Saturday, June 11, 2005

Day Lily or Ditch Lily Posted by Hello

Ditch Lily

Many would call this a day lily, but the common name, at least in my rural background, is ditch lily. They are hearty and may be quite prolific spreading to ditches near farmsteads many times in with bromegrass or along fences. Beautiful hybrid day lilies are available now, but my favorite is still the wild orange-yellow flowers that grow in unexpected places.

Of course, you could also be a Lilyhead There was a Cincinnati based country/folk singer/songwriter duo named Ditch Lilies who at one time had quite a following. It seems as though they have disbanded, but I enjoyed listening to a clip of their album “Lily Stuff”

Maybe you could still be a lilyhead if you just enjoy this beautiful flower.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

This was taken in the south sky. It was a lucky shot. Posted by Hello

Tornado Warning

Today was very humid and had a feeling of weather moving in. It did not surprise me when the severe weather warning came on the radio. When I checked Weather Bug after work, I could see storm cells starting to pop up. We continued to watch the sky while eating supper. It was obvious something big was building south of us. Meanwhile, the weather radio kept sounding off with a report of a severe storm with a spotted tornado northeast of Topeka. The television reported quarter size hail about ten miles north of us. Meanwhile the storm south had produced a tornado which only briefly touched down.

As I write this most of the storms have moved out and we seem to be escaping any kind of weather including rain. Our neighbor's wheat looks like it will be ready to harvest in a couple of weeks. I am thankful they escaped hail--some places were not so fortunate.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Night Heron Posted by Hello

Night Heron

Chip sent a picture of a Black-crowned night heron. As the name indicates, this species hunts primarily at night. Check the eyes--very distinctive. Perhaps the red helps them see better when feeding.

Their habitat is throughout North America preferably wetlands. We see herons standing along the edge of the lake or river frequently in the valley but I did not know this particular species was around.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

June 6--D Day

Since Dan is in a recovery mode, the television is on more than usual. Late this afternoon I was in the kitchen when I heard the beginning of a History Channel broadcast on D Day.

With Dan's recent accident and the reminder of how swiftly life can be taken and how precious it is when spared, I probably would not have chosen to watch this particular show today. However, I felt a duty to break from mundane household tasks and watch again the sacrifice, heroism and gut determination of those who participated in this war changing event. The pictures taken of soldiers involved at the actual time of the events were sobering. Some were shaking so much they could not light their cigarette, then dumped out of a boat to certain death. There were narrators who witnessed the carnage but lived to tell how they and other survivors pressed ahead toward an objective. It once again made me thankful for those men who gave then and give now for us and others to live free.

My family has a connection to D Day. Uncle Bill (my dad's youngest brother) was a medic driver in the Army. As I understand it, he was in the second wave to arrive on the beach and tended to the dead and wounded. I did not ever approach Uncle Bill about his involvement. My Dad always said he did not want to talk about it and I respected that wish. He died over 15 years ago without telling his story.

At the last family reunion, I quietly asked his wife if he had ever said much to her about his war time. She said very little but she did have some letters. Maybe some day she will share with us her memories. My feeling is Uncle Bill's war memories, specifically of that D Day beach, were too difficult to share even with his wife.