Another Busy October

As usual, October was a busy month for us – leaves to manage, deadline work to complete, toddler to raise, extended family activities, Halloween, some paddling, in-state travel for a brief vacation.  I still have a couple of emails I’ve been wanting to respond to but haven’t had time for about a month.  It’s a little maddening to have stuff I want to get done and limited time in which to accomplish those goals.  Here are some October photos:


Giant Leaf-Blower rules the yard making relatively short work of leaf-management chores.  The jet-pack Stihl blower is effective for smaller cleanup jobs.  The lawn tractor’s mulching blades didn’t make much difference, but I didn’t get the complete “mulching kit.”  I got a reprieve from the rain predicted for this afternoon, however I was only able to get two-thirds of the backyard leaf-pile to the curb this evening before dark.


Earlier this month we got to spend time with cousins we don’t often see, and it was pleasant visiting with them.  We all met on Sunday afternoon for a cookout at their family farm on the other side of our county.  The old farmhouse is much as I remember it from boyhood visits.  Seventy-Six enjoyed meeting relatives, playing with other kids, chasing and playing with little farm kittens, and looking at the penned chickens.


I bought a new camera that’d been waiting for someone to purchase it since its manufacture in 2007.  It is the 7.1 megapixel Pentax Optio W30 (at right).  I bought it to replace the somewhat older 3.2 megapixel Pentax WR33 I bought as a factory refurb in December 2005.  The WR33, about the same size and shape as Klondike Bar, has been devouring AA rechargeable batteries these past two or three months, but seems to “run” normally on standard AA batteries.  I put the WR’s lanyard on the W30, and the short wrist-strap that shipped with the new camera on the Klondike Bar.  I don’t think I could manage a camera in my kayak on a wrist strap without dropping it over the side.  The Giant Leaf-Blower photo was made with the W30 as was the close-up crop below from the control panel of my HP scanner/copier/printer.  The kayak photos further down the page were shot with the W30.


I think the new Pentax (at $99.95 including shipping brand-new in box from an vendor) will serve pretty well for the next five or so years if its build-quality is anything close to that of the WR33.  Certainly, it cost less than the WR did five years ago.

Barton Springs Boat Ramp

Saturday before last I went to the county administrative complex and voted early.  While there, I spoke with a friend and we made plans to paddle the following day.  We met at a nearby lake the following morning.  He paddled the Pionier 450- S, and I paddled the Pouch E68.   We had the unexpected opportunity to practice a T-recovery and even though all was well, we decided to abort the Fall colors tour of Carroll Creek branch.


Leaf Blower Yardwork

 Leaf-BlowerLeaves Again

It’s early Tuesday afternoon, the 12th day of October, 2010.  I have a headache and have had, except while sleeping, since yesterday evening.  I’ve spent four, four and a half hours, total, using my new Stihl BR 380 D leaf-blower to  clean up the thousands of leaves that’ve fallen in my yard over the past three weeks.  Yesterday, I failed to use hearing protection, but this morning I did not again make that mistake.  I wore ear protection that dulls the report of a garden variety assault-rifle, and found it sufficient to render bearable the Stihl’s loud engine.

I wish I had one hundred dollars for every leaf that falls in my yard every year.  Later on I may post a photo I snapped showing the leaves piled at the curb.  To look at the yard right now, however, you wouldn’t know I’d done a thing if it were not for the evidence of the leaves piled at the curb.

I should have bought the thing on wheels that looks like a large box-fan that is supposed to be useful in blowing large masses of leaves in one direction as it is moved by the operator back and forth across the lawn on its wheels. 

In spite of the headache and sense of failed effort vis-a-vis the leaves in my yard, I wrote this weblog entry.