Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
Ferdie has a bear he loves more than anything. He has it near him all the time and bear is often an emotional barometer as to what Ferdie is feeling. Sad or happy or tired or lonely or needing some affection. Bear is everything to Ferd. Well, yesterday we left Bear behind in Collinsville when we went back to the seminary. Actually Ferdie took him into the backyard in the afternoon and we forgot to check there when packing up the car. I called Dale when I realized this and asked if he'd bring him in to keep safe til we could get Bear on Sunday.
And there he was, poor guy.
But last night was tough. At one point Ferdie went upstairs and I could hear him going room to room searching for Bear. He was panting very loudly, so desperate was he to find that bear. Then he came downstairs and went into every room looking to no avail. He ended up laying down in the living room and gave the biggest, saddest sigh I've ever heard from him.
On Friday afternoon a few seminary students sat ouside with us for a bit to enjoy the nice sunshine. One of the students is from Southern Africa and he brought along a bottle of Amarula which is a cream liqueur made from the fruit of the Marula tree. The fruit is about the size of lemons or oval plums.
The Amarula is mostly a dessert drink Christian told us and while creamy like Bailey's, it is very fruity tasting.
The best part of his story, though, was what happens when the fruit ripens and drops to the ground. It seems the fruit will ferment if left on the ground and this fermented fruit attracts elephants and monkeys who love it. That's why the stock photo of a Marula tree has an elephant standing underneath it. Christians said the elephants and monkeys will walk right into your yard to eat the fruit. What a great image. And fun to learn something new.
It's been raining most of the night and looks like it will continue most of the day. Frankly, if I had to choose, I'd take snow over this wet rain. Especially having a dog who does need getting out periodicaly during the day. I told Ferdie this morning that he better make good use of the time he does get out because it won't be often.
Yesterday afternoon Ferdie got a visit from his best buddy, Booj. Booj has been out of commission for several months after having undergone knee surgery. They were so happy to see each other and have a bit of a romp and a long walk/run across the soccer field. They ended up sharing a big drink of water.
They had the biggest smiles on their faces the entire time.
Last night the O'Fallon city council voted down an ordinance which would have allowed backyard chickens. This vote has mobilized the many chicken fans in that city to begin a petition drive in order to get the question on the April ballot. What's odd about this denial (7-2) and the comments from the mayor afterward is that backyard chickens is such an old story and acceptance of the fowl has been pretty widespread across the region. I posted about Clayton's chicken debate several times with the result that the chickens may remain in that town's backyards. Most arguments similar to the O'Fallon mayor who later commented on feedback he received from some anti chicken residents before the meeting have long been shown as incorrect.
"I think it was the noise. It was the waste. They just don’t want chickens in their backyards,” Mayor Bill Hennessy said. “I heard, ‘ if they want fresh eggs, they can go to a farm and buy fresh eggs’." Actually, reading the comments to this news story on Facebook, it looked to me as though the vast majority of people there were in favor of chickens.
Moving on in St. Charles County there stands this new billboard:
It's freedom of speech, no question or argument. But it just seems weird out there in St. Charles County.
Dogs we have had over the years are always shocked and kind of overwhelmed when the real Christmas comes into the house. Most of the time they stay way away for a few hours, maybe because to us humans, the fragance of the tree smells like Christmas but to a dog's smeller, it carries the scent of every creature who ever walked by it in the woods. But his dog below is happy.