Ice

Halo Around Me

halo

Why do people invade our space when there is a whole world around them. Go pick your own spot. For instance going to a shopping store. The whole parking lot is empty and the person just has to park next to you. Another is at the lunch table’s in the café, just has to sit right next to me. You know I like my own space, get out of my circle, cant you see the halo around me?

It just never seems to end. The other day I decided to go ice fishing. I look out and there is no one else ice fishing this pond. I am all cozy and my traps are set when I hear a snowmobiler coming my way. Yup, another one invading my space. This person also has set his traps right next to one of mine. He had the whole pond to set his traps, nope right next to mine. This is the guy, notice the trap to the left side of picture, he is setting his trap near mine.

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There are so many times that I feel crowded by people. If only they would take a minute and think about what they are doing. Maybe they do give a crap and I’m being a little sensitive, maybe I’m not aggressive enough. So what do you think? You ever feel this way about certain situations?

How about the times you are in a men’s public restroom and using the wall urinal. There is six of them on the wall and some dude comes in and just has to piss right next to you. Invading my space, it happens all the time around here. I wonder what the connection or magnetism to me really is. It must be the glow about me. Maybe it is like pigs in shit, or a fly on a shit shingle. I guess understanding why people do stuff is beyond my third grade education. Someday I might understand why people do things, for now I will just let it percolate. I just hope I don’t say or do something stupid and get myself in a verbal exchange. Good day everyone and keep your distance.

Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

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Winter Bliss

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Oh my aching back. The de-winterization process is what I call it. Here in Maine we had our first real snow storm and it was a pretty good one or bad one. It all depends on how you look at it. Mainers all around are waiting for winter in different ways. My spouse looks at the beauty of it all. I see red and only red. What it means to me has me really become a confusing mess in my little brain. I have to clean both trucks off then scrape the windshield. I then have to get the old plow truck running which gives me troubles every time I try to use it. I have to jump start it, there must be a ground in there somewhere but it is old right? I then clean the driveway with the old truck stalling a few times. Then I have to get the snowblower running which gives me a headache as well. Usually after getting it started then proceeding to clean the walkways I always seem to hit a rock on the first few storms. The shear pins break and then I have to do some mechanical work to get new pins installed. After finishing the process of driveway erratication and walkway cleaning I proceed to clean the large deck we have. This is quite a process which usually takes a toll on my back. I’m glad my spouse came out to help me. It really is pretty around here in Maine with the snow but you can see how one might tend to start disliking the winter process. If we get anymore snow than what just landed it will be time to clean the roofs. All I see around here is work, work, and more work. Where is the winter wonderland, I guess I missed that boat. Enjoy your day folks and I hope you have had time to digest that turkey dinner. Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Snow Up The Ying Yang

snow tahoe

I was watching the news channel this morning and the reports of all that lake effect snow that has accumulated in upper state New York is the big story. I was amazed at the fact this isn’t even winter yet. People have been literally stopped in their tracks. Major freeway’s with tractor trailer trucks stranded in the middle of a super highway. People opening doors to their houses and nothing but snow completely covering the opening. There is one major factor the news is not reporting. People are stuck in their beds and making love because they cannot do anything else. I really wonder if the population is going to climb from this one single event. Another serious issue is that dogs are peeing and pooping inside the residents houses. I saw one dog trying to go poop in the snow bank, poor thing didn’t know he was pooping on the cat that was below him. It really is terrible all the snow that the Buffalo Region is getting. I wonder where the name Buffalo came from. There must of been herds of Buffalo’s there at one time is all I can figure.

A real serious issue I’m hearing is the fact that snowplow drivers cannot even get out of the barn. Really with a ten foot wall of snow in front of the blades it is impossible to even get out of the gate per say. The ladies of Isabella are not having their Fall walk of the streets this time. They have decided to cancel this event. I can hear sirens going off from over at the Buffalo Fire Department but no one is going anywhere. I see all the firefighters with their turn-out gear on standing looking in awe, mouth’s dropping from what they are seeing. Clyde’s barber shop is closed today too. All the local boys like to hang out there and have coffee. No coffee for the boys today because there is no power.

