Thursday, July 30, 2009

“If it is a Miracle, any sort of evidence will answer, but if it is a Fact, proof is necessary”. Mark Twain



Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tuesday July 28, 2009

7 am
8:30 am

Monday, July 27, 2009

Rainbow Tonight

Yesterday was like living in a cloud bank. Today dawned the same, and then about 9 am the sun broke through and the humidity level skyrocketed. There was so much moisture evaporating it immediately reformed into clouds and blocked out the sun. ON the way to Nash it looked like thunderboomers were threatening.

The whole day went like that, sun, clouds, moisture, energy building. Finally about 4 the thunder started grumbling. I was filled with pre-storm energy and hustled about the yard putting things away and neatening up. The thunder kept booming off to the west, and that is where our bad storms come from.

Two hours it thundered to the west, then some to the North, and some to the south. I couldn't tell which way the storm was going. It felt like it was circling us.Then the sun broke through over the house, and we enjoyed this rainbow for twenty minutes. I even saw a flash of lightning while looking at the rainbow.

Then the storm and the rainbow evaporated.

Sunday, July 26, 2009



Thursday, July 23, 2009

Check your Credit Report

I have been recently considering applying for a car loan, but I thought I would first check my credit report. Here in the US we are able to get a free annual report from each of three different credit reporting agencies. I chose to request just one, from Experion.

When I opened it this am, I was horrified. There were three pages of negative reports, including bankruptcies. All of it from other states. Under personal information, there were over a dozen names that weren't mine. Addresses that weren't mine, etc, etc.

Over an hour on the phone with Experion I finally got it sorted. I had to talk with someone directly, it wouldn't take online disputes or automated phone ones.

Was it fraud? No, the bogus listings and names didn't even have my SS#. Somehow another person was meshed into my credit report.

I have used the same name for my whole life, and lived in Maine over thirty years, ten years at the same address, yet somehow someone else's bad credit got onto my report. GRRRRR>

Well, the Experion rep assured me it has all been removed and safeguards put in place that will prevent anymore information that does not belong to me from getting on there in the future. And they will be sending updated credit reports to anyone that has requested one on me, of which there were at least a dozen-if they were enquiring about me and not this alter ego, I suppose.

Now I am left wondering what information the other two agencies have on file for me, or not me, as the case was.

I suppose I should be happy the corrected report looks great, and I am happy I fixed at least one report before I sit down in front of a bank or auto loan officer...still, THE HORROR. Check your credit report!!!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sunday's Sightings




Hemerocalis sp

Friday, July 17, 2009

Today's Sightings

Tentatively identified as Blinded Sphinx Moth

- - Sphinginae/Smerinthini/Paonias excaeacatus
Slug From Maine

Three pages of google image slug and grossed out before I could ID it.


fireworks and flags


Strawberry Social

Monday, July 13, 2009

Rosaire Animal Trainers

Sometimes I can't just drop things. I did some digging tonight and discovered that the name of the trainers with the chimpanzee act I recently blogged about-they are named the Rosaires.

A recent USDA inspection of their sanctuary in Florida yielded no violations, and here is a bit of an excerpt from an interview about a documentary made about them a couple of years ago.

The complete interview made be found here:

AFI Dallas: Robin Bliley Invites You to the Circus Rosaire

Q: What attracted you to their story?

A: When I was growing up, the circus was magical and enchanting and the Rosaires were superstars. Many years later as a young adult, I saw the Rosaires perform again and was shocked and saddened by how things had changed. The huge stadium arena, with the 3 ornate and spectacular circus rings where they had performed in their heyday, was now a dusty rodeo ring in a small Texas field with a handful of people more interested in their beer and hotdogs. I wondered how a family, who at one time performed for presidents and kings, found themselves struggling to survive. I knew in my core that this was a perfect backdrop for a great story. The kind of story I wanted to tell. One full of drama, laughter, struggle and pathos. To me, the Rosaires are not just circus performers, they are circus heroes, going through Herculean efforts in order to make show dates, taking immaculate care of their animals along the way, all in order to put a smile on a kid’s face in the audience and continue their family legacy. I feel that “Circus Rosaire” captures a small piece of American culture and history that is disappearing before our very eyes. The circus will never be the same after this current generation of circus performers has passed.

