it might be spring

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today with some possibly spring-like thoughts. You may remember me from such seasonal posts as “The Terrors Of Spring”, and “Much More Springy”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose. 

A couple of not-so-great things have happened recently; one was that we had a blizzard last week and so I didn’t get to go to Day Care and there was no radiation for the guy I live with, which means an extra day at the end, for him.

And after Day Care the other day, the veterinary technician took the guy I live with aside and said that I had been a bit too aggressive, herding the little puppies around, and that I had probably outgrown Day Care, so I won’t be going any more. It is Puppy Day Care, after all, and I’m no longer a puppy, as maybe you’ve noticed.

The guy I live with has told me many times that going to Day Care was kind of making up for me not having someone else in the house to cuddle me, but he also said that he and Chess, the purebred border collie who lived here before me, had a very good life together, even when Chess got sick, and so he saw no reason why we couldn’t have the same thing too, just without Day Care.

So that’s an abrupt change. I suppose we’ll deal with it like all the other changes have been dealt with here.
Anyway at least I’m not the one who has to go to their sixth appointment with a tax person. The guy I live with said there would probably be a couple more after that. He hasn’t said anything about it being fun.

Also, even though there’s still a little bit of snow on the ground, things have been happening in the garden. Some of these pictures are strangely focused.

Crocus alatavicus.

Galanthus ‘Wasp’.

Crocus korolkowii.

Crocus sieberi ‘Firefly’.

The little mugo pine, ‘Carsten’s Wintergold’ (or maybe just ‘Carstens’), is still golden, so it’s not like totally Spring here. 

Today it got cloudy and dark for a while, and I thought some geese were going to land in my yard. But they changed their minds and flew off to the south.

Then I went on my evening walk. I spent a lot of time hunting for voles. I didn’t find any, but it was fun to look, like it always is.

First I went into the creek bed to look. It was pretty sandy there, as you can see.  Those paw prints are not all mine, by the way. They weren’t made by dogs, either. 

Then I decided to hop back up into the grass. There were lots of tunnel entrances close to the creek bank.

So that’s the news from here. Not a whole lot, I know.

Until next time, then.

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the endless winter

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here to bring you up to date on the latest news, which really isn’t all that much. You may remember me from such posts as “Biscuit Time”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.

I know I haven’t posted for a while, but as the guy I live with would say, this winter has been endless. Not only endless, but endlessly endless. It got down to six below zero last Sunday night (that’s -22C), with snow, and it’s supposed to snow again this week.
Temperatures have been below normal here since the middle of November; the guy I live with has not been able to work in the garden for a third of a year. He has other things to do, so he’s not as put out as you might imagine. But this winter does seem extremely endless.

Yesterday was nice, though; the sun was out, and it was pretty warm. Today was okay, too. We can tell if it’s going to snow because the weather gets nice for a day or two, and then it snows. The ice along the paths is really thick.  The guy I live with sprinkles sand on the ice, and I guess the sand heats up in the sun, and helps melt the ice. I know that sounds kind of weird.

Today I found a couple of warm spots to lie in. The flagstone was really warm. 

This is just about the warmest spot in the garden. In fact the bulb frame heats up so much that the plastic has to be removed to let out the hot air.

Some crocuses finally started flowering. Everything is late this year because it’s been so cold for so long. If you look at the post I mentioned, “Biscuit Time”, you will see how late things are now. This is kind of an overexposed picture of Crocus chrysanthus ‘Snowbunting’, with a visitor.

Crocus stridii.

Crocus sieberi from Amfiklia, Greece.

My walks have been pretty good, except for last weekend when it was really, really cold. We still walked then but I got ice in my paws and the guy I live with thought he was going to get frostbite. He didn’t.

There are still voles to look for. I haven’t found any yet, but it’s fun to look.

We haven’t seen the owls in a while. The guy I live with said that the female is sitting on a nest somewhere, or that there are even baby owls now. I hope they stayed warm last weekend. We can hear them hooting, and there are pellets everywhere.

The owls regurgitate stuff they can’t digest, so the pellets are full of really gross things. The guy I live with said they say not to touch the pellets because there can be all sorts of bacteria and viruses in them, from rodents, and that the only way to bring one safely into the house is to put it in the microwave first. “Then you throw away the microwave”, the guy I live with said.
So we leave the pellets alone.

This afternoon we walked under this kind of gnarly willow. 

Someone had made a home in it. It’s too small for an owl, but maybe a woodpecker.

And that’s really all I have for today. At least we remembered to set our clocks forward.

Until next time, then.




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