Allegany Early Morning

As I stated in the previous post,  we were up and off early Monday morning.  I wanted to get to the hospital early enough to be with my mom so she wouldn’t have to sit and wait through my dad’s surgery alone. 

We left not too long after sunrise.  It was a very brisk morning with the temperature sinking below the freezing mark.  The sun was making its way into the clear blue sky, deceiving anyone who thought the bright blue sky meant warmth! Of course, as we drove along the Red House Lake,  there were just too many beautiful opportunities to pass on, photographically speaking!

The icing on the cake, however, was yet to come.  For as we left the park,  Ben called out to see the big bird sitting on top of the telephone pole in its nest.

I was thrilled to get probably about 150-200 feet away from this Osprey. I’m not certain whether chicks were in the nest, or just eggs, but I don’t think I would want to get too much closer than I did.  As it was, the bird began calling out when it spotted me….a series of “whistles”….then it flew….

landing in an old dead tree across the road.

Even though I stopped to take some photos, I arrived in plenty of time before Dad’s surgery.  Monday was spent mostly in Erie. 

On Tuesday morning, as we were leaving the park, I felt so saddened and almost “empty”….I think I would gladly live in that little camper if it meant I could spend all my time in such a marvelous place.  The tranquil atmosphere was so delightful, after all!  As an aside, there were few campers at the park, making one feel as though they owned the place!

Phew, It’s Been a While, Eh?

Well, here I am, in case you might have wondered where I had gone!  Let me tell you, things have been consistantly running away from me! i know, I know, we can all use that excuse.  But, when you live in the “middle of nowhere”, tis hard to connect because “somewhere” is always at least half an hour away!

My father had a partial shoulder replacement surgery on Monday.  My older brother was going to ride along with my mother to Erie, where Dad had the surgery.  Well, said brother had a terrible cold and so he thought he had better not go to the hospital.  Well, we had planned to be there on Monday, so we decided to go camping.  hehehe

Before we could go camping, we needed to de-winterize the camper. There was also the slight problem (which I confirmed on Friday) that the Scotties were in need of a Rabies shot.  Sooo, to make a long story longer  short, we made an appointment on Saturday at the vet’s.  Saturday was a rainy day and we spent quite some time de-winterizing whilst showering!  Also,  we had to do a little “touch-up” work, as we discovered a small hole in the hose leading to the water inlet in the camper. Oops. More raindrops falling on our heads!

We left for Allegany State Park on Sunday morning.  After arriving and setting up, we relaxed for the night and then went to bed early so we could get an early start to Erie. 

We were up and on our way early Monday morning.  Mark and the kids dropped me off at the hospital, where I was a bit nervous, as my mom was nowhere in sight.  I was finally able to ask a young woman who informed waiting family members on the progress of their loved one in surgery. She took me to a small room where my father was lying on a gurney and my mother sat in a chair, talking with him.  The anaesthesiologist came in and spoke to Dad, then shortly before eleven,  the surgeon came by to tell Dad he would soon be going in for the surgery.

I am happy to say that all went well for my dad and the doctor came and spoke to my mother and me post-op.  He explained that the ball part of the ball and socket was a mess! He told us that when Dad is all recovered, he will feel like a new man!

On Monday,  I rode home to the home of my parents with my mom so she wouldn’t have to drive alone. (The hospital is located about an hour from their home!)  We ate dinner, then watched the Sabres/ Bruins playoff game.  We then drove nearly an hour back to the camper.  Ah, the camper. I forgot to mention the fact that we had frosts each night and the furnace seemed to want to run endlessly, so we had to manually turn it on and off.  Oh my, was it COLD awakening in the night and having to get up to turn the thermostat up!

In the midst of all this, I didn’t want to say anything until after Dad’s surgery,  but it seemed the gums above the tooth I had a root canal and crown on were inflamed as though I had an infection.  Of course, when my mom heard this, she insisted I see the dentist right away.

Since my brother, Randy, had taken off Tuesday and Wednesday, we decided to leave early on Tuesday morning to see if the dentist could take a look at the tooth.  The most unfortunate thing in all this is that we had no phone reception while camping. 

Tuesday morning, shortly after rising, we were on our way home. I called the dentist and was able to be seen yesterday.  After an x ray and short examination, the dentist gave me a prescription for an antibiotic and I was on my way.  When the dentist tried to examine the gums,  I nearly jumped out of the chair when he tried to probe the area. Since I was there on a short visit, he said if the gums don’t improve, I will need to make another appointment.  Aren’t teeth fun?

The kids had reserved the racquetball court at the YMCA today, so we were off once again. Afterwards, we needed to run to Victor for some supplies. 

Well, ne’er a dull moment here in the Bristolwood!  So, now that I have explained my absence, or tried, anyway,  please be kind!

I have some photos I will try to post tonight.  I will try to visit blogs tomorrow…I think I have a great deal of catching up to do!

Go Sabres!

