December has arrived and as far as I know, the town of Waldo has no holiday plans of any sort, no public suppers, no musical entertainment and no carolers.

Along with that, I have absolutely no town-related news to report. So it’s time for my annual plea to readers. If you have any news items whatever, please contact me and I’ll put them in this column. The news may be personal, such as birthdays and anniversaries. Any news at all will be appreciated, as long as it has some ties to the town of Waldo.

Under the feeder

This past week saw the usual retinue of visitors at the suet feeder. And that included another gray squirrel. The squirrel met the usual fate. Remember, squirrel-hunting season lasts through December, so if you have problem squirrels and a hunting license, by all means rid yourselves of these pests. Or if you are tender-hearted, just go with the flow. Some people even put out dried ears of corn, just for the squirrels. Each to their own.

Road wear

Around one month ago Waldo’s dirt roads were in fine shape. Then a series of driving rainstorms coaxed the potholes back and now a trip down these roads requires slowing down to avoid damaging your vehicle. Unfortunately, hardly anyone slows down, which, in addition to rain, has made roads even more difficult to negotiate.

Also, artificially induced thawing after sand-and-salt applications has done more harm than good. After plowing, our roads acquire a relatively smooth character and as long as temperatures remain cold enough to keep salt from working, the roads remain fine.

But come the first sunny, warm day and the salt destroys the snow-and-ice base, creating a real quagmire. Back in the 1970s, I read that one rural town in Vermont tried an experiment. They plowed and sanded their unpaved roads but did not apply salt. The results, as I recall, were impressive.

Were Waldo to employ a similar measure, we could, conceivably, have smooth sailing throughout the winter.

In other news, it’s time to check those stored winter squash. I checked mine last week and found two that had rotted. So just because the squash have only been in storage for a few months, that doesn’t mean they can’t go bad. Be safe and go over your collected squash, discarding bad ones and using others that have only begun to develop soft spots.

Weekly quote

This one sounds like a Yogi Berra witticism, but instead it is a quote from Robert Earl Keen: “Some folks think I’m apathetic, but really I don’t care.”