Winter has arrived early and unexpectedly. Just a week ago it was balmy and mild. Impudent wasps were making a nest right by my front door (and chasing me inside every time I tried to step out).
The annual (and dreaded) influx of Asian beetles began with alarming rapidity. Every year at this time they descend like the plagues of Egypt - climbing the sides of the house, seeping through windows, getting into everything - from my hair and clothes to food on the dinner table. It took me twenty minutes to sweep them off the front porch - - and in less than five minutes they were back.
I took this photo last year, to show how they congregated on my bedroom window sill. They were just as bad this year.
Fortunately they die quickly and the influx only lasts a few days.
On Friday it was cold and rainy and the temperature dropped steadily all day. I had to make the dreaded (and long) trek to my mailbox to leave some letters for the mail carrier to pick up.
Since it was pouring, there was no way I could walk. I had to take the car. Things went reasonably well until I was returning and trying to get back up the hill to my house. I got stuck in the mud (this isn't the first time).
I tried to remember the rules pertaining to the situation.
Don't panic and don't accelerate.
I pushed the accelerator to the floorboard while the wheels screeched and spun and I sunk deeper into mud.
I had to walk back to the house (in deep mire and torrential rain) and get sheets of cardboard from the garage. I placed them under the tires of the car (for traction) and switched to the lowest gear ( never keep it in "drive" when you're stuck in mud).
Finally I was free, but the car and I were covered in mud. And I was completely drenched.
I washed my clothes....but there's no possibility of drying them since the motor on my clothes dryer blew out.
My boots are still caked with mud and too wet to wear.
Yesterday (Saturday) was sunny but cold - a daytime "high" of only 34 degrees (that's Fahrenheit, for those of you in Guam).
The leaves are still hanging onto the trees so I wandered out to take some final photos of the foliage. A brisk and invigorating day.
Random scenes from the back yard.
My two cats Bosco (left) and Scratch, hurrying up the porch steps to get back into the house. I let them out for a few minutes yesterday morning but they didn't like the cold.
My cat Scruffy died only two weeks ago and I'm still extremely upset over it. I miss her so much.
Tonight as I write this it's about 23 degrees. Cold and silent here in the woods. A few stray coyotes are howling in the far distance.
Much like the last November leaves, I'm still hanging on......