Sunday, November 30, 2014

Before And After - A Story of Gaining Weight

I recently stumbled on to one of my own blog posts from when the cows first arrived in November, 2013 and was shocked to see how emaciated they had been. That inspired me to compare six of the old photos to six recent photos, illustrating the improvement in the cows' condition.

BEFORE - All five cows were three years old and had calved once. They didn't know what grain was and it took me some time to convince them it was edible:

AFTER - Now, they are fat and sleek and know all too well what grain is, though they mostly eat grass and hay. They also had to learn what apples are, and that they are edible:

BEFORE - To be honest, I was shocked to see my own photos. These poor cows looked abused and starved when they arrived:

AFTER - Nobody could say they looked starved now. Number three is Amy. She was the smallest and most malnourished of the cows when she arrived and has grown in height, girth and head size. In fact, all five cows had their collars on the first notch when they arrived. I've been letting their collars out as they grew, and they are all now on the seventh notch:

 BEFORE - Their ribs stuck out as if they'd come from a concentration camp:

AFTER - Now, as in the case of Jasmine here, their bellies are wide and they are friendly and healthy:

BEFORE - Their backbones swayed or arched when they arrived, with their ribs showing and their hip bones protruding:

 AFTER - As you can see, they are now wide bodied like beef cattle are supposed to be:

 BEFORE - This photo shocked me when I saw it. I hadn't remembered just how emaciated they were when they arrived:

AFTER - But these cows were from good stock and with good food, worming and kind care, they have blossomed into a fine herd:

BEFORE - It took me quite some time to tempt these skinny cows into the barn and, even then, to teach them where to put their heads so they could eat grain out of their bowls:

 AFTER - They certainly know how to eat now. They were eating apples when I took this photo and their wide bellies and sleek coats glistened in the sun. My girls have come a long way in one year:

Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Village Of Burke, New York - Part 2

I was taking a driving tour of the small village of Burke, New York, in Franklin County (see Part 1, yesterday). They had a New Holland tractor dealer:

I sure did enjoy photographing some of the picturesque farms:

This antique automobile sat out on someone's manicured lawn:

And there were lots of old barns in terrific shape:

A large and modern fire station:

Lots of homes with front porches and porch swings:

There were still some pumpkins decorating folks' front steps:

There were also modern barns and some very large farms:

A field of horses with what I supposed was Canada off on the northern horizon:

An old barn in excellent shape:

And another old barn, this one with several additions. But Burke was tiny and I'd pretty much seen all of it, so I put my camera away and continued on toward home:

Friday, November 28, 2014

The Village Of Burke, New York - Part 1

The man from whom I'd purchased the fantail pigeons called and asked if I'd like to have his last two pairs of birds, and I said that I would. So I drove to the little village of Burke to pick them up and decided to take a driving tour of Burke on the way home:

Burke is basically an intersection where two county roads cross. But there are a number of nice homes and a few small businesses. Mostly it is farm country:

I really liked this square log home. It reminded me of homes out west, especially in the Rockies:

There were plenty of horses:

There was a center of town, where the houses were much closer together than other places, but it was a small area:

There was one fine, old church:

And this, if I remember correctly what I was told, was an old fire station, used now only as a garage for a restored, antique fire engine:

Burke looked like a pleasant place to live and I guessed that most folks earned their livings in the comparatively "big city" of Malone:

Burke had a village market and gas station:

And Leo's Tavern:

This old colonial style home, up on a hill behind big Maple trees:

And a very tall water tower. But there was still more to see in the village of Burke. I'll post Part 2 tomorrow:

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Mount Baker On A November Day - Part 3

We arrived at the summit of Mount Baker and the views were as advertised:

I could see out over the valleys, forests and lakes below. I could even see Lake Flower and the village of Saranac Lake down below:

We walked around on the summit and explored:

And looked out over the landscape in all directions:

Someone had put up prayer flags to bless the surrounding countryside and I found it a welcome, even touching, gesture:

The dogs continued to investigate as I snapped pictures:

Clover is quite fearless in such places:

Daphne is slightly more reserved, but still a little too reckless for my comfort:

But I stayed away from the edge and enjoyed the beauty from a safe place:

The high peaks in the distance, I have read, were the Adirondacks' McKenzie Range:

But of course the time soon came to begin the downhill climb. I started descending the rocky ledges very carefully:

My hands and attention were fully engaged in keeping me from slipping and falling, so I took no pictures all the way down - at least until we reached the level, easy walking near the trail head. It had been a lovely, invigorating hike and I hope that you enjoyed the photos:

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Mount Baker On A November Day - Part 2

The trail up Mount Baker, which had begun as such easy walking, had turned more rocky and more steep. The small dogs found it great fun to run and play on the rocky ledges, but Seamus and I were slowing down a little more with each climb:

But always the bare trees afforded us spectacular views off into the valley below and the blue sky overhead. It felt good to be alive:

Seamus was slowing down and stopped at this ledge as if to say, "Really? How am I supposed to get up there?":

The three smaller dogs walked to the edge as if to encourage him. And, in the end, Seamus maneuvered the ledge with a bit of help from me. I did also, though my leg braces made climbing a bit awkward:

We'd reached a height which made it increasingly easy to see through the trees to the valley below:

We kept climbing. There were more rock ledges:

And the winds suddenly picked up, blowing hard enough that I wondered if we were in for a major windstorm. Little Daphne and Clover braced themselves against the wind and a dead tree crashed down right behind us, startling us all:

But we stayed on the trail and kept climbing upward:

It was a wonderful day in a beautiful place:

I could tell that we were nearing the summit:

There were some steep ledges to negotiate as we got closer to the peak, some of them a little worrisome because my braces made me clumsy and there were steep drop offs below:

But we continued to climb. Seamus appeared apprehensive as well, and stayed right by my side most of the time. The little dogs, as you can see, waited for us at the top. We were almost to the summit and I'll post photos of that in Part 3, tomorrow: