Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Death at Armleder Park

Word of the Day:
triskaidekaphobia \tris-ky-dek-uh-FOH-bee-uh\, noun:

A morbid fear of the number 13 or the date Friday the 13th.

As planned, I went back to Armleder today by myself. And I swear, everything I saw was DEAD.

cardinal pieces
Male Cardinal pieces...
robin pieces
Robin pieces... (The merlin must be doing well!)
This stopped me in my tracks...a life mammal:
meadow vole
A meadow vole. But I stared and stared at it, and it wasn't moving. It was just sitting in it's tunnel whose roof had melted. I watched it's sides and realized that it was dead.

meadow vole on its side
So of course, I had to pull it out and look at it.
I thought about getting a picture of me snuggling with it, just to freak out my mother-in-law. But I resisted.
vole and tunnel
As far as I can tell, the little guy just up and died in his tunnel. I couldn't find any blood or trauma. (the dark stains on the snow are tracks from someone's dog) He was a cute little thing. Very soft, like cat fur.
And speaking of cats: I have contacted another rescue (this time, a Boston rescue) and they are trying to find a foster home for him. They are full now, but the woman keeps sending emails telling me that she is trying. I wonder if she is afraid that I am about to cart him back to the shelter? If that was the case, it would have been done a long time ago. We love Boomer; I don't think that has ever been in question. But I get vibes from some people who think that I am not committed to him. I beg your pardon. Yes, I made a commitment to him, but I also made a commitment to my 5 cats to care for them and protect them from harm. And Boomer is harmful. Let's move on.

And then, finally, some life. And a life bird!
common goldeneye
A common goldeneye. I thought that I had seen one, once, but it turned out to be a female bufflehead, I think. Oh well. I got one now!
female goldeneye
And he has a girlfriend!

My car saga goes on. It needs a starter, but cash flow is always a problem for us, with Geoff being self employed. It's not like he gets a regular paycheck every two weeks. It's feast or famine, most of the time. Sigh. We will have to wait for a few days at the least to send it to the mechanic. I have a program tomorrow afternoon and a board meeting in the evening and while it's nice to have Geoff's car to fall back on, I miss my Chrysler. Geoff's is a 1998 Saturn and it's just too small. I am limited in which birds I can take to a presentation. The back seat will hold Lucy the Peregrine, and maybe one of the big owls, and I can put either the kestrel or a screech owl in the front with me. The larger hawk carriers are possible to fit into the back, but by putting them in, it tears the molding around the doors. So that won't work.
Speaking of Geoff:
He has been obsessively checking Amazon regarding his book and someone actually has it on their Wish List! And it's not even printed yet! That's one down, a few million to go!


NatureWoman said...

Congrats on yet another lifer! It's beautiful! Cool funky dead stuff.
Okay, the most committed woman in the world to animals and you're being questioned? Yeah, definitely move on with that one.
Sorry about your car - the whole money thing sucks doesn't it?
Okay, I'll head over to Amazon and add it to my wish list too!!! That will be *two* down!

Susan Gets Native said...

You're a sweetie, Pam. Geoff will be so thrilled.
This book has been years in the making and we are so jazzed about it.

Mary said...

Dead stuff is very interesting, nothing I'd snuggle up to though :) At least you saw some cool birds and a lifer goldeneye! I've visited Geoff's blog a while back and I'll definitely buy his book.

My fingers are crossed for sweet Boomer.

Liza Lee Miller said...

I love it, Susan. I only had time to visit one blog this morning and I picked yours. Thank you for starting my day off right. Dead critters! Now, I'm set to go teach the rug rats how to do math! Love it!

Fingers crossed on Boomer and Geoff's book.

mon@rch said...

Congrats on the Goldeneyes! How amazing to have captured such great photos! How crazy all those dead things!!

LauraHinNJ said...

You crack me up, Susan!

NatureWoman said...

I did one better and pre-ordered his book. I like his style of writing after reading his articles and blog, and you know me and history. . .!

grateful author said...

Yay, Pam, Mary and Naturewoman! A pre-order! Wow. I just read your comments, and that made my morning! Maybe my whole day. Which is kind of sad, now that I think about it--it's all downhill from here for the rest of the day... Seriously, though, thanks.

grateful author again said...

I just checked Amazon.com--yes, I am obsessed--but I now, for the first time, have a sales ranking. Thanks, Naturewoman. My father pre-ordered the book a few months ago, but apparently that did nothing, but now, I actually have a ranking. As of this writing, my book is the 141,528th best selling title on the web site! Yay!

grateful and obsessed author said...

Oh, dear. I just went to Amazon.com again. I nonchalantly thought I'd mention this Amazon.com news to my father, and so I called him, told him about the ranking, went back to the page--there's a new ranking!

Amazon.com Sales Rank: #35,632 in Books

I just jumped 100,000 or so... Now, I've heard that one or two people buying books can actually make the ranking go way up, so maybe that's the reason. I don't know. I just know that--sigh--at this point, I might as well make Amazon.com my home page. Anyway, thanks again, Naturewoman (I think). And happy reading, in about four months and a few weeks--I do think you'll enjoy the book. It's an incredible story. Whether I tell the tale well or not, it's an amazing piece of American history that seems to have been forgotten. OK, I'm done with my comments now and won't take over my wife's blog any longer. Really.

NatureWoman Pam said...

You're welcome Geoff - I'm really looking forward to reading it - being the history buff I am. I love reading about stuff that people have long forgotten about.
Please keep up the great work!

still grateful author said...

1) Sorry, Pam for getting confused and thinking there was a Pam and a Naturewoman. I read the comments up there too quickly. See, this is why usually I'm a lurker. If I lie low, I make fewer mistakes.
2) For anyone who thinks Susan came down with the plague last night, since she didn't do a post, she had a Raptor meeting, and she got home pretty late and was wiped out. I'm sure she'll post tonight.
3) But back to Pam. Thanks again. Incidentally, as the day wore on, I went back and checked the sales ranking a few dozen times. I'm back up to #138,098, which is still better than being in the millions or something. I'm just glad that I've kept all of this in perspective. I've heard that there are some authors who actually wind up getting obsessed with their Amazon.com sales rankings.

Amazon Staff & Management said...

Dear Mr. Obsessed Author,
We here in the Amazon Computer Operations Center have been busy for most of the day trying to keep our systems from crashing due to the overload caused by some obsessed author checking his ranking about 45 times per minute.

Please take a deep breath.
Thank you.

NatureWoman said...

Geoff, no problems with the confusion between my code name and real name!
I really don't get how those Amazon rankings work. From what I heard from other authors you really don't want to pay attention to them because they will drive you nuts!