Sewing Day, Sweet Rolls, Sleepy Owl

Tuesday at Rusty's RV Ranch, that means it's sewing day! We had another great gathering at the clubhouse to work on our quilts. It was a smaller group this time but we sure enjoyed ourselves. Dianne is working on nap mat covers for her grandchildren's daycare mats and I was super impressed that she matched her outfit to her sewing project when she got dressed today... I love that she gets my sense of humor! Her husband Joe kept our strength up by baking and bringing fresh cinnamon rolls for us to enjoy in the clubhouse. I've been thinking the clothes dryers here must be really hot because my pants are getting snug...but...maybe not....! Oh well, who can pass up homemade baked goods, really...I can always get new pants! Thank you Joe!


The winds are picking back up and rain is predicted to start falling tomorrow and last for several days, so I went back to the Portal Library and checked out another mystery and two more Prime Suspect DVDs to keep me going. The locals are hoping and praying we do get a good soaking because it's so very dry. As I was leaving, the librarian pointed out an owl sleeping in a hole in the big sycamore tree by the library entrance. It seems he's a fixture around here so I drove back to the camper to get my Nikon, keeping my fingers crossed that he would still be there when I got back. When am I going to learn to carry the camera with me? Luckily he was still there and although it was a reach for my 300mm lens, and the light was harsh, I was able to get a peek at him sleeping in the hole. Within minutes of my arrival, he tucked himself far back into his cozy den and was well out of sight. I'm so glad he waited for me!

A few minutes later, I ran into another local, a gentleman who has been living in Paradise, just up the road from Portal, for the past 34 years, and who will be relocating to Catalina near Tucson in just a few weeks. He says he's getting older and it's becoming more and more difficult to manage the remote location of Paradise.  He told me a story about a group of birders who, like me, were standing out in front of the library one day taking pictures of birds when a feral cat ran by them and right behind it a came a mountain lion who grabbed the cat quick as a flash and took it up into a nearby tree to have its dinner. He said that group of birders sure got more pictures than they bargained for that day! Between the snakes and the possibility of a big cat, I'm keeping Dexter on a very short leash. Several folks have already seen snakes sunning themselves along the trails at Rusty's. They are coming out of hibernation early because it's been so warm and baby Rattlers have been spotted under the bushes near the clubhouse. Rusty explained to me that the baby Rattlers are more dangerous than the adults because they become frightened more easily and are more likely to strike. They are also more deadly because being that they scare more easily, they rarely rattle a warning before striking. They also have not yet learned how to control the output of their venom so they just give you all of it when they strike. Yikes, I'm keeping my eyes open!

Driving back to the camper I saw this beautiful hawk soaring way up in the sky. Again, it was a real reach for the 300mm lens, but I wanted to give you a glimpse at least of this beautiful bird. There was one perched in a tree not 12 feet from me earlier today while I had Dexter at the dog park but did not have my camera with me then (sigh). Oh well, maybe I'll start to carry it with me more often.  I also couldn't resist a few photos of these gorgeous horses grazing in a nearby pasture. Isn't it beautiful country? It sure makes it worth the remote location and the snakes to see this gorgeous view.