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Thread: Living in the Woods

  1. #21
    Member Ependymin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaJ View Post
    This past Saturday the morning humidity was 88%.
    Wanna trade? There aren't any "woods" around here, though.

  2. #22
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    Update: Fireflies!!!

    Also I haven't really said anything about this because I didn't want to jinx it, but i wonder if they sprayed for mosquitoes around here. The blood suckers were absolutely insane in early spring: you couldn't step outside for a moment without getting mobbed. Now it's... mostly alI right. It's weird.

    (Part of that might also be that we got a carbon dioxide/blue light trap for the house, best purchase ever. ...But no they're not even too bad outside. It's strange.)

    I wonder if whatever killed the mosquitoes also killed our bees, because the bees were also abundant much earlier in the year, and now you have to really look around to find one lonely buzz among the clover.

    Whatever it was, it didn't kill the fireflies.

  3. #23
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    Also as much as I bemoan my fair skin I do seem to have a couple of genetic advantages. As far as I can tell I'm not particularly allergic to either horse fly bites or poison ivy, which is good because then I'd be really fucked.

  4. #24
    igKnight Hephaestus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaJ View Post
    Update: Fireflies!!!

    Also I haven't really said anything about this because I didn't want to jinx it, but i wonder if they sprayed for mosquitoes around here. The blood suckers were absolutely insane in early spring: you couldn't step outside for a moment without getting mobbed. Now it's... mostly alI right. It's weird.

    (Part of that might also be that we got a carbon dioxide/blue light trap for the house, best purchase ever. ...But no they're not even too bad outside. It's strange.)

    I wonder if whatever killed the mosquitoes also killed our bees, because the bees were also abundant much earlier in the year, and now you have to really look around to find one lonely buzz among the clover.

    Whatever it was, it didn't kill the fireflies.
    You can't take the sky from a Firefly.
    --Mention of these things is so taboo, they aren't even allowed a name for the prohibition. It is just not done.

  5. #25
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    Y'all need this game.

  6. #26
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sappho View Post
    Y'all need this game.
    Oh man, living in the Wyoming wilderness used to be my dream. Looking at the preview... I actually did save a snapping turtle the other day by pushing it off the road. It thanked me by trying to bite the stick I was using in half.

    ...Also, the mosquitoes are back! I'm a little relieved.
    Last edited by TeresaJ; 06-18-2016 at 03:06 AM.
    Too bad, Lady Une. You were far too lenient.
    As a soldier, yes. But as a civilian I lived an austere life.

  7. #27
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    I almost ran over a couple of puppies the other day. They came running toward the car down a winding road as I was driving to work. I said "Oh shit!" loudly and clearly for the benefit of my two-year-old.

    A lot of people come out this way to abandon their pets. A lot of times it seems like a dog used to have a decent owner, because they're friendly and eager and lonesome looking. And sometimes they're pregnant, and then there are puppies.

    The last time this happened it was my sister driving to work. I happened to be at home for a few weeks, and she called me up. "TJ, there's a momma with puppies! I have to go to work. Save them!" I protested, but she was insistent, so ten minutes later I was scouring our neighborhood in in my then-Miata with a laundry basket in the passenger seat.

    Sure enough, there was a smallish, brown, bone-skinny dog on the side of the road with a litter of puppies sucking at her teats. When she saw me pull over she trotted off into the forest and the puppies followed. I climbed out with a basket and moments later the momma dog reappeared, starving and hopeful and wagging her tail. She went straight to my car and got in. 'Thank God you rescued me from those hungry little monsters,' she seemed to say. I went back to the forest with the basket. The ferns shook as four half-grown puppies bounded through the undergrowth toward the strange human calling for them.

    I drove into town and tried to drop them all off at an animal shelter, but it was closed for the weekend. I came back home wondering what the hell I was going to do with this dog and all these puppies. Aside from one cat that got eaten by the forest, we never had any pets at this house. I contacted one of our animal-loving neighbors, who lent me a kennel and got in touch with one of her friends, who ran a local shelter. She told me that if the main animal shelter had been open to accept them, the mother and her whole litter would have been euthanized.

    Anyway, long story short, within a couple of weeks the momma was gaining some weight and all four adorable, troublesome little puppies were adopted. We guessed they were about eight weeks old - ready to be weaned, and momma was more than ready for a break. Momma Dog's prospects weren't looking good. She was beginning to flesh out into a sleek and beautiful Catahoula/terrier mix with black-spotted dark brown fur and ice blue eyes, but adult dogs in general just don't get adopted. I was due to head back to New Orleans and I made the trip with Sadie either curled up on the back ledge of my two-seater or perched with her front paws around the gear shift, desperately absorbing what passed for AC from the dash.

