Saturday, November 20, 2010

Why Adults do the Pee Pee Dance sometimes too....

...terminus ad quem?

One of the few things I miss about where we used to live was the proximity to work. We were 1/8 of a mile away and were able to sleep in until the very last minute and still make it to work if we wanted to.

Being miles away and close to half an hour ride from home has forced us to readjust to a number of things. Like making a list and planning a route to save gas, setting the second alarm, NOT hitting the snooze button, and remembering to make a pit-stop before leaving to or from work!


So it was on Thursday when I was working feverishly to whittle down the to-do list, and managing to get everything but the outdoor stuff that I should have done first, that I came to installing the new front door lock.

My mind was fried; the Tub and the many many trips to and from the Hardware Store for various parts had taken it's toll. Well, despite my male propensity to NOT READ THE INSTRUCTIONS unless ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY DAMNIT! I completed the final assembly around 9:30-10:00.

Then, in a moment of lucidity I took the old colored key cover that is supposed to remind you that that is the key you are looking for and placed it on the new key for my own benefit intending to make things easy for myself.


Fast forward to Friday afternoon now. I have been drinking coffee and soda all day to stay awake because as exhausted as I was when I went to bed I stayed up long into the night reading "The Steward of Christendom" by Sebastian Berry.

As I approached the house I realized that I had forgotten to take my own advice about making a pit-stop before leaving from work.

BAM! I whipped the car into the driveway, slammed the shift into park, grabbed all my garb and groceries, hopped out of the door flipping it closed with the back of my leg, blew through the porch door dropping everything on the floor and fumbled for my keys doing the Pee-Pee dance!!!

What!? Where's the key? What did I do with it? How could I have left it in the house! Maybe it's at work!? Why isn't Sarah home yet?!!! Oh Crap! Why do I do these things to myself!

Maybe I can get in through a window on the back porch! Sh*t! Open the door, run across the yard, stumble up the back steps, NOPE! The door is locked like it should be. Push up the window, getting it started with my car key, (BRILLIANT!) ...fall through the window cracking the the sill on the way in... Across the distance in a blink I realize I also remembered to put the hook & eye on AND lock the other two locks!

Pee-Pee dance is now Prancing with the **STARS** as I fly out the back door, down the steps and RUN FOR THE WOODS whipping my head back and forth to see if the neighbors are watching???

Twenty feet into the now bare and leafless woods I find a suitably large enough tree to hide me from at least three posable pairs of prying eyes and form icicles on a large oak tree that Deut frequents.

... Ahhhhhhh....


Strolling back to the house as nonchalantly as I can so as to appear to have a "meant to do that" air about me I pull out my keys one last time muttering to myself: "Whatever did I do with that key? If I didn't drop my phone in the woods maybe I can call Sarah and wait for her on the porch while I listen to the dog wine from the other side of the door..."

WHAT! Wait a minute! THAT'S NOT THE OLD KEY ON MY RING! It's the new one I put on with the old cover so I wouldn't sabotage myself!!!


Yup... Sometimes Adults do the the Pee-Pee Dance too.


Yeah, I just wrote this in the parking lot after work...

The mOOn is FULL...

Maybe I better make a pit-stop... Ya think???

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location: 5 Maple Road,Voorheesville,United States

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Bennett Hill Envisioning

On November 11th; a day of much importance in my mythology, (Veterans Day, My Dads Birthday and the day on which my progenitors progenitor arrived in this country 150 years ago) we hiked Bennett's Hill.

Every night on the way home as I round corners I can see it coming closer as I pursue home.

It has been calling to me since we moved in...

Meadowbrook Farm Dairy at the base of the trail.

It was a lovely sunny fall day, bIRD and I hadn't been out hiking in some time, and I needed break from worrying the house.

Trailhead leading up the Southern face.

I couldn't find my blue Hiking pack as it is in a box among boxes still and subsequently I had no camera. bIRD loaned me his so I could take a few views along the way...


When we attained the summit plateau I pulled out my iPad to see what things looked like in Hybrid & Terrain mode on Googlemaps. We were having trouble locating the wetland indicated on the map from Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy.

