Robert (gurdonark) wrote,

mobbing birds

Friday night my young friend and I went to Chinese buffet at Golden Palace in Allen. We spent time doing computer stuff at Escape Coffee Shop. I am impressed that my friend has taken to trying out different linux distros by installing them on his computer. A recent issue of Linux Format I bought (the one that included 50 excellent capsule Linux distribution reviews) came with a DVD of 100 Linux games. I gave that to my friend, and hope he finds some games he enjoys.

My friend graduates from high school on Thursday, which is a good achievement. High school seems so long ago. We started doing the Big Brothers thing when he was 15 and he is 19 now.

My wife and I drove up to Arkansas to see my father and his wife on Saturday morning. When we got forty miles or so out of town, we decided to call and point out that I am getting over a cold. I did not want to infect anyone in Arkansas. My dad advised to come on, and I saw my relatives but kept my distance for the most part. The drive to Arkansas took only 4 hours and 15 minutes, which is about 45 minutes less than usual.

Once we got to Arkansas, I had a nice visit with my father, whose health has been imperfect. I went to take a nap at 2 p.m., and slept into the early evening. During waking restful moments I read a Peter Hamilton novel on my e-reader tablet. We all had sliced peppered ham sandwiches for dinner. My wife and I headed to the Holiday Inn suites, where we went to sleep at 9:15 p.m.

A huge rainstorm hit on Saturday, reminding me of so many childhood rains. We need more rain like that where I live now, which just re-entered Stage 3 drought conditions. Throughout the weekend, though, when it was not raining, we saw songbirds chasing crows away. Here a scissor-tailed flycatcher mobbed a crow, there a mockingbird chased all crow comers.

We stopped to see my dad and his wife a bit before 9 a.m., and hit the road at 9.35. We were home
in another 4 hours and 15 minutes. I rested most of the afternoon, and feel much better. We went for a walk in the park with Beatrice. Some cruel kid had posted a squirrel head on a stick in the park. Probably the squirrel was killed by a hawk or bobcat. The stick was atop a plastic cross from a church promotion, so the whole thing was probably some childish attempt to show irreverence. If it is still there tomorrow, I'll take it down.

The walk was otherwise very pleasant. Six ducklings are nearly full grown. We saw two kingbirds and a singing mockingbird.

We watched an interview with Maggie Smith on 60 Minutes and an episode or two of Duck Dynasty. I made a move in my last postal chess game. I resigned the next to last one in a hopelessly lost position. Now I am in a rook and pawn endgame in which I am a pawn ahead. My calcuation is that with best play by my opponent it is a draw,but I am hoping he errs and I win. I would have to make a really stupid move to lose. If it is a draw, then my score will be 2 out of 6 in this tournament. If I win, I'll have 2 1/2.

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