Wednesday, February 23, 2011

transition time

St. Francis has emerged from the snow at last. OF course, his bird bath is still a small rink, but just seeing the whole of him is encouraging. I know we cannot count on not having a spring storm or two, but March is days away, and that means spring officially will arrive. I have mounds of snow in my yard which is the repository when we have to have a "snow removal" to keep the Creek open.

I will be going to have a knee replacement next week, thus this is my last "Mainely" blog for awhile. Things yet to be done in the next few days - laundry, cleaning out fridge, putting tax papers in the mail, assembling things to "take" and things to leave. A few letters to write and calls to make. Today I go for a "cardiac release" for surgery. I am nearly recovered from a virus and a UTI for which I was prescribed a dreadful sulfur drug that made me sicker than the illness itself. But with a few days left to complete the recovery, I should be in and out of surgery by early afternoon on March 4.

Nick, the Wild Wheaten is going to the vet/kennel for the duration.

Meanwhile, Maine is transitioning from deep winter to early spring with temperatures in the singles at night, and the "above freezings" during the day. The sun is warm(er) and the snow on the roof next door is melting off. The sky lights are fully visible, but I would not dare open mine just in case they are too cold to operate both ways. too much snow to be seeing crocuses yet. But the pine trees are beginning to look brighter.

So - HERE'S TO SPRING - bring it on.


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sunday 2/13/11

Some days would be better if started later. Like seven p.m. instead of seven a.m. I stayed in bed this morning after taking my early a.m. thyroid pill, which says in tiny little print on a yellow label, that I must not eat for 30 minutes. I got out my cross-word puzzle book and settled in to get my brain in gear. I glanced out to see several turkey hens marching through my yard. My kind neighbor shovels my patio off and makes a path from his patio to mine, which also gives the turkeys a nice easy crossing trail. Two of the usual birds were missing. We do have two young foxes who appear in the same trail, so perhaps they have each had a turkey dinner or two. Anyway, I thought it would be a good day. I thought.

Completing two crossword puzzles, I got up, put the pup out, and went to the kitchen to see what was on hand for Sunday breakfast. I had picked up two day-old muffins at Mr. Bagel on Friday when I went to Portland. I put one in the microwave, and began the coffee making ritual. Everything was going well.

Thinking ahead, I thought while in the kitchen I might as well decide what to prepare for lunch. I really don' t like to cook.
I had a package of lean hamburg purchased at the local supermarket thawing in the bottom of the fridge, lots of vegetables in the drawer. Pick up hamburg, it's leaked all over the bottom of the fridge. Try to get it to sink without dripping. Not successful. I know you are not supposed to put tomatoes in the fridge, but I had a little box of those fancy back yard babies - in the bottom of the fridge. Sitting in the blood. I put the tomatoes on the counter but missed a bit and they ended up on the floor. Grabbed a bunch of paper towels and my "Gloves Off" spray and liberally sprayed inside the fridge. And the floor. Got that mess cleaned up, stepped back, one of the tomatoes had fallen out of the box - put my heel firmly on it and Squished it flat. NOw a small tomato should only have a few seeds, but this one had an over load and they were from here to --------here. Along with slippery stuff encasing them. Then of course, I had "squish" on my heel. SO, I managed to get things cleaned up. I took the veggies out of the drawer, and Mrs. Meyer's green bag had failed to keep things as advertised. The red and green peppers had turned to mush. Well, I have put the hamburg in the pan, chopped up an onion and some celery and dumped Paul Newman's Sweet Onion and Garlic red sauce over it and later I will eat it over a piece of 12-grain bread. NOt gourmet, but it will have to do. Yesterday I had a two meal salad from Texas Road House so if I don't get a green veg today, I will live. Oh, and the muffin? I have no idea. It had some really strange grain and a few raising and nuts. I'm pretty sure it wasn't bran. I know bran. It could have been carrot cake. The coffee was delicious with maple syrup for sweetener.

Now about Maine. Our governor, bless him, is proposing some very stringent new rules about welfare and has the liberals up in arms. The oil company that went out of business all in a day leaving people without money or fuel is staying out of the press as much as possible. Why they aren't liquidating rapidly and refunding is my question. We have had three or maybe four snow-free days, YAHOO! and the temperatures are rising slightly with only a little snow predicted in the near days. The real estate section is small, the help wanted is smaller and the articles for sale grows longer with every edition. A sign of the times. Don't try to sell you grandmother's antiques for cash. You won't get what you were told they are worth. Not that I am trying, or that I even have any of Grammie's antiques, but I watch the market.

Check out for the interesting story about a man for whom a day of passion should have been named.

scarborough, maine

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like -----

Yes, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas - except it's February 2, Ground Hog Day. I have had the television on today and haven't heard a word about poor Puxatawney Phil. My guess is he won't see his shadow, or anything else. I doubt if he will even come out of his hole. but one way or the other there will be only six more weeks of winter - if we are lucky.

My neighbor told me she has seen two foxes in the rear of our condos. They have always lived in this area. We feed them well with a sizable flock of turkeys. Yesterday as I drove home in the first of our two snow storms, there were turkeys in the road and I and another car had to stop and wait for them to decide where they were going. Every road is a "fork in the road" for turkeys. They never know which way the will go until they get into the middle, and then you cannot rush them. Eventually, both flew in their straight up flight to the tall pines. I put out a lot of flax seed to see if they or the birds would eat it. It is well covered now with the new snow, of which we are getting an abundance.

Maine should be able to handle any amount of snow. We have gotten spoiled by milder winters and manageable snow storms. This is the kind of winter you tell your grandkids about. Only you can't say you walked three miles to school - uphill both ways - in a blizzard. The kids around here sit in their mothers' cars until the bus arrives to take them to school. And that's as it should be since they would have to cross U.S.Route 1. Of course, there was a nice red brick neighborhood school they could easily walk to until it was closed and converted to senior housing. Most schools that close end up that way. I wonder if they ever get the smell of the school out of the building. You know - the smell of oiled wood floors, chalk dust, lockers full of gym clothes and old apples. I went back to my old school once and after all those years, I could still smell Mrs. Witham's cologne in Room 6.

Well, Maine roads like those all across the northern states affected by this latest storm, are a bit slick and considerably narrower with high snow banks on both sides. I am saving gas by staying home, and saving money by not getting out to shop. I have enough food to last a long time. Not gourmet stuff, but healthy and smple. SO, pull up a chair and have a plate of beans with me. Soldier Beans cooked and canned in Northern Maine are exceptionally good. Brown bread and a glass of milk. A little apple sauce on the side. Who care if it's snowing and blowing? We Mainers know enough to stock up - just in case.