Sunday, June 22, 2008

Not so cute anymore, are you...

Sonofabitches eating my garden.

Oh sure. I was all so "How cute!" when Tom first pointed out where Mrs. Woodchuck had built her main entrance and out popped 2 (3?) babies.

And I was all "How sad" when a brown splat in the road was very likely the Mrs. (How will the babies survive?)

Very well, it seems.

Our section of land in this area has the equivalent of an underground railway system. The burned out potato barn that stood here before we bought the property had a system of cement drainage trenches all around it.

Woodchuck hole entrance number 2 was 30 feet to the right and 30 feet closer to my garden. The Mrs. stood at the edge of that hole screaming at me and Jazz while the garden was being planted.

At this point I began wondering What DO woodchucks eat?
Because this is MY GARDEN.
I'm fighting the weeds & wildlife for it this year.

Whatever it takes.

The Have-A-Heart trap came out. Babies wanted nothing to do with the strawberry I placed inside. They started with spinach. Ate a dozen plants right down to ground with just little bare stems poking out.
Fine. I'll plant more. And keep covering them up at night. Except they come out about every 3 hours. Day & night to dine. I'm thinking because there's no mom, there's no fear?

Next they moved on to zucchini.
Well at least they just ate the outer leaves (ALL of them). But the centers of the plants are still intact. They'll keep growing and I'll build fence cages around them.

Cucumbers. Yum! Little bitches got most every leaf off several plants - right through the fencing. Their little heads fit right through the mesh.

One even climbed down into the holes of the cement blocks I used to prop up windows as a barrier. Not sure which one of us was more scared as we found ourselves nose to nose, less than 3 feet between us.

Screaming KEEP OUT - I MEAN IT!
Not very effective, it seems?

Read on one man's blog about how he peed in the hole and they never came back. One of our friends stopped by after hiking Mt. Katahdin, working on trail maintenance all day and obliged at entrance number 1.
Too many underground railway systems to be very effective.
Or not enough friends?

Husband instructed to DO SOMETHING (else ;) !

DEAD EYE garden defender: 2 shots.
2 dead woodchucks.

(Tom thought there were only 2, but I think there are 3 showing in one of the pictures.)

Don't say I didn't warn you.

52 Pair Plunge II update

This makes 5.

52 Pair Plunge began June 1st.

I've finished 5 pair, including the 2 that were cast-on before June.

Since works in progress were allowed to encourage finishing things we start, I worked in my 2 WIP's.

All caught up now!

Friday, June 13, 2008

What are the odds?

Anyone lose a truck?

Tom and I went back to the river we fished a couple of weeks ago and tried to hike the section of AT again but a week of rain made the river too treacherous to wade across, let alone fish along the side. The current was raging and water levels were a foot higher than before.

So we gave up and went "exploring" - still looking for that shortcut back to Abbot.
Yeah. Still didn't find it.

What we did find was frightening and I can't believe I didn't take a picture before we left. A truck had gone down over the side of the mountain!

I had taken over the driving and we were on a very high mountain ridge. The trees were thick along the side but it looked like there might be a lake off in the valley so Tom said to pull over and he would go across the road and look over the side. I kept driving, thinking I would find a better place to see through the trees and also be able to be seen by other vehicles coming up the mountain.

So he got out when I finally decided on a spot to park and walked to the edge. And as he's gazing into the distance he sees a truck at the bottom of the ravine!
Oh. My. God. We had no idea if it had just happened or not so he climbed down to see if anyone needed help. I'm at the top screaming are you okay...scared to death there's a body. I stacked several rock towers on the side of the road to mark the spot. Luckily no sign of anyone. Turns out it was reported stolen in April.

We called the state police when we got home - there are NO police stations in rural Maine, by the way! (You never find a cop when you want one and we don't have a cell phone.) We were not even sure where we were once we made it back to the main road, although we took notes and marked the mileage.

So my blogger camera priorities need some work. I
didn't take a picture of Truck Over Side of Mountain? But I remembered to take a picture of my Sock on Vacation progress. (I turned the heel and got the stitches all picked up for the ankle :)

Sock photo caption:
"It's all downstream from here!"

Saturday, June 07, 2008

One week at a time.

52 Pair Plunge II

June 1st marked the start of the 2nd annual "knit a pair of socks a week" challenge.

There being 52 weeks in a year, should help with the math.

I didn't participate in last year's challenge, having seen enough of socks for a while at the end of Sock Madness 1. Sock Madness 2 has wound down now and still like knitting.

So I've joined another pack of sock knitters.

It's the end of the first week and I've finished the pair I started on Sunday, after a very rough start with chart VS written instruction. Charts really are the way to go. Plus a pair for week 2 that was started some time in May. I didn't jot down the date because I was procrastiknitting when I should have been doing something else.
With a deadline.

(I've been watching the Lord Of The Rings trilogy again :)

I have one last pair under way that was started in April. It has 72 stitches on size 0 needles. I promised myself I would get them cleared out of the way before Summer Of Socks kicks off June 21st. No WIP's are supposed to count for that one, so a good a reason as any to finish half done things.

After that - anyone want some size 0 needles?
Because I'm NEVER knitting 72 stitch socks with 0's again!

Sock Details:
Pink ones - Snowflake Lace pdf by Melanie Berney.
Green ones - inspired by cuff of Giotto by Anna Bell.

I already had the picot top done and was looking for something different to do for the ankle. I have no idea what her pattern is, but stitch I used was part of "Fancy Horizontal Stripe" #160 from The Complete Book of Knitting.
Barbara Abbey/ Viking Press 1971.

(Striped yarn kind of defeated the look.)