Terrain view. Highest point is measured 1135 ft.+/-

We took what we thought was a trail that lead there but in fact it was a deer trail. I turned back to the main trail and bIRD traipsed on into the brush with a general direction. I found it easily enough using the iPad and soon I was alone in stand of pine trees.

Hybrid View.

I called out to bIRD that I had found it and began moving in his direction based on the sound of his voice. Looking up into the sun through the trees and towards him I thought I spied a small 6" American flag in a tree waving with the wind. Keeping my eyes steady I began to walk towards it. Checking my footing; I glanced down and when I looked up again it was gone.


I walked to where I thought I had seen it.



Then, in the quiet of the forest I realized it may have been a vision. iPad in hand; I quickly brought up my writing program and began to type...


Hilltop Visionation:

I saw your colors America
Waving from a treetop
On Bennett's Hill

As I stood alone
In a grove of white-pines
Searching for wetland
Blinded by your sunlight

Crashing through the trees

We walked a false trail America
Circling the summit of our dreams
Taking pictures along the way

Listen to your trains
Blowing the distance
Calling us home to yesterdays

Shaman with treemask speaks
Through wood

"Lost one
Follow the oak
Don't forget to tie your shoe"

down your spine

Into shade
your shalier side

Littering your cliff

To moss
Covered lowlands of my America


The trail less clearly marked

We search

Make our way to the
indefinite future
then onwards

Find our own sacred springs

Encourage flow


Say prayer of rest.



bIRDS vision happen thusly:

Portrait of the bIRD facing west.



hollow log fits neatly over my head
tube view of mountain brush
chill leaf fall clean sky
red-tailed hawk makes one sweep, not interested,
drifts towards escarpment uplift
visions not solutions
keep hitting small branches
legs abandoned to willywaw
grounded sense of terrain
swing turn small circle view
loggerhead mask separates me from any path
only shows ahead, steps toward familiar
shadow-side of the mountain
shadows hide secrets just don’t know them yet
under the floor the child was pleased the father said earth
inside tunnel dark come lighter
not estranged from outside
there is no future, there is no past, there is only now
tribal dancers, generations, all pick up shared rhythm
dance in uneven light, rattles reflect fire
from a sacred spring: roots, broad leaf, tall stem, full blossom flower…
water worn patterns on stone are also life forms
dead oak leaves over deep humus my foot sinks in
mushrooms climb stairs on hill-facing side of old stump
crow caws constant all the way across farm fields to another hill
make moan mock googa-booga noise to attract attention


Alan Casline
November 11, 2010
morning hike of Bennett Hill


WARNING! No Kinnikinnick was inhaled or consumed in the creation of this chronicle of what transpired in poetical form. Some poetic license and minor revisions have taken place since the event.



Here is a map obtained from the Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy site at:

We took the Green trail up to the Yellow. There are more switchbacks than indicated and I would rate this part of the trail at 2.5 to 3 Geezers. The loop around the top plateau is fairly flat with enjoyable views. The best views being from the northernmost part of the loop. Then we took the Red trail where it breaks off of the yellow and drops sharply down in a Northeasterly direction. The steep grade here is rated at 5 Geezers. Slippery and smooth going up or down. We went down slowly and carefully.

Having attained the base of the Red trail at it's most northernly point; the trail became poorly marked. We wandered around for a bit until we found a downed Birch with a marker on it. (...A poor choice of tree to mark as they fall frequently and rot quickly...) With no real marker, and rather than resort to the iPad, we simply relied on common sense and followed the base of the Mountain. As it it possible to hike the trail and avoid going on the Red trail my overall Geezer Rating is 3.5 Somewhere between Hard and Difficult. 3 if you avoid the Red trail, 4 if you take the Red trail down and 5 perhaps if you scale the Red trail up.

Overall Geezer Rating 3.5

There are a number of springs on the southern face and that is what lead us to seek out the wetland on the top. When we found it we were a bit disappointed as it was choked with scrub. We identified a number of species of Pine. White and Pitch being the most prevalent.

