Last night apparently a transformer blew in Queens or Brooklyn and lit up the New York City sky with blue — although at the time I would have said green — light. When I first noticed it as I did the dog route, I looked to see if anyone else on the street was paying attention to this strange phenomenon. For a few moments, no one seemed to be looking. When I saw a group of people on the corner pointing, I found it reassuring: yes, this was a massive and unusual event.
I lived in the city for 15 years. It’s starting to be that I have lived up here in the country for almost as long as the city. When I used to drive around my old haunts– upper west side, Union Square or Park Slope– I found it emotionally taxing, to consider my younger self in any way. Increasingly, I just drive. Moments like this transformer blowing up I was “a part” of the city with other people, and I can remember when I thought that meant something. But now, naw, it’s all an illusion, just a flash in the sky and gone.
We have a pond here full of these little frogs people call peepers. They “peep” in the spring. The peeping can actually be quite loud. If you stand at the edge of the wetlands or the pond when they start in the evening, the noise can hurt your ears.
In the winter, they bury themselves down in the mud, deep under there somewhere. When it’s been warm for a while, one male frog comes out and starts singing his mating song. The other males don’t want to be left out, so they all come out and sing too. That’s why they peep: the males are trying to attract females.
When one male comes out, they all come out. So, one night some time in March or April, it’s quiet. The next night, it’s loud. It’s like turning on the light: boom, there they are. So, I have been writing down the date of this marker of spring for a few years.
2019: March 29
2018: March 28
2017: February 25
2016: March 9
2015: April 3
2014: April 6
2013: March 30
2012: March 12
2011: March 17
2010: March 19
2009: March 27
2008: April 1
BREAKING NEWS: Peepers out, global climate change in the back yard. We have a pond here full of these little frogs people call peepers. They “peep” in the spring. The peeping can actually be quite loud. If you stand at the edge of the wetlands or the pond when they start in the evening, the noise can hurt your ears.
In the winter, they bury themselves in the mud. One male frog comes out and starts singing his mating song. The other males don’t want to be left out, so they all come out and sing too.
When one male comes out, they all come out. So, one night some time in March or April, it’s quiet. The next night, it’s loud. It’s like turning on the light… So, I have been writing down the date of this marker of spring for a few years.
For ten years, I have held a fetch competition here on Christmas day. This year, 2018, we decided to do it up right and make it a real event. It was incredibly fun and more events like this are definitely coming up. What a great job! Sometimes I’m out there clearly having so much fun, it hardly seems fair to call it work.
There were five bald eagles on a branch behind the barn last week. Five. Never heard of such a thing. A coyote came right up to Vern’s house across the creek and looked him in the eye for 10 seconds before running away. Also not common. The pond froze so thick but so clear I could see fish swimming under there I didn’t know I still had. We installed a wood stove in the barn, vented the water heater and the furnace. Holes poke out in every direction like the kennel was stabbed. The coyotes, I hear them. My dogs hear them. The guest dogs hear them. But they don’t come too close. I have never lost an animal to a coyote, knock wood. There is a snowstorm coming perhaps this weekend but it felt like snow today. We have been splitting some trees a neighbor took down and I’m going to finish the winter with more wood than I started with. That also has never happened. I just want one phone number and one place to do communications by text, voice, and email but that hasn’t happened yet. Kind of surprising. I’m reading a book about Winston Churchill and he was as blind about India as Hilter was about Russia. I don’t mind cold, really. Some of the dogs love it. Poncho would stay out all night just enjoying the breeze.
Once you have made a reservation and we have confirmed the reservation, you can log into your Glencadia account and see the dates and times like this:
You can pay, modify the reservation, all good stuff. Also note that now you can add the reservation to your own Google calendar so that someone remembers to be home from 6 to 10 PM or so on the Monday and Thursday we are coming to pick up the dog.
If you click to add to your calendar you will see this:
Make sure you note the right time — after 6PM in the city, other times by agreement. Now you’ll have it where you keep all your other appointments!
If you go to glencadia.com/our-fleet, you can watch the vans as they make their way around the city. As the van gets close to your house, get ready and we’ll meet you out front. If you need an update, click the chat icon on this page or text +1-518-203-1537. Thanks for working with us to make the pick up and drop off process as smooth and quick as possible.
Our family of country mice went to the city and had a great city weekend. One thing that’s healthy about being in the city but not working is it reminds me what living in the city is like. I lived in New York from about 1990 to 2005 so it really isn’t a foreign place or anything but still, it’s getting pretty far back there in my past.
I noticed a hair salon with a number of high-end Macs they were using to make appointments with customers. Now, you can make the same appointment on a $150 Chromebook that you make on a $3000 Mac. But that’s kind of the point: anyone can make an appointment on a $150 Chromebook and get their haircut somewhere. Only some people can make their appointment on a $3000 Mac and get their hair styled in a facility that pays $20,000 a month in rent.
But is the hair styling any better? If a human being opens the door for you and calls you “sir” is there any difference to when the robotic automatic door opens at Walmart?
I’m all for quality. Food: we are in a CSA, have a garden, raise our own sheep, keep bees. Quality is important. I can see that it might be the same with clothes, even a camera, or anything.
But I think there is a type out there that is a confusing luxury for quality. Luxury is a con. You are either fooling yourself or someone is fooling you and laughing at you behind your back. That’s luxury. You are paying for nothing, fluff, or an illusion. You get what you pay for? No, sometimes you get something quite poor for a very high price. It looks nice on the plate. The reviews of the restaurant are good. But its mass hysteria: the food is not actually high quality.
On the topic of dogs in the city, I noticed that some people definitely have a dog as an accouterment to their overall lifestyle. The same luxury/quality dynamic is definitely playing out in the business in which I find myself participating. I just can’t do participate in the luxury con. It’s not in my nature and it’s morally questionable.
Anyway, we had a terrific time in the city and did some high-quality activities, and none of them were inexpensive in this case.