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Last Edited: November 3, 2005, 8:14 am


Morning blogsters:

Lots of minor distractions here at the moment.

I got a call last night and happily was informed old Marsh made it back down out of the mountains and hellichopters without mishap.  Didn't find those cannon, but didn't get himself killed trying to hover a rotating wing at 9200 feet MSL with ground level at 9000.  Which is a win.

Took about a thousand high resolution photographs of the area to give him something to go blind studying this winter.  That was the upfront most likely scenario and it worked out.

Got a determined squirrel decided to make a winter retreat into my old '87 Trooper engine compartment. 

I came back from town the other day and found the neighbor dogs had torn all the plastic shielding between the engine compartment and the outdoors out and scattered pieces around the yard trying to get to the squirrel, which I didn't know existed at that moment.  Thought they might have been after a cat.

Gave me a bit of a start when I lifted the hood and an aggressive squirrel feigned a jump at me, then scurried back over the trannie case somewhere.  I tried unsuccessfully to get it to move out, but I'm thinking I'm going to have to start driving the Trooper more just to convince that squirrel I don't plan on putting up with all the damage it would do if I allowed it to stay.

The various cats either can't, or won't bring it down for meat, so I'm going to have to deal with it.

I used to have a similar problem with nature's creatures ignoring the agendae and priorities of humanity when I was keeping old N90172 tied down at an airstrip.

Seemed every time I went to pre-flight the bird I'd find a mess of bird nests, eggs or, sometimes, baby birds under the engine canopy.  Nothing for it but to pull them out and mess up the day for one homeless bird or another, but I never liked doing it.

On the other hand, when there were baby birds  in there it was clear I'd have to kill them or just toss them on the ground and let them die.  It seemed a shame to waste them, so I started taking them home to the cats.

Now, friends, neighbors and blogsters, I'm going to assure you that everyone from my ex-wife, the mocking birds, whomever, got fairly riled when I did that.   For some reason all my friends of the time preferred the thought of those young birds just getting stomped and left at the airstrip than carried back to the house and fed to the cats.

I dunno.  Strange creatures, us.



Entry #402


Comment by cowgirlpoet - November 3, 2005, 12:09 pm
Gives me the willies -- feeding live babies to the cats. It may be a woman thing, I dunno. And I am chicken hearted when it comes to those types of things, although I'm sure not adverse to Deconning the kangaroo rats and mice around here -- different strokes for different folks.

I keep a "have a heart" trap around for the rock squirrels at my place, then I "relocate" them to some land I have down along the river. They may die anyway, but it gives me the warm fuzzies thinking I've taken the moral high ground.

I'm glad your buddy, Marsh, made it back in one piece. You guy's mentality reminds me of the helicopter pilots at the Grand Canyon, some of whom who delight in scaring the Be Jesus out of a certain cowgirl, who once thought she was so gung ho. They are mostly Veitnam Vets, are you two?
Comment by Rip Snorter - November 3, 2005, 1:53 pm
Thanks for the comment.
I generally don't kill anything from spiders upward if I can avoid it. However, the word, 'avoid' is open to interpretation and covers a multitude of possible circumstances. I don't recognize any moral high ground existing in the equation, but I do relocate rattlers and anything else making a nuisance of itself or endangering itself by trying to mind its own affairs in close proximity to mankind when I can, as opposed to the alternatives. But if it needs killing I kill it and don't look back.

Coyotes and the occasional neighborhood dog sometimes put themselves into that piece of the pie.

I didn't become a pilot until a long time after my military times. I do take the attitude that an air machine will occasionally cause a pilot's life to flash before his eyes, but it's something to be avoided when possible, not deliberately induced.

Comment by Rip Snorter - November 3, 2005, 4:34 pm
I neglected to mention that Marsh has made countless trips by horseback, muleback and afoot scouring those mountains on the surface over the last quarter-century.

This was his last hurrah. If those cannon can't be located from air photos they're just going to have to wait for someone else to find them.

Marsh ain't a quitter, but he anticipates being the kind of man who knows when he's whupped, supposing it ever happens. But, on the other hand, he's got a friend who's a bullgoose when it comes to finding needles in haystacks studying air photos.

Yers trooly.

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