Q: How rare are the Rosaires? Are they the only animal handlers that treat their animals humanely?

A: Fortunately, in my experience, I have never seen animal handlers mistreat their animals, however I do think the Rosaires are incredibly unique. Their eternal devotion and sacrifice for their animals is a beautiful thing to see. Along with performing in circuses and shows around the country, the Rosaire family is dedicated to running their non-profit animal sanctuary in Sarasota, Florida. Many of the animals they perform with are animals they have rescued. They are passionate about animal welfare and adopting exotic animals in need of homes, health and love. There aren’t too many people I know who would put their animals needs before their own, and the Rosaires do that.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Response to Walker Brothers Circus Comment

My previous post was about the Walker Brother Circus. I had a response from an anonymous poster, always welcome if you dare...I also had responses from fellow bloggers, which I do not copy here, but Thanks T and Warren for your nice comments!

I will re-post anonymous' comment here and follow with my reply. It was so lengthy I decided to dedicate a new post to it.

"Walker Brothers Circus"

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry, but why on earth would you think that performing animals care about applause? That's a human thing. Performing animals care about the fact that they are forced to stay in cages, trucked around from pillar to post. Chimps roam large areas in the wild and stay in close family units. These were probably brought here as babies and have lived terrifying and unnatural lives ever since. Give some thought to what went into teaching a chimp to ride on a pony, and how terrifying it must have been for both of them. It sounds like you started out having a compassionate response and talked yourself out of it. I hope that in future you will go with your first instinct. WIld animals do not belong in the circus.

To Anon,

Certainly all those points went through my head, about how the chimps should be free in the wild. I feel the same about elephants. The sad truth and reality is LOSS OF HABITAT. The chimps we saw wouldn't exist at all if not for the time and caring their owners have put into them. Every chimps act ended with a kiss and hug from the trainer, and it was reciprocated.

Now, as to applause, have you ever had a pet of any kind? I play ball and fetch with my dog every day, and if he makes a spectacular catch, I clap and cheer, and his step quickens and his tail wags. If something unexpected happens and I laugh inadvertently at his expense, his attitude changes.

For a performing animal to go in front of a disapproving crowd, to suggest that the animal cannot sense animosity being directed at its performance, is as unfeeling and ignorant as you seem to claim my response to be. They are there, sad, yes, but I am glad I could clap LOUDLY and say, "Good Job!"

At least once, the trainer looked me in the eye, and mouthed, "Thank YOU." If my simple act could help the trainer relax, if you are one who subscribes to the thought that animals do not have feelings, creating a positive human response from the trainer might then be passed on to a more positive emotional response to the trained animal. Thus improving the quality of life for that animal.

As far as the travel, using the dog analogy again, some dogs love to ride in cars. Some get car sick. Any good trainer would not subject an animal to the travel if they could not thrive in it.

If the chimp was terrified of the horse, no trainer alive could get it to ride. Same with the horse, although I think it would be worse for the horse. Yet horses are raced, rodeo'd, and been trained for centuries. They don't all run free in the mountains, and if they did, I am sure BLM would round them up and slam them in a pen awaiting adoption.

And what of the awareness that the presence of the wild animal creates to individuals? Some people might become more aware that chimp habitat needs protecting, and discuss it with others. Some of the children might never have a chance to see an elephant or chimp in person for their whole lives. This is Maine.

People dominate animals. That is a truth. Caring humans can only help but act to provide animals they come into contact with with a loving, caring, compassionate attitude, even if we eat them. Animal abuse is rampant. Dogs are bred for fighting, mass produced poultry is beaten, abused, and confined to filthy conditions before being sent to a horrifying filthy death.

We have branches of government that regulate an annual slaughter of wild animals of various types-some have an open season and are openly persecuted. Don't think it is kinder to let Bambi run free until it is dropped with a painless clean shot. Many animals escape wounded to die a lingering and infected death of starvation, unless one of the persecuted predators is still alive to take it out quickly and cleanly.

