Friday, April 29, 2011

Not much left to do to finish the semester. I have to grade the finals in both 202 classes and read and comment on the 470 papers. I will finally be getting my money for the research grant over the next three pay periods. I had nice parties with my 310 and 470 students and in the 470 class we watched some funny videos on you tube.
I have eaten a few strawberries and more lettuce out of the greenhouse and I should have some peas and a lot of strawberries coming in.
I taped screening over the pipes that lead into the house, two for the heating system (which hasn’t been used in years and I think had an old hornet’s nest in it) and the one into the solar batteries.
I am almost done with the new door screen. I have to put the screen on after I put the hardware cloth this morning. I wish I had an electric staple gun but a battery powered one costs around a hundred and I don’t know how many uses I will have for it. The screen fits perfectly.
Spring is almost over and redbuds are ending along with the bluebells. I still have wild geranium and fire pinks but the amazing spring burst is over.
The big rain sent some soft earth into the culvert, but it is still open and I will fix it tomorrow.
No real prospects on Match but I keep checking.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The last two days, Saturday and Sunday, have been busy but a lot of fun. Since Friday was rainy, I ended up grading most of the day and got a lot of stuff done, allowing me a lot of flexibility on the weekend. Saturday I drove down to Allisonia and rode the New River Trail for a total of seven miles. I could have done more but my hands were bothering me a little. After that I drifted off south and eventually ended up on part of walker creek east of bland. At my first stop, I caught one bass and had several other hits. The Mepps spinner worked best and the crankbait lure got a few hits. None on the popper. At my second stop near the correctional facility, I caught three fish, two bass and a bluegill. The raft which passed me had only caught nine so I hadn’t done too badly. After that I went and played nine holes of golf at the meadows and shot a 45 on the front nine.
This morning I got the tractor out and finished clearing out the collapsed bank. It took about 20 buckets and it really looks good right now. A heavy rain will be the test but with about 70 buckets gone, another collapse shouldn’t be too severe. After that I drove to Pandapus pond for a hike with rob. We saw windflower, wintergreen, chickweed, yellow violets. We met renata and her two daughters and I took them off to look for crawfish and minnows. They found two crawfish and rob told me renata said she appreciated the break. After a nap, I headed out to Walker creek again and fished about five miles from Perisburg just below the bridge where the river crosses. It was tricky getting down but the large pool there had a number of fish and I got three and one as I waded upstream. Getting back up to the road was difficult and next time I will try to find an easier access. Following this I went to play nine holes at Castle Rock, but with 4 holes left I was too tired and my score went up. Still, it was fun. I could hardly move after I got to the truck but after a sushi dinner at Poor Billy’s and now coffee at Mill Mountain, I am ready to do some work, though fortunately I only have a little left.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Things are busy but well. The spring flowers are all over the place with new ones like wild geranium and fire pinks coming on.
I had a nice walk on Wednesday with Rob by Deercroft and while we saw lots of wildflowers (spring beauties, golden ragwort, chickweed, and about a dozen others), it wasn’t close to Wildwood.
I have finally gotten the galleys from Finishing Line and I will get to them next week.
My summer school class is holding at 16 so I will get paid in full.
I haven’t heard from Jeff and I hope Benjamin is okay. Jeff thinks it is a diet problem but Rob doesn’t.
My semester is still going well and I will be done in less than two weeks.
I went fishing yesterday on little walker and got one small redeye on a Mepps spinner. My line was getting tangled so I am going to replace it today. I may go biking and fishing on the new river trail tomorrow if the weather is okay.
Even though I have stopped performing I am playing a lot at home and learning new pieces.
I ate some broccoli from the greenhouse a couple days ago and today I had a big dish of fresh lettuce. Two of the trays of strawberries seemed to have suffered a shock and I hope they aren’t going to die.
I looked for morels a couple days ago but found none. I think the deer and the turkeys are having a fine time.

Monday, April 18, 2011

A good weekend of golf, practicing, fishing, and projects. On Sunday I started digging out the bank that had collapsed by the first culvert, and I must have dug out 50 buckets. I got the tractor at a bad angle at one point but fortunately it didn’t tip over. I then had to dig out the actual culvert and after some hard shoveling, I finally found it.
This morning I went back to work and dug out another 25 buckets and it looks pretty good. I also dug out the leaves and debris and now the culvert is back working even though I should probably get another 10 buckets out. Let’s see what a big rain does. I checked the oil (fine) and the transmission fluid (it probably could use a pint) and the battery water (fine) so things are okay with the tractor. I should grease it again with all the work I have been doing.
Jeff and Rachel’s baby Benjamin has some health concerns and tests should be back today or tomorrow. I watched the Knicks game last night with them and we had a good time. They may come visit next weekend.
I finished caulking the lower part of the house after I found some bees going into one of the gaps in the caulking. I remember when Tracy and I had bees in the bedroom and that was no fun.
Still haven’t heard from Rob and I hope things are okay with him.
No luck on match but I will keep checking.