Views from the Northern edge gave us spectacular sights of the Valley looking directly towards my new home and beyond to my old home.
Hence the poetic reference. We did actually hear trains but they could very well have come from Selkirk which is also visible from the Northeast side through the treeline.

This trail is popular, I can only assume that this comes from it's easy accessibility and the range of terrain for hikers of differing skill levels. Many people brought along their dogs. They seemed to have the most fun jumping in the water and bounding threw the underbrush. From my experience this is a jewel right under your nose. Check it out with the family or perhaps a second date for a good day hike!


Having written this as a poetic experiment; I am also attempting another. As the content seems to contain elements of more than one of my blogs I have decided to test out a new feature with the Updated version of this App and post it simultaneously to "Glebe Homie" and "Helder~Hiking Adventures!"

I can't say that I will ever have need of this feature in the future but it's nice to know I can do it if I want.



11/11/10- 11/14/10

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

At what point do I Freakout?

This new house has been serendipitous to the weird from the start.
(see previous Blogposts/FB notes)

From the feeling I first had when I walked in the door to recently finding out that there was a Honey Factory on or about where my house now stands. (...Devin's hobby and pastime...)

To today at work when I found out from a previous employee, who used to work in the Deli and lives in Clarksville, that NOT ONLY is my neighbors wife named Sarah (the same as my daughter!) but their oldest son is named Devin!!! (the same as my son!)

Cue the creepy music AGAIN!

Am I the only person this kind of stuff happens to? Or do I pay attention to things others in their ordinary everyday quest for normalcy miss???


If, when I finally find out the original owners name, it turns out to be O'Brien... (as there was a Smith O'Brien who once lived in Clarksville) ...well, that's when I'm gonna really flip!

Until then I'll just have to continue living in the "Twilight Zone".

Do-do-do-do do-do-do-do... Dah dah dah da DUNT!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:Coventry Ct,Voorheesville,United States

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Looking before you leap!

One of the things I have started to do is clear away all the brush that has built up along the foundation so I can repoint the stonework before winter sets in.

There is a nice garden in the front of the house that is mostly filled with perennials I will keep. The rest of the house was overgrown with every kind of weed that grows in Northern New York State and they have had the entire year to grow and cultivate.
Devin went out last week and bought a Gas Powered Weed-Waker to help do the job. Of course he bought one like he bought his T.V.... Devin Sized! This thing looks quit normal in his hands, but it is longer than I am tall... In other words, in his hands it almost looks like a toy; in my hands: I look like the toy!!! ;)
So there I was, whacking and hacking, hacking and whacking; desperately trying to cut my way through six feet of brush and rocks along the side of the house... (by now my arms have gone from fatigued to numb) I was moving like a robot hoping to finish up before it got dark or rained simply because I was doing yard work.

Then, as I'm buzzing hard into some stubborn tree/weed; I see EYE's pEEking back at me!

BARRRRAP! OH NO!!! It's a baby Rabbit!

I LEAPED back and stumbled over the brush dropping the Waker on the ground...

Crap! I killed it!

What?'s still there staring at me just the way it was before and it hasn't moved?

Oh Man! It's Plastic! The eye's are glass!
I stopped for the night. No need to worry about the rain as it was getting dark by then anyway.

When you stop in to see us say "Hello!" to my new friend waiting for you at the front door.

I think I'm gonna name him "Gleebie". He is Homie after all!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

You can't make this up... AGAIN!

Well... We decided to turn the Pantry into The Laundry Room. (Having worked every day and night running the V'ville Laundromat for the past umpteen years I never wanna have to go back once we leave!)

To that end; I ripped off the mishmash clapboard/plywood/anything that you can find to fill a hole wall and removed the tarpaper in preparation for rolled insulation last week. Then I took up the piecemeal faux indian rug linoleum and then the black & white pattern you see here down to the oil paper base.

Lifting up the oilpaper I found that the original wood floor was lined with newspapers; dating the extension onto the original house to sometime in the fall of 1942.

Then up comes a perfectly preserved copy of the Sunday News Comics Pages from the week of September 27th, 1942!!!

...It is here that I must aside...

