Friday, January 1, 2010

Lookin' at ya in the new year

Duffy, a Himalayan mix, is the newest resident of the John and Cindy Helt home on the Hogsback Road near Hubertus. We spent new years' eve with Duffy and John and Cindy, pictured above, at the cabin, where a nice woodfire kept us all warm on a cold WI night.

Duffy came as a peace offering, lost as he was on a back road near the Burlington Iowa ordnance depot.

About to expire, Duffy leaned against a desolate wind-swept rural fence post on the dreary road when Cindy on her morning long walk spied him, helpless, and saved him, surely. Nothing else for miles around, he was likely deserted to meet an uncared-about fate. No one had reported him missing; no one claimed him after they notified the shelters.

Duffy has come a long way, to the Helt' cabin home, since that recent day. Very affectionate, he loves John, Cindy, and the other two cats, plus any visitors.

He seems to be glad he was saved and given a good life. Rescued by kind, Himalayan-Tibetan types in America, he may muse.

Wild turkeys feed from scattered corn in the Helt yard which also draws deer. We didn't realize that male turkeys have beards. See the bird in the center. (Enlarge images by clicking in them.)

The cabin looked inviting as we approached, wood smoke visible from the chimney, and from this angle it looks unprepossessing. Additions hide behind the front facade.

John revels in his new ownership of the 20 year old Sears Craftsman Snow Thrower, showing his bravery by holding his right hand close to the still glowing hurricane chute. We bought this machine from 1st Congregational's Don Schauer when he and Jean retired to Naples Fla. Don never had anything but the best.

This mind-of-its-own powerhouse runs on rubber tractor treads. At 5 HP and with a 24"scoop, it operates with 3 forward gears and reverse. The operator merely steers, in indolence. Deep snowdrifts are doomed; hard-packed driveway approaches are mince meat for the flaming behemoth.

Mince meat.
John has surprised burrowing hares in the drifts. Unwary non-snow critters will be caught up in the screw and thrown in bloody particles around the snowscape. As though the rabbit or whatever is only made of feathers. The mighty machine isn't made to care, being a path-clearer, period.

John, a 'waste not, want not'-er, has now and again gathered the pre-tenderized bunny pieces and taken them in to Cindy, who is known to cook a tasty casserole of traditional tavern Welsh Rarebit.

May all eat well in 2010!