People really become close in events like this. I saw the whole Balsalmo Family gathered this morning around lodge at Spruce Mountain, Ole Victor is getting out his skis now. I think even Victor is wondering if he is going to be able to hit the slopes with this much snow. Needless to say they can all go into the lodge for the 25 cent hot chocolate and talk about family matters.

I really cannot fathom the amounts of snow that New York has received because I’m looking out my window at only a dusting, I do however feel for them and hope that all that snow is removed in due time.  I have full faith in the Buffalo Public Works department that all this snow will be removed before the weekend. Enjoy your day, I have to go out and find my dog and cat.

Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

One Degree Away From SUMMAH

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We still have frost on the pumpkin around here. The furnace is still running to keep some heat in this house. The woodpile ran out weeks ago and most people are just plain fed up with these cooler temps. For instance, I saw a very sad picture the other day of two children standing on the shore of their great fishing hole. They hiked through the woods with their dad to only be disappointed by the lake still skimmed over with ice. The law states around here in Maine that it has to be open water. They were able to fish because they tossed a ball out on the lake and had their dog fetch a few time. I saw fisherman the other day using a PVC pipe contraption the other day too. They stick this device under the ice from shore and the line goes through the pipe.

The other day I saw a couple driving a motorcycle with snowmobile suits on. They were also wearing their old ski jumping helmets and goggles from Lady Wellingham. Funny seeing people wearing the old snowmobile boots with the felt liners. I could have sworn I saw bread bags around the edges of the boot. This was used back in the day to keep the feet dry. Most of the boots in those days had leaks.

It is very sad to see the lumberjacks around here sitting on their front porches rocking in the chair and taking selfies of themselves with their Skidda’s in the background. The poor lumberjacks have nothing to do around here right now because they are between seasons. One being WINTAH and the other MUDD. There is not going to be SUMMAH season this year because WINTAH was extended.

The Firefighters around here have been so busy putting out stove fires and chimney fires. Most people ran out of firewood weeks ago and people are burning, literary, their undies. Really!  I saw a woman the other day burning her Ames Brand underwear in her outdoor wood boiler. A lot of people around here bought outside wood boilers and it makes no friggin sense to me why anyone would want to go outside in the freezing cold to stoak the fire. I wonder how Ames Brand underwear burn anyways? I have quite a few around here.

The farmers will have to have their cows warmed up this year by artificial insemination with heat modules inserted. The milk has been coming out creamy because it has not warmed up this SUMMAH so far. It is pretty weird driving down the road and seeing the lumberjacks and the farmers sitting on the same porch drinking Five Hour energy drinks mixed with Templeton Rye Whiskey. They really look like a bunch of goofs if you ask me.

The ladies around here have giving up on putting laundry out on the line to dry. We have so many ticks around here that the clothes on the line are starting to become an attractant. Also, it is so cold that I saw icicles hanging from one pair of jeans the other day from the crotch area. It was funny because it was hanging in a fashion that is looked like a weiner. Just no one getting a break around here.

I went out the other day to get some worms for fishing. My dad taught me when I was a kid how to fetch these little slimy things. You put water on the lawn after supper and then when it is dark you go out with a flashlight and the shiny slimy suckers will show up. You have to be quick and snatch them real quick or they will pull back in and go back into the earth. This one night I went to get them I could see ice crystals on the tops of their heads, or is it tails? Darn cold around here!

I know we will get a chance for SUMMAH sometimes, maybe it wont be until the flies are filled on the fly strip. Good day everyone-I’m going out to get some tick poop, I hear it burns good.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Winter Summerland

HQ-Winter-Fun-Images_3096035There is no time left of summer. The winter has overflowed into spring here and now is on its path to take over summer. The Maine winter has been horrible or great to whoever you talk to. The skiers and snowmobilers are so excited that skiing will be in place July 4th this summer. The lodge at Sugarloaf is hosting an Olympic  Championship ski race July 21st this year.  Snowmobile shops have their doors open and sleds all the way from Lewiston to Carthage are selling out fast. The kids are excited this summer because it is the first time ever that they can ice fish with their dads in August instead of going to double practices for football in the blazing sun. The cheerleaders are excited this summer too, they don’t have to wear those mini skirts when doing summersaults for the August 29th championships in Sanford Maine. This summer they will be wearing snowmobile suits with helmet’s and driving snowmobile’s to practice. The schools around here have closed most of their doors and they refuse to pay for heat this summer. The Area Youth Sports Group here cannot afford the cost of heating the building’s this summer. I have seen a lot of changes around here. Usually this time of year we are swatting blackflies and mosquito’s but this year we are dwelling on the fact that winter will go into winter and we will not get a chance to eat our own garden cucumbers. The only thing leftover from last years garden is the parsnips and carrots. I’m just not sure I will be able to pull them out of the frozen ground. I tried tying fishing line around one carrot and hooking it to my four wheeler but the line keeps snapping and hitting me in the frozen butt.

The scientist have been studying all the effects from the earth shifting in place by .0002365 degree’s and are not sure if we are going to end up like Noah’s Ark in the future.  I hear that Sunny Florida is now the coldest place on earth at the moment. It is very strange that Mt. Washington is the tropics now , Canadians are shinning up their speedo’s in preparation to let it all hang out.

Firestone Tire company had to order one-hundred more sets of winter tires. The people just in my region alone have worn out their treads, most are now putting studs on their tires too. I went for a walk the other day and kept finding all these metal pellets. For the sake of god I couldn’t figure out what these metal pellets were. I finally figured it out, the studs from tires. I’m going to complain to the local authorities of this town and give them a mouthful for what it is worth.

The kids around here or especially the boys have all but giving up on their Tonka Trucks and Hot-Wheels. With no chance to hang outside and play, they have giving up on the most recognized toys of American. GI Joe is still a big seller around here and Barbi has lost her appeal. You know Barbi is Fifty Years Old with a pot gut? Time has not been on her side.

Winter year round is going to drive most of us people around here to drink. I know this for a fact because I saw two old church ladies drinking a PBR at the local Convent. One of them opened the door outside and asked the other one if she wanted a cold one. Maybe they were not drinking and they were just letting fluffy the cat in. I don’t know and really don’t care.

The local plow companies around here are out of sand again for the hundreth time this year. Oh, Smitty? Can you drive down to the Wayne desert and dig up some more of that historic sand? The town roads are in horrible shape and the studs on the tires have been digging up the roads. Winter cannot go on like this! There has to be a break. I have an idea. If everyone on the East Coast goes over to the West Coast that maybe the earth will flop back into position. Come on engineer’s! You can dock a space ship going 26,000 miles a minute cant you? We American’s are smart folks and sometimes you just have to take the bull by the horns. You don’t need a doctorate degree to figure stuff out around here, just a little common smarts.

Stay warm folks, I have but all used up my allotted wood for the season. I thought I would be clam digging by now.©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Mornings Around Here

2014-03-25 07.31.22Mornings are wonderful around here. The deer are feeding in the backyard and I can hear the morning doves. The chickadee’s are making their presence also. I look to the apple tree in the backyard and birds are picking off remaining apple’s. There is a war for these rotting frozen apples. The birds want them but so do the deer. The sun is shinning and the sky this morning was very pink. We have been supplied with an abundance of snow here in Central, Maine, the beauty is spectacular to see. 2014-03-25 07.35.12

With the amount of snow we have the authorities are very concerned with flooding in this area. The river is called the Androscoggin River and meanders around several towns throughout this state. I can remember a flood we had in 1986 or 87 that really hit this area hard. The roads were washed out and the paper mills took some damage from severe flooding. Not a whole lot you can do when all the water comes rushing into your facility and the basement is completely flooded. All the motors in the mill had to be hoisted above the water line. It was a good thing a contractor was at the facility at the time and lifted all the motors. A friend of mine called one day and he reported that his washer and dryer in the basement were floating. We are not usually concerned that much of the river flooding its banks, but this year we have an abundance of snow compared to earlier years.2014-03-14 08.20.26

I am hoping for all this snow to melt so we can start getting ready for bug season. There really is a season for that around here I swear.  We have many seasons around here. Summer, Winter, Spring, Fall, Bug, and Mud. We also have hunting, fishing season that are merged into some of these seasons. I have talked with the local leaders about making mud and bug an official season but we never get enough people to show up to local town meeting’s to have enough hands to vote.

Did I mention that the mornings are beautiful around here? Really just great to look out and see this wonderful, spectacular view. Ok honey! I will be right with you, she likes it when I put her socks on for her. I have to run, I’m taking one more peek outside. Enjoy the day! I’m going shoveling today. Ciao!