I have been a fan of Dick Tracy ever since I can remember. I used to read it every Sunday with my Dad. I will always remember "The Pouch"; one of Chester Gould's weirdest Villains was all wrinkly and covered with lose skin. He was a Jewel Thief by trade and would hide his ill-gotten goods in the folds of skin under his chin; to which he had somehow attached a snap style button that could hold the skin closed so no one would be the wiser that he had stolen goods hidden in the "pouch" in his neck. On my 13th Birthday Dick caught The Pouch and I was hooked for life!

So you can imagine how thrilled I was to see Tracy on the cover of the Sunday News just like it was during my 60's wannabe Childhood!

...and this is where things get WEIRD...

There I was reading away when "The Story within The Story" SMACKED ME in the face! (...This is an old school writing technique that even Poe used...)

Keeping in mind how this all started; take a close look at what happens in one of the center panels:

...cue the eeeerie music...

My sentiments EXCTLY Junior!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Gulf of Maine Bookstore & Chimney Farm.

Visited poet Gary Lawless at Chimney Farm today. Enjoyable conversation with bIRD, Gary and his wife Beth! ...headed home with some fresh garlic, some interesting books and a messa pictures!

bIRD chasing Butterflies @ Chimney Farm.

Gary and Beth's Bookstore in Brunswick Maine. Nice place, they even sell books of poetry by obscure poets from upstate N.Y...

...hmmmm, I wonder who they might be....

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:Maine Turnpike,Saco,United States

Friday, August 20, 2010

Crabcakes and Chowder for Dinner!

MMMMMM, you know you're jealous!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

A Poem for the ride.... Off to Maine this a.m. W/ the bIRD for the Sardine Fest

...into a small dark place:

I'm thinking of sardines again
How the world changes
How things get lost from our lexicon

Like Herring in a Barrel
Like Sardines in a Can

They stopped using Barrels
They no longer Can Sardines

In my hometown
At the local Methodist Church
Every Sunday night

We've been playing a version
Of Hide & Seek called "Sardines"
For as long as they've packed Fish in a Can

This year we had to explain what a Sardine is
Why when you pile into a small dark place
In some dusty hideaway where no one goes

It is like Fish packed tightly in a Can

When the thought occurred to me
What would we call this game
Without a reference point?

Can we find something new
That recovers our loss?

I'm thinking of sardines again
How the world changes
How things get lost from our lexicon.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:County Road 201,Voorheesville,United States

Monday, August 2, 2010

Simultaneous epiphanies....

If you haven't heard yet, we found a House. With luck we will be taking the "Last Train To Clarksville" and moving in mid September! :)


So, I'm waking up the other day, into that sleeping lucid dream state... I was placing stones in the future back yard, building a fence for the dog etc...

And I am going through the hatch in the floor of the back porch down to where the Bilco door enters the cellar, and now I'm under the porch looking at the foundation to my right underneath the pantry....

And I am thinking that if there is a trapdoor here, maybe there is a trapdoor there under the Pantry?!!! ...perhaps to a Root Cellar ?

The alarm goes off and I get up and get dressed and head for the door to leave... And I meet Devin coming in from his job so I say "Hey! I just had this dream about the house, and I was under the porch and I am going through the hatch in the floor of the back porch down to where the Bilco door enters the cellar, blah, blah, blah, and now I'm under the porch looking at the foundation to my right underneath the pantry blah, blah, blah.... I'm thinking that if there is a trapdoor here, maybe there is a trapdoor there under the Pantry?!!! ...perhaps to a Root Cellar ?"

And Devin replies: "Yeeeah! That's where we can make the Beeer!"

To which I reply: "Yeeeah! That's where we can make the Beeer!"

My Son is a Genius!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:S Main St,Voorheesville,United States

Friday, May 28, 2010


UGH! The title field took that U in and now won't let me type anything else in there!

Yeah, until the bugs get worked out or I find something that works better I will not be risking any other postings from the road.

The Facebook App's server went down too so unless we stop and I load things through Devo' Laptop it's a no go there too.

This is what I get for being ahead of the curve. NextGen next year may-haps things will be worked out better. Too bad. This thing is so promising! Driving and navigating (although those programs crash as well; and sometimes at the worst of times...) on the fly was overall invaluable!

