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Mild [Feb. 3rd, 2006|07:33 pm]
Tonight we have both the cricket and the frogs singing, and there have been flocks of geese (or maybe swans) flying north, making loud calls. Their wings make a buzzing noise that sounds a bit like a card in the spokes of a bicycle. A few of them crossed between me and the fat crescent moon so that it flickered briefly like a bulb about to burn out. If they are not merely heading into the mountains for some night fishing, but leaving for their breeding grounds, the birds must be expecting an early spring. I suspect they would know better than a groundhog does. I'll listen for them in the morning, to see if they return to the valley. If they don't, I'm fetching the electric fan from the closet. I'll probably be needing it sooner than expected.

I was able to open the windows for a couple of hours this afternoon, though the day was still a bit cool. It was pleasant to fill the house with fresh air unsullied by wood smoke. The damp on the ground has retreated, remaining only in the places that got little or no direct sunlight, and along the cracks in the driveway, where it continues to seep up. Another half dozen camellias have bloomed. I expect the mulberry tree to begin displaying its greeny, Caterpillar-like blossoms any day now. There will soon be pollen, and I will be sneezing. There will be mosquitoes, too, and I will be itching. It's the price of my favorite season. Ah, well. I'd still like to see May arrive in February and last through June.

After looking through all those old pictures last night, I'm coveting a printer-scanner more than ever. Currently, I'm leaning toward the Canon Pixma MP800, which I can probably pick up for around 300 bucks-- a bit of a strain on the budget, but nothing cheaper that I've seen has all the features I want plus generally positive reviews. Must have slide and film scanning as well as print scanning, and that's pretty rare in low-price devices. One problem with the Canon is that I'd probably have to buy it online, as no store within a hundred miles of this town stocks it. I do like to fondle look at stuff before I buy it. I also like to see the expressions on clerk's faces when I pull out a wad of cash to pay for something costly.