Wednesday, June 15, 2016


Log House on a Rock:  This delightful exercise in minimalist living has been around far longer than it's counterparts now part of trendy architecture.  This sample is buried deep in Amish country near Trail, OH and we recently passed it in our caching travels.

Dundee Falls:  This is the larger of two waterfalls in Tuscarawas County that are undeveloped but are under the protection of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.  We discovered them because an Earthcache (geocache) has been created featuring their geology.  My partner, Sue, standing in the lower right background (above) adds perspective to the view.

We estimated this fall to be a about 30 feet tall while the very picturesque falls (below) were likely between 15 and 20 feet high.  Both are located on Dundee Wilmot Rd. NE, about 1/2 mile NW of Kohr Rd.  Each has a gravel parking area with ODNR signs visible.  There are well-worn trails to both falls but no directional signs.

Nature Being Natural:  An amusing sight during our day was this pair of cicadas (below) evidently discussing what comes naturally while I noticed the ant passing without comment.  They were found on the edge of a steel guardrail near where a geocache was located on our romp through Amish country.

Thursday, June 9, 2016


The view was enchanting with the forest resplendent in its freshly arrived Spring finery.  And, this first stop on the day's caching route revealed this view of Mohican I had never seen before.

Cross the covered bridge deep in the park over the Clear Fork branch of the Mohican River and corkscrew your way up the park road as if you intend to leave the park's north exit.  Up top you will see a turn to the left which heads to that exit.  Continue straight ahead there as if you are headed for the primitive/group camping area but, immediately branch to the right on a paved driveway leading to a small parking area.

Leave your vehicle and prepare for a short, gently sloped walk through woods which will end in about 200 yards while presenting you this spectacular view.  The view here is generally east and I believe the visible valley in the distance may lead toward the camping area at the intersection of SRs 97 and 3 south of Loudonville.

Our caching target that day was to Sue's right about 50 yards then down the quite steep hill another 100 feet or so where we found an ammo can hiding behind a decaying log.  That was the cache container holding a log we signed which proves our attendance should the cache owner ever bother to check.

That's the activity of geocaching in a nutshell.  Use the latitude/longitude coordinates and your GPS to find these hides of which there are nearly 3 million world-wide and multiple 10s of thousands in Ohio alone.

A huge benefit of this activity is enjoying the locations it often takes us--like that jewel pictured above.  I've visited the Mohican State Park/Forest countless times but in over 75 years of enjoying life I never previously enjoyed this view.

Actually our caching day of 15 finds included two dandys.  The second was in the photo below; a wood carving done in a single piece of wood and entitled "The Ole Fishing Hole".  It is a rendition of Thomas Kinkade's work and involved his daughter dressed up as Tom Sawyer.

Done by artist Paul Weaver, it is breath-taking in its detail and is displayed at Lehman's Hardware in Kidron, OH with numerous other samples of his exquisite creations.  We wound up our caching that day in nearby Mt. Hope and made Lehman's our usual "must visit".  In fact Lehman's is a delightful destination for a visit in its own right, and that day put a fitting punctuation to our day's caching outing.



Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Reyers Shoe Store

This gem of a footwear emporium is located just a chip shot across the Ohio/Pennsylvania border from Youngstown in Sharon, PA.

It can be a salvation for those of us with feet that are something other than medium or wide in size.  Manufacturers and retailers, especially the box store variety, have learned there are less of us with narrow or unusual sized feet and, consequently, we are not as profitable.

In my specific case it was growing hard to find desirable shoes in my 11 B (narrow) foot size.

Colman, my salesman over there that day knew my tale of woe very well.  "Yup, the typical retailer will be happy to sell you a medium size shoe and simply tell you to wear heavier socks when you complain that his shoe slides around on your heel."

"What's sad is people buy that line, thinking they have no choice," he continued.

Well, if you have experienced this problem your solution might just be a modest two hour or so car ride away.

