Bee on hat on fourtrak

2013-02-28 03:41:24′, ‘

I was doing my thing, riding my fourtrak down the gravel pit road at about thirty mph. The dirt road is bumpy and curvy and it is a slight challenge to avoid crashing into the trees that line the sides of the road at that speed. I noticed a large hornet flying next to me at shoulder height and about two feet away.  It was flying at the same speed as me and it looked like it was just floating in the air next to me.  I had a Deja vu feeling like I was in a in one of those nature specials where I was on a boat and a goose was flying next to me.  I marveled at the floating bee as I sped down the road.  We were traveling together thru the woods like two planes next to each other. You know when you see the blue angels flying next to each other and one of then peels off like a banana and arcs away from the others.  Well, the bee did that, but instead of doing the right thing and arching away from me into the woods, it arced towards me.   It really looked cool until it actually landed on the underside of my hat.   I heard it’s buzzing stop and felt a thump as it landed.  It is not a good thing to be distracted while driving at thirty mph down a bumpy curvy road on a fourtrak.  Nonetheless I was not sure where on my hat the bee was.  I decided that the best thing to do in this situation was to panic.  The problem was that I didn’t know what was the appropriate thing to do while panicking.  The smart thing to do would have been to do nothing since the bee was probably just resting on my hat and did not mean any harm to me.  But I didn’t think of that.  What I did was to reach up with one hand to the top of my head, pinched the crown of the hat and threw the hat into the woods while traveling at thirty miles an hour.  After this I did not know where the bee was.  It might still be on my head somewhere. So I started doing the Zen thing whereby you totally focus on your environment and use your spider senses to detect if the bee was still on my person.  The one thing that was interfering with this was that my ATV was still traveling down  the narrow road.  I had to settle for stopping the bike and checking myself out.  No bee.  Now I had to go rescue my hat.’, ‘

Escort the Fire Truck

2013-02-28 03:24:09′, ‘

A long, long time ago, Laura and I were spending a week at the cabin.  It was about noon and we were the only ones at the cabin. As I sat reading my book, I noticed that I was smelling smoke.   After a few minutes, I heard fire engines in the distance towards the farm.  Then I could see wafts of smoke coming up the creek. Laura and I decided to see what the excitement was about.  We rode my 4trak up the gravel pit, turned left at on pangletown. We went by the sheep sacrifice spot and started passing people on the gravel road.  One of them was carrying a shovel,  so I asked him where the fire was. He said he would show us if we gave him a ride.  So he sat on my fourtraks front rack and pointed where to go.  We went down a dirt road, and we saw a bunch of guys heading down the hill towards the smoke. I parked my bike and started to follow when a short and very intense man walked up to me and Starts informing me that there is a water truck coming and the dirt road is blocked by some trucks.   He orders me to move the trucks.  I start to tell him that I am not one of the firefighters, but he interrupts to yell at me “GET THOSE DAMN TRUCKS MOVED NOW!!! ” I just stare at him a moment while l try to decide what to do.  Finally I say “OK” and he stalks off. Luckily each driver had left the key so I got into each truck and drove them into the woods clearing the road. After that,  I started back to the fire to have my look at it. The short intense man came up to me again he looked over at my fourtrak and told me that the water truck had missed the turn and was lost in the woods.  He told me to go find the truck and bring it back to the fire.  I really wanted to see the fire but I saw the need for the water truck. And I really didn’t want the woods to burn down. So Laura and I got on the fourtrak and went down the trail looking for a fire truck.  Using my Indian tracking skills, I spotted tire tracks going past the turn off to get to the fire.  I followed the tracks to the top of a hill we call BreakNeck because it is so steep and windie. It can be a challenge for any jeep. The tracks went down BreakNeck.  So I went down also.  When we got to the bottom of the hill we found the fire truck with an old guy standing beside it wiping the sweat off his face and looking at a map.  I rode up to him and told him that he missed the turn back up the trail.  He looked up at BreakNeck and said there was no way in Hell that he would go back up the hill.  He said he was lost and asked if I could lead him to a road so he could drive around to the fire.I told him that it was a long way through the woods and the roads were not very good.  He said he was not going up the hill.  So I decided to  show him the way out.  A problem was that His water truck was full of water and his truck was wide. The road was narrow at spots. He had to break out the chain saw many many times so the truck could get through.  We would wait for him to clear out trees and lead him to the next bottleneck.  After a couple of hours of this, the sun went down and we were still leading them out.  The lights of the truck would sweep thru the woods as he spun sideways in mud holes. Eventually, we made it past the what we call the chicken coop which is on the edge of the property.  There we met a neighbor driving into the woods to see what all the noise was since the fireman had been using the chainsaw a lot. We finally got to a paved road around eight in the evening.  The fireman was sooooo happy to be out. He said it was to late to go around to the fire since they had it under control.  He insisted that we follow him to the fire house so they could feed us something.  We declined and headed back to the cabin.  Our unplanned adventure behind us.’, ‘

The Virginia Falconers Association came to the North 60

2013-02-28 02:54:36′, ‘

She found a dead crow on the ground. It make a hawk meal
She found a dead crow on the ground. It make a hawk meal

When the Virginia Falconers’ Association (VFA) came to the north 60 to hunt rabbits and squirrels this February, I joined them.  The had a number of groups which went to various areas of the property.  I followed one of the groups based around a fellow who had a red tailed hawk which he carried on his gloved arm as a group of people followed him into the woods.  All of these people carried sticks which they used to walk through the woods.  As we entered the woods the hawk flew up to a tree branch which had a wonderful view of all of us.  The prepared people then used their walking sticks to beat the grasses and piles of branches in order to flush out rabbits.  I discovered that the proper thing to say when someone spotted a rabbit was something like “Ho Ho Hoe”.  Now this was nothing like the way that Santa would say it but but with a different cadence and at a much higher pitch.  I even heard a person go HooOOOoo  HoooooOOOO.  I kinda had trouble understanding what he was saying.  So there was much whapping of sticks and walking thru sticker patches.  The hawk would follow us thru the woods from tree to tree where it had a good view of things.  So occasionally after much whacking, I would hear a chorus of Ho Ho Ho’s and see the bird swoop down but come up empty.  Then the people would rush to the brush pile where the rabbit escaped into and start stomping on the pile and poking their sticke into all the holes in the pile, trying to get the rabbit to run again.  There would then be discussions as to which pile the rabbit was in and people would stomp and whack their piles of choice.  After a couple of minutes of this, they would give up and continue on thru the woods. So I did my stomping around at the fringes of the group and at last I stirred up a rabbit. As I watched its little fuzzy tail hopping down the trail, I pointed and shouted my warning to all who would listen, “Bunnie, Bunnie, Bunnie” in a high sqeekie voice.  Neither the Hawk or anybody else around me paid attention.  My moment was past, and nobody noticed. While Eddie an I were walking we found a dead crow which was mostly feathers and bones on the ground and later we found out the one of the hawk owners had scavagened some crow meat that loooked like black jerky from the carcass.  The owner treated us to the sight of her hawk chomping away at the crow jerky while we took pictures. When Big Ed started working on his ATV, he found a mouse nest with 5 mieces in it.  He started smashing and tossing the miece out into the grass.  We told Little Eddie to offer a mouse to one of the raptor owners for thier hawk.  The Lady that Eddie talked to took the mouse but wanted to know if the mouse had been poisened.  She thanked Eddie and when he left, she threw the mouse away.  Later on we were talking with another Raptor owner and offered him one of the mice.  He gave it to his Hawk which ate it with one byte.’, ‘