February 7, 2021

Martha O'Kennon

Just as I said three weeks ago, it had probably been one of the warmer winters in a while. But guess what? Quite soon after I said that, the whole earth seemed to take a nose dive. Even now that we've passed February 2, the day when the average low temperature stops going lower and begins to stir warmer. Well, forget about Averages. Whatever it is, it broke my outdoor thermometer. Well, maybe it broke itself when it fell from the upstairs window onto the deck. But here is a picture of a morning on 29 Mile Road; then one of the pond with an unfrozen circle around the little floating heater. Still going! Some kind of green gunk has floated to the top. You can see cat prints leading to the water hole. Not my cat though. Spooky wants nothing more than to go out, but now when I open the door, she steps back to the relative warmth of the kitchen.

Remember that there is information in the name of the file for each image. You can see it by mousing over the image - look at the lower left of the screen. Or you can click on the image to get to the (usually) larger image. Then the info is displayed in the address line above. Sometimes the second click will actually display a different view of the original image.

No Ants for three weeks now. Not one. The most common living creature to be spotted these days are still the Gall Wasps. And I haven't seen any for a few days. Look how much quicker the one on the left is moving - it was a month ago and a bit warmer.

The Graphopsocus cruciatus Barklice are long gone. Wait - here is a very cold, barely moving G.c. Barklouse. It has been in the photo file since January 23 (today is February 6). The second is a dead one found on January 21. But their eggs still look viable. Wait - do you see a little trap door open on top of several of the eggs? Do you see tiny little strange black dots near the egg? Maybe they are nymphs. I suppose the nymphs can find a place to wait out the winter.

Way down near the bottom of the shop siding there was a Drymus unus Dirt-colored Seed Bug on January 1. Not since then though. This Midge was alive yesterday (February 5). This is an ancient Bag Worm twig case.

This ONE Dwarf Spider (alive!) was walking the wall on January 21, the last Spider I've seen since then.

Here is a Gall Wasp from January 23.

Even though the bugs did not particular care about the old lady that comes out and breathes heavily on them as she points the black thing at them, life was full and rich in a myriad ways. One of the memes that lightened out hearts in the past couple of weeks was the Bernie meme. Bernie Sanders started to crop up in all sorts of places. A clever fellow on the internet even created an app that would take that lovely picture of Bernie Sanders sitting noncommittally on a folding chair and given GPS coordinates and produce a picture with Bernie in front of any place. Chaim immediately made a picture of my house as it was 10 or so years ago and Bernie sitting on the parking (good thing he has those lovely hand-knit mittens). Here's the house. Then the creator was forced to remove the app - it was creating too much merriment, yoks, chuckles, guffaws, in the world. So now the meme was removed and so your author, always on the trailing edge of anything great, took a picture of her doll house and, using Paintbrush, inserted the Bernie image in the top right dormer and then spent about 3 delightful hours cutting and pasting bits of matching colors so that he looked as if he really were visiting the old lady doll, whose face unfortunately didn't show up. Here's the picture. Unfortunately when I sent this out to people with the caption that I had a distinguished visitor in my Doll House, many didn't realize they would have to zooom in until they found his senatorial self in the attic. Here is my picture.

The evening after I wrote that woeful and angry missive about the Covid switcheroo, I got a message from my patient portal saying I should sign up to get the first Covid vaccination. None of the sites near me or even near Chelsea, where my primary care physician works had a single time where I could schedule an appointment. Finallly I clicked on a hospital in Grand Rapids that is in my net and to my surprise they were wide open for the next day. I clicked on a noon appointment and it was open for the next day, a Monday. Chaim and I drove over there and I got shot 1. If all goes well (like the Michigan weather), I'll go back Monday this week and get the booster. For over a year, I haven't been out of the house. I have enjoyed not having to drive to meetings when they can be had over Zoom. Since it's hard for me to sit on a regular chair for long, I usually just sit propped on a lot of pillows. I can slap on a backdrop of my choice. So it's been a lazy person's vacation. But now I'm beginning to think 81 isn't impossible! I hope you can all get vaccinated as soon as possible and we can open up our lives a bit. We will meet up again! Who WAS that masked woman?

Love to all, Martha

By the way, if you want to compare how things were last year, here is the blog from February 9th of last year. Blog February 9 2020

Things ARE going to improve!

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copyright Martha O'Kennon 2021