That called for some celebration of sitting out on the patio with an early New Year's cigar to celebrate the great weather and to keep an eye on Henry and Watson, hoping to prevent them from their new hobby of chewing small clumps of green grass that are still left in the doormat backyard.
That "tan stuff" is Bermuda grass looking normal in the winter months. I am not a fan of Bermuda grass but the yard is full of it but does not cover all of the yard. IF I had someway to control the hounds and the dog for a month or more I would have the whole yard plowed up and reseeded with Kentucky Bluegrass.
Walter is spending more time outside for some reason, even when the temps are in the 20s as they are right now at 7:56am. He also goes out first thing in the morning which is a new routine for him. I am not sure how long that will last but right now with all three going outside first thing in the morning instead of their own schedule makes it much easier for me to start my day half asleep.
I have no idea how people can train their dogs to stay out of the kitchen when they are cooking. If you know the answer, let me know in the comments section. They live on kibble, expensive kibble, but still think they will get some of my food that is being cooked. They don't get their wish when it comes to my food.
One of the best bones for a bloodhound puppy. That will last forever, or close to it.
As you can see not much has changed in the early morning routine while I am drinking coffee and reading the internet. I still use Flipboard for what I want to read.
I have been doing a lot of this lately. A lot of good reading throughout the day. You will notice the chewed corners of my new table. I am not thrilled about that but that is what happens I guess when you trust a puppy more than you should as they play early morning, in the dark, while I am in the computer room drinking coffee. The top of it is also kept clear of any flower pots, tv remotes, etc ... because Watson is a professional counter surfer and he does not care if it is food or something not edible.
They sleep while I read.
For the first time in the history of me living with hounds ... I have three that like deer antlers. The Benebone is another one like I showed above and Watson claimed that as soon as I cut the cardboard off of it. The chews in the middle were cut into shorter pieces and lasted less than 30 minutes between the two hounds and the dog. Although, Walter did take longer to finish his portion plus he wanted the door closed for privacy while he ate his. They are NON rawhide.
Where I go they go.
A knock on the front door early last Friday morning, I was told I'd lose power for about 30 minutes while they did some repairs. I guess my neighbor had been losing power completely off and on. I had noticed my lights would flicker recently but I never lost power. If you remember last month, I had trees fall across those three power lines that connect at that pole. I guess there had to be some damage from that tree falling across the lines.
I watched with interest and learned just how that power is turned off to the house for them to work. That long yellow pole was used to "turn off the light switch" and is connected to that part of wire it pulled down from the shape above the transformer that looks like this [
He unhooked the spices to the lines to my house. Just like you would strip wire and cut to new wire for your stereo speakers, he did the same only on a large scale. When he was cutting the damaged section of the wire connected to the transformer, it fell to the ground with insulation that looked like it had melted. He then cut and cleaned the end of that wire along with the wires that go to my house.
He twisted them together just like you would speaker wire, wrapped them with insulation, climbed down the pole with all his tools. Once everyone was clear, another tried balancing that long flexible pole just in the right position to push the "light switch" upward to connect the top and bottom of that [
Once that happened I had power back on in my house.
New Year's Eve was uneventful. Walter slept and snored through most of it, including two complete football games for the College Football Playoffs. Looking back on past blog posts for the same day/night each year, I saw nothing had really changed. As in past years I stood outside late at night looking at the sky, right before going to bed hours before midnight. Twenty Twenty-Two sounds like something in a Sci-Fi movie.
This past Friday night it started raining lightly and never stopped evidently. When I opened the patio door in the dark at 5am Saturday morning all three stood there with the door open and did not take one step outside. I could hear the rain but didn't see my flooded backyard until later, after daybreak. The rain never stopped throughout Saturday and since I have two hounds and a dog that refuse to go out in that ... my only backup here is for them to use the garage. I am willing to clean that floor up instead of somewhere inside my house. After all, you cannot expect them to hold it while they wait hours for the rain to stop.
I am not sure what my plan is to prevent this next spring and next winter but something has to be done. Why wasn't it done before? One thing I see though ... that Bermuda grass I don't care for has absorbed a lot of the water and there is no flooding where that grass is. Looking at the yard last fall when mowing leaves, these flooded spots did not look like low spots. The yard looked fairly level. There is a drainage system built around the house I am told by a neighbor that watch them install it years ago. I am guessing I am getting a lot of underground water from the field behind the berm.
Needless to say, it was a long day and night on Saturday anxiously waiting for cold temperatures and no rain on Sunday and Monday. The yard absorbed the excess water over night and was gone by Sunday morning when the hounds trotted outside in the dark first thing Sunday morning. I will trade warm temps and non-stop rain for colder temperatures and a dry yard.
