My wife has relatives who have a ranch in western Oklahoma. They sent me some photos of a new donkey foal just born last Saturday. There is not much cuter in the animal world than a baby donkey with its mother. Generally I edit them a little but these are perfect just as they are.
The miracle of life is always amazing.
Mama says photos are okay but keep your distance!!
My knee has been feeling a little glitchy lately so I haven’t been walking like I was, let alone running. Sunday, I had been in the house all day watching football and working on paperwork so I went to Turkey Mountain for a short walk on a relatively flat trail. I went late evening, my favorite time on the mountain even though it was pretty chilly.
I came upon this early on. I was a little annoyed but I guess that one could call it a “painted rock.” I’ve put a few painted rocks out. They are like river rocks though not sandstone. I let it be.
I love the trees on Turkey Mountain. The old ones are all gnarled up. They survived numerous ice storms, wind storms, and more than just a few tornadoes. They are kind of eerie looking. I like eerie.
As the sun went down some of the vegetation and grass had almost a fluorescent quality to it releasing a little bit of the light of the day.
I passed by one of the lakes on the mountain. This is about all we had for a sunset that night. The clouds were thick and low
Toward the end of my hike it was just plain dark. Nothing like being out in the woods all by yourself in the dark.
Sunday the weather was great, sunny and kind of cool but not warm so the family decided to go hiking at Oxley Nature Center. We headed up there to their North Woods Unit and there was like eight or so cars parked there where usually there is none and no more than two in all the years we went there. We went hiking anyway! What are we going to do, go mall walking?
There was like three groups with dogs, on a trail where no dogs are allowed. One of those groups was smoking marijuana as they went along. And then they stopped about 100 yards ahead of us and all urinated together. What!!! Yes, you heard me.
So they got to a fork in the trail and went one way and we went the other. We still had a good time but all the dogs and barking and such meant no deer anywhere close. We had a good time though.
I found this tornado damaged tree that looked somewhat like a bird. Does that count as wildlife?
And at this nice idyllic scene about 30 seconds I took this photo with my phone there were a couple pelicans paddling around. I had brought my good camera with a long lens. I got it out and found out that the white balance, shutter speed, and iso was all wrong. I don’t do auto of stubborness any more and by the time I got all that squared away the pelicans left!!!
And now for your chance to laugh at me. (You might as well everybody else does.) Here is our family selfie from the trip. We were facing the sun to get the good light on our faces but I couldn’t see the screen so I wasn’t really sure what we had.
Well this we had. Talk about fail. Oh well, I smile at myself when I look at it.
Recently the worlds best Mother-in-Law, Nana had a birthday. A milestone birthday is what people were saying but myself, all birthdays are milestones. So what do you get somebody who has everything?
Heather arranged to have this put up in Nana’s front yard. I think it is totally cool.
Nana has an issue though that you need to know about. Two examples are in this photo.
Here’s is a closeup.
And this one is on top of the stove. I kind of cut it off.
And I spotted this…
And this is one of her birthday presents. Are you beginning to see a pattern here? Nana needs an intervention on her red trucks!! What do you think? I am thinking we’ll let here keep them. She has earned them!!
Monday morning I decided to go check out the North Woods trails at Oxley Nature Center. I heard there was a new trail and I wanted to go check it out.
I don’t need much of an excuse to go to Oxley, especially what they call the North Woods Unit. Seldom do I see another person.
Usually there are lots of birds and squirrels. This day I saw a bunch of deer running through the woods, too far away to even try taking a photo.
The leaves have pretty much got blown off the trees already so you can see deep into the woods now.
Oxley is kind of low. There is almost always water. It is kind of halfway a swamp.
Hah, I found the new trail. It’s not very long, its kind of a cutoff from one part of the existing trail system to another. That’s okay. I love networked trail systems. It makes for options and I love options.
I soon got to the boardwalk. One of my favorite spots. Something about a boardwalk in the woods looks great to me.
Oxley hasn’t added the trail to their trails maps yet so I am doing it for them. It’s the blue line highlighted in yellow above. I’m a thinking when I start trailrunning again I can do a cool 4 mile route of the new network. I had been reading on social media on the new trail at Oxley but I couldn’t figure out where it was, so now we know.
This past weekend was the annual Fall Fest for the Tulsa Area Geocachers (“TAG”) at Lake Bixhoma. Usually it is a multi day affair with camping and catered meals but this year it was an abbreviated one day affair. No camping, bring your own food, etc. I was busy with flooring and wall repair contractors so I was very late getting out there.
So here is proof that I can be social. I’m on the far left with two other geocachers. Yep, there was a cache on that dock.
In addition to meeting people, the big thing at Fall Fest is all the temporary geocacaches that people put out. There are typically dozens of them. I only saw a few. You will never see caches like this “in the wild” because they would be muggled in no time. (Muggles are people who are not geocachers, muggling is vandalism by muggles.)
Many of them involve puzzles or riddles to solve. Me and another guy had worked on this one for a while and the young man showed up and solved it in no time.
This was a pinball type cache where you had to notice numbers that were revealed as the ball fell down to solve a code.
And there were some water caches you could use a kayak to go find it. It was cold so I declined.