 

Winter Forever

2014-03-20 04.19.51Hard to believe that spring is here. I can remember the days when spring was when flowers are coming up and grass is starting to turn green.  I believe that Al Gore made a correct assumption  saying it is all about global warming. If there is some global warming I would like to see it here in Maine. I have come to conclusion that it really rots looking out the window when it is supposed to be spring. It does get a little depressing when you see other peoples post south of this State enjoying some warmer temps and actually looking at grass. Winters full grip is still within us and woodstoves are going and it is not even out of the 30’s F.  You know what the “F” stands for around here? FRIG or to mean cold. Refrigerator was derived from this term. I believe it was some Mainer that came up with it. It was spring time and snow was all about, he looked out the window and said FRIG. His name is in the books somewhere, I know I have seen it somewhere, Henry Frig Winkle.

We will wait for warmer temperatures to come around and melt some of this snow. The maple syrup business is in distress around here too. You have to have warm days with cold night. I see a long line of men today at Food Mart buying all the Aunt Jemima Syrup on the shelves. It has been a hard time for all around here.

It really just killed me that my daughter just came here to visit the night, she told me that from where she lives in South Portland, Maine, which is an hour and a half south of here, she could not believe how much snow we have. She replied, I felt like I just came from summer to winter. I know how she feels because we have the same feeling like winter is here to stay. It wont be until August before we can mow the lawn, I have to start my wood gathering and stacking program around that time to get ready for winter. Argh! Go Away Winter, I have had enough already. Enjoy your night folks, I’m going to slug down a little Crown and sulk.

Abundance Of Something

2014-03-13 13.01.33What is all this white stuff around here. I decided it was time to go out and start cleaning the snow. I was very comfortable in the living room. The woodstove was pumping out some nice heat and going out into the cold just didn’t seem right. I was thinking that if I wait long enough the snow would be gone. However being the smart guy that I am, How was I going to get to work in the morning? So I went into my cellar to retrieve my snowmobile suit and gather up my mad bomber hat and some gloves.

I’m all bundled up now and feeling a little locked in. I make the move out to start cleaning off one of two trucks that I have. One truck I use everyday and it doesn’t have a plow. The other truck is the old truck with a plow. I decided to get the everyday truck cleaned off first . I tried to open the drivers side door and I couldn’t open it. Frozen in time. I pounded on the handle and finally the door opened. I spent some time cleaning this truck and it was not easy. The snow we had last night was filled with a lot of moisture and I had to pound ice off. I then proceeded to the old plow truck. I tromped through the snow and started the cleaning process. Phew! I”m getting tired already and haven’t even started cleaning the driveway yet. 2013-12-30 06.57.11

I finished the plowing in the driveway and now it was time to start the snow blower so I could clean the walkways. This was going to be a task since I burned up the starter during the last snow event. I had to take the spark plug out and spray starter fluid to assist me in starting this. I pulled on the pull cord many times before it started up. I proceeded the process of cleaning. I was about halfway done when the snow blower quit. Oh no! Now I have to try and get this started without the starter fluid. Lucky for me it started right back up.2014-03-12 17.53.03

You know what usually happens when your all bundled up like this? You have to go to the bathroom. Back into the house and reverse the process.  Then start the process over and so I can finish the job outside. It is not easy being me.  I finished this job and felt like taking a nap after all this work. So I told myself, You? Take a nap, Me, Ok no problem. The wood heat is feeling so good. I will have to make it another day to finish this story. Good night everyone. The shoveling will have to be completed in the morning.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

New Invention- Keeping America Cool

SchwartzCap_backNew snow here in Central Maine. We have so much snow that I joined a group of local’s who have come up with an idea to start shipping snowballs to California. The Governor of that State called for assistance in keeping people cool. This group or one smart guy, came up with an awesome invention. We will distribute this item along with a pack of ten snowballs. It is similar to a stocking hat where you place the snowball within. The user will take the long tail of the hat and stuff it down the back of their shirt.

Studies have been concluded, and it has proved to drop the body temperature by 6 degree’s. The governor has ordered Five Hundred Thousand to start. We have had to hire the locals from the next town over for assistance. So far business is booming and with the amount of snow we have been collecting from this new named storm, we can continue our business at least into August.