These performing chimps were probably better off than a chimp in a zoo. Get over it.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Walker Brothers Circus

The one ring circus came to town! We have seen this troupe several times. Three years ago they had elephants with them, and we had an elephant ride before the show. This year the pre- show entertainment was a giant bouncy slide or pony rides.

Willow took a pony ride, and she was so thrilled!

I then stood in line while the two saplings bought cotton candy, and then the gate opened, and we grabbed front row ringside seats.

The opening act was dogs, much toned down from previous years with some hoop and gate jumping with the prerequisite humor of the dachshund running under the gates, and a small terrier mix knocking the gates down.

There was a foursome pony act-Willow was thrilled to see "her" pony among them. Here's a pic of them as they were trotting in line around the ring over a small cavelletti, led by a small Hidalgo look-alike.

There was a trapeze artist, who is seen here on the high hoop (no safety net), and she returned during the second half to work on a long rope. She was as good as I have seen in a solo performer.

The young juggler, Paolo, had grown in the two years since we had first seen him. He still finished his act with fiery batons, a real crowd-pleaser. I had the chance to compliment him during intermission as he was selling tickets for the pony/snake/sponge Bob photo ops.

He had five batons going at one point. Here he is working with three batons.

The clown had several acts. I tend to be quite noisy during these small events. The crowds here are a killer, so quiet and stiff. So I really clap and whistle and hoot and try and get folks going. These performers working the small shows really deserve the applause! Anyhow, either our front row seats or my crowd participation drew the clown's attention and we were surprised and soaked by shooting fake tears in his first act. Ha-ha.

His second act he asked for volunteers from the audience, and you can bet I kept my head between my knees for that one. He grabbed a man sitting next to the lovely teenage girl next to me, and I quickly learned he was her father and her younger brother gleefully admitted that he had volunteered his father. Ha!

The girl called for her Dad's phone, and I suddenly offerred her my new camera phone, telling her she could take pics and send them to herself.

"You're my Hero!" she exclaimed.


I don't know if the pix are still on my phone or not, but I will save her father further embarassment by not posting any here! Dancing, skipping, grinding, and a funny trick with four guys and chairs with heads on each other's knees...

Moving on...

One of the acts really cracked me up. This pretty little mule was brought out and volunteers were asked to try and ride the unrideable mule. Two men were forthcoming.

Well, whenever the man approached the mule, the mule went into attack mode. Here it is biting the man on the arm. I was thinking, "lawsuit in waiting."

Well, as the guy didn't give up, I realized he must be part of the act. At one point, he stumbled runnning out of the ring to avoid the mule, and knocked into the women who had brought the mule out, and she fell down and her wig fell off. THAT was NOT part of the act, I learned at intermission-and I did ask if she was ok, and she was, and then I said sorry it was so funny everyone laughed. I got a sour look for that left-handed compliment. Yeah, it was VERY funny. I thought the ringmaster was going to wet herself laughing at her .

Poor mule, well, the act finished with this tiny tot coming out and proudly mastering the unrideable mule.

The final act was, MUCH to my utter amazement, a chimpanzee act.

First I was a little worried considering the big story of the chimp attacking a woman in Connecticut a few months ago, but then it was sort of horror for these poor things...still, as I watched each one clap for itself after each little trick, my heart went out as I know that performing creatures do appreciate the applause, so I clapped and called words of encouragement and gave the occasional whistle.

Well, I didn't have to pretend when they brought out a pony and had one of the chimps riding on the back, to finish with back flips as the pony cantered around the ring. Yeah, it was cool. And we were maybe ten feet away.

Admission for three, two cotton candies, two sodas, a popcorn, a pic on a pony, a pony ride, and a soaking in clown tears all for under $50. Great deal! Check out the Walker Brothers Circus-just make sure to clap and hoot and whistle for me, ok? :D

N.B. This is a free consumer review. The author has no affiliation with Walker Brothers Circus nor it's associates.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Finally some sun from the gloom! (poems)


How beautiful is the rain!
After the dust and heat,
In the broad and fiery street,
In the narrow lane,
How beautiful is the rain!

