Sunday, April 22, 2012

Aerie Report, April 22, 2012

Friday morning Terry and I herded the kittehs into their travel cases and hustled them down to the veterinary clinic on Route 6 to get their annual check-ups and their rabies shots. As usual, we had closed all the doors heading to any and all extra rooms and the basement so as to limit their escape routes. Even so, it's amazing how slinky and fast they can be when they sense something is afoot. Took us ten minutes to corral the little buggers.

As expected, Chester gained some weight. He is now officially over 20 pounds of pussy cat. His sister is slightly less as she topped the scales at a smidge over 17 pounds. (Next to her BIG brother, she doesn't look that big at all.) Julie, the grand dame of the group at nearly 11 years of age, lost a couple of tenths of a pound and is around 9 pounds. That wasn't much of a surprise as I had noticed lately that, despite finishing up everyone's moist food every day, Julie was more skin-and-bone-ish than the other two. That is, when she cuddles up to you and you start scratching her, you can actually feed her shoulder blades, ribs and spine. With the other two all you get is fur and fat. (Chester would make a good raccoon. He could probably turn 180 degrees inside his skin if he needed to.)

All three are fine otherwise. Chester purred the entire time the vet was checking him out and even while she gave him his shots. He then sat at her feet as Shadow went through the same routine. (She didn't purr and only hissed once when the second needle went in.) Julie tolerated the exam and the shots and willingly went back in her carry case on her own before turning to me and swatting at my hand as I fastened the door.

The trip was eventful in the usual way as none of them love being in the car and are not afraid to vocalize their displeasure. Chester and Shadow add to their protest in ways that would make the Occupy crowd proud; i.e. they foam at the mouth, and piss and poop in their cages. Good thing it's only a six mile trip to the vet's.


Shortly after we returned back at the Aerie, Terry took off for New Jersey to attend a baby shower and a stitching class while staying at her Mom's house and I was left alone with the beasts. Lucky for me, the shots they got make them lethargic. Besides Julie's occasional demand for some cuddle time, I've been left alone.


Saturday there was an Earth Day event at Mill Cove Environmental Area over in Tioga. I was there as a representative of the Tiadaghton Audubon Society. I had some blue bird houses and Audubon hats for sale as well as free printed information on places to bird and bird checklists. I set up my digiscoping equipment (a small digital camera attached to a spotting scope) and had my usual telephoto camera as well as binoculars and bird books. I also had information about the eel project.

The weather didn't cooperate as much as it could have. After several weeks of virtually no rain, the damn stuff showed up around 10 AM with a fast hitting torrential downpour and reappeared sporadically during the day. Coupled with what seemed like a swift temperature drop, folks were shivering by mid afternoon. (I checked the trucks thermometer and the temp did drop, but only about 10 degrees to 50 degrees. It just felt like more.) Attendance was knocked down by the out of the way location and the weather--mostly the weather--but it wasn't bad for a first time event. (Previous years it was held at Mansfield University and that really limited the kinds of activities that could be held.)


Saturday I snuck out to the Mainesburg Methodist Church for dinner. It was the guys turn to do the cooking and they served up some baked fish, ham, sweet potatoes, beets and creamed corn as well as some great deserts. It was well worth the money and, despite having to go alone, I ran into several folks I know from around town and elsewhere.

Later Saturday night the sky opened up in earnest and we got some very heavy rainfall as well a further drop in the temperatures. It stopped raining somewhere around 3 AM but the temperatures haven't done any rising. As a result, I spent some time restocking the firewood in the garage and putting some of it to use in the fireplace. Currently it's foggy as heck out there and I can hear some sleet rattling against the windows. The weather service has a winter storm watch for northern and western PA. This warning will extend through the night and much of tomorrow. "Significant" snow accumulation is possible in the Laurel Highlands which start around the Pine Creek Gorge area and head west from there. (Points in the Allegheny National Forest to just east of Buffalo, NY could see a foot of snow.) If we are lucky, it will stay just to our west and we'll get nothing but rain. But if the darn thing shifts a tiny bit to the east, we could certainly be looking a several inches of snow. And with many trees just starting to spread their leaves, that could prove disastrous. Terry is heading home this evening and should beat the worst of it, but she better be careful on the higher elevations between Williamsport and here on Route 15.


That's about it from the Aerie.

Oh, one more thing: Don't forget Portland's Mayoral Madness and vote for Jody!

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