You can find this product in most of the online stores and pricing is dependent on the consistency of the snowballs. With this storm there is more water content and because of the viscosity we have to charge more for this product. We will be rolling this product out to public shortly. It will be going public on the New York Stock Exchange within a month. California is our testing ground and so far of what we have heard there is a lot of happy people. The Fire Service is now talking with our Chief CEO right now and we hope to land an order with the Wildland Fire Service. We are applying for a grant from the Fire Act Program to buy more stocking hats. Stay tuned folks.

Our Catch Phrase is- Keeping America Chilled, One Hat At A Time.

©Bilodeau,D.H. 2014

Ice Around Here

FallOnIce-738120We just cannot seem to get warm temperature,s around here. Last weekend it did get into the high 40’s but when getting out of work this morning it was zero degree’s F. Today as I sit here It is only 22 degree’s. The icicles are still hanging from the garage and house. The sun is showing it’s face from time to time but only for a minute or two and then back to overcast. Maine can be cold at times but this is unusual for temperatures to be this low at the end of February. The sneakers will stay tucked away for now and I will continue to wear my LLBean boots a bit longer. This cold cannot last forever right? I know probably in a few weeks I will be wishing it was cool and again. The icicles can be a real problem in places that you just cannot reach to knock them off.  I know where I work that there is places very high and icicles form and when we get a day of slight warmth these will fall. They will come down and destroy whatever is in its path. Here is a bridge in Maine that found out the hard way. Click on this to watch the video   http://bangordailynews.com/2013/12/29/news/midcoast/falling-ice-closes-penobscot-narrows-bridge/

There is a real difference from ice falling or falling through ice. Here is a pic of what you do not want, well neither is very good. 9f2f19f4-7584-4563-87a4-102fda04c894_650x366watch-a-fake-vw-touareg-falling-through-ice-on-live-tv-video-55410-7818-tulsa-ice-storm-dec-9-2007imagesA few clips of either ice falling or falling on ice picture. You can see that none of them are very good. So, I will sit here today and view the icicles from within the house. It will be warmer soon I hope, and then I can complain about the mosquito’s and blackflies. Another thing we have around here is ticks. I hate those worse than any other bug. I will take icicles any day.

The video clip used from a report from BDN Maine Midcoast report. This bridge is realatively new and no one ever thought this was going to happen. We had several ice storm this winter and all the suspension wire were coated. We then had one or two days of warmer temps and this is what happened.

Little Balmy in Maine

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAmazing what a helping hand can do for you. I woke up this morning with a pile of snow that had accumulated throughout the night. A task that I really wasn’t looking forward to. We received about 12 inches of snow so far and it is still snowing. What is really getting to me is the weather man told us to add insult to injury that another storm is coming Saturday night with possible 6 more inches in my area. Coastal Maine could get 12-18 inches of snow. Argh! Enough of this stuff. I remember last winter it snowed every weekend for about 5 weekends in a row. So much for people that only have weekend’s off. I however have days off during the week and some weekends.

This Valentine’s Day has been good to me so far. My wife didn’t have to report to work this morning so she came out and gave me a helping hand. Awesome thing to have someone to help move some of this stuff. They say spring is five weeks away. If you came here I just do not see that happening real soon. There might be tulips coming up through the snow. Maybe the snow pea’s will be alright, but not the flowers.

The driveway is clear for now but I’m still counting snowflakes. The deer have been fed this morning and the birds are reporting to their feeders. This is Maine, we just have to hunker down sometimes and get-er-done. The dog is officially pooped out. He has chased every shovel full of snow. It is amazing to watch him go right into his crate and chill out. He really loves the snow and his crate. We leave it outside in the garage and it gives him a chance to chill and watch the outdoors at the same time.

We can complain or we can embrace the weather here. I’m not answering this right now. It still is better than the bugs. I do miss warmer weather, it will come soon and I will enjoy that too. Have a great day and don’t forget to wish your love one Happy Valentines Days.

©2014 Bilodeau,D.H.

