The Fighters

On the dairy farm, I had lots of chances to get outdoors. Watching the sky could be a relaxing pastime. It’s a reason to appreciate creation. After a high pressure system arrives in the summer, the clouds can have beautiful “fluffy” cumulus clouds and the low humidity would be pleasant.

I miss the sky when I visit Chicago. If I don’t leave the downtown, the skyscrapers won’t let me see much of the sky.

When things need to be done outside in the fields, it can be really pleasant. One thing that needs to be done is process the fields. Our main crop, hay, was always a source of work. We preferred alfalfa, which is a legume. It uses bacteria to take nitrogen from the air and “fix ” it so that the fields need less fertilizer. Alfalfa is nutritious for the cattle.

When it was ready, we mowed the hay. The mower is a machine that uses the tractor’s PTO. It’s some gearing and a “cutting bar” that stretched out to the side It had guides that help keep the hay from moving sideways. Behind them were some triangular teeth with really sharp edges. The tractor made the cutting bar oscillate left to right rapidly so that it could cut the hay close to ground level against the guides.

That’s where watching the sky becomes important.

Hay needs to dry before it can be baled up and stored. Rain interrupts the drying and if we’re unlucky, it could even make the hay get moldy. That’s less palatable for the cattle. However, if you store it when it is too wet, it risks spontaneously combusting and causing a fire.

A couple of times, when I was outside, I saw a military fighter plane go by heading north. It was going low to the ground and very fast. I never learned its origin nor destination. Fort Wayne had some military activities at Baer Field so that might explain it.

Sometimes, on the highway I-69, there would be a caravan of military vehicles go by. The trucks were all painted in camouflage. They were going out on training exercises, as best as I knew.

At the time, my attitude toward the military was pretty negative. I didn’t know anyone in the family that was in the service; maybe it was a throwback to the negative attitude toward Vietnam vets from earlier and I never knew any better..

Now, on Veterans Day, I can have breakfast with a friend who served in Iraq. At the time, when we were mostly at peace, the military seemed less relevant, but now I can appreciate the sacrifices they make.

It is time

Dark storm cloudsA mystical dream comes in sleep.

A black storm fills a sturdy reservoir. As the storm rages on, hope for mercy has become a hollow fantasy. Its winds destroy the innocent and powerless.

Time will stop.

Powerful barriers surround the proud, vain and arrogant. They know no storm can bring them down. The shadows hide their evil. Final victory will come soon.

Time has stopped.

In the darkest night, a dazzling power strikes with fury against the center of a hidden world.

Time starts again.

The reservoir descends into an abyss. A cataclysm collapses the barriers and washes away their filth. The night and its storm are over.

The mystery is complete. New vistas fill eyes with hope and joy.

Wake to see the sun rise on the horizon of a new world.

Rain, snow, snow, rain

We’ve had a roller coaster of weather the past few days.

Lots of rain and some more snow on the way. Yesterday was in the 60s which a friend commented “in July, this is going to feel cold.”

Some people think that the cycling of the weather can have a lot of subtle effects on mood, joint pain, and other things. I’m not sure.

I’ll be glad when I can plant the garden again. I might make it really big with the intent of donating a lot of food. Last year I was overwhelmed with tomatoes and let a bunch go to waste. If I had realized that I could have donated it to some community organizations, I would have done a better job of keeping up.

Dreaming

Lightning bolts striking To The Right Right To The Left left. Two images Layered making this 30 sec, 250 ISO – f5.6 – 90mm. (C) 2011 James Bo Insogna


Last night, I had some really realistic dreams. While thinking about dreams from the past, it seems that, depending on a person’s strengths and experiences, a dream might contain different symbols.

For example, an effect of experience: I was really successful at taking tests when I was in school. A consequence of that is that I never have dreams about an unexpected test coming up or the anxiety of getting there late.

An effect of strengths: Often my dreams include text. While I can recognize the words on the page, if I look away and look back again, the words have all changed. I can’t remember the message. Apparently my brain’s system that recognizes words and letters is closer to my core than the semantic part that understands them.

One feature of my sleep is that I often have “hypnogogic hallucinations:” I start dreaming before I’m actually asleep. Past experiences have usually been the face of a single person that appears and then vanishes. Recently, the images include two people instead of one. I wonder what that change signifies?

Last night, my dreams were hyper-realistic. Everything was really detailed and pretty mundane. Nothing was bizarre or mixed up.¬†For example, I saw a rain shower in the distance. I could see the edges of where the rain was falling and the dark clouds that were above them. In the dream, I was picking up some papers because the approaching storm could scatter them. They looked like real pieces of papers and as I piled them together, they didn’t do something strange such as transforming into a bird or a monster.

One aspect of last night’s dream was anxiety about a tornado coming. In the past I’ve had real tornadoes coming near me. Eventually, I had one pass directly over where I was hiding and I never had a tornado dream again. I didn’t see one last night, but I was worried that one might come.

Original image: To The Right Right To The Left left. By Bo Insogna, TheLightningMan.com [Image license]

A Colorful Sky

I look out my window and see the rain falling. The street is wet and the winds are calm. Recent days have been gloomy, but today is a good day to spend with a friend.

The shadows that come each night are not so frightening that they keep me alone. I see the moon rise and a beautiful constellation expands above me. I have nothing to fear and it is good to be here today.
A man fishing in the ocean waves
The ocean won’t wash me away today. I walk through the town and find new places to go. I’m glad that I am here today. I am glad that the sorrowful days have passed and I have much to look forward to.

Light comes down in a fabric of glistening pearls. Singing birds glow in its beauty and dance on the branches. A squirrel runs by and it is time for the roses to grow.

Although the sky is gray today, I know that I will see it’s colors soon. A blazing sun is fleeing the day and my time alone is near an end.

The land that surrounds me protects me and helps me rest. I will work in the morning and follow my path into tomorrow.

Original image: Each of them is fishing. By Corn Farmer [Image license]