159: Reversing the process

(Frosty kitchen window sunrise.)

When I woke up this morning my thoughts were about spring.  The reality was frost and ice.  It had gotten down into the 20’s overnight and there was a sparkly layer of frost coating everything.  Had the rain not melted most of the snow, we might have had another round of hoar frost.

(This morning’s view of the pond.)

As I stood at the window sipping on my cup of tea, it occurred to me that the scene I was looking at was very similar to how it looked in the late autumn when frost began to appear in the mornings on a regular basis.  Winter is reversing itself.  We started frosty in November and we’ll probably end frosty.  I’m not sure when that will be, though.

(An autumn leaf frozen in time.)

I had a nice walk this afternoon.  The sun is shining, and it feels relatively warm (almost 40 degrees).  I didn’t take many photos.  I meandered around the property with no particular destination in mind.  I eventually circled back around to the front of the house to check on the flowers.  I wanted to see if they’d opened their little heads yet.

Aren’t they gorgeous?  I think they may well be the most beautiful flowers I’ve ever seen.  They look like warmth, springtime, and hope.

What’s new in the Bogs

  • The heavy rains and snow melt have caused quite a bit of flooding in northeast Ohio (other than our basement, of course, which is now pretty much dry).  I had a look at some of the local creeks this afternoon while I was out and about running errands.  I think this is the highest I’ve seen some of the creeks, including the one that is currently flooding our woods.  It’s possible they have been higher in previous years, but this year I am paying attention.
  • Some folks apparently don’t understand the phrase “Turn around, don’t drown.”  A woman my age, who should be old enough to know better, decided to try to drive through flood waters and was swept away in her car.  The poor woman died as a result.  Another woman on another road did the same thing but she was lucky enough to be rescued.  The deputy who rescued her, however, suffered from hypothermia.  The moral of the story:  If there is water on the road, turn around.  There is no way of knowing how deep it is or how fast it’s moving.
  • A few roads nearby are covered with water.  There are plenty of high and dry alternate routes.
  • The Ohio Senate has delayed a vote on the union (busting) bill.  It will be interesting to see what they do with it.  One of the things we the people of Ohio can do if we don’t like a law or a section of a law that our Assembly passes is have it put on a statewide ballot.  IF they pass the union bill, it’s highly likely it will show up on the ballot in time for the next presidential election which might bring out those independent and progressive voters who stayed home during last November’s elections.  So, it should be kind of interesting to see how this all plays out.
  • I noticed that the drivers in this part of the world have not improved their driving skills since my last outing a week or two ago.  I don’t know what it is with Ohio drivers and driving at least 10 mph under the speed limit, not using turn signals, and driving while texting or talking on their cell phone.  You can always tell who is texting or talking on the phone.  They are usually driving about 15 mph under the speed limit and swerving.  Sometimes it is difficult to tell them apart from drunk drivers.  They are probably almost as dangerous.
  • Most of the snow has melted.  There are still some patches in shady spots, and the huge mounds of snow made by plowing will probably be around until April.  There are few that may even last into May.  (Not really, but they sure are big.)

Well, that’s about it from the Bogs for today.  I’ll have some slightly more exciting news soon.  Or at least something different to write about.  I hope.


158: The annual flood

(A crocheted coral reef.)

The photos I’m using in this post were taken at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History when M and I went to Washington, D.C. last December.  The exhibition is called The Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef.  This is another of those instances where photographs are not nearly as good as the real deal.  It is pretty amazing what the local crocheters and crochet groups managed to create.  I saved the photos for a watery post.  This seems to be it.

Apropos of nothing in particular:  My mother taught me to crochet.  It has been a long time since I sat down with a crochet hook and some yarn and created something.  Hopefully it’s like riding a bicycle.  All I have to do is pick up a hook and I’ll remember how to do it.

It stormed here in the Bogs last night.  And I mean STORMED.  There were many, many bright flashes of lightning and loud booms of thunder that rattled the house.  The rain POURED.  Torrents of rain.  Early this morning one of the local weather people said we had gotten 3 inches of rain overnight.  The rain, of course, melted the snow.  The result?  Water, water, everywhere.

M went down to the basement to discover that yes, indeed, the water made its way into the basement.  It’s the annual February flood.  Sometimes it waits until March if the rains start late.  One year we had no flooding at all in the spring, but a hurricane blew through and left behind so much water that the ground was over-saturated and there was no place for the water to go except the basement.

Yesterday, without thinking about the rain and the snow melt, I sorted the laundry and left it in piles on the laundry room floor.  We found it all thoroughly soaked this morning so today has been a laundry intensive day for me.  It all has to be washed and dried before it starts to become moldy and musty.  You’d be surprised how fast mold can form.

I had planned to start my Spring Cleaning Fest in a couple of weeks.  Once again Mother Nature has decided I should start earlier than planned.

M and I had to carry out the throw rugs and area carpets that soften up the basement floor.  It’s still gray and misty outside right now, but the sun is supposed to come out eventually and that should dry out the rugs and carpets.

This morning I was thankful for a lot of things, but two stand out.  The first is the shop vac (or wet/dry vac).  It is so much easier to suck up all that water with a vacuum than with a mop.  There is one little area in the basement bathroom where the water continues to slowly stream in, and I’ve had to keep at that all day, going in every half hour or so to vacuum up the new water.  Once that stops, I’ll do a good mopping with some bleach.

The other thing I was particularly thankful for was the return of my photos on the external hard drive.  It just needed a reboot.  But I like to think that talking nicely to it while turning it on helped.

(Hmph.)

Today’s outdoor adventures

With all the early spring cleaning of the basement upon me, I did not have a lot of time to spend outdoors today.  I went out periodically to hang things on the line, to feed the birds, and to get in my full 30 minute minimum.  There is a great deal of water out there.  And mud.  Lots and lots of mud.

The birds are enjoying all the mud and water, though.  There were hundreds of them covering the front lawn when I went out this afternoon.  There was even a small flock of robins.  I haven’t yet seen the red-winged blackbird, our harbinger of spring.

One nice thing is that walking around the pond is much easier without the snow.  I did not go down into the woods as the creek has taken over and it’s mostly flooded.  See the two crossed trees in the center of the above photo?  The creek bank is usually somewhere behind that.  I’d like to take a ride around and have a look at some of the other creeks around here, but I don’t think I’ll have the time for it.

I did find this lovely surprise:

Crocuses!!  The little squiggly green things from a couple of weeks ago are now flowers and leaves.

The daffodils are pushing their way up out of the ground, too.

(The ice on the pond is thawing.)

Tomorrow morning should be interesting.  It’s going down to 20 degrees tonight.  I expect there will be plenty of ice out there in the morning.