Saturday, after our big family trip to the dump – I mean “Transfer Station” – we stopped along the massively overbroad shoulder of Route 202, where the road runs over a culvert that allows Maranacook Lake to flow into Annabessacook Lake. (A post from earlier in 2016 mentioned beavers blocking this culvert and I have no reason to believe that that has changed, though I have no solid proof either.) In any event, this portion of Route 202 has been widened on both sides of the road in this area, making it a safe place for fisherpersons (that rolls of the gender-neutral tongue, doesn’t it?) and duck-dispatchers to access our lake without committing vehicular homicide. So we stopped so that I could climb the guardrail and get some photos. The water levels are so low that it looks like low tide has struck the lake.
In addition to snapping my first ever photos of a belted kingfisher at our lake, I also had the pleasure of being tooted at by a fine young gentleman in a jacked up red pick-up truck with a healthy collection of tires in the truck bed. Having not been tooted at in something like a decade, I was rather pleased with myself. Didn’t even trip in the weeds when I looked up to see who’d mistaken me for a bottle picker on the side of the road. Ever-present air cast on my right leg be damned!
I wasn’t in quite such good spirits about the air cast today, after finally being passed by the two pretty ladies hiking on my heels at Jamie’s Pond today. After they finally past me I stood there and cried. “Oh, you’re hiking with a cast on?!” observed one fit, smiling woman. “No F&4K!ng kidding!” my brain screamed. But out of my tired mouth came, “Yup, for four months.” Meanwhile the other happy looking hiker asked permission to pat my younger dog. No matter that I’m perched on the edge of a slope trying not to tip backwards. It’s cool – let’s pat the dog. Or NOT. NEVER a good idea to reach out for stranger’s dogs. We try to explain this to people while they are reaching fingers toward her sharp, excited teeth, but they don’t listen and they are surprised when (after I’ve said, “She bites…she bites….”) she has in fact nipped them in excitement. To combat this stupidity I’ve learned to say, “She’ll make you bleed,” in a very urgent and frightening manner, which generally causes people to withdraw their idiotic fingers in time, as well as to look at me like I’m a monster.
So, the pretty lady did not stick her fingers out, and in fact thanked me for warning her. So as the two happy ladies pranced away with their sneaker-shod feet gamely taking the rocks and pine needles with real style, I just went ahead and let those tears that I’ve been saving for months now sneak out. But only long enough for my husband to get so far ahead of me with the older dog that I had to then pick my younger, able-bodied dog up and carry her, since otherwise she would have (1) run off and dive-tackled those ladies or (2) dragged me over a 45 degree boulder-strewn slope fast enough for me to break an ankle, which quite frankly at this point would be a welcome relief.
Well aware that I’m not a child and nobody was going to carry me out of the woods, I decided it was time to buck up. Plus, I’d run out of tissues two miles back, started blowing my nose on my shirt one mile back, and really had to pee. Again. So off I went – though not without a bit of extra gimp in my step just to show the universe how pathetic I am. (Insert sheepish grin.)
But WAIT – I’ve gotten far afield of my original story. So where was I….oh yes, getting honked at on the side of Route 202 after Saturday morning’s dump run. Having finished with the seagulls, I happened to see a belted kingfisher fly in. I love getting to photograph a new friend. Photos aren’t as clear as I’d liked but here they are.
Since husband and dogs were patiently waiting for the rest of Saturday morning to get underway, I tore myself away and headed back into the car. And off we went on our merry little way. All the way into Augusta to walk the dogs at the trails behind UMA. Great trails there for those (like me and my old lady dog) who are mobility impaired. We arrived to find a huge cross country meet underway, so we drove back to Winthrop to our old fall back – the high school trails. The rest of Saturday involves pumpkin carving, which I must say it fun for those from age 18 months to 87 years old. It’s not too late folks. Gut a pumpkin today. Share the seeds with your woodland friends. Have you noticed their haste to stash winter’s meals?