Hello everyone on this chilly fall morning. The sky is cloudy and there is a light wind. Definitely time for wearing jackets. Fall flowers are blooming abundantly now. And so many of our birds have left us, going on their southward journey. I keep track of our bird friends and their migration habits, especially in fall. They are a great indicator of the coming winter. When they leave early it means an early winter and normally a long and cold winter as well. And there are certain species especially to watch for this, they are rarely wrong.
On average, our birds are leaving about 2 weeks earlier than normal. That’s scary. Last year birds left early. This year is worse since more birds than normal are leaving early. This could mean an early, long and cold winter ahead. But that would be 4 years in a row which would be very unusual. However, the birds could be wrong. Sometimes that happens. So I will stay positive and hope they are wrong. Hmm, does that mean a negative is a positive? Oh well.
Now, back to my title. A few years ago on a beautiful August evening I decided to go for a drive. I enjoyed driving down some of our country roads, it was often a good way to see wildlife. Driving along this one road I came to a spot and stopped. Hmm, I thought, looks like a house may have stood there at one time. I enjoy exploring. So I drove off the road and into the little clearing among the trees. It looked like a driveway may have been in that location anyway. But I was careful not to go too far, I didn’t want to end up driving into an old well.
I started to walk around. Sure enough, a house did stand there at some point in the past. An old floor, that definitely didn’t look safe to stand on, was still there. And what’s this? An opening into an old cellar. Wow. Just think what might be in that old cellar. Old canning jars, bottles, boxes, stoneware, a skeleton. What?! Who said skeleton? Anyway, I went back to my car to get a flashlight and gloves. I just had to check this out!
Of course, it meant walking across the old unsafe looking floor. But it was only about 10 feet (3 meters). That’s not so bad. The old boards creaked and sagged as I slowly and nervously walked over to the cellar opening. The cellar door was missing, and had been for a long time by the looks of things. There was some very steep stairs leading down to the cellar. They certainly looked solid enough. I knelt down to push on them. Yep, solid enough I figured. I made it this far, may as well keep going. So off I went down the stairs.
The stairs creaked and groaned with all kinds of noises as I gingerly made my way down. I put my foot on the third step. That was it. Down I went with a loud crash, landing on my back in a cloud of dust with the broken stairs under and all around me. I lay there for a minute, then looked around for my flashlight. Why wasn’t it working, I did have it on. As my eyes became accustomed to the dim light I found my flashlight. It was under part of the stairs. Broken. Great. Slowly I could see things a bit better in that cellar. Not much there. Some old shelves at one end with a few, still full, canning jars. Some old wood boxes in one corner. An old broom that had seen better days was close by. Hmm, not much.
And how am I going to get out of here? I forgot to mention, it was already getting late by the time I found this place. The sun was setting. Which means it will be dark in about an hour. I didn’t really want to spend the night in that cellar. Then I heard someone walking on the floor above so I called out. No answer. I listened. That wasn’t a person. This big black head looked in the cellar opening. A bear!
Oh my. This has gotten long again. Guess I will have to leave it there until next time. I hope you all have a wonderful day and God bless!
Steve and Muffin.
© 2019 Steve McLeod.