Friday, February 1, 2008

If A Tree Falls in the Forest--Redux

The joy of snow and ice...the ticks are gone for now, and Tasha and I can tromp anywhere in the woods we can get to. The only limiting factor is the fact that there is a crust under about six inches of our latest snowfall, so some places are treacherous. We think we're walking in that small layer of snow, break through the crust into empty air until hitting ground a foot further down. I'm learning to recognize those areas by the waves in the surface snow that indicate empty space underneath.

Tasha is feeling frisky these days and happily following me up this hill. Don't think a little rise...think a hill that's probably a half a mile from side to side. It's so big and steep that it was once a local ski slope. It's great exercise for me and she gets excited when she sees me heading up instead of around.

The other day, I checked the weather map (as I always do) before heading out. The map showed showers about sixty miles away but was otherwise clear.

Hm. Right. Tasha and I were on the far side of the hill, cresting it when dark clouds and very high winds blew in. It is very dangerous to be in the woods during high winds (and someday I'll tell you my miracle story) because big branches and huge trees that are either dead or dying can be brought down. I was stuck on top of the hill, trying to figure out a safe way home.

And then it occurred to me...the forester has been cutting trees on the side of the hill where I never go, because it is always laden with ticks. No ticks on this day and, because he's been cutting, there was a clear swath all the way back to his workspace (which is on the other side of my stone wall). Tasha and I cut over that way, still under trees but not nearly as many as in the other ways back to my home. The windstorm raged over my head but the trees were now at a distance, giving me a real measure of security.

His clearing had made it so less likely that some disaster was going to come down on my head.

Will I ever learn?

CAT MONTH...Did I miss anyone's cats? Email me privately if I did and I'll get your kitties posted. kathrynmackel at aol


Anonymous said...

Lower risk of ticks this time of year, too, I'd guess ...

Pam Halter said...

Oh no! Don't leave us hanging! What happened?