I know I promised to end our little journey from last Saturday here today, but it has been a very busy day and I am so tired. (again)

It really was a busy day, but I will show you a couple photos I took today.  Ben was making some noise in the garage as I approached the woodshed today.  I wondered what was going on when he explained a little Titmouse had flown into the garage and didn’t seem able to figure its way back out again.  He gently scooped up the little bird and took it outside to release it.  However, the little bird just sat on Ben’s hand.

I excitedly ran inside the house to grab my camera,  thinking the bird would probably have flown off by the time I got back outside.  When I arrived back outside, Ben was still holding the bird on his hand! He told the bird to fly, but it needed some time to recover!

The little bird seemed so comfortable on Ben’s hand. It even scratched at an itch!

Finally, after about ten minutes, the bird hopped down from Ben’s hand and flew away.  What an amazing experience!

After we picked Michelle up from school, she invited Jacob and Jeffrey over for dinner.  We stopped at the grocery store and soon after we got home, the boys came over. 

After dinner, Mark and I watched the Sabres play.  This is game one for them in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, so when they beat Boston 2:1,  it was cause for celebrating.  There is a long road ahead still,  but it was an exciting game, nonetheless!

Unexpected Beauty

Last Saturday when Mark and I were spending time so gloriously….taking our time with no pressure,  Mark made a funny comment.  He asked me,  “So you look at everything you see as though you were looking through your camera?”

B-I-N-G-O!

Thus in saying that,  I am constantly accompanied by a camera.  Many times, both the Nikon and the little Panasonic are within an arms reach.  If I am feeling terribly hurried,  I will grab the little camera as I head out the door.  For a longer drive or special event, the Nikon is sure to be sitting by my side.

So, one morning last week,  Mark asked me to linger around Canandaigua for a bit to pick up a few things for him.  One of my stops was Advance Auto to grab some parts he had ordered.  Since I had some time to kill afterwards as some stores had not yet opened,  I decided to wander out behind the store to see if anything might be attracted to the big pond there.

I never expected this….

The single swan was sitting on the side of the pond when I arrived, but quickly hopped into the water once it saw me.

And so, I can never say it enough….always, always have a camera ready…ALL the time!

It’s a Wonderful Life, Indeed!

Especially since the hot water is once again flowing!  Yes, after numerous calls to the tank manufacturer,  Mark and Ben worked this afternoon on removing the burner assembly on the old hot water heater.  Tech support at the company advised Mark on how to clean the tiny orifice that was plugged on the pilot feed tube.  I guess there are many bonuses being married to a mechanical engineer.  One thing about Mark is that he has the tenacity of a terrier to follow through when he needs information, and he isn’t the least bit intimidated asking for it!

Well, then, now that the hot water is back…and I was the first to luxuriate in a tub of warm water!!!….I will recommence with our little Saturday adventure!

After Angus had his opportunity to nearly run us into a ditch drive the truck,  we were off once again.  The next stop on our itinerary was Sauder’s Store.  Wow, I think we are addicted and Mark enjoys going there just as much as I!  I had to smile when I saw the little “oops” in the spelling on the sign out front….

I cannot complain, as I think it must be difficult placing the little letters in proper sequence, let alone getting spelling perfect!

After leaving the store,  we headed back to Seneca Falls. Mark needed to fiddle around a little with the GPS, so he pulled over at a spot I suggested. For anyone who has seen the movie It’s a Wonderful Life,  an interesting bit of trivia is that the town in which it is set might be based upon Seneca Falls.  Seems Frank Capra (producer and director of this classic) passed through the town and was quite enamoured by it.  And so, it wouldn’t seem the least bit surprising that the bridge we parked near would be on “George Bailey Lane”!

Now, why I didn’t photograph the actual bridge itself is beyond me.  (Fort hat matter, I didn’t catch Zuzu Cafe, either..named for George Bailey’s daughter, Zuzu in the movie.)

Well, I did notice the insanely bright bushes in front of the truck!

Oh, and a couple of starlings perched upon the railing….

Seneca Falls has another notable bit about it.  Why, even drifters upon the water are alerted to its fame…

Yes, Seneca Falls is noted as the birthplace of women’s rights here in the USA!  The Seneca Falls Convention was held here in 1848 with some progressive women who advocated equal rights for women.  The ball began rolling right in this picturesque little town!

I noticed some statues along the water and I am totally unsure what they are all about, but I will certainly be finding out on my next outing to this lovely town!

Well, we ventured out to see all these sights and were ready to move on along by mid-morning. We still weren’t done!  I will finished up our little tour in the next entry!

As a little addendum here,  for those who feel so inclined,  please pray for my dear friend, Laurie, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.  I am sure she will greatly covet any and all prayers uttered on her behalf. Thank you!

Mind if I Grumble a Wee Bit?

We spent the better part of yesterday being totally frustrated.

It all began the night before last when the hot water heater’s pilot light went out.   I tried several times to ignite the bugger, but each time, it was a total “no go”.  Finally, in frustration, I turned the gas off to the unit and called it a night!

Yesterday morning,  I went outside to read the guage on the 500 gallon tank buried in our backyard. 