Today is the coldest day so far this year. It is 27° at 8:22am and will not get much warmer than that. It is much different than the single digit temps I experienced up north day after day a few years ago. Some light snow is in Thursday forecast but it will be nothing close to what other parts of the country are experiencing.
Some may be wondering how I am adjusting after my move from Arizona. Well when most think of the word Arizona, they think of hot weather all the time year round. Living at 4,600' at the base of the Huachuca Mountains is much different where during the winter months it would be in the 40's most of the morning if not colder. The afternoons would be filled with high winds, windy enough that bicycling was not an option. Reading Ed Frey's blog I see the temperatures in Benson AZ is not much different than what I have here.
Like I have said, I have been doing a lot of reading just like I expected this time of year. I have PS4 games to play if I want and I have basketball, and football games to watch if I want. It is pretty amazing just how few games I watch now compared to my 12 hour marathons just a few years ago.
I did take a roadtrip a couple of weeks ago, through the areas I use to live. It is interesting to think how I could I live there for over twenty years because it really does seem like a different world ... not in a good way. I cannot even imagine living there again, nor is there any plans too. I currently live in a great small city but a part of town that looks as if I am in the country. I still look on Realtor dot com at houses for sale in that area just to see if I recognize any homes up for sale. I also do that for other towns out of curiosity mostly. It's replaced my habit of looking at websites that sell cars. LOL
I am finally settled on cars. I have only two, both parked in the garage. The 2003 Z4 I bought at the first of November is the same one I owned from 2016 to 2018. She did not drive it much more than I did the two years the previous owner had it. I also have a 2007 Toyota FJ, my all-time favorite vehicle and one that Toyota stopped making in the USA after their 2104 model. Looking at my spreadsheet with monthly mileage for each car, I can see the more than two car theory was nothing new as it shows I did that quite often in the past 21 years.
I think I can say that my lifestyle was never affected by COVID and the mask rules. With my AVS I have a 10%-12% chance of having major heart problems if I were to get vaccinated. That is only one but not all the reasons I have chosen not to be vaccinated. I did wear a mask out in public when shopping only when I was required to. I used the cheap blue disposables that everyone else uses(d). You know the one, the CDC said to wear a year or two ago and now they say those masks don't work. Just more fuel to put on the fire of media bullshit.
I go out maskless as much as I did before 2020. I haven't cut back ever, what I did or didn't do before this COVID stuff. Being a hermit I guess has it's benefits. I have a few friends that are not just online friends, scattered all over the USA. We have argued over COVID protocol, shots or no shots, boosters or no boosters ... some of us are UNvax'd (the devil of society to some) and most are vaccinated and boosters.
My few unvaxed friends are like me, they never changed their lifestyle, went to bars/restaurants to eat, went to football stadiums packed with 50-100,000 spectators and most were not wearing a mask, they shopped at Walmart, Fry's or Krogers or Safeway without a mask ... and one works in health care ....
The ONLY friends that have had COVID has had the two shots and booster and a couple on top of that, wore their masks everywhere ... inside their homes, inside their cars, everywhere. Even when outside walking. ALL of them have had COVID and a couple of them twice.
My reasons are not political. My reasons are that I don't live my life in fear. I don't believe most of the media, even the sports channels. IF I get sick and die, I've had a good life. I don't fear death either.
Based on Medical Journal of Harvard, I should have never had a hip replaced with any kind of heart issues, until those heart issues were surgically fixed, but they did it anyway. The surgeon did call and check with a cardiologist the night before surgery to discuss what they had found on the EKG and their Echocardiogram before deciding to replace my hip. I found out about that call when I saw that same cardiologist a few months later in December 2019.
This guy is not making my decisions for me either on whether to get vaccinated or not but he sees through the BS of the past two years.
What I have said may/will not sit well with some readers and I understand that. Two things early in "this game" that made me suspicious of all the COVID stuff being reported ... (1) I have an aunt die in a nursing home in the summer of 2020. She was healthy with no issues except being 99 years and 8 months old when she died in her sleep. "They" listed her cause of death as COVID. (2) Personal people I know that work at hospitals in two different states told me people that died and had COVID as a reason for their death meant the hospital would be reimbursed with federal money ... I threw all the CDC stats in the trash after that. Those two reasons showed me their data was manipulated and not to be trusted.
I will stick to my lifestyle and let the chips fall where they may. I don't live in fear.
All is good here in the cold "tropics" of Southern Indiana.