Well, better post and log out before this thing crashes and I loose this too...

Taking a photo record as I go so I will blog our travels as James traveled from home. TTFN!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:New Market Ct,Manassas,United States

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Out of synced....

The iPad has not been synced since we left last week and I think this my be causing problems here. I tried several times to post photos yesterday, here and on Facebook but it only resulted in fail messages.... Hope today goes better!
ARGH! Now BlogPress is failing to create new documents so I have had to do an end around by opening an old draft and modifying that!!! Oh well, here I goes again!!!!

Put your nose to the grindstone Mark, work harder!

Crossing the Shannondoah River watershed the hard way ....

What, you didn't think I could do it???

This is only a tree, no really, well actually it looks like a root taking a drink!

Hurry up! Take the picture before the guard sees you!

Maybe if you push hard enough you'll actually brt somewhere...


Location:E Market St,Leesburg,United States

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

C&O part two...

We decided to forgo crossing today and followed James' route along the Potomac.
The next stop was Manocacy Aqueduct. James and Francis were stationed here before being sent to Edwards Ferry for theBattle of Balls Bluff. He was very impressed with the structure and I can see why. It was something of the 8th wonder in his day for construction and achievement.

We broke for lunch as soon as we arrived and this guy decided we might be on the menu! Devin was sitting where his head is and he only noticed him when he was about where his tail is!!!

In my estimation when he was fully stretched out he was somewhere between 5 and a half ft. and 6 ft. In length!!!
When lunch was over and we managed to remove ourselves from the menu we took in the site.

View from a distance as we approached.

From the Momocacy Riverbank looking Northwest.

Devin on the beginning of the Catwalk.

The Catwalk where Devin was standing.

Devin on the Catwalk above the River looking at something...

What Devin was looking at... Duh!

The Waterway, looking back the in the direction we came across.

If it were 1861 I would be up to my neck and treading water!
If you have been paying attention to the locations in the postings you will have noticed that we are now in Harpers Ferry. today we walk the streets of the town and vista the Arsenal. If we have time we should end up in Leesburg tomorrow night.
I'll try not to take so many pictures... NOT!


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:KOA Campgrounds Rd,Harpers Ferry,United States

The C&O Canal Route.

We started the day in Poolsville where James wrote the majority of his letters during the fall and winter of1861 into the early months of spring.

This is the Poolsville Town Hall. Just across the street was a Gift Shop where I purchased a number of local history items. The owner Reva O. Hoewing reminded me of my "Little 'Ol Lady Fanclub" at Church; guess what, she is an elder in the Poolsville Methodist Church and they are looking for a Youth Pastor... It's not me really it isn't, they see me coming and just know! :)

Alright, this is just weird! AND Twilight Zone in a cool sorta way... Sometime along the way while I was transcribing the letters and decided to write a novel based on them, I was drawn to name the novel "A Westerly Gale." James was speaking to me again and I was obviously receiving!!!!

Our next stop was Edwards Ferry just south along the Potomac. James and Francis did Picket duty here during the month of December and James and Francis were a part of the "Union Unit" mentioned here on the sign. For the record: that "Unit" was "Units" and the 2nd New York State Militia was one of them. From what I know from James' letters they were the faint to distract the enemy, so the sign is wrong.

A Harpers Weekly Illustration of General Stones Division (including the 2nd NYSM) in October of 1861. According to James' letter the Division was engaged and took some minor casualties.

The view from shore looking South west towards Leesburg.

View from Edwards Ferry looking South across the Potomac River.

Devin in front of the Tender's House at Edwards Ferry with his feet in what would have been water in 1861.

The Towpath along the Canal. James and Francis walked this 35 miles along this route on the way home from a Christmas Leave to N.Y. In winter weather because they were tired of waiting for a Canal Bout to take them. they apparently made it back in 2 days and before the boat with their rucksacks arrived.


Next up, Whites Ferry; where James' cousin Jacob Glenn crossed during the Battle of Balls Bluff. More on this later when we cross over ourselves to the Battlefield....


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad.

Location:KOA Campgrounds Rd,Harpers Ferry,United States