March 21 – On the morning of St. Patrick’s day I got up a little earlier than usual (around 6:30 am) as I wanted to investigate what the cat was doing to make those odd noises I kept hearing. But she was lying calmly on the rug, so I went into the living room and turned up the thermostat. There was that strange sound again, coming out of the fireplace! I turned on the light and went over to see what was going on in there.Much to my surprise, there was an owl in there, flapping around as it tried to escape! I opened one of the two glass doors and reached in and seized the bird, receiving just a slight gouge on one finger as a talon made its mark. This was a barn owl, looking for a barn in the wrong place. Chris was still in bed, and I took my prize in and asked if she would like to take some pictures. Seeing what the prize was, she jumped quickly out of bed and ran off to get her camera.
Soon she had taken a number of pictures, including one of our cat coming over to investigate this strange thing. After the photography session, we took the bird to the front door and launched it into space and freedom. It left a small feather behind, which the cat sniffed and shortly realized it had attached itself to her nose and whiskers. It was quite a struggle to get that feather off.After breakfast and giving the weather a little time to warm up, and watching the St. Patrick’s Day Parade for a while, Chris dressed up in her old attire and went off to cut more buckbrush and wild rose bushes. I stayed on for quite a while longer, watching all the marchers in green and realizing that I had unwittingly put on green clothes too. Quite a bit later I too tired of the long procession of vehicles and marchers and went out to lend a hand with the brush cutting.
This time I took along a lawn chair, just in case I needed something to sit on. Chris had already cut big piles of rose bushes and low-growing tree branches, and I raked a lot of them over to a nearby pile that would be burned eventually. A nearby honey locust tree had a rose bush growing way up among its lower branches, and that stem must have been well over an inch thick. Some of it is still there, as I couldn’t get it pulled down. Lots of poison ivy vines were also growing on the surrounding trees, and we cut most of them down as far up as we could reach, and the remainder will just dry up and fall off. In due time we decided to call it quits for the day and went back to the house. Will be back with another report later in the week. – DALE