And then you had some more straightforward ones that even I could find.
I didn’t join the big group, I said hello to a few people and then found a trail around the lake. Social Distancing!
It was cold and overcast but still pretty in my book.
Bits of Fall Color were present. And then I went home!!
Come to find out that while I was off at the lake, the flooring guys knocked off early and my wife reclaimed our living room and master bedroom. We had been living upstairs during the time they were working downstairs and it was nice to have a couple rooms back. Our dogs and cats were highly stressed and they were glad to have Saturday afternoon and Sunday without being locked up with all the banging and other noises going on.
Abby loves the contractors. They give her belly rubs in the morning and evening but she slept almost all day Sunday.
Lots going on at our house these days. We are doing a “refresh” new floors and pant mainly. Last week the tile demo guy showed up and wow, what a mess and what hard work!! One guy showed up and worked from morning until night with no breaks.
First he had to take all the tile up and then the “grinding” where he ground the mortar off the floor. Noisy and dusty. And guess what he had to stop halfway through the second day because his wife was having a baby. So he was gone that day, missed the next day and showed back up the day after that. We wouldn’t have minded if he took a few more days off. I am sure that he has no benefits and no time off. We really do live in separate worlds in the USA. Those of us that have benefits and time off live one way and millions don’t have that. That being said, I am in awe of the guys work ethic.
The noise was huge! Our two dogs and cats are traumatized. I am as well.
So Saturday while that was going on we had a garage sale. We are really trying to declutter drastically and change the way we do things. We even sold our Christmas Trees. We got rid of almost everything in the garage. We met a lot of people. I met one of our neighbors. She was from Vietnam. She came first then over the years she brought seven of her brothers and sisters over (all legal! she said). They all live within a couple blocks of each other. They all showed up and chatted and bought some of our stuff. Really nice people. Our world is changing before our eyes.
Except nobody wanted Heather’s Windsor Bears. Anyway, it was great but stressful. Meanwhile the tile guy completed his work so Heather and I dusted, swept, dusted, and vacuumed for hours. The grinding made everything gritty despite the fans in the doors and the open windows, and the plastic sheeting covering everything. (Our air conditioning guy said to not run the A/C or heating to avoid damage so we didn’t but the weather was cool) I think that we’ll be working on the cleanup for a while. So this week, new tile, new laminate!!
So Sunday was a regroup day. I went geocaching and had a lot of fun going down the lonely trails and abandoned roads.
I even found a geocache in a dog park featuring this statue. What kind of dog is this to you? It looks to me kind of like a gorilla, but what do I know?
My first pumpkin photo of the season at Lowe’s Hardware of all places.
This is a phone booth that has been in downtown Tulsa for years. There is no phone in it but there is a sign that says it came from Liverpool, England and that likely one of the Beatles may have used it. Yep, sure. There is a geocache in it though.
I went to Tulsa’s Woodward Park to walk around a little. I found this vantage point looking up some stone steps to a long forgotten memorial to William Shakespeare.
I walked up there and saw three blooms laying on the ground so I put them up and took a photo with a Polaroid App on my phone. Here’s to you William!!
Downtown I saw this cool sign, with sign language. I love the explosion of murals in Tulsa and elsewhere.
Friday afternoon Heather and I took off way past Sand Springs to the Keystone Trail which is on US Corps of Engineers Dam near Keystone Dam and Lake.
It’s a six mile plus or minus loop that is popular with the mountain bikers in the area. When we got there there was only one other person in the parking lot. We took the loop in a clcokwise direction and he took his bike counterclockwise and met him on the trail. We saw nobody else the whole time and ours was the only car in the parking lot when we left.
We didn’t see any deer, we saw lots of squirrels and this guy.
And these two, not friendly at all. I think we were interrupting something.
And rocks, we saw lots of rocks, big beautiful rocks. We didn’t see hardly any litter though. We walked through some spider webs which means that the trail was not very busy.
The trails were well designed and maintained. Not much erosion going on.
We even saw a little fall color. I think coming back in a month the forest would be beautiful with color.
Here’s a 38 second video of our hike. We went every which way. We covered about five miles in all and loved it.
This past weekend I helped build a Butterfly Garden on Turkey Mountain. It was part of an annual event called Monarchs on the Mountain. This year, for safety, it was scattered all over town. Families could reserve a time spot to help with the garden. It was great seeing all the little kids excited about digging and planting stuff.
I helped taking out the bermuda grass. I was sore all over at the end of my not very long shift. Anyway, we ended planting a lot of plants. They lady leading the effort was great. She told the children that this was their garden now so come check on it. One child asked if they could add to it and was told, yes, just make sure the plant is native to Oklahoma because we don’t water, fertilize or spray these plants so they have be hardy enough to survive on their own.
We are getting a little of the fire haze from California. My heart goes out to the residents there. What a nightmare.
I’ve been riding my bicycle up and down the trails on the RiverParks. No road crossings!!
Fire Station number 9 here in Tulsa is sponsoring this geocache. It’s a gadget cache which means that it is easy to find and hard to get into to sign the log. This one requires tools, but it provides the tools, so first you have to figure out how to get the tools, and then what to do with them then. I loved it.