Archive for January 2014
At last it rained. We had resigned ourselves to a completely dry January, but Mother Nature came through at the last moment. We got only a couple of hundredths during the day yesterday, hardly even visible, but last night we got a decent tenth of an inch.
It was too dark for pictures then, but here are the remnants of the storm clouds from this morning.
This afternoon, the sun came through and lit up the remaining clouds.
It was hard to believe in that sky. It’s been so long since we’ve seen anything but grayish haze, we’ve almost forgotten it could be blue.
The storm is over, but maybe there will be more. I bet all of the people in the rest of the country hope so, too, including sister Sally and her family. If we get rain, maybe they’ll get some warmer weather . . . we hope.
Well, not quite. Donna F. caught this dramatic picture of a golden eagle stooping at a ground squirrel a couple of days ago.
It was an eagle, not a big redtailed hawk. It’s not often we see one down here in the valley, but every once in a while one shows up. It’s usually after a big windstorm like the one we just had.
Donna’s gotten some great pictures around here. I love this one of her horse Zena (not to be confused with my dog Xena) and Peaches.
Peaches was perfectly OK with Zena nibbling her ear. Maybe she was dreaming that it was a tall dark handsome stranger . . . perhaps a chocolate Lab.
Billy continues to improve. He’s abandoned his sling, and can do most (but not all) of the things he usually does. I was even able to get out and ride a little this afternoon. Here’s the proof . . .
We didn’t go for very long, or very far, but it was nice to be back in the saddle!
Peaches has had, since she was a tiny pup, had a tendency to make off with things. It’s usually things any pup would take — old socks, slippers, that kind of thing. She still does, but she’s graduated to bigger and better things.
She’ll be walking along innocently . . .
. . . when she’ll spot something interesting.
“Now what’s this? Can I chew it?”
“Oh, hello . . . did you want this?”
Actually, they didn’t. This time. A few days ago, it was a different story.
Peaches went out to visit a boarder’s husband, who was checking her horses. It so happened that he had left his car door open, and on the seat was a fascinating leather object. His wallet.
Yep, she grabbed it, and bolted for home, hotly pursued by another boarder who had witness the theft. She made it to the house, where the wallet was recovered without much damage. Except . . . it had been shedding money all the way.
Now this wouldn’t have been so bad, but this was the day of the Santa Ana. That money went north at high speed, no doubt to delight some passer-by.
I still haven’t caught anyone to find out how much money was lost. Not only do I need to pay it back, but I’d like to know if my dog committed a felony or just a misdemeanor.
That’s right, Peaches. You’d better practice your running.
. . . the place looked like this.
Later, it looked like this.
It was the Snowy Day. People who live where snow is an everyday event can’t know what a big deal this day was. It may never come again, at least in my lifetime, but at least I was there to see it. Almost as good as the snow itself were the puzzled faces of the horses, who had never seen such a thing, either.
Unfortunately, the chance of snow today is zero, as the paper gloomily announced. It’s 74 right now . . . sigh.
We’ve been having a dust storm in the Valley. The Santa Ana winds picked up suddenly, as they sometimes do. The leaves were just beginning to move when I started out to the bank, and by the time I headed for home, the southeast wind was roaring, and plumes of dust were racing by. As I drove down Panorama, the dust was blowing off the bluffs and falling toward the river valley far below, exactly like a waterfall. The drop-off shielded the dust from the worst of the wind, and down it went. Would you call that a dusterfall?
I was afraid of getting dust in my camera’s works during the worst of the wind, so I didn’t get any pictures of the storm itself. I couldn’t hold the camera still enough to get a focus, anyway. After the worst was over, I recorded the sunset. They’re always spectacular after a dust storm. Here’s the evolution of a sunset . . .
The wind is pretty much over now, and I went out to water my poor parched potted plants, and fill the hummingbird feeder. It spent most of yesterday horizontal, sugar water spewing everywhere. I put it onto a stool so it wouldn’t blow around, and it didn’t take long for the hummers to find it.
We were lucky, and got through with very little damage. The garbage cans went north, and all of the carrot sacks in them had to be picked up in case horses thought there were still carrots in them and tried to eat them. Plastic is not good for digestion. But all in all, we did better than most places. Our hope is that this storm heralds the beginning of a weather change — maybe even some rain. A little optimism can’t hurt . . .
I washed Kody’s tail today. He wasn’t thrilled.
“Isn’t it too cold for this? I’m a senior citizen pony, you know.”
“Oh, there are carrots involved? That’s all right, then. But hey — you made my nose look big.”
Notice Peaches in the background. She’s almost the same color as Kody. Maybe I could train her to pull a itty-bitty cart, and they could be a matched pair. Sort of.
“What hole? Where?”