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mbumby
Con, weather, crafty win, gardening fail, the circle of life 
20th-Jun-2010 11:38 pm
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DucKon
This past weekend was DucKon, a con I have enjoyed in the past. Spouse & I decided to go this year -- at least in part because of one of the guests who is not on this side of the pond very often. I got to see many people whom I really wanted to see -- but there were also quite a few whom I didn't see until Sunday as we were planning to leave, and still more whom I suspect were there that I did not see at all.

There was a line of storms that we encountered on our way into Chicago. Half an hour earlier and we'd have made it to the hotel before it hit, but instead we got to watch green sky, interesting clouds, and blinding rain.

I am not going to comment on the politics of which I was vaguely aware, and which might have been partly responsible for some of the parts of the con that weren't as smooth as they might have been.

Talis' concert was in the program book for 5, but in the pocket program for 8... and when I got there about 8 (the first programming even I tried to make) there were other performers I was quite happy to hear. But after a while, we were kicked out so they could work on getting the sound to really work. I chatted with several friends, old and new. I might be wrong or confused, but I think it was closer to 9:30 when the concert started. When that was done, I stayed for the next concert. During the concerts, I got a text message and an automated call from the UM emergency alert system, warning me about all the bad weather in Ann Arbor. (Thus I was grateful when I discovered no trees intersecting our roof on our return, and I was not surprised to find my computer off.)

I think it was a bit after midnight Chicago time when I staggered up to the room and fell asleep.

Saturday I was up by about 11, and spent the rest of the day in the filk room. I missed one "filk programming" item because I didn't check the room -- and the "tea with Talis" must have been elsewhere, but I stayed in the main programming room and watched rescued birds (including several owls, an eagle, and a raven) strut their stuff. I like the bird folks! Then off to the prime rib buffet at the hotel. Our timing was good, and we made it before the huge rush, and even managed to get a table for 10. Even more tired this evening, I think it was closer to 11pm local I went to bed. I usually fall asleep immediately, but I was still awake 45 minutes later when the spouse stopped in briefly. He told me he was going off to perform a brief task, so when I heard a noise at about 1am, I originally thought it was 15 minutes after I'd talked to him, rather than an hour and 15. I'd probably fallen asleep as soon as he left. I started walking around the room trying to figure out what alarm he'd set and where he'd left it. Before giving up and going back to bed, I opened the doorway to the hall and realized that the sound was even louder out there. Oops. So I joined everyone else out on the lawn, marveling as about 6 fire engines and 2 ambulances showed up in very short order. While out there, someone indicated that it was a fire, it was on the 5th floor, it was small, and it was contained. When we got the all-clear, I went back to bed and spent another 45 minutes trying to fall asleep.

I realized what it was a lot more quickly when it rang the next time. I think about half of our crowd was awake, and some of us were eating breakfast already. It was 8am... I think only one fire truck showed up this time. One person I'd just met indicated that she knew were the fire was -- the room right next to hers was open, full of haze, and smelled like someone had burnt toast. Oops. The all clear came before everyone was out of the building. While we're not sure about this one, it seems that the first fire was not in a fan's room, and the bar fight that caused the police to be called was not us either. Don't know about the breakfast fire.

Crafty win: I can die happy now
While I was on my way back from the con, a friend was making a delivery for me. About 2 years ago I was challenged with the notion of reverse-engineering a scarf that was just not available any more. I took the challenge (without telling the person who had challenged me). As I got closer and closer to being done, I got more and more afraid that either the requester would not want it as much as I had thought she had, or that she would not like my interpretation of it. I also feared that were I present when she received it, and didn't like it, she might not be willing to be honest about not liking it, fearing to hurt my feelings. Meanwhile I figured that if she didn't like it, I wanted it back. Some friends of mine were going to be seeing her this weekend, so I had them deliver it for me.

I guess she liked it. Seems, even, that she REALLY liked it. YAY!!!!!

Gardening Fail
Most weekends I try to do something outside. My current hope is to reclaim the deck. The wood that was piled on it drying to be used in the stove collected a few years worth of leaves, and now I have dandelions as tall as I am growing out of the lovely compost that is coating the deck. I can't make compost in my bin, but I sure can make it on the deck! (And in the rain gutters, but that is a different story.) One of the "weeds" that I really need to move is a plant I love. It's raspberries. Maybe black raspberries. But it just doesn't do to leave them, because if I slip in the snow and land on them, I come away lacerated, and it's easy for me to slip -- and they're growing all over the deck. Anyhow, I've never had any luck moving them -- there are 2 of the other places in the yard I'd prefer to have them grow -- but they only seem to like the deck. I dug out a large mess of raspberries last weekend -- including a runner that didn't need to be dug up -- it had taken root in the compost atop the deck. Made a nice hole elsewhere, salvaged as much root as I could, and moved the already berry-laden branches over to a different location. Then I moved some of the deck-compost over atop where I'd put them -- and tried to harvest some of my bin-compost. Discovered many roots. Discovered many corn-cobs that look like the day I put them in. Discovered some red ants with eggs. Got some nice black dirt out, though, and covered the raspberries with that. Today I checked, and all the berries were dried up and dead. All the leaves were dead. I chopped off all but 2 of the branches hoping that maybe the root would come back later. The 2 I didn't chop off were still green although all their leaves were dead, so I hoped that they might be able to hang on.

the circle of life: Did they jump or were they pushed
Spouse was going to be running on the treadmill for over 2 hours which would put his finishing sometime after 11pm, so I decided that rather than doing treadmill and catching up on FB, LJ, etc. when he was done, I'd do a walk outside and then come do the internet. (Of course, I took an hour outside, and have been typing at this for long enough that he's done... so I'm not going to get any caught up reading today.) Close to the house I had to stop to investigate 2 small items on the sidewalk. Birds. Quite dead. One larger than the other, the larger of which seemed to have at least proto-feathers. But even the larger one was gawky enough, I don't think he could have fledged yet. Makes me a bit sad, even though I don't know if they were unlucky enough to fall or be blown out by the wind, or whether a parent made room for other kids by getting rid of these.

Further on my walk, I was cutting though a nearby subdivision, and saw a friend ("Hi 'D'") biking with a couple of dogs "in tow" (out front). Walked though the woods -- and I think I startled something large. From the sound, 2 or 3 deer. Or maybe a small bear. I looked after the sound, but couldn't see anything in the tricky dusk-light.

Cutting through a different sub-division, I saw something odd on the ground. Too big for an ant. Didn't move like a spider. Bent down... It looked more like a honeybee than anything else I've seen, but it was the color of a shed snake-skin -- maybe a bit more yellow -- and appeared to have that consistency as well. Was going around in circles on the pavement. How odd.

Home again, and I finished up some other things & started typing.

Hope your weekends have been wonderful.
Comments 
21st-Jun-2010 05:03 pm (UTC)
Considering how some of this year's previous winds have blown entire squirrels out of the trees, it's a fair assumption that it didn't take parent birds to push those babies prematurely out of the nest.
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