May 15, 2018

What Squirrel?

As some of you may have noticed on my other blog yesterday afternoon, Heidi did something she has never done in the 7 years she has lived here. After a short trip outside right after lunch with Sadie and Stella, about an hour later she walked past me and stood at the door to be let out. What took place in the next 2 hours and 45 minutes was funny, interesting and even a little weird for her.

When she did not come back to the door to be let in soon after going outside, I glanced out the windows to see if she was laying in the sunshine, something she has always enjoyed doing on hot sunny days. I did not see her in the backyard nor the front yard. So I grabbed the camera and started my search.

It didn't take long to see her over behind the burn pile, a place I had never seen her go before. Even though she is in perfect health my mind for a few short seconds thought the worse. Then when she glanced at me but didn't move, didn't wag her tail I wondered if she had hurt herself or had a tick bit her making her feel this way. It happened to Sadie a few years ago, where I blogged about it.

As I zoomed in the camera I could see she was just laying there in the shade on a really hot day. Was the 76° inside the house too cool for her? Or did she just feel like getting away for some private time.

I want back to the house and decided to sit by the door at the kitchen table to play some Mahjong on my laptop in case she walked to the door wanting inside. But an hour passed and I went outside to check on her ... here was what I found ... in a deep sleep taking an afternoon nap. I could tell by the way her ear laid, she was in a dream state of sleep.

I quietly turned and headed back to the house, letting her sleep. ANOTHER hour passed, no Heidi ... once again I walked out to check on her and saw that she had moved a little deeper into the brush. You might notice she did that to stay in the shade. She seemed more than content, so I returned to the house.

30 minutes later same thing ... she is back to a sound sleep. By this time it had been a little more than 2-1/2 hours since she went outside by herself.

Finally not quite 4pm she decided it was time to head back inside ... she had a nice afternoon of sleeping, almost 3 hours worth.

I am liking this range of temperatures .... high 80's during the day, hot like I like it and into the 60's at night where you can sleep with the windows open. The humidity has not kicked in full time yet.

Sadie was off as soon as we started this morning, thinking she was seeing birds in her field. I did not see any get airborne but something made her dart all over the field.

Stella continues to start each walk out well. By the time we turn that corner up ahead, our recent walks, morning and afternoon have turned into what I call 'work'. Too much verbal herding is needed and a few times all out begging is used to get her headed our direction. She is one stubborn bloodhound.

Sadie was getting  a lot of running in this morning.

Stella veers off on her own walk ... but I eventually talked her into joining us by the time we got to the back of the field. I have the feeling she would love to wander off toward the north woods since her failed attempt this past weekend.

With rain on the way and days full of sunshine, these freshly planted fields are going to change over night with growth.

Normal routine ... we get back from the walk, the hounds sleep, I download the photos edit them and then upload them into my Flickr account for free online storage. It wasn't too far past 11:30am where Heidi and Stella demanded lunch by barking and howling. Of course Sadie is ready to eat anytime day or night.

It was not has hot as yesterday and in fact didn't feel that hot to me at all. I had just finished mowing the yard an hour earlier, continuing my mowing every 3rd day to keep up ... but the hounds only wanted to head back inside.  In fact Stella never left the driveway and Heidi trotted toward the door.

While the hounds slept the afternoon away I could get back to the book I just started reading the night before. I couldn't put it down and had to force myself to stop reading and go to sleep last night. I have been following his blog for years but did not buy the book when it came out in 2014. I thought it was just a reprint of his blog with photos ... things that I had already read and photos I had seen.

That was not the case at all ... in fact it has not only no photos, it has no chapters. I like that.

A book titled Freedom At Both Ends of The Leash occupied my time this morning from the time we got back from the morning walk throughout the afternoon, only with a break for my hour siesta. I finished the book of 204 pages just in time for Sadie's afternoon walk, after starting it around 6pm yesterday.

To the south the skies looked like the forecast was correct ... to the northeast rain was not even a thought.

It never matters to Sadie how hot it is, was or going to be .. she just loves taking the walks. Those are in addition to the time where I let her out each afternoon for about an hour, letting her roam the field at will. Sometimes she will return to the door on her own but most of the time I stand outside and yell her name. On rare occasions I need a pair of binoculars to find her.

As Sadie and I headed for the back of the field, Stella took the old ATV path to meet us on the way back. She does that only on her afternoon walks, it's not part of her morning routine. Funny how many different routines she has, much different than Sadie.

Looking this direction the talk of rain was just a rumor ... but at least the yard was mowed just in case it rained later or within the next few days.

If you walked with Stella in the afternoons you would think she might be on her last legs as she drags her feet through the field, barely able to left one paw in front of the other. When you can see her tongue hanging out, you know it's hot.

As I took my first step into the yard I couldn't believe what I saw with the hounds walking behind me. Stella was still out in the field but Sadie was a few feet behind me. This is the squirrel Sadie will chase at a full sprint from the time she steps outside in the carport toward the squirrel sitting on the fence.

But this afternoon that squirrel was caught red handed in the yard not 20' away. It stood motionless as I focused my camera.

I turned around to check on the hounds. You can see that Stella is still quite a bit away but I was positive that Sadie would take off sprinting any second after the squirrel.

I turned back to the squirrel that was still there sitting motionless. So still it let me take more photos of her.

As I walked slowly closer I was shocked she did not take off into the field.

I was even more shocked the hounds had not even noticed her nor showed any kind of interest in her. If you look closely at the left year of the squirrel I am pretty sure that is a tick on it's ear, full of blood showing it's been attached for quite a while.

What do you think ... 8'-10' separating the three and not even a look in the squirrel's direction.

As the hounds slowly walked past her, never responding, the squirrel hopped to the center of the yard behind the hounds. She even turned to look at them just as shocked as I was.

Well I have caught up with real time as they say. A day and a half of photos included. So tomorrow's should be just a day of photos and not as many as today. This schedule of posting late afternoon or early evening already feels like a better time. I am still not sure if I'll do this daily but I would think at least every few days.

Blog readers left in droves in 2015 when I announced I would not be traveling with three hounds and I would not be buying a RV. At that time Stella had not arrived. A few stayed around as the blog changed from RV thoughts to more of daily lives of the hounds in Indiana, but more left when I decided to move this blog to Wordpress. Yet I have even ran off more readers with I guess taking time off ... or maybe they can see how bored I am with the blog the past few months by the way I write. Anyway, blog visitor numbers are down to a trickle.

Blog traffic numbers have always interested me for some reason. Maybe I am trying to justify the time it takes to put a post together or is it that result that internet research has found in today's world of social media of needing "likes" or comments etc ... all ego based.

Who knows.

I just know that Sadie is standing next to me wanting to go outside again. Stella is sleeping so close to my chair that I can't roll it back from the desk to stand up and walk away, while Heidi is stretch out as far as possible sleeping soundly on the couch. (she was when I started this) ... so it's time for some dinner, catch up on sports news of the day and prepare for the late start (10:15pm) of the Reds game in San Francisco.

I think we will be back the same time tomorrow.

'The tropics' of Southern Indiana has been awfully nice lately.

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