Saturday, November 15, 2014

Mid November in the Middle of the Mitten

What do we call this time of year?  Late Fall?  Early Winter?   It is getting cold, that's all I can be sure of, and there is a dusting of snow again today.   I am toying with the idea of buying snow shoes . . . I've never worn them, any tips or advice?
A friend and I took another beautiful walk in our local Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge this week but this time it was not nearly as much fun.  We look forward to these interludes of peace, the return to nature.   We see deer and birds and muskrat, an assortment of critters who are always surprised to see us there.
But on this walk, we were horrified to find live raccoons caught in traps right next to the pathway, their paws clamped down under a sleeve designed, no doubt, to protect the public from the sight of their poor paws.    There was no way for us to free them, or even to put them out of their misery.   We found a ranger who told us bluntly, "we have too many of them," and promised at least to let the trapper know so that they would not have to sit and suffer for long.  

And yet when we left the refuge hours later, the animals were still there, no longer alert, breathing heavily and clearly suffering.   A very upsetting sight.   I have never shot an animal, but I would have been glad to have my pistol that day.  
In happier news, my grandson turns 10 this week, double digits!    It is hard to remember when he  was as small as a construction cone and fascinated by big machinery.    He has been a joy for me for the entire decade, that's for sure, but growing up way too fast for my liking, as kids tend to do.  :)   I will be going today to hear him play cello and his little sister play violin at their orchestra concert, what fun!
And, on the geeky side of my life, I have finally dipped my toes into another area of amateur radio with my first packet station -- I built the Raspberry Pi that forms the guts of the system and, after a series of mess-ups and mistakes, it was finally set up today and I sent my first digital messages this evening.    Now I'm waiting to see whether they worked and what I'll get back.   Who doesn't love to get mail?!   And I enjoy getting it in many forms these days, by snail mail, through your comments (!), by Morse Code and hopefully now in a digital form, too.  

I hope you are all enjoying a variety of contacts with the people you care about, too, as winter approaches.   Stay warm out there! 


Kim@Snug Harbor said...

I am horrified about the raccoons. That is not humane at all.

StitchinByTheLake said...

I am so sad about the raccoons...even if there are too many there should be a better way to handle this. :( blessings, marlene