Midwestern Wanderlog

2015-03-04 – No, seriously. Am I absolutely, COMPLETELY sure?

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A very tiring night.  But, off we go anyway.

I had intended to be out here earlier – even set my alarm ten minutes ahead.  And here I am, out here at the same time.  I wanted to be able to walk up the hill leisurely.

The fresh snow makes everything really pretty, though.

Wonder if I’ll see the fox again?

Sunrise is scheduled for 6:40 AM according to Farmer’s Almanac, and 6:44 according to the Sunrise Free app, but the official times aren’t really going to matter much, since it’s a clear day and I’ll be able to see the sunrise.

But, yeah.  Almost didn’t get up this morning.  The alarm rang and i stared at the iPad and hit the snooze button and then picked it up so I wouldn’t immediately fall back to sleep and I asked myself, why am I doing this to myself?  I hate mornings, I hate getting up in the morning, what possible reason could I be doing this for?  It isn’t as if Recognition for Creative Expression is one of my Personal Pivotal Needs.  Tromping up this hill every morning to take a picture of the sunrise, I don’t see how it’s going to further my Liberty, though I can see how it’s going to enhance my Spiritual Growth.

Oh – Personal Pivotal Need?  Those are… well, they’ve been described as “oxygen for the soul.”  You need good air to breathe in order for your body to continue living; that inner part of you, that bit that isn’t your mind or your body, the bit that does the thinking and is aware that you are thinking, that part of you needs nourishment too.  PPNs are what feed it.  If you feed that part of you by learning and being true to your PPNs, then achieving your heart’s desire becomes almost a given.

There’s seven of them:  Legacy; Spiritual Growth; Autonomy; Liberty; Helping Others; Recognition for Creative Expression; and True Health.  Now, you pick the right two to focus on to start, and you end up with the other five anyway by the time you’re living your life’s purpose, so it’s kind of a win-win-win – ’cause you’ll also get your heart’s desire along the way.  But you have to really focus on them, and they have to be right.  They have to be always in the back of your mind, always guide your decisions of what you’re going to do and when.  And you have to repeat them to yourself multiple times a day, until they are absolutely and irrevocably embedded in your subconscious – which coincidentally happens to be the driving force behind all your decisions.

But it starts with identifying your primary two.  And for me, one of them is not having my readers tell me what a marvelous job I’m doing.  It’s wonderful, and I appreciate comments and every single one of my readers, but acclaim is not something I need.

Definitely have to put the ice cleats on before coming back down.

Time for a breather.  And to think Ivan was concerned about me getting cold.

All right.  6:11.  Time to move on.

When I left the house this morning, the biggest, fullest, brightest, prettiest moon you’d ever seen was hanging above the horizon, near to setting.  If I hadn’t been running a teeny bit late – which seems to be a recurring theme – I’d have pulled out the camera and tripod and taken pictures of that.

You know, I should check the Farmer’s Almanac and see just how early I’ll need to be getting up for sunrise in the dead of summer.  Then I’ll have to see about working my alarm clock back to that time so I’ll be prepared.  Yuck.

Definitely putting the ice cleats on before I head up the big hill.  Not that the path seems all that slippery down below here, but I know how steep it is, and any point of traction is a good one!  Although putting the cleats on is almost more strenuous than the walk…

Seriously, why does this seem to be getting harder and harder each day?  And when am I going to start losing weight?  I’m still up near 150 pounds, but I haven’t increased my intake at all, and this is strenuous exercise for sure.

IMG_1285Put the cleats on, and time check.  6:20.  Okay, still on time.  On we go.

Lots of tracks in the snow – rabbit, and either a small dog or maybe the fox.  Don’t really know what fox tracks look like, so can’t say for sure.

Halfway up the hill, and I need another breather.  How easy it would be to just stay here until my heart rate and breathing slow to normal, but then I’d really be too late getting into position for the sunrise!  Onward and upward!

Besides, it’s always smooth sailing from the top of the hill.

Wondering what I can do to supplement the income until the website starts paying off.  Could become a dog-walker.  I’m sure there are lots of people who just do not want to go outside on a morning like this.  I could get a Paypal account and have it be cash or credit, no checks.

And that reminds me:  Delayne and Miles still haven’t paid us for their signs.  It would really be nice to be able to trust people implicitly, but obviously certain people can’t be trusted to pay their bills if they get their product before they’re asked to submit payment.

You know, it’d be nice not to have to sleep.  Think of how much I could get done if I didn’t have to spend five, six, as much as eight or nine hours a night completely unconscious.

Wow.  Looks like a thin skin of ice on the river.  Guess it really was colder last night than it has been.  Still, supposed to be up near forty on the weekend.  A lot of this stuff’ll be melting by then.

In place and ready, and the sky is getting pink.  One minor oversight; the cold has made the release cable very stiff this morning.  It is really really breezy up here on the hill, and it’s a stiff wind I’ll be walking into on the way back.

I really am going to have to switch to Sunrise Free – it does seem to be closest.  I’ll bet just as my clock clicks over to 6:44 the sun’ll peek above the horizon.

IMG_1277After standing in the wind for ten minutes or better to get the pictures, it’s just a really good thing I know how to bundle up; otherwise this would be really uncomfortable.  ‘Cause ordinarily I’d be contemplating all manner of really cool things about now; this morning, I’m contemplating just getting down into the shelter of the trees as quickly as possible.

Hope I don’t get frostburn on my face before that happens.

My nifty orange face mask has gotten rimmed over with frost.

I should do a review of the sunrise calculators I’ve used so far – might be useful for other photographers.

Think I’ll leave the ice cleats on until I get to the truck.  There’s enough snow here for them to function okay.  Apparently it’s not good for them to be worn on rigid surfaces like cement, asphalt or concrete… and that last is what the stairs just happen to be made of.

Still torn between taking a nap when I get home or just going to work.  Still have that chapter to write in Shadowed Flight and get sent off to Carolyn.  And of course I have to catch up on this particular blog, do my MKMMA blog, and finish reconfiguring Midwestern Wanderer.

You know, there’s not a lot of deer tracks in through here.  I know they’re around… on the other hand, they might be hanging out on Memorial Bluff rather than here.

Thinking about the many sunrise calculators there are, it kind of makes me wonder just what exactly determines the moment of sunrise:  When the sun first peeks above the horizon; when it’s fully above the horizon; or is it, I don’t know, where the sun would be if the horizon were sea level?  Up on the bluff I’m 1001 feet above sea level, and I can see the river valley, but beyond the river is another bluff.

Huh.  Crows.  And they’re chasing… what?  Doesn’t look like a crow, dark above and light below, and too big to be a junco or nuthatch… on the other hand, he’s probably fluffed out against the cold…

Let’s see if he’ll cooperate long enough for me to get the camera out.

IMG_1291

Huhn.  Could be a red-tailed hawk, I suppose.  Seemed too small, though.  Maybe it’s an owl!

Going to have to study up on my birds.

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