Friday, April 15, 2011

A good Friday, with practicing, playing golf to beat the rain, cutting the grass to beat the rain, fishing the North Fork to beat the rain, caulking the lower part of the house to beat the rain, and taking a flower walk—to beat the rain.
The flower walk was grand. The hollow is so beautiful right now with all the bluebells and redbuds, and all the pale green leaves just coming out. There is no better place to live. Twinflowers are done, and toothwort is ending, but rue anemone is still strong along with star chickweed. The large flowered white trillium is starting as is wild geranium. Dogwoods are flowering and I saw spring beauties out by my gate. Wild Mustard and grape hyacinth out in the pasture and garlic mustard soon to start. Still some shepards purse, purple dead nettle and Persian speedwell. Large flowered bellwort on the big rock. You can’t really ask for more.
The Louisiana waterthrush has been back for a couple of weeks and I heard the winter wren almost daily a week ago. I have heard the rufus sided towhee and the Great Horned at night.
I am troubled by the budget battles and I hope the poor and the middle class aren’t screwed too bad.
The Coleman and Nan Lacy awards reading yesterday was fine with about 30 people in attendance.
I check out two of the match e-mails but none of the women listed appealed to me.
I did get another writing assignment for Kaatskill Life, this time an article on fishing for the handicapped. I want to also do another one on how my fishing has changed as I have gotten older.
I heard from Bill Rudge that the hatchery lease is gone and the DEC will be taking over. It might be a place where they allow handicapped fishing. Perhaps an article there.
No word still from Don Devine, so I will have to contact him soon.
My grading is going well, but I am pretty exhausted right now.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Things are going well but very busy. I finished with the Coleman awards and now all I have to do is mc the reading on Thursday. I graded and graded so this weekend shouldn’t be too bad although I have to represent the department at the open house on Saturday.
The bluebells are almost peaking and the redbuds are coming on strong. Twin leaf is done and so are the bloodroots. Chickweed is out and rue anemone. I went up and looked at the fruit trees by the solar panels and four of them are doing fine. I think I am going to fertilize them and trim around them. No asparagus yet but I am sure by next week.
The mice are back but I went underneath yesterday and completely sealed around all the vents. I hope to trap out the remaining ones and end the infestation. Hard to say.
No response from the woman on match so I will have to keep searching.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Today turned out very well. Rob put me on a steroid inhaler last night and I slept very well, almost until 9 am. I didn’t cough much at all during the day. I marked up some of the endless rewrites of the poems, practiced my sax, and then headed off to play nine holes of golf.
I shot a 47 on the front nine despite being rained on for the last three holes.
I then did more grading and headed home to watch the Masters. It looked grim for Tiger through the early holes but he had a fabulous back nine (31) with some amazing shots. He is tied for third and tomorrow should be very interesting.
I practiced some more, did my yoga and weights and then took a short walk because storms were coming in and I got back to the house just in time.
I built one of the new windows out of hardware cloth and it is working well, no squirrels.
Justin Craig has paid me back the money I had forgiven, but I am going to use it. I have had a lot of medical expenses and other costs and I am sure my truck is going to need some work shortly. I may send him some money back but I am not sure.
I e-mailed a woman on Match and I’ll see if she responds.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A fine day, practicing and riding the bike and then off for a wildflower walk. Coltsfoot is just past peak, as is the bloodroot. Chickweed and cut-leaved toothwort are out along with rue anemone. The bluebells should be flowering shortly, and the trillium is up. Persian speedwell, Pennsylvania bitter cress, shepard’s purse out in the pasture, also purple dead nettle.
The greenhouse is doing fine and I should have some lettuce in ten days. No asparagus is up yet but it should be my next week.
I played golf and shot a 49 on the back nine even with a 10 on the par 5 where I hit my first shot way to the right and needed 5 shots just to get back on the fairway, hitting two bad shots and hitting two trees.
I went for a hike with Rob and his two students in Wildwood and we saw lots of things: purple dead nettle, ground ivy, toothwort, chickweed, hepatica, dwarf larkspur (just about to bloom), dutchmen’s breeches, large flowered bellwort, wild ginger, may apple (just about to flower), small flowered crowfoot, bloodroot, solomon’s seal (about to flower)¸ spring beauties, violets, persian and corn speedwells, marsh marigold. My leg is hurting.

Monday, April 4, 2011

A bike ride this morning in the pasture. Coltsfoot is at peak, with bloodroot, rue anemone, violets, speedwells, cress, henbit, purple dead nettle, toothwort. Bluebells very soon and redbuds soon also.
David King will come out and pump the septic in a few months and that should solve the problem.
Things with Eileen didn’t work out, so I am back on Match to see who else is around.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The past week has been very busy, with setting up the Coleman contest, grading midterms and poems and papers, fixing things around the house, and trying to practice my sax. My article in Kaatskill Life appeared and the photos look great. I should get the chapbook galleys next week, and that should appear by the end of the month. My NPR essay about the trout pond ran this week but I haven’t heard it yet.
I had lunch with Eileen and she was attractive and nature-oriented, and we are planning to take a hike in Wildwood on Sunday.
My hands are doing well (2 out of 10 on the pain scale and I am down to 4 mg of prednisone).
Justin Craig has kept pushing me too much in my lessons so I have decided to stop taking lessons. I offered to still play with him at Gillies on occasion.
I made up a new batch of gas mix for the chainsaw and ran it for a few minutes. It’s good to know that it is there if I need it. I fixed the blemish in the kitchen ceiling and it looks much better. I also rode the bike, did yoga and weights, graded a lot of paper and began reading Ethan Frome.
When I left the hollow, I went and played nine holes at the Meadows and shot a 48 from the red tees. It was pretty cold.