    Over the next few months I spent $1500 on shots and hookworm treatments. I binged on the Dog Whisperer and took her running along the levee. I fed her raw chicken backs and taught her to wait for them until I gave the command. I got damn good at walking that dog. She repaid me with joyful affection and obedience.

    But I was working full time and also carrying on an ill-advised affair. This was a born hunting dog who could outrun every other animal in the dog park and she was spending her days in a kennel inside a small walk-up apartment. So I put up flyers, but had no response. Then, right after I signed a lease on a dog-friendly shithole apartment run by a negligent, absentee landlord (and this was uptown New Orleans, so those of you who know know how terrible this apartment was) I heard from a family on the northshore with three active kids, a stay at home mom, and acres of land.

    So that was Sadie.

    She was beautiful.

    Never again.
    Too bad, Lady Une. You were far too lenient.
    As a soldier, yes. But as a civilian I lived an austere life.

  8. #28
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    We live in a forest surrounded by lakes and rivers, but I just drove two and a half hours to go swimming.

    Why can't we swim in our own nearby large and somewhat lovely lake? I have yet to get a solid answer on this. Hypotheses:
    * Water moccasins
    * Bacteria
    * "It's nasty"

    So we drove. The kid didn't sleep well at all last night, so I expected him to nap in the car. He did fall asleep fairly quickly, but then woke up twenty minutes later with a coughing spell, and that was it for the nap. Meanwhile I was struggling to keep my eyes open and on the road during the subsequent two hours.

    When we finally arrived at our destination the swimming area was this small, muddy, cordoned off "beach" wracked by the wake of motor boats and jet skis. In spite of a poor comparison against some other genuinely nice, spring-fed swimming holes in some other states I could mention, it did actually turn out to be really lovely. It was so refreshing just to spend time in the water, in the open air. The weather was perfect - warm with a sky full of luscious, shady clouds. The surrounding area was pleasantly hilly and green. There were other people swimming, boating, and fishing, but it wasn't too crowded. After we swam we walked around the lakefront a bit and then had dinner at the hotel (!) restaurant. Their catfish was good. The kid actually seemed to be hungry and ate a variety of foods.

    Then on the drive back we were treated to a really spectacular Maxfield Parish sunset mountain of clouds.

    Now I don't know if I was bit or stung by something or if I'm just having an allergic reaction, because my entire right leg is itching. There seem to be small little bites or stings and when I scratch they raise into archipelagos and large, conjoined welts. ...Still not as itchy as mosquito bites.

    Meanwhile the kid fell asleep in the car. Cried when I took him inside, of course, but that gave me the opportunity to shove some drugs down his throat - between his prolonged chest cough, whatever bug bites and irritations he picked up today, and his general tendency toward insomnia, I gave him benadryl, ibuprofen, and melatonin. You'd think that would knock him out but I can almost guarantee that he's still going to wake up coughing and fussing - once or twice if I'm lucky - during the night.

    I doped myself up as well.

    Next time I go on an expedition like this I at least want to explore some other options. One is two hours away but seems nicer. The other seems about the same or worse but is only one hour away.

    I'm still not convinced there's a good reason why we can't swim in our lake that's two minutes away.

    The good news is that we survived the day. The great news is that it was actually quite pleasant.

    Meanwhile I remember hiking down to cold, clear springs... Other states, other states of mind.
    Too bad, Lady Une. You were far too lenient.
    As a soldier, yes. But as a civilian I lived an austere life.

  9. #29
    Senior Member Senseye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaJ
    I'm still not convinced there's a good reason why we can't swim in our lake that's two minutes away.
    If it's actually "lovely" as you say, then by definition it is not nasty, and I can't see why there would be any more bacteria present than any other natural body of water.

    So that leaves the snake thing. Google tells me some important facts. Water moccasins while signfiicantly venomous apparently rarely bite. Also, there have been 21 fatal snake bites in the US since 2010. So like 3.5 a year. Almost all from rattlesnakes. I'm guessing your odds of dying in an accident during a 2 hour drive are likely 10x (maybe 100x) higher.

    I'd check out the lake if I were you.

  10. #30
    Senior Member Lurker's Avatar
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    Wait, you live in the woods?! Cool!

    Tent? Wait, I hope this is by choice....

    Obviously, I haven't read the thread yet. I just wanted to talk-type.


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