Weekly Weather: Pick your Own – After the Storm

Branches from Storm 06.01 (2)

Although we got away quite nicely in our area, the winds manage to damage trees. The ground is covered with twigs and branches and it is now time to clear it all away. I saw this tree laying in the local cemetery. It had fallen and had been sawn off to prevent and further damage and is now waiting for transport.

Weekly Weather: Pick Your Own – After the Storm

Daily Prompt: Funnelling can be a problem

Funnel Spider

A funnel spider has it easy, because he spins his web according to his size. The walls are elastic and stretch to fit. He has a nice large opening and can retreat to the narrow part, laying in wait for the prey.

Today I was also in a funnel. I had a large space when I left for a drive with my wheelchair. I am a beginner and are still exploring the possibilities. I waved goodbye to Mr. Swiss and was on my way. Today it was the advanced course, taking the downward slope to the river bank – no problem. Of course not, just one wheel after the other and do not forget to slope your seat backwards, it is a downhill run and we do not want to fall out of the chair.

There were blue skies and ducks and swans, which was the purpose of my journey, to take a few photos. The path to the river is tarred, so no problem. The river path has no surface just compressed dirt and stones. It was a bumpy ride to say the least and I had to avoid the twigs still laying around from this week’s storm, but I persevered undaunted. The funnel was getting narrower. I saw a few ducks on the river and was snapping away with my camera as usual. The path branched off to the right leading to the main road, but me being me decided to go a little further to the next path. It was still stoney, but I could now see a normal sidewalk leading to the road. This was where the funnel got very narrow and I discovered I could not push myself through. It was the way to the main road with no good possibility to turn right afterwards for the homeward run, as the sidewalk was too narrow for the wheelchair. I could not cross the main road because there was no crossing, just traffic and the rails from the train.

The funnel spider can sit and wait, but I had to backtrack my path back to the river bank. I headed back along the river and took the next sideways path as I knew this one would be met with a road crossing at the top. The funnel was now spilling out the contents into a larger space thank goodness. I crossed the road with my wheelchair and had to travel further to be able to cross the road back to reach the  good path home.

I arrived safe and sound to a worried Mr. Swiss who wondered why my usual hour trial run today took 2 hours.  I told him it was the funnel effect, but not exactly in those words. He was more bothered about the stones and dirt I had brought into the appartment from the wheels of the chair. But I am learning the ways of a wheelchair and now realise the river bank has a wonderful view across the river, but is a stony path to take. There must be some hidden depth in the meaning of this, almost something biblical. In future I will keep to the straight path like the funnel spider.

River Aar 05.06 (4)

Daily Prompt: Funnelling can be a problem

Good Morning

Three Kings Cake

Yesterday was the day of the Three Kings in Europe. It means that Christmas is at last over and we get a cake to go with it in Switzerland. In Spain they give the kids gifts and in Portugal they also have a cake, but a bit more ornamental than ours. Inside one of the sections of this cake is a little plastic king and the if you happen to find it in your piece, you get the crown and are King for the day. There are only three of us at home to eat it, so perhaps you have to go for it twice with your choice until someone gets the King.

Three Kings Cake

However this time I got it first time in my piece. I find this cake a little dry, and as it is a yeast thing, I like to spread butter on my piece. As I was halving my piece the knife began to saw through something hard. It was the King, so I qualified for giving the orders for the rest of the day. On the other hand I am the chief logistician at home, so it was no big deal. I always give the orders. If they are followed is another question.

Horses 06.02 (6)

Yesterday afternoon I made the great escape. The weather was a little dull, but no rain and so I saddled my wheelchair, packed my bag with a camera and an extra zoom lens and was away. This time I gave it all with my finger on the button. First of all I was parallel to the railway tracks and when I reached the next station I was surprised to see there were a couple of horses grazing in the field behind the station. I now had to cross the road. This is a easy step for mankind, but not when it is your first road crossing in a wheelchair. The sidewalk was nicely sloped into the road, so no problem. Just as I reached the center part, the signals began to warn me that a train was coming, but I stayed cool and continued until I reached the other side. Now it was a straight run to the cemetery: the gate was open.

Branches from Storm 06.01 (6)

Broken twigs and branches were laying everywhere, although most of it had been collected: this was the result of the storm which had swept through Europe. We had been warned in Switzerland not to take walks through the woods at the moment, as it could be dangerous, but I decided a cemetery is not a wood so what could possibly happen.

I moved on, left the cemetery and walked past the chicken run, which was now at the side of the path.

Chickens 06.01 (6)

The chickns have a house on wheels which is quite good, as they have a change of scenery about once a month.  They were all glad to see me again and gave me a few welcoming clucks. I had so missed these excursions into the unknown. I could never have manage to walk this distance. Now was the time to change my lens for close-ups. I could never do this with a walking stick and trying to balance at the same time.  And so the next visit was to the ducks.

Ducks 06.01 (6)

They were all there, but it was not exactly action as they all seemed to having their afternoon sleep. It was standing on one leg and burying your head in you wings time, but I made the most of the opportunity.

I moved on and as I turned the corner I was now on the home stretch with just the main road to cross. This is the nearest crossing to my home and the big question mark because when they constructed it a couple of years ago in the renovation, they did not bother with wheelchair people, so it was a little steeper that the others. When I was a pedestrian, even with a cane, I never thought of these things. It was just taken for granted that you can cross a road, even chickens can do it. In a wheel chair  you have a different approach. Can I do it or not, will the wheelchair land with a bump and topple? Of course not, I now have practice. You must know that you should always approach a step straight ahead, and not on a slant. If one wheel goes over the kerb, the chair can lose its equilibrium and topple, otherwise there is absolutely no problem.

I was now approaching my home entrance and called Mr. Swiss on my mobile to come and open the door. I called three times until he actually picked up his mobile and eventually appeared at the door. Anther little problem solved.

I am now a qualified wheelchair driver and there are no limits to what I can achieve. I can now throw away my “L” plate, although I never really had one.

See you later, some time same place, and have  nice day with smooth runnings.

St. Katherines Cemetary 06.01 (3)