate or offspring

Speaking of cooking, tonight will be a hamburger stew of some sort. That means most veggie type things that are in the fridge will go in it, with the exception of Bill’s ‘favourite’ (not) broccoli. This type of dinner means there will be leftovers and that is important today.

I cooked and chopped up 3 carrots in advance, browned a pound of ground beef with onion, red and yellow peppers. I added 2 cups of water and 1 cup of beef broth and seasonings. Separately I cooked linguini broken into 2” pieces (I didn’t have shell or elbow pasta in the house) and added that to the mixture. Lastly, once everything was cooked I added dumplings. Things I make out of my head don’t usually taste quite so good. This was yummy and we had 3 containers of leftovers.

Tomorrow morning you will learn why I needed prepared meals in the fridge. After dinner and after dishes I wandered outside and down the lane a bit. 
And a couple more turtles gleaming in the sunlight
For the last 2 nights, around 6 pm, Bill and I have closed our Suite doors and windows to the loud chirping of what I’ve learned is a competition between 'spring peepers'.

Wha?? I couldn’t figure out what they were but we assumed it had to be frogs of some kind and their mating call. It is deafening, with no word of a lie. Usually I love the sounds of nature, but it is steady from 6 until 9 or 10 at least.

I googled it and if you are interested this is what I’ve discovered.

It is a tiny brown frog, small enough to sit on your fingertip. The pond was transformed into a chorus of these frogs, all trying to outdo each other in attracting females.

That huge pouch that you see is a vocal sac, and it inflates up to be nearly as large as the frog. It’s this acoustic resonator that allows this tiny frog to emit such a loud and shrill chirp.

The benefits of being loud are apparent. If you’re a frog and you can call out louder then your fellow peeps, you’re likelier to get the female’s attention.
One way that these spring peepers avoid predators is by emerging from hibernation very early in spring. Early spring comes with bouts of cold temperatures, often dropping below freezing so how does the frog prevent itself from freezing? The frog doesn’t prevent itself from freezing. Instead, evolution has devised a way for this frog to stay frozen alive.

That is my science lesson for today. If you wish to learn more check this site out:

When I came in from listening to the choir the sun was out again and the temperature was back up to 18C. Up and down like a yo-yo today but it has been a lovely day. I hope you have had a great day too.
Tonight's sunset

The calm after the storm

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  1. Nice that your are getting things all in order and enjoying the wonderful spring time weather back in Ontario, Soon we can enjoy it too, in the meantime Ohio works for us.

    1. It feels good to get things in motion. We are enjoying being home.

  2. Glad you're settling in so well. I was out recording the peepers tonight as well. Good little bit of science. Have you heard any Wood Frogs? They sound like gabbling ducks.

    1. thank you. Those peepers are so loud! this is our first spring here so didn't know what they were. I don't think we've heard wood frogs unless we have and thought they were ducks. We have those here too. :) Aaah, sounds of spring.

  3. Just started following your travel site and have a quick question, What is your Ridge Roost?? And Bunky?
    Don in Okla.

    1. Ha ha, I'm sorry. I am using 'pet' names that we give our out buildings. The Ridge is where we stay in the summer and the Roost is like a little cabin for guests. Bunky is a slang name for it. Happy to have you along!

  4. Great picture of the woodpecker in the tree. You two had a busy day taking care of business.
    Sounds like you have some noisy frogs in residence. Interesting that they actually stay alive while frozen. Thanks for the science lesson.

    1. Thanks Deb, I couldn't stop smiling all day getting things done. I do love it here so much. Who would have thought something so small can make such a loud noise when together!

  5. That was interesting info about the frogs šŸ˜Š