Thursday, October 18, 2007

The 18th

This is my late mother's birthday. A nice warm day, and I went in to Newberry early to walk a German Shepherd at Newberry County Animal Care and Control. Patti, well, she was more than overjoyed to see me. She was leaping around and trying to kiss me and jumping up. It took at least a couple minutes to get the leash on her, and AWAY we went. She has tons of stored up energy. She needs work, and if I could have run, I'd have worn some energy out.
On the early morning walk, I was looking at trees, and yes, I CAN tell it's fall. It SMELLS like fall. The Sweet Gum trees are changing color, either due to the season, the extreme dryness or both. Most oak trees have not any color showing. Some of the Winged Elm have dropped leaves and have yellow leaves also. The Sugar Maples I talked about earlier still show green. A very occasional Red Maple leaf is red. Some of the grasses that my grandmother used to call "broom straw" has turned brown.
The weather forecast is calling for rain, and I hope we get some. I hope the entire Southeast gets some substantial rain, as the drought is having profound shortages of water in many areas. Mechanics Creek is still flowing as of this morning. I have yet to see it flow much, but it has been that dry. Sandy Run Creek has run dry.
There is rain in Georgia, and I hope I get home and walk Jolene before it gets here. I don't like walking in the rain that much, and I can use an umbrella and Jolene doesn not get to.

Monday, October 15, 2007

October 15 ramblings

Fall is definitely here. The weather, however went from HOT to cold, and now on October 15 the temperatures are slightly above normal. That strong cold front that came through last week had virtually no rainfall with it. A couple mornings were rather cool with a skirting of near freezing, but only a hint of frost, however. Rainfall is only a slight threat later this week, and the long range outlook is for dryer than normal precipitation.
On the morning mile walks, it smells like fall. Leaves are falling from the trees but that's due to the extremely dry weather. My Sugar Maple has dropped leaves, but the ones on the tree have not a bit of color on them. This is a volunteer tree and up and down Sandy Run Creek road I can see an occasional Sugar Maple in the woods. Sugar Maple trees are not native, so someone SOMEWHERE planted some and the seeds propagated far and wide. While walking this morning I noticed the white flowered weed, I mean, uh, wildflower is blooming again. It has little white blooms about as big as a medium sized fingernail, and is round. I call these a “Micro” daisy. There's a yellow version that is blooming, but not as profusely as the white ones. They aren't as big and as abundant due to the dryness.
According to reports, the leaves are just starting to turn in the North Carolina mountains. I will be going to Black Mountain this weekend to Full Moon Farm and the last Howl In of the year. Jolene likes to go now, and she has a couple of boyfriends up there. She also is now socialized enough to enjoy all the different people she gets to meet.
I mowed around the radio building. There was a lot of grown up weeds, and I also stirred up a lot of dust. I also need to get in there and get the radio room cleaned up and set up for fall and ham radio stuff. There's a lot of equipment that needs to be restored. I need to replace all the capacitors in the Viking Valiant I that was originally Claude Ragsdale's. I remember him talking on it from his General Store in Blair, SC. That radio has not seen power applied in well over 30 years. Lets hope it does work after all the capacitors get replaced. I wouldn't dare fire it up without those new caps. I don't want to destroy the transmitter!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

This afternoon

Just a short note this afternoon. Something MUST be wrong. It is raining. It has been exceptionally dry here in the southeast. Right here we are 15 inches below normal. Some of the small Pine trees have died. The Sweetgum trees have started shedding leaves and turning color. Down on Sandy Run Creek road, Mechanics Creek has water in it, though it is flowing very slowly. Sandy Run Creek has dried up and the creekbed is dry to the bone. The weather forecast is the most encouraging I have seen in months. But the deficit can't even be made up with a tropical system. Maybe a few of them can help, but even a tropical depression brings the threats of tornadoes.
On tonight's walk with Jolene we had to hurry up. I saw the rain coming and she did her business, and back home we headed. The rain caught up to us as we headed back down Alpha Martha. At least there are a lot of trees and it did not rain very hard.
Right now, I think I will get ready for bed early. I'm getting up this week at 6:30 AM. WKDK is doing live remotes downtown, so I get to be back at the main studio. The remote broacasts are being done as we have our big OKTOBERFEST in historic downtown Newberry on Saturday. I guess that's great to have the event on my birthday.
Jolene is now eating. Of course I as the Alpha Pack leader eats first, and the she gets hers.

More tomorrow!

Here we are!

I decided to do a bit of an online blog after I started this month to do a "Pen Blog". Yes, writing on paper with a fountain pen. So my friend Larry Kollar said I should do one here. What about the name. Alpha Martha is the name of the small, narrow dirt road I live at the end of....somewhere about 5 miles north and west of the small community of Silverstreet in rural Newberry County, South Carolina. It's very quiet there, as I am the only full time inhabitant other than deer, coyote, skunks, rabbitts and fire ants.
I was looking for a new place, and with the help of my real estate agent, we found this place. We had looked as far east as Cassatt, SC and when we found this place, I knew this was it. I had wanted to move to rural New Mexico where my friend Stuart Norman lives, but I ended up some $20,000 short. Yeah, $20,000 for the solar array I would need as most of the land I looked out there does not have close access to main power. I may eventually buy some land out there after I retire for good....again. I think I have worked and retired from radio more times than Art Bell has.
I have an acre and a 1680 square foot double wide so calle mobile home with 4 bedrooms. White vinyl siding. I have a radio building out back for my ham radio stuff. I don't live alone, Jolene, my German Shepherd / Sheltie mix is there too. She is a Pets INC alumnus. She was abused and then thrown out into the woods near Alcolu, SC. She has her own Dogster page. When I first moved in she had some separation anxiety, so I took her everywhere, and to the radio station every day. She is fine now, and listens to the radio station every day. She knows everyone here, so she gets to listen to us while snoozing on HER sofa.
Every morning we go for a mile walk, and the same in the evening. It does us good, and especially me. The first time the mile nearly killed me, but now if I hurry we can do it in 15 minutes. It usually takes longer than that as Jolene loves to track and she gets to......when I let her.