Hot August and Tropical Storm Henri

Good morning – I am glad to see that posts are working again – yay!!. I am not sure why the email notification of a post is not happening but will look at that in the future.

What’s going on this week? Well, as you would expect, August in Massachusetts is hot and HUMID! yesterday we were at 78% humidity and it was really hot. It was so humid that dew in the morning was still on the grass at 5 pm unless it had been in direct sunlight for a looong period of time. My Dad and I both remarked on that while we were doing stuff around the shop in the late afternoon (Saturday).

I did some mowing over at my house and I have taken to mowing along the driveway and around the back to keep things tidy, but around the front of the house, due to the sandy nature of the soil and the ledge rock close under the surface, the grass tends to be thinner and there are a lot more wild flowers. So I am mowing that less and enjoying the flowers. Speaking of which, this year with all the rain we have gotten (July was about 13″ or 14″ inches – which is an all time record), the plantings for the English Hedgerow are doing well for the most part. (also see this other page in the blog for the specifics on what I planted in the Hedgerow)

For the future, I am thinking about hiring Laura Kuhn to do something interesting with the large ledge rock near the mill site and combine it with a restoration/stabilization effort of the stonework. Something to continue thinking about.

The other thing that got done is thinking about winter and plowing. Our mutual plow guy (who is excellent!) is Mercer Therrien and he is switching to a tractor for plowing from a pickup truck (I have zero idea on how he is going to make that work?). Anyway, he asked that there be a certain clearance in terms of height be available for him – so my Dad and I went out yesterday and measured the the low point of the utility wires as they cross the driveway. We could have gotten all fancy and used various surveying tools and math – but I suggested being simple. We tied some string to a large 3/4″ metal nut and tossed over the line and then measured the length of line. Easy! Turns out the lowest point in the line drape from the utility pole at the street and first utility pole on my parent’ drive way is 11′ 4″. At the point where the wire is at the center of the driveway (crossing it over) the lowest point is 12′ 6″. So the wire height is actually rising again as it crosses the driveway (diagram below I wrote up for long term reference). Mercer only needs 10′ so we are good. However, this led to the thought and wonder in terms of how much height does the current town firetrucks need? My Mom is going to contact them during the week and ask. The lowest cable set is from the phone company – so it should be pretty easy for them to come and tighten up the tension and reduce the drape. At my house all the utilities are underground so no worries there – just branches.

Finally – Hurricane Henri.

First Hurricane in New England in 30 years. While I have been typing this entry, the first of the rain started to fall. My understanding is that this storm was barely a Hurricane and it has weakened already into a Tropical Storm. Yesterday I took down the last remaining canoe from the boat shed (the while Bart Hathaway ultralight – we gave to the Andereggs the other canoes and windsurfers) and in general tidied up things that are wind susceptible. We should just get wet and this is why it was so humid yesterday :-).

Below is a screenshot of the radar on Accuweather as of 7:30am this morning – the storm has been coming up the coast and while they original thought it slam Cape Cod and go east, it looks now like it is going west and will hit Rhode Island and move up the Connecticut River Valley. Regardless, a good day to stay indoors and be glad we have backup generator service!

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