Sunday, July 31, 2016

Paradise ponders...

Paradise ponders...  Yesterday morning was busy as heck with various and sundry things. 

A shipping company truck arrived to pick up the dinged desktop originally intended for Debbie's office.  It's headed back to North Carolina to be planed off, refinished, and shipped back.  It will ship along with Debbie's new, shorter desk – and I'll reassemble the repaired desktop with the rest of it's parts, and install it in my office. 

Abby S. came over for a computer programming lesson.  She's running into the first stuff that comes hard for her: the details of loops.  I've got her writing a function to determine whether a number is a prime, and then optimizing it.  We'll extend that over the next couple of weeks to list all the primes between 1 and n, and then to do it recursively.  It will be interesting to see how her young brain absorbs recursion :)

In the afternoon Debbie and I decided to go out for dinner.  We went to the Black Pearl in North Logan.  I'd picked up takeout food there before, but we'd never been in to eat a sit down meal.  We loved the takeout food, and yet we were surprised by how good the food there was.  They have an avocado egg roll that sounded good, so we ordered one as an experiment – it was awesomely good.  I had a California roll and sweet-and-sour pork, both excellent.  I particularly appreciated the fact that the sweet-and-sour sauce was served on the side (without my asking!), which allowed me to use it sparingly (my preference).  Debbie got Singapore rice noodles with shrimp, and she ate an impressive amount of it – so it must have been good :)  We'll be adding this place to our list of good places to eat in the area, for sure!

This morning Debbie and I took our usual wildlife drive, up Blacksmith Fork Canyon and partway to Ant Flats, turning around at Miller's Ranch.  We left this time well before sunrise; we didn't see any direct sun until nearly our turnaround point.  We saw plenty of wildlife, but the highlight was spotting three moose (at right) just east of the dammed pond, about 1/3 of the way toward Hardware Ranch from Hyrum.  The moose appeared to be a family group: an older bull, a cow, and a young bull.  We saw several deer, including a doe with twin fawns (just barely still spotted).  Debbie spotted a rabbit, to our memory only the second one we've ever seen in Cache Valley.  Near Miller's Ranch we saw lots of birds.  As we drove up, there were approximately 12 bazillion swallows perched in bushes and on fence strands right near the road.  When the sun finally popped up, they joyously took off, wheeling and swooping for bugs.  In the distance to our west, we spotted a pair of Sandhill Cranes, presumably the same pair we've been seeing nearly every time we come out here.  This time, though, their chick was nowhere in sight.  We're afraid something may have killed it.  Debbie spotted a blue heron hunting alongside a holding pond, and in the same pond I spotted a large duck.  A little while later, Debbie spotted six ducklings huddled between two uprights on a dock in that pond.  Nice!  We caught a glimpse of a kingfisher, but no cedar waxwings or dippers today...

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