Band Aid Kid

imagesSo many stories from the band aid kid. I was named that when I was very young. So much truth to this. One time I was riding my stingray bike down a big hill with a group of neighborhood boys and I decided to get brave. I first took my hands off the handle bar, that was going good, I then took both feet off the pedals. The bike went into a gyration and I splatted right on the pavement and rolled several times. I think I made a couple of flips too. When the dust settled I was laying in a puddle of blood. My bike was damaged and I was a quarter of a mile from home. You should of seen my mothers eyes when I came into the house.ice-1

Another story was when I was ice skating on local skating pond near the house. There was a limb hanging out over the edge of the pond. In my wisdom, or non wisdom, I latched onto the limb, my feet slipped and my face implanted into the limb. That took out my two front teeth.maxresdefault

Another time I was snow skiing behind a snowmobile. I had made shorties, or skis cut down in size. The binding’s were mounted up higher and no adjustments were made for the release of the binding incase something happened. We were eight miles out on the trail when I fell. One ski released but the other one didn’t. The rope had tightened up on my glove and I couldn’t let go. I tried to ski on one leg while hollering for the driver to stop. I finally fell but broke both tibia and fibula on one leg. I spent 3 months in a full cast.DSCF2394

I have had many of close calls but came out ok. I still wonder where my teeth are. I sure could use the real ones. I tend to take it easy today and do not take risk. I did however sliced my hand on a lawnmower blade while changing it last fall. That took nine stiches and I have a little numbness in that area now. I kick myself in the butt on this one. I just bought cut resistant gloves that morning and I didn’t put them on. Taking risk, not good!

I really like to have my body intact these day’s. Tell me about some of your stories. I would like to hear a few. Stay safe everyone.

©2014 Bilodeau,D.H. Just4why.wordpress.com

Bring On The Warmth

SnowDeerI find it hard to get motivated when it is only 12F outside this morning. I made my way out to the backyard to put feed out for the deer. I came back inside real quick because I was reminded real fast it was cold. We have an approaching storm that will hit the Northeast starting tomorrow. Local weather stations reporting a Noreaster. Usually this means a lot of snow. First amounts are reporting 8-12 inches of wet snow. The wet snow can be a real problem around here. The snow hands up in the tree’s and branche’s snap all over the place.818-tulsa-ice-storm-dec-9-2007

The electricity sometimes is out for days in this region. I remember one storm we had in 1998 that we had no power for 15 days. That is real hard to deal with. It is especially hard to deal with when you still have to report to your job site. I need to run a brush up through the chimney just to make sure it is nice and clean before this storm. The woodstove will be burning to full capacity and I really do not need any chimney fires. I am a firefighter and sometimes during harsh weather conditions I am out and about assisting others in need. I really need to make sure my own house is prepared for such a storm. Still, my motivation at this point in the morning is real low. I am finding it hard to go out into the cold right now just to clean the chimney. I certainly can understand how people in Alaska get camp fever. It is sitting in the house for day’s on end. It is too cold to do anything outside. I will have to get my self in gear and do the job at some point today. I am so wishing for spring, I need to get some real natural warmth in this body. They say the older you get the more you hate the cold. I now understand this very well. Have a great day everyone. moose-snow2

©2014Bilodeau,D.H. Just4why

The Square Feet Venture

2014-02-09 10.41.50I decided to feed the deer this morning. I walked out in my slippers mind you, my wife is not here today to correct me on this venture. I can hear her now, come on crazy man your walking out there in your slippers. Ok, she might be right. I filled the bucket with deer feed and proceeded to the back lawn. It is so cold here in Maine and I started to feel the cold ice moving up through my slippers. The walk out was much easier with normal feet but by the time I was finished laying down the morsels my feet started to feel a little square. I think my feet were becoming somewhat chilled to the bone. I made my way back to the house walking like a penguin. I’m glad my neighbors didn’t see this ridiculous man walking like he had something shoved up his arse. I couldn’t help myself at this point because my feet were starting to feel like a block of ice. Ok, I hear you lovely wife, you should not go out in your slippers. Yes dear! Glad she was not here today to witness the penguin carrying a bucket. The warmth of the house and the woodstove I fired up this morning was such comfort to the feet. I’m getting my feet back. The things we do to feed the wildlife. I hope that they appreciate the fact that I was in my slippers out there, just for them.

