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Showing posts from September, 2010

Hiking near Sunset

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A few pictures from last night's hike at Occoneechee Park. The sunset was pretty.

This picture was taken through the trees as we were sitting at the Quarry Overlook.

It was in the low 70s when we were hiking which was a huge change from the low 90s that we'd been used to hiking in. This change in the weather was quite welcome. Even more welcome was the 36 hours of rain we'd had from Sunday afternoon until quite late Monday evening.

I'd not mowed my lawn in over a month. At my house it'd been around 7 weeks since I'd had any rain. My back door wouldn't lock. I thought there was some kind of water damage to it and it'd warped. Since my area is pretty safe I just didn't bother locking it. And then when leaving for work on Monday, the lock worked again.

I guess the door was so dry it changed shape! I'd never had that happen before.

This second picture is the group of us leaving the overlook with the sun shining through the trees behind us.

Tonight after w…

Lamb, pork or beef?

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A recipe I was following the other day asked for ground lamb.

Now I don't know about you, but where I live ground lamb isn't typically stocked in stores. Actually, lamb of any stripe is difficult to find.

So then the question became should I use ground beef or ground pork. I didn't even bother to contemplate ground chicken or turkey. Ickers!

What I would have liked to do would have been to have a mix of 75% pork and 25% beef but given that the packages of ground pork were 1 pound each, I would have had to make enough to feed an army. I could have bought a pound of pork and a pound of beef and just used a quarter of the beef but that wouldn't have been quite enough.


In the end I went with just using 2 packs of pork and nixing the beef entirely. Sorry cows! Or like actress Clara Peller used to say in those Wendy's commercials, Where's the beef?

So that's what you see over there on the left. Just ground up piggies.

Quite a bit of fat in them. At the beginning I coul…

Wounded in Action

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Dogs are dangerous.

See my lip? Torn up it is. Do you wonder how it got that way?

Just take a gander at the picture below and you'll see the oaf that inflicted the injury on my person.

The obvious conclusion was that I was lifting the dog, it struggled, and my mouth got struck during the fracas. But no, it wasn't like that at all. All I was doing was sitting in a chair eating my dinner and the dog tried to jump in my lap.

Do you see the size of that damn thing?!? Needless to say it didn't fit and my mouth got whacked by the dog's head during the attempt to fit onto my lap. Dogs!

Another interesting thing about that picture. Until I saw the picture up there I didn't realize how different the wear pattern was on my teeth. It looks like I use the teeth on one side of my mouth a lot more than the ones on the other. Odd.

I'll have to pay more attention when I'm biting things and see if I can notice myself preferring one side over the other.

In other matters, that pictu…

A Pair

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How's this for a pair of bugs. One small and kinda cute in a buggy way and the other huge and icky. It's like a hummingbird bug. It hovers at a flower and that long tongue goes in then off it flies to find another flower. *shudder*

As Roxanne points out in the comments, the "cute bug" is a cucumber beetle and apparently they're bad news. Since I took the picture at a botanical garden, it's not my problem. :-)



Another toy

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Last weekend I went on two hikes and both of them were road trips to the west of me.

And both times there were at least two roads closed on my route. Since I just look at Google Maps and write down which roads to drive on---when something is closed it's really not a good thing.

I got lost multiple times and it took a hell of a lot longer than it should have. So after the second hike I decided it was finally time to buy a GPS. And so I did. Amazon had one of their specials on a Garmin on Tuesday and I snapped it up for $99.99.

It arrived on Friday afternoon. It's very pretty.

As you can see in the picture above, it's a Garmin  nuvi 855. Touchscreen, talks to you, and even has voice recognition too. Gotta love it.

I used it for the first time today while driving to Duke Forest for some hiking and it was great. I wish I'd bought one of these gadgets years ago.

I've never used one before so I don't know which features they all have and which ones aren't standard. I r…

Pictures while Hiking

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I delayed my evening hike at Occoneechee a little bit tonight.

As a result, it was getting pretty damn dark by the time I was doing my second loop around the trail.

That's what made it weird that this big boy was still on the trail. My vision wasn't very good since in the low light I had trouble seeing slight color variations.

As a result, I almost stepped on the snake. His sudden move to get away is what made me notice him. Otherwise I'd never have seen him at all.

And isn't he pretty?


The darkness made it a lot easier to take macro shots of this plant.

The flash lit up the parts I wanted to take the picture of and the rest of the scene was too dark to be seen. Nice.

I love how startling white the puffy parts are. It's like a dandelion top.

Paddling after Work

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I did a lot of hiking this past weekend but no paddling.

So I decided that paddling after work today was an excellent idea.

As you can see from this picture, the setting was quite lovely. Unfortunately I was stuck in a canoe with the world's worst paddler. This guy was a public menace!

Whichever side of the canoe he was paddling on, he scooted all the way over to the edge of the canoe. I was doing all I could to keep us from tipping over. At times I couldn't paddle because I was holding the sides of the boat as I leaned over the edge to keep from capsizing.

And despite being out there for 2 hours, he never got any better. If anything, as he tired out (the wimp!) he just got worse.

The lack of paddling pictures is because I never dared pull out my camera. We were in constant danger of going over. Grrrrrr.



The Future

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Things have been a little weird at times lately.

So I decided that a little warning about what might happen in the future would be a great thing. As a result, I decided to buy some Tarot Cards. I don't know if they work but it can't hurt.

The cards, which are quite pretty, came with a 284 page book. Yes. I said 284 pages!

I'm starting to get the idea that this Tarot thing might be a wee bit complicated.


I guess it might be a while before I'm able to read these suckers. I'm getting a feeling it's not something that just automatically comes to you. Maybe I should just buy a computer program that predicts the future, eh?

I'll let you know if I open a booth at the state fair. :-)

Toy in the Mail

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The Kindle that I mentioned yesterday arrived today. Pretty damn fast.

This is the box it came in. Nice and compact. Amazon is getting pretty good with its packaging.

As you can see in the picture below, it was extremely easy to open. Just rip a tab on the end and then lift the lid. That was it.

The painful part was setting up the wireless network that I needed to download books onto my new Kindle. A few weeks ago I "switched" from Roadrunner to AT&T but I never bothered to actually do it. So tonight that was the task I had to do so I could play with my new toy.

I was impressed with how easy the AT&T setup should have worked. Unfortunately I have a Linux OS and not Windows or Mac. Let's just say that things got complicated and I had to call up the Helpline folk to find out how to work around the OS problem. It took a while on hold but once I was connected to a human, he just had me input website IP numbers directly and that made everything work just fine.

It still too…

Red Letter Day

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Actually it's more of a black letter day now that I think about it. Amazon just shipped my Kindle 6 minutes ago and the lettering on those critters is black.

Yep. 2:32am on September 1st is when they sent the Email and I read it 5 minutes later. Gotta love this instant knowledge stuff.

I bought one of the new generation $139 Kindles that don't have the 3G connectivity. Since I don't think I'll be buying many books on impulse, I'm willing to give up the roaming capability to save some money. Fifty bucks! And until I decide if I like it or not, I'm only downloading free books ---mostly old classics--- only some of which I'll be willing to read. But this is more about deciding if I like the feel, sensation, experience of reading an electronic tablet. I really do like holding a heavy paper based hardcover book so this electronic gadget is iffy.

Well, we'll see... it's supposed to get here tomorrow!