Monday, December 16, 2013

Ozark Winter Weather: Uncle Cran and Cousin Bill

Uncle Cran in Ozark Snow

The Ozarks have been getting some snow recently, and as you see, Uncle Cran has sent the above photo. Here's another:

Cranless Snow

That extra blue tint makes the scene look even colder! Uncle Cran offered a few words along with these photos, beginning with a brief geography lesson:
This is not Alaska . . . . Just the frozen fields of Arkansas . . . . You have to bundle up, and even wear a ski type mask when you go out.

[These photos were] taken from the South side of the house . . . . You can see that I haven't been able to clear the snow with the tractor or snow shovel. It took a lot of shoveling to just get tracks cleared for the tractor to get to the barn and out to the field. Even then it took a lot of tries to finally get to get the hay bales in the barn area. The snow was so powdery, with ice underneath, that the tractor would just spin and not move anywhere, until I finally was able to get a path cleared.

You can't see my pet dog Buddy [in my arms in the first photo], just the tip of his tail, but every morning after breakfast I have to carry him to the tractor shed so he can unload his breakfast. The only way he can navigate is to follow the tractor tracks and where I shoveled a path. I carry him down, but make him follow me back.
That was Uncle Cran's report from North Central Arkansas -- though I'm still a bit unclear on how the tractor's spinning wheels are connected to the cleared path since Uncle Cran hadn't been able to clear the snow with tractor or shovel, but somehow shoveled a path for the tractor to move upon. Well, there's always a bit of ambiguity in a weather report. Anyway, more snow has fallen since Uncle Cran's email, and Cousin Bill now offers a somewhat ironic report on the weather situation in Northwestern Arkansas:
It's cold here, 29 [degrees fahrenheit] at typing time. We've had mostly lousy weather here all week. Sunshine and blue skies made an appearance twice, otherwise it's been gray and dreary.

Sunday past Scott and Morgan arrived at Buena Vista's Town Center intersection from Olathe[, Kansas] in less than three hours . . . from there to our house required only one hour and fifteen minutes . . . what? . . . yep the roads were so bad here they had a few necessary re-routes. We gave them just enough time to get over the shakes and the road horror stories before I announced "Well guys and gals, I've called Crystal Bridges [Museum,] and they're open, so let's get headed that way." I hadn't driven a half mile when I questioned my sanity (silently), all the while my optimistic mindset telling me the next curve of the road would offer a summer like Arkansas highway view . . . that didn't happen . . . the roads were snow packed and icy all the way to Bentonville's J St and Museum Way . . . the final quarter mile looking like the Arkansas summer highway I'd envisioned.

The best part of the Crystal Bridges visit was the staff's undivided attention . . . answering any questions we asked and offering answers to questions we didn't ask . . . "Did you know . . . the ceiling beams were cut from Arkansas pine?, the benches are made from trees cut right here on the grounds and Rosie the Riveter's pose is exactly as that of Michelangelo's painting of Isaiah". Our answers "Nope, nope and nope". We did observe (on our own) that Rockwell's included a halo above Rosie's head . . . I hadn't noticed that in previous viewings, perhaps the nearby nude bronze female figure got me distracted. I might add the personalized tour wasn't account my esteemed status in the Benton County community, but rather the fact that we were but four of maybe twenty people crazy enough to risk life or limb to visit in inclement weather.
Cousin Bill didn't supply any photos, though I'd like to see one of that Rockwell painting of Rosie the Riveter and compare it to Michelangelo's painting of Isaiah.

Fascinating . . . for me. Seeing the familiar winter snow but reading about an unfamiliar, important art museum in the Ozarks . . .

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At 8:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the Crystal Bridges link. The complex, grounds are a must see when in NWA.

At 8:50 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Thanks, Cousin Bill, but let me make that link for you.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 11:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

With the temp reaching 5 degrees, almost 8 inches of snow, and not being able to get out of our driveway for 10 days, it turned out to be quite an ordeal.
Having to cut holes in the ice on our pond,feeding grain and hauling hay bales to the cows, shoveling snow, and stoking the stove was our daily routine.
Having a mini stroke November 19 didn't help the situation.
But we survived.


At 4:23 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Maybe it IS Alaska, after all!

I'm sorry to hear that you had a mini stroke, Uncle Cran. I did get your email on that, but the problem must have been somewhat more serious than you reported at the time.

I hope you're feeling better.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 6:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To keep myself from any potential stroke or heart issues, I hired a group of four young adults to shovel the 10 inches of show and ice off my driveway, which is about 60 feet long, uphill and curved. They even put down a layer of ice melt for me. Best $50 I have spent in a long time! As for our dogs, even though they are Corgi's, they had to forge their own way through the snow to find their "facilities".

Fortunately we will have temperatures in the fifties this week. That should melt everything but the "Salem Knob" sized mounds of snow from the parking lots just in time for Winter to actually get here.


At 7:04 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Fifty dollars sounds pretty cheap!

Especially compared to the otherwise probable hospital bills . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 7:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Your having to cut holes in the ice-covered ponds, hauling hay to the cows I'm pretty much with you.


What exactly does one feed grain? Hot air maybe? If it's that, I bet you got some of the fattest grain in the Ozarks.

(Just kidding - sorry to become aware you suffered a stroke Cran. Stay active.)


At 11:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feed two kinds of grain.
On is in pellet form alled a range cube, a 3/4x4 inch pellet that you can just pour out on the ground as you distribute it while riding on the atv. The other is a mixture of grains, sorgrum molasses and salt.
This is placed in a self feeder trough.


At 1:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah. Symbiosis.



At 7:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


The range cubes and grain/sorgrum/salt mix are fed to the cows, of course.
I finally caught on to your exercise in semantics.
The C/T and eeg scan turned out with no visible damage. That's good, as I only have half a brain.
The only thing that bothered me was both must have been observed by the same person, as each result was signed in large red letters....A.B. NORMAL.


At 7:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cran "Old" Friend, I've actually grown quite fond of you over the years.

(I didn't want you to discover my ruse though and that's why I sent my Special Clinician Abby to have a go on your charts.)

I trust your heart enjoyed "the pair" of results?

Stay active Friend.



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