Archive - Oct 2005

October 27th


I am always hoping to catch some of the stark beauty of the Red River Valley with the camera, but it is difficult to get a feel for the flatness and the lines. Here is an attempt using a row of trees that I have always enjoyed near Crookston. Somebody has taken the time to trim these green ash so they have nice trunks.

October 26th

Old Friend Orion

Got up early enough this morning to see the constellation Orion in the southwest skies. Orion is a "winter constellation," meaning that it is visible in the winter skies only. So, its appearance marks the change in seasons.

Most constellations consist of unrelated stars which happen to line up in our vision from earth. The ancients, who spent a lot more time than we do observing the skies, named the constellations for figures in their mythology. Those names have stuck, even in modern astronomy, as a way of navigating the geography of the night sky.

October 25th

Fall classic

My house is finally fully wired to the world. On the television is the World Series game. On my lap is a computer hooked up to wireless internet.

I am ambivalent about the World Series. I have spent the past several years despising the White Sox, but they have gotten rid of all of their unbearably cocky players--players who claimed they were better than the Twins despite their poor record--and have gotten a manager who is a character, Ozzie Guillen.

Morning frost

The news

Although I don't subscribe to any newspapers and magazines, with the internet one doesn't need hard copies of the news to in order to keep up on with the world. Instead, I find myself reading commentary from newspapers around the world each morning.

October 24th

Final trip to the apartment

After loading up the remaining things in Aunt Olla's apartment, Aunt Ede and Uncle Orville pose with Olla on the doorstep before she locks her apartment for the last time.

Ede helps Olla to the van for the trip back to the Fertile Hilton. "I have no regrets," Olla said as she left behind the apartment where she has spent most of the past decade.

Pac filling

For at least the past thirty years, filling the greenhouse pacs for the spring using Dad's automated system has been a fall ritual. Up to about six years ago, we could do all the trays in one day. Now it takes a day-and-a-half.

October 23rd

Quit while I'm ahead?

The column on the rummage sale seems to have gotten a few laughs from people. Hits on this website went up, which means more people read it than usual.

One woman just assumed that I had made it all up. Ha! I wish.

Olla locks up

This afternoon, Uncle Orv, Aunt Ede and I loaded up the last of Aunt Olla's things from her apartment. Olla said good-bye to her neighbor Lilly, who stopped by, and then locked the place up for the last time, announcing that "I have no regrets whatsoever."

All in all, a pretty good way to move into the nursing home. Olla has embraced the change with her usual enthusiasm, refusing to see anything at all negative in an experience most of us dread. She is thrilled with the Fertile Hilton and, as always, is having the time of her life.


Yesterday, I eagerly opened a letter from the address of some friends from my baseball tour two years ago--but my heart sank a bit when I saw the pink pastels of a funeral folio.

Tess was writing to tell me that Warren passed away last week. He was eighty-three.

Warren and Tess were the honorary grandparents of our baseball tour bus. They were particularly dear to the back-of-the bus gang. Each morning, as they came on the bus, they graciously greeted everybody as they worked their way down the aisle.