Russian Teen Spinning Capabilities-Olympics

untitledI was amazed after watching some Olympic coverage yesterday to see this teens spinning talent. If you watch this video start at about 4 minutes and you will see what I’m talking about. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mx96OcUKpT0 Her name is Julia Lipnitskaia. Really amazing to watch. I believe she won the short program.  No wonder she won.

I do not really follow ice skating but just caught a glimpse yesterday. Wow! I will watch other events throughout the Olympics. I like the ski jumping and the Downhill events. I do not know much about the snowboarding events except the snow cross. Local Mainer Seth Westcott won two gold medals in this event.

Axes of Ages

untitledLingering winters and men and woman chipping ice in their driveways. It almost sounds like a symphony around here with all the different chippings in the neighborhood. Some people have long handle axes and some with short handle axes. They each vibrate at different frequencies and make a distinct noise. When you live in a tight neighborhood it really is like a music ensemble. Dah, Dah, Dit, Dahhhhhh. I might have to bring out the golden handle axe my father gave me when I had my first child. This is the axe of all axes. He built it himself and hollowed out the center of the handle. He put it on a balancer to make sure that the weight was distributed evenly. The magic of this handle is he put a reed inside. With the vibration of the handle it will vibrate the reed and make a sound like no other. I can see all my neighbor’s heads turn in unison when I chip ice in my driveway. They are like, what the heck is he using up on the hill? I will never tell them because I have one up on them. I’m going to pass this axe down to my children, the first born, when he is old enough to swing the handle. I have to get ready for some work in the driveway so have a great day everyone , I will. Dah- Dah- Dit Dit Dit, Dit/ Dit, Dit, Dit ,Dah Dah.

Thriving In The Artic

1215719-568624-sneportraet It has come to my attention, or many other people’s attention, that a cold snap has hit us here again in the Northeast. We just cannot seem to keep our toes warm. Simple things like starting a truck or a car is even a task that becomes us. Electron’s are almost like us, when cold we don’t move too well. So again, I try out the plow truck with an impending storm ahead and it does not start. Dam, so cold and somewhat windy and now I have to do the routine of getting out the jump starter and giving it a boost. I wish it was that easy when we are out in the cold. Plugging into something to give us a charge. This cold is no good for nothing. The deer herds are taking a beating trying to snuggle up in groups to keep warm with the fear of being attacked by the coyote in the region. The birds do not seem to care to much, I have seen them gathering food all day from the feeder. I wonder why you don’t see a plume of frost coming out of their beaks when they breath. I guess we humans are full of hot air. The darn toes are still cold , I even have my LLBean slippers on. The truck is out warming, I will make an attempt again to gather up enough energy to go out and put cold air into the almost flat tire on the old plow truck. I have plunged into a hot coffee but it still hasn’t hit the toes yet. I will get warm today somehow. Maybe one of those snuggies is not a bad idea, you just wont see me in the cow looking one. Ok, out to venture into the cold again, maybe my dog will warm me up if I could only get him to come inside. He likes the cold, I know he should be inside where it is warm. Everytime he comes to the doorway he has a stick in his mouth. Sorry buddy, that stick is not coming into this house. Stay warm folks, I’m going to try later myself.

© 2014 Bilodeau, H. D.

Precarious

driving_on_ice_02Being on the edge, lack of stability. Often I have thought about this when looking out over the ice covered lakes around the region. Fisherman have brought their vehicles out onto the ice to get closer to the ice shacks, not wanting to walk. I for one have practiced this method. Taking a chance that the ice would be thick enough to hold the weight of my truck.

Stories are read in the papers of people who have lost their life going to the bottom of the Lake not being able to release themselves from the cold and icy waters. So precarious are the thickness of the ice at times. The sun has been shinning and warm temperatures for a three day spell. The ice in one place can be thick enough but what if your near a rock, an outlet, or inlet. What if you have never been to this lake before and not sure of where the inlets and outlets are located.

A few years ago I witnessed a man that had falling through the ice. This was a beautiful day and warm temperatures. It was also the last day of fishing which was the end of March. This man wanted one more chance to catch a trout. I was driving by the lake and noticed at first at how black the ice looked. This usually is indication that the ice is about ready to be open water. From the corner of my eye I saw something splashing in the water or ice. This man was about 200 feet from shore and was trying to self rescue himself. He had put himself in a PRECARIOUS position that morning. The signs were all around him of the possible dangers. I stopped my vehicle and with my fire radio called in for assistance. He was able to self rescue himself. He was very cold and he was put into an ambulance to warm up.Thin-Ice-630x389

I still think about this one incident of a family out for a joy ride one night on the lake who ended up at the bottom of the lake. Sad story yes, driving at night puts you in a much worse condition. You certainly cannot see where the inlets and outlet are located. Sometimes the ice will fracture from pressure on the lake and a big crack will open up. You could drive right into one of those and the next morning the crack would close right back up.article-2537078-1A85BC2000000578-123_634x367

I know we all take chances, I for one. The older I get, the wiser I get. With that said, I will think three times now about driving my truck out on the ice. I don’t want to put myself into a precarious position. What do you think about this? There is a reward for being safe on the ice.33980_3887727172115_1911327579_n

©2014 Dwayne Bilodeau

I Need To Get Home

1526496_10153742281120078_15619122_nI sit here this morning and dwell about the accident scenes that came about yesterday with the icy roads. One truck driver slid off the corner going into a bridge and broke through a guardrail. The truck was hanging off the edge facing the river. Life before your eyes moment. This driver told me he still had his bowels intact. Still can you imagine looking out the glass of the truck and seeing water in front of you. This was a large truck, not a semi but still a multiple axle truck. 1493242_760992203929836_667714854_n

Numerous calls came in yesterday. It was like bumping cars at the fair with cars bumping each other and sliding right off the road. One scene we had 5 cars off the road. We had to shutdown a major route through our town. Called out again for assistance for Sheriff Dept with another car off the road. I was approaching the scene and off to my right I see a small pickup truck off the road. This was not a day to be on the roads. I know people have things to do on the weekend but really is it worth your life venturing out into ice slick roads. Many warnings were reported to stay off the roads. One town in our region closed all roads in their town. First time ever doing this.

Most people are understanding when we told them about a detour but some complained. It really, excuse my language, pisses me off when someone complains when we are trying to control the situation. One time a few years ago a person was hollering at me because they needed to get somewhere. I told them so didn’t that person that was laying under the blanket, never to see another day. Sometimes my firefighter peers and I are up against a jungle. Please understand we are only doing our job. It is our duty to mitigate the situations.

There is new hope for today. I checked the weather report and it stated the sun might pay us a visit. I really think we have been lacking some vitamins, last Sunday was the last time it appeared. Have a great day- I’m off to fire training. The picture with this post was taking from FB and I believe was in New Brunswick, Canada. A weather channel had reported. WAGM-TV

© 2014 Dwayne Bilodeau

The Passage Of Time

cookstove410 Clusters of ice hanging on the edge of the roof. Reminders of old man winter with its clutch on us. Frozen lakes with eagles snacking on little morsels left over from the fisherman. Deer tracks left under the apple tree, hunting for any food around. Birdseed all over the ground, birds? I question this. Other animals in the night are finding this birdfeeder a lunch, quick one at that. Filtered light shown today with a gloomy aspect to what winter brings us. Cars moving about, people moving around from place to place, noises of movement are heard in the distance. Smoke bellowing from the chimney’s with the scent of hardwood smoke all around. Everyone is finding a place of shelter, ridding themselves from the cold grip here in New England.

Kids play interrupted by the cold, you must stay inside today, no outside play kids until it warms up. The day has hope, justified as some relief to a few degree of increase from this morning which was in the negative numbers. Rain is expected to arrive later this weekend and outside dwellers will be caught by large amounts of droplets falling from the sky. The rivers are ice covered ,with this large chunks will dam up which could cause the banks to flood. Never and end to old man winter. The struggles are numerous ,dwindling wood supplies, and heating fuel prices on the increase. We have become the bank of the heating suppliers of the world.

I hear a siren in the distance, another one has been taking by the cold. No blankets available because this was the last fuel that person had to keep warm. It has become too much for people to handle. A group of local people will gather tonight at the local church to bring anything that can help the community survive this winter. I have donated my time to help, gathering candles for the elderly and newspapers for fuel. My supplies are getting low and I must go find more food too like the animals. Where is the sun? Only time will dictate the future, I will struggle on with everyone else. I hear another siren, it hurts.
©2014 Dwayne Bilodeau