Sunday, September 23, 2018

Sunday Walkabout 9-23

I have a confession to make. The past week was not a model of productivity and looking back, I am almost certain I accomplished nothing of import. That may be a new record. And, I don’t even have any excuses.

After all our “hurricane preparedness” work, we got very little rain (and virtually no wind) from Hurricane Florence. The same cannot be said for many other places. They are just beginning to deal with the destruction from post-hurricane flooding in North Carolina. The situation is dire for many farmers and the environment. Huge numbers of hogs and chickens were killed in the post-hurricane flooding. In addition, there is the concern that some of the lagoons (used for animal waste) will flow into the rivers. And, there is also the danger that coal dust will contaminate the environment as well. I have seen numerous articles covering the situation. Here is just one.  
after the storm sky

post-hurricane sunset

backside of the storm
afternoon sky

grazing sheep 

Fortunately, around here things were nowhere near that dire. Although it has been bad. There was some serious flooding elsewhere in the county, so school was closed for two days.

I "borrowed" these shots from the internet...
flooding out on Hewitt Road

flood damage on Stover Shop Road

And, you can see the effects of the weather on the crops in the fields, although locally nothing was actually underwater. Getting the crops OUT of the field may be another matter as the ground is super-saturated and we’ve gotten a fair amount of additional rain recently.

soybean field on Howardsville Road

The continual rain brings to mind Noah and his ark. How in the world did they stand it for 40 days and 40 nights of rain? trapped in that ark with those animals? I know there are many who doubt the story, but bear with me here… the confinement, the animals, the utter boredom, the uncertainty…how did Mrs. Noah deal? Since there is no mention of her later in the bible, I am seriously beginning to think that she jumped ship somewhere along the way. I mean, think about it... 
ANOTHER gloomy/rainy day

Bad/questionable theology aside, here’s what’s been happening on the hill:

On Monday, our eldest daughter and grandsons 1 and 3 came by. Since school was out and she needed to borrow our office for a bit, #1 and I baked some cookies and played while #3 took a little nap. Then when the sun finally peeked out, we were able to go outdoors for a while.

nothing like jumping in a puddle after the rain!

It was a brilliantly bright, glorious day. but, the ground was so saturated there was no thought of gardening. And, the rain effectively put an end to any tomato and zucchini production. The Boss was hoping for a few dry days to do some mowing and maybe even get in the potato garden for harvest.
grass growing ON the lawnmower
sunlit leaves

Tuesday it was a matter of playing catch-up from Monday’s rain-altered plans. And…it (rather unexpectedly) rained again. In the afternoon, I made a trip to the draft to sit with the boys while their mom ran an errand on the other side of the mountain.
I called for "reinforcements" when...

 a dinosaur was spotted watching TV in the Draft

Wednesday saw us going over the mountain for the Boss’ fluoroscopy appointment redux. This time the equipment was working, there were no delays and we were back home well before lunch. My presence on this trip seemed to serve no real purpose, particularly since the passenger side of the Xterra is equipped neither with brakes nor steering apparatus. (and the Boss would really appreciate if I kept my opinions to myself). There have been no updates from the medical center on the outcome of the tests, so we’re no closer to any solution at this point in time.

at least we had a sunny day for travel

Then we went out to lunch in celebration of our anniversary. 34 years...that's a long time!
I could only find a few pics taken on the actual date
we sure have changed!
(but, somebody might need a new hat)
The actual date wasn’t until Saturday, but we knew we’d be too tired after the Market and we’d never stay awake to go out to supper. So, lunch it was. On the way home, we picked up a pie from our friend Jane’s amazing pie shop.

delicious coconut cream pie

And, then (after it rained AGAIN) it was time to get ready for Market.

Market offerings 9-22

Not that there was much to get ready. This has been a difficult, disappointing growing season. And, I think the customers are starting to pick up on that fact. 

after the rains the zucchini all look like this
I suppose it is some sort of fungal disease
we cannot offer these for sale
last of the okra crop

that big clump of mud is full of potatoes
just a few butternut squash this year

We have been waiting for the broccoli harvest for what seems like forever now. The plants have been just sitting there… The warm, dark, wet days have not been good for growing. However, it is the perfect environment for insect growth and diseases. So, once the sun came out, we were fighting for the survival of the plants. It remains to be seen if we will win this battle and ever have any broccoli for Market.

looper moth caterpillar

caterpillar damage

On the other hand, when the sun does come out, it’s gorgeous. The sky is brilliant blue, and the puffy white clouds make for picture perfect vistas. There are countless butterflies and the wildflowers bloom with perfusion.

Orb spiders are everywhere

teasels down by the creek have sprouted on the seedhead
the SUN

…and then it rains again. I kid you not. (this is getting ridiculous)

short shower left 1/2 inch of rain!

Thankfully, the next rain held off until Saturday afternoon. Our neighbor Danny and his band provided some good old-time rock and roll music for the Market and it was a nice morning. Although the upcoming festival that will cut off vehicular traffic to the entire downtown area for 3 days seemed to be the over-riding topic of discussion and contention. I stand by my original statement that it CANNOT be good for the Farmers’ Market. But, it remains to be seen how this will all work out. (this weekend will tell the tale)

By the time we got home, there was yet another flood watch/warning posted for the county.

Somewhere between 2 and 5 inches of rain was predicted for the next twenty-four hours! Concerns about any more rain on the super-saturated soil are running high at this point. I’m sure those corn and soybean farmers are worried. And, I don’t know if we will ever get those potatoes out of the ground.

Two inches in the gauge when I first looked out definitely has me feeling that “Mrs. Noah” vibe this morning.

But, it is what it is.

I suppose it’s up to me to find a little positivity in all of this. And, I guess I should be glad for the chance to catch up on the housework, the filing, and that odd and random writing I’ve been putting off. We’ll find our way through it, we always do. We might even find that “all things work together for good…”  

Positive thoughts, that’s what we need right now.
Remy provides some silly distraction

Hope that you have a Happy Sunday! 

Thanks for stopping by. Come back and “visit” again soon.

Here's the link to the Boss' Market photos: 


  1. I hope next years harvests and growing season is better. This too shall pass. I wish I lived closer. If those zucchinis were edible, I wouldn't care what they looked like, lol.

    1. Thanks, Barbara! I know there's always the hope of next year. I just wish there wasn't so much of the Market season left.
      I don't know that the zukes are edible (although I don't know that they aren't) It's weird. The outside is hard (like a pumpkin) and the inside is sort of soft. Strange. Definitely need to research this one!
      Have a great week!

  2. My heart goes out to all of you over there affected by Florence. We often grumble about our weather here Barbara, but we have nothing like your problems to deal with. I hope next week proves a better one for you all.

    1. Thank you, Pat!
      There have been so many affected by this storm. It is unimaginable in some spots.

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