Saturday, January 22, 2011

All's Well that Ends Well

The Building's & Docks foreman came up to my office this morning to report a bald eagle had caught its foot in a railing and was unable to extricate itself.  I located the Fish and Game office number for him and went downstairs to see - yup - a bald eagle hanging upside down like a bat.
The eagle was actually pretty stoic about the whole thing, considering.  I thought it was cool that another immature eagle perched on the railing above him, keeping him company.  I always tend to anthropomorphize pretty much any animal I observe, so what I attributed to loyal companionship on the part of the second eagle may have been it waiting for the trapped eagle to die so he could eat it . . .
After awhile, someone showed up to free the eagle.  You can just see the top of the dog kennel to the left that he brought in case the eagle needed further rehabilitation after release.  The guy was wearing gloves, but otherwise absolutely no protective gear of any kind, earning him Captain Cojones status in my book. In about 30 seconds he had freed the eagle's claw from where it was wedged and the eagle flew off like nothing happened.  I apologize for the quality of the pictures but the only camera at hand was the cheapie one we use in engineering to snap photos of parts to help source them out.  Not something you see every day, fortunately!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Making the Most of the Day

 Working from 7 to 6 everyday makes it tough to get out and enjoy the outdoors this time of year - the days are just too short.  To combat this, Goldfish arrived at work with Chico right when I got off today, so we could head directly out to Humpy Cove and walk on the beach.  There appeared to be around 30 bald eagles on the cranes on the way by . . . .
 Summers Lake was looking lovely with a rare lull in the wind leaving a mirror smooth reflecting surface.
 On the walk down to the beach, little frozen puddles reminded me that this was just a lull in winter, not a permanent condition.  The little green pebbles are typical for the area as there are huge boulders of the stuff littering the beaches.  It is beautiful, especially when wet, but it is a bit soft for most uses.
 Chico loves the beach!
And on the way home, still around 30 bald eagles on the cranes . . . . . that is how you squeeze the most out of the hour or so of daylight after work!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Happy Not-So-New Year!

So, it is January 20, and I knew that if I didn't just throw a picture up here and write something - anything - then I was afraid I would just stop blogging.  So, for your viewing pleasure, the only picture I have taken this year (and it was maybe 10 days ago - there is even less snow now), my trusty KLR that I dragged out of the shed when the weather started getting nice.  Yesterday it was so warm I drove it to work in the morning, instead of switching from the truck at noon, and today it was rumored to have hit 50 degrees.  Don't get me wrong, we've had some storms in January, it is after all storm season.

Goldfish and I had a wonderful vacation, just right, with touristy stuff and lots of goof off time to clear the head.  Visiting family on mainland Alaska on the way back out to the island was the frosting on the cake.  Within 48 hours of landing, I was sick with a flu-like death rattle, probably something I picked up on the plane.  I went right back to work, and the day after my return my co-worker had to fly to Seattle to attend the funeral of his brother.  So I was sick, we were in the middle of the million things required to get the plant ready for fish and crab after the season break, I had two weeks of work piled in my in-box from vacation that all had to be done before preparing end of month reporting for Seattle and Japan, and I was short-staffed.  Good times.  I won't bore you with the details, but the job got done, reports were filed on January 5th on schedule, and my death rattle has slowly subsided.  We have flown in some 400 processors, one chartered 20 person plane-load at a time, and pollock season opened at noon today.  Pot cod season started January 1st and closes tomorrow, so most of those vessels will turn their attention to catching opilio crab.

I guess the worst thing about being sick - really sick - wasn't dragging myself to work everyday, it was missing the New Year's Eve fireworks.  I was in bed with fever chills and other lovely symptoms by 8 that night and even when Goldfish let me know the fireworks were visible from the small deck by the hot tub, I couldn't drag myself over to look.  Big bummer because I was really ready for this year, with a better tripod and for the first time a remote shutter control so I don't have to touch the camera to do long exposures.  It has put me in a bit of a photography slump, so combined with the short days I have just not felt like taking pictures.  I'm starting to get back into the mood though, and the start of pollock season always brings all the eagles out, so I promise I'll have something worthy of posting soon.

I think that's it for now, I'm going to ease back into the blog thing, no deep thoughts - I don't want to scare myself away!  Night all, I'm going to get tucked under the quilt with a good book!