Last Friday, a loud noise, sounding something like a small-gauge shotgun being fired, caught my attention. This was a little after 9 p.m. and I was on my way to bed, so didn’t investigate the cause of the sound.

About three hours later, machinery and human voices awakened me. Three CMP trucks were parked across the way by a utility pole, and one man was in a snorkel working on the top of the pole.

It then made sense. The “shotgun” I heard was probably the fuse popping on the condenser atop the pole. What triggered it to pop? I don’t know. The pole itself was undamaged, so no one could have driven into it.

I found it reassuring that the electric company was able to get workers to the troubling spot in such a short time. We have had no electrical problems since.

History note

From The Republican Journal, Feb. 21, 1901:

“The Mt. Waldo granite works were shut down last week for a short time, as the quarries were so blocked with snow that it was impossible to get out sufficient stone for the cutters to work on. There have been about 200 men employed on the job, at Mt. Waldo and Mosquito Mountain, during the fall and winter, and if stone could be quarried faster the force would be largely increased.”

Under the feeder

It must be a spring thing. One day last week, while sitting at my writing desk, I glanced out the window and saw on the bank across the stream a small animal scurrying about. At first I thought it must be a mink, but it acted different from a mink.

So out came my new high-powered monocular and soon, I had a close-up view of the creature. It was a chipmunk and it was able to skip across the snowcrust with ease.

The little critter soon darted into a hole formed by some tree limbs leaning against a downed tree. After that, it would occasionally lift its head out to peer around, before disappearing back into its sanctuary.

Songbird activity continues as usual, with no new arrivals. I note that chickadees have become more active, another sign of oncoming spring.

Vaccine time

I visited Belfast last Thursday to get the first round of the COVID-19 vaccine. On the way home I developed a headache and about three hours later, became feverish and tired. I’m told most people experience such symptoms after their second round of shots, not the first.

Hopefully, I will have already paid my dues when I get shot number two.

Weekly quote

“I predict future happiness for Americans, if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.” — Thomas Jefferson