As you can see, the tank reads at nearly 30% full.  Now, mind you, we were told this guage  is “sticky”….that is, it often reads higher than the actual level.  One of the guys that filled the tank told me this and advised me to “take a wrench and tap on the guage and it *will read accurately. Simple enough. I did so, and it read 30%.

Well, the bottom line is,  when the stove failed to ignite later in the day (after 5pm when the office was closed) we realized we are out of propane.

The above was written in total frustration this morning. The saga continues…………

If you have read here for awhile, you might remember we were discussing putting in a new tankless hot water heater last year. (my, how time does fly!)  Well, we still have the old heater and after the propane tank was filled today, water heater still isn’t working.  Mark spoke to the manufacturer and they said they think the orifice is clogged.  Joy of joys. We also had a visit from the service technician (why is everyone a “technician” these days, anyway?) this morning as well and we now have a new non-sticking (I sure hope!!!) guage on the propane tank.

So, the long and short of it is, we can now run the furnace if we desire,  we can cook on the stove, but we still only have c-o-l-d water!  Bahhhhhhh!!!!!

And….Seneca Lake State Park (again)

through the lens of the Nikon D-90. Since I kind of showed you, my Readers, around the park in the previous entry,  I will not yap, but rather, let the photos speak for themselves.  (I know if you have a question,  you will certainly ask!) I will say that the duck flying off the playground in the second photo nearly startled me out of my skin!  The park was so quiet and when it rose into the air, quacking loudly and profusely, it was quite the experience!

Still several miles from our next stop,  our journey will continue east in the next post.

Seneca Lake State Park

through the lens of my little Panasonic camera.  I like to use this camera as well as the Nikon D-SLR,  as I love the wide angle leans on it.  

Mark and I dropped the kids off at the church in Middlesex at 6:30 am.  As we sat in the truck, we had to decide what to do, what to do!  It isn’t that often that we find ourselves “kidless” and when we do,  we are almost “numb” trying to think of how to spend our time.  It is a treat not to have four different people in the truck at on time, all wanting to go in a different direction!

It didn’t really take me too long to think of what I wanted to do and as Mark thought about it, he came up with another idea or two of his own.   We had a beautiful day ahead of us with nice temperatures and lots of sunshine. How could we ever go wrong with that combination?  And so, we headed due east.

I suggested stopping by Sauder’s Store as every time we enter, we find something new that just amazes us. We were off toward Seneca Falls by way of state routes 5&20.

As we approached the head of Seneca Lake where the city of Geneva is located,  Mark suggested we stop by the Seneca Lake State Park.  After all,  the park doesn’t start charging entry fees until May 8. 

We drove into the park and Mark stopped the truck along the lake road.  I hopped out and had to take one “artistic” shot through a chainlink fence of this old milkweed….

A short distance away was a plaque.  As I started walking that way, Mark wondered where I was headed and I pointed. As always, the information provided was very interesting!

Here you can see some of the young willows planted lakeside, along with the plaque.

Here is a view of this very large Finger Lake, looking toward the south.

Looking toward the west,  one can see the city of Geneva and the beautiful walking path on the lake.

This is a view looking to the east along the road. Since the information provided said that routes 5&20 used to run just a short distance from the lake,  we wondered if this road was part of te original route.

As we drove eastward through the park, we were able to see a few waterfowl, such as this flock of Bufflehead Ducks bobbing up and down in the water.

As we progressed along the road, the trees grew larger and larger. Note the picnic table along the lake….this is such an awesome place to just spend a day walking and picnicking or just observing others!

We drove down near the marina, where there were many more boats on the land than in the water.  Since the official opening of the “summer season” commences the end of May on Memorial Day,  I suppose the boats will slowly make their way to the water…

I took the next photo to show just how closely this park runs to routes 5&20. (on the right side of the photo)

Neither Mark nor I was in any hurry to leave the park.  It was so relaxing driving around, taking in the scenes, enjoying the fresh air and not hearing the kids in the back seat asking “how much longer?’  We did have the two Scottie boys and while we were in the park, we allowed them to sit up in the front seat.  After awhile,  Angus crawled up on Mark and plopped his seat down on Mark’s left leg.  Since we were one of only four or five vehicles in the park,  Mark let Angus ride on his leg.  With window rolled down and a brisk breeze blowing,  Angus thoroughly enjoyed letting his beard air out!

He looked out the window, searching the  grounds  for squirrels……

then grew bored until Mark allowed him to take over the controls……..

Well, Angus’s driving lesson proved to be rather short as he discovered it is awkward trying to keep a vehicle on the road when your legs, err….”arms”  are only six or seven inches long!

Sign of the Times?

The past couple of months, we have noticed trucks from the phone company up in Rochester working on the lines.  We have also seen contractors from another company with huge spools of bright orange cable working along our road.  Well, Mark is so excited!

We currently have our phone, television, and internet through a cable company.  Well, all this bright orange “stuff” points to “Fios” or fiber-optic cable.  Mark is over the moon!  The fiber-optics are supposed to be much more efficient and faster as well!

Now, when will they “hook up” all that bright orange cable they buried?