Friday, January 16, 2009


Yesterday was quite a day on the Hudson River in New York City. As a former pilot (small planes) I marvel at the pilot who made the perfect landing, despite the circumstances.
When all the stories are told, I'm sure you'll find a lot of credit due as well to the crew, the passengers, the rescuers... and even to the lessons in cooperative management that were learned as a result of 9-l1.
Now I wonder, will PETA complain if someone takes strong anti-bird--(in this case, so I have heard, Canada geese)--measures around airports, despite the fact that this "endangered" species endangers air travel everyday around runways.
Makes me think of something I witnessed in the Northwest in the 1990s, when geese were causing swimmers at beaches to be plagued with skin-burrowing parasites in high numbers, and officials tried to relocate them. (The geese, not the swimmers)
Crowds of PETA people came between the geese and the people attempting to round the geese up. The protesters marched with signs such as "Geese are people too" and "You may be breaking up a goose marriage. They mate for life"...
Why is common sense UNcommon in the human species? That characteristic, in its disappearance, endangers US.
R.A.T.... (Rose About Town) known today in this sub-zero valley as Olde Colde Rose!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


I can't seem to forget the words of a congresswoman during a TV interview a week or two ago. "You don't understand," she said. "It's not the taxpayers' money; it's a set-in-place government program." She kept interupting the interviewer's objection, repeating that mantra over and over again, like a schoolmarm trying to pound sense into the head of a mulish student.
It doesn't matter what they were talking about. Her words say it all. Once they get the people's money, it's strictly theirs. It seems to have fallen like manna from heaven into their hands.
Rats! from R.A.T. (Rose About Town)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Today my brother Ben emailed from Washington State with fantastic photos of the flooding and landslides there. Among the photos labelled as "Disaster", the one that made me chuckle was a flooded wetland site. Isn't a wetland MEANT to be wet?

Monday, January 12, 2009


The temperatures were plunging fast toward zero at bedtime last night when I donned my husband's heavy old "buffalo coat" to accompany my big dog Jack on his last walk out for the night. The cold air shocked my lungs, and I told my dog, "I'll walk as far as the steps, my friend; from there you're on your own."
As I reached the step, I saw the full moon rising; it had found a generous opening in the clouds, despite the fact that it was snowing vigorously around me. The spectacular moonlight on the fresh snow made flashlights and porch lights unnecessary, and I kept walking... down the steps and onto the walk, where I suddenly found myself in a land of glitter; diamonds were everywhere.
The snow crunched beneath our feet like broken glass. The sequin-snow had traced itself along the trunks and branches of the trees, and the prisms gleaming back at me were dazzling. Even the snow-covered road, unblemished by plows, was covered with sparkle.
My world that night was hushed; quieter than quiet; our footsteps were the only sound... I walked with Jack through the trees to the end of the drive and stood very still, soaking up the unexpected glory.
Jack cut things short; it seems he simply had to. Beneath his heavy knit coat (lovingly made by a friend), he was shivering and impatient---a captive audience, and clearly not nearly as pleased by the night as his mistress was.
We hurried back to the comforts of the house, where he threw himself into his warmly padded cage and covered his head with his paws, as if anticipating another cruel invitation to the cold outdoors, which he didn't intend to accept.
I looked outside and the moon was gone, smothered again into darkness by a sky full of clouds.
Beauty can be fleeting. It can also be uncomfortable. Ask my dog.
R.A.T. (Rose About Town)

FROM SUSAN LUHTA PRICE OF ALABAMA: Your description paints a perfect picture. I am a southern girl born and bred, but I guess I have just enough of my Daddy's Yankee blood in me that the cold weather fascinates me. I only want it in small doses, however. I love to walk outside in the snow when there is a complete enough blanket to eliminate the need for man-made light. It is magical and so completely quiet you can hear your own heart beat.

ROSE SPEAKS TO SUSAN OF BEAUTIFUL ALABAMA: Susan, you haven't lived until you've made snow ice cream and snow angels and taken part in a snowball fight. Then there are the winter sports of ice skating and tobogganing. I can do neither these days, but tobogganing will always remain special in my mind because I met my husband at a toboggan party 50 years ago.