Their store at 36,000 square feet holds inventories from the industry's best name brands.  They are proud of their ability to provide hard to find sizes, styles and colors unavailable any where else.

This year marks the company's 130th year in business, the model of which they describe succinctly as "Sit and Fit."

Take a peek at their lively web page Click! for what could be the solution to your footwear needs.

I'm thrilled I found this place, believe me.

*          *           *

Photo note:  The above image was done with the panorama feature on my cell phone's camera.  The walls on the sides of the picture actually are at right angles to each other but the effect of the digitally "stitched" photo does a striking job in showing the immensity of their sales floor.

We were in the Sharon area for a recent wedding in Sue's family and she--with a similar shoe fitting problem--told me about this amazing store.

If you dislike the mayhem of driving on the interstate highway system as I do, take a peek at going East out of Mansfield on US 30 to East Canton then north on SR 44 to US 62 which will almost deliver you to the store's front door in Sharon.

Monday, May 16, 2016


Yup, it happened yesterday.  We saw a shower of snow pellets in Mansfield--while guzzling our ice cream treats at the local Dairy Queen.

Thursday, May 12, 2016


We built our acre and a half pond 23 years ago and as part of our early stocking effort we added six white amurs (grass carp).  These fish are known to help with broad-leaf, pond weed control and do not reproduce.   Amazingly, today I saw one of them still surviving.

This one looks to be over 3 feet long now and deserves the title Grand Daddy of the pond.

*            *            *

I saw our first Ruby Throated Hummingbird of the season this morning and by noon at least three of them were involved in feeding skirmishes at my just installed feeder.  Actually, this variety is about the only hummer we can expect to see in this part of Ohio.

The correct mixture for their feeder liquid is 1:4, (1 part sugar:4 parts water).  Boiling the water before mixing helps insure water purity and helps the sugar dissolve.  Some folks add a dash of red food coloring.  It's not necessary to attract the birds but will help you be able to see the fluid level in your feeder.

I've found you will need to clean your feeder regularly.  To help with that project I keep two feeders on hand; one in use and the other ready to fill and take its place when cleaning is necessary.

*            *            *

Recently my son found two 1.5" holes evidently whittled into my home's siding.  Before I had the chance to repair that damage I saw a bumble bee fly into one of them.  Made me wonder if that critter or one of his pals was the culprit.  They are perfectly capable of boring holes of their body-size in wood.  Yet, a close examination of these holes appeared that small teeth might have been the tools used.  That and the hole size pretty much eliminated the bees as the guilty party(s).

It's hard to imagine bees with dentures.

Then, as I was walking toward this repair project, tools and materials in hand, a red squirrel zoomed into view, up the siding and disappeared into the larger of the two holes.  I had cut two round pieces of thin aluminum and was equipped with silicone caulk and self-tapping screws to close the holes--and did.

I live in the woods and hearing critters in the walls is not uncommon.  It is pretty much impossible to seal all possible points of entry for these cagey rascals.  Poison is a somewhat effective remedy, unpleasant to ponder but these and other small rodents can cause lots of damage.  Imagine what can happen when they gnaw the insulation off electric wires.

That's scary!

Saturday, April 23, 2016


One of the hazards to geocaching in Florida's back country is stumbling onto one of these critters relaxing in the afternoon sun.  This chubby rascal was seen on a tour of the Stick Marsh in our Indian River County about 15 miles northwest of Vero Beach.

There is an evident truism here that opines, "If you see a body of (fresh) water here there is an alligator in it."  They are not fond of salt water.  There, a whole battalion of shark varieties can keep your curiosity challenged.

After the marsh tour concluded we meandered into Squid Lips Restaurant in Sebastian for a mid-day meal followed by feeding the local flotilla of catfish (residents under this dock behind the restaurant in the inter-coastal waterway); activity which, naturally, attracted near by seagulls.  The teenage grand daughter, right, was more interested in