It’ll never be as good as Monday, Monday, but it is Sunday after all. Finally got plowed out late last night, about a foot of new snow on the level, less than the 22 inches that was forecast.
As a result I never checked the mail Friday or Saturday. Shouldn’t have been any Friday, but that depends on whether I really did check the mail on Thursday, and I have my doubts. So I did check the mail this morning and it was a stuffed box, sigh. Must have missed a bunch of days. Thankfully nothing critical was missed, except my cat. He went out two nights ago and has not come back. He’s a Tom-Cat, huge, and so this isn’t a new thing. He has disappeared for days at a time several times.
Yes, one of those trips he came back less one ear. He is a very independent cat and it is a tough job getting him to let me treat him, de-flea him, other pills. And, he is only lovable when he fells like being lovable. On top of that I am a dog person, so I treat him and my other cat as dogs, they follow me around. Expect to be taken for walks to the mailbox, around the yard, whether it is raining, snowing, 100 degrees, they don’t care as long as they get dad time.
So, the cat is out, The snow is crazy deep and they are calling for more. It seems I was joking the other day about it going back and forth, unable to make up its mind. I guess it did. It decided Winter is here.
I live very close to the Canadian border, 30 miles or so. Near Lake Ontario and the ST Lawrence seaway. Big bodies of water that can and do influence our weather.
On one side of the road I live on, there is a narrow strip of civilian land and then the largest winter Military base in the world. Behind me is the river, and bordered on the other sides, except the main road and river that separates it, is forever wild lands we have here in New York that split the state and run from where I live and through central New York: Most of it is known as the Tug Hill Plateau (Bing: The Tug Hill Plateau, rising up out of the lowlands east of Lake Ontario and west of the Adirondack Mountains is approximately 2100 square miles in northern New York State. Thanks to its elevation and prevailing Lake Effect winds Tug Hill receives the heaviest snowfall in the eastern United States, as much as 300″ on average.)
We have snow, winter military training: Translate that as bangs and booms all day, every day, and huge cargo planes shaking the house as the rumble into the base airstrip, low flying helicopters on maneuvers, and, the flip side, herds of deer, coy-dogs, turkeys, wild dogs and cats of all types (This has been a military base and rams since last century, so many pets escape owners or get lost, or get left behind. So, lots of animals that have thousands of acres to hang out in.
Another thing: 90 percent of the homes here, in my village, were built in a rush in the 30’s through the 60’s when this land became available very cheaply. Wood to build a house on it was scarce, however, and so the majority of the homes here are one story, actually built from ammunition boxes and scrap lumber from the base. Even in the late sixties and seventies when I had a job selling newspapers on base, the base was an open door. Little security, and on the weekends they would sell off truckloads of used lumber and ammunition boxes. I believe, back then, it was something like 5 bucks a truckload, first come, first served.
Last year when I remodeled this house I found it was constructed entirely from ammunition boxes and used lumber. One wall that I had thought was drywall, turned out to be ammunition boxes covered with a cardboard refrigerator box from 1952, mudded and painted.
But the economy here was very bad during the first part of this century. Paper Mills polluted the river, yet they were the only steady work to be had. I made 20 bucks a week pumping gas, my first job, but because I worked there I got gas for 17 cents a gallon. I had a sixty two Chevy impala and I drove that thing, even with a small block V8 most of the week for about 2 dollars.
I live in the town now, but then I lived in the city. Population here, right now, is about six hundred. Population eight miles away in the city was Sixteen thousand. Wow, what a wild place, I thought back then. What could be bigger.
We had three local places to hand out on the weekends, all ex-barns, all featuring square dancing, live C&W bands and all the fist fights you could handle once a few guys got drunk. Then Monday, back to pumping gas for me. My friends from school, back to working their family farms, or one of the paper mills.
Day times in the summertime you had two choices, the state park beaches on lake Ontario (Now mostly closed all of the time. The beaches have been destroyed by high water as have the beach front homes. Or, swimming in the river.
I was a river kid. We hung out on the river every hot summer day. Jumping off the bridge girders to the water (About a sixty foot dive). Hanging out under the waterfall. A water carved cave (Limestone). Fishing: Bullheads, Pike, Trout and even six foot long Cat fish. In the twenties and thirties, when it was legal, they pulled 25 foot long salmon out of that same river. Now they are allowed to fish six foot salmon in the winter. Dexter New York, a few miles away, draws people from around the world to fish here for them.
When I got older I worked in Syracuse and commuted everyday, at a younger age I had spent two years on the streets living in Rochester. I moved back there as an adult and spent a large part of my adult life there.
Then I moved south, Alabama, and truly I never would have thought I would come back. But I did, and now I live just a few miles north of where I was born. Life is funny. I think I tried to escape all the rural aspects of life here, and now it is all that I want.
So, it’s Sunday and I have walked out to the front door twice now to get the mail. Got the cats hopes up, but no mail on Sunday. I remembered, or was told if I am to be honest.
Still no cat, but I hope he is okay. There is a fridge full of holiday food. There is ham, pie, cake, more cake, plus fresh eggs and some bacon I just did up, sliced, cut and packaged and put in the freezer. I’m thinking of making something to tide me over until dinner…
See you all tomorrow, Dell…