How it clatters along the roofs,
Like the tramp of hoofs
How it gushes and struggles out
From the throat of the overflowing spout!

Across the window-pane
It pours and pours;
And swift and wide,
With a muddy tide,
Like a river down the gutter roars
The rain, the welcome rain!

The sick man from his chamber looks
At the twisted brooks;
He can feel the cool
Breath of each little pool;
His fevered brain
Grows calm again,
And he breathes a blessing on the rain.

From the neighboring school
Come the boys,
With more than their wonted noise
And commotion;
And down the wet streets
Sail their mimic fleets,
Till the treacherous pool
Ingulfs them in its whirling
And turbulent ocean.

In the country, on every side,
Where far and wide,
Like a leopard's tawny and spotted hide,
Stretches the plain,
To the dry grass and the drier grain
How welcome is the rain!

In the furrowed land
The toilsome and patient oxen stand;
Lifting the yoke encumbered head,
With their dilated nostrils spread,
They silently inhale
The clover-scented gale,
And the vapors that arise
From the well-watered and smoking soil.
For this rest in the furrow after toil
Their large and lustrous eyes
Seem to thank the Lord,
More than man's spoken word.

Near at hand,
From under the sheltering trees,
The farmer sees
His pastures, and his fields of grain,
As they bend their tops
To the numberless beating drops
Of the incessant rain.
He counts it as no sin
That he sees therein
Only his own thrift and gain.

These, and far more than these,
The Poet sees!
He can behold
Aquarius old
Walking the fenceless fields of air;
And from each ample fold
Of the clouds about him rolled
Scattering everywhere
The showery rain,
As the farmer scatters his grain.

He can behold
Things manifold
That have not yet been wholly told,--
Have not been wholly sung nor said.
For his thought, that never stops,
Follows the water-drops
Down to the graves of the dead,
Down through chasms and gulfs profound,
To the dreary fountain-head
Of lakes and rivers under ground;
And sees them, when the rain is done,
On the bridge of colors seven
Climbing up once more to heaven,
Opposite the setting sun.

Thus the Seer,
With vision clear,
Sees forms appear and disappear,
In the perpetual round of strange,
Mysterious change
From birth to death, from death to birth,
From earth to heaven, from heaven to earth;
Till glimpses more sublime
Of things, unseen before,
Unto his wondering eyes reveal
The Universe, as an immeasurable wheel
Turning forevermore
In the rapid and rushing river of Time.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The Sound of the Sea

The sea awoke at midnight from its sleep,
And round the pebbly beaches far and wide
I heard the first wave of the rising tide
Rush onward with uninterrupted sweep;
A voice out of the silence of the deep,
A sound mysteriously multiplied
As of a cataract from the mountain's side,
Or roar of winds upon a wooded steep.
So comes to us at times, from the unknown
And inaccessible solitudes of being,
The rushing of the sea-tides of the soul;
And inspirations, that we deem our own,
Are some divine of foreshadowing and foreseeing
Of things beyond our reason or control.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The rising moon has hid the stars;
Her level rays, like golden bars,
Lie on the landscape green,
With shadows brown between.

And silver white the river gleams,
As if Diana, in her dreams,
Had dropt her silver bow
Upon the meadows low.

On such a tranquil night as this,
She woke Endymion with a kiss,
When, sleeping in the grove,
He dreamed not of her love.

Like Dian's kiss, unasked, unsought,
Love gives itself, but is not bought;
Nor voice, nor sound betrays
Its deep, impassioned gaze.

It comes,--the beautiful, the free,
The crown of all humanity,--
In silence and alone
To seek the elected one.

It lifts the boughs, whose shadows deep
Are Life's oblivion, the soul's sleep,
And kisses the closed eyes
Of him, who slumbering lies.

O weary hearts! O slumbering eyes!
O drooping souls, whose destinies
Are fraught with fear and pain,
Ye shall be loved again!

No one is so accursed by fate,
No one so utterly desolate,
But some heart, though unknown,
Responds unto his own.

Responds,--as if with unseen wings,
An angel touched its quivering strings;
And whispers, in its song,
"'Where hast thou stayed so long?"

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow