fat bear on the Esopus plain
Thursday, November 10 2022
As I was returning from the forest with another backpack of firewood, the soundtrack for the YouTube video I was playing on a local FM station went to static, meaning the power had failed in the house. (Had it just been a computer crash, the transmitter would continue working and it would've instead gone to silence.) I checked the Central Hudson outage map and learned the power wouldn't be restored until 4:00pm. Not wanting to try to work from the laptop in a coffee shop, I told my colleagues the situation and proceeded to do other things, mostly in the garage. Gretchen made a heroic effort to clean it this weekend, which exposed other tasks needing to be done there. One of these was a nasty spill from an oil can on top of a set of plastic drawers near the freezer. I also decommissioned a large (but not very good) FM dipole antenna that has been languishing in the garage for over a decade.
The ladies were scheduled to come clean the house today, but they couldn't do it without electricity. So I called Gretchen to tell her to tell them not to come. They came anyway, but cheerfully took my announcement of "no energia" as a good enough reason not to work. One of them asked if they could come tomorrow instead, and I said okay.
A little before 3:00pm, I took both dogs to the Hurley vet. It was a gorgeous sunny day, and as we drove on Hurley Mountain Road just north of the intersection with Dug Hill Road, I saw a huge bear running with surprising speed across the wide Esopus floodplain. It looked like some sort of not-quite-plausible CGI effect. The bear was coming in my direction, and the cars in front of me all slowed down in anticipation of the monster erupting into the roadway. But the bear stopped among the dense brush along Englishman's Creek, and I caught a glimpse of him or her there. I tried to take a picture but it didn't turn out.
The vet appointment was so Neville could get his blood drawn to test for something related to his thyroid hormone levels (for which he has been taking a medication). This was to be a $300 procedure, though it didn't take long. I waited out in the waiting area while Neville was led off (he didn't want to go without Ramona) to have it done. Meanwhile Ramona made a number of threatening noises at other dogs who came and went. There were also a few cats, but her reaction to those was more of a whiny hyperventilation, the kind of noise she makes when she wants to chase wildlife. After his procedure, Neville got to meet some sort of bull dog who looked like a much wrinklier and fatter version of himself.
On the way home, I went well out of my way to visit the Tibetan Center thrift store, but there was nothing there worth getting.
The power was still out when I got home, but it finally came on at 4:30pm. I tried to track down an ArcGIS bug, but by this point I was drinking a booze and not fully engaged.
I'd started cutting up some old pallets in the driveway, something Gretchen has been trying to get me to do for years. The pieces were full of rusty nails and somewhat damp, but they quickly kindled up a hot fire in the woodstove that I could use to dry the other pieces.
Eventually I went down to the greenhouse for the night, but when Gretchen got home, she wanted to watch Jeopardy, and I hadn't yet downloaded the files from the server I use to Bittorrent them. I can't do that from the greenhouse Chromebook, so I had to come up to the house.
Later tonight, Powerful would be arriving from Albany to housesit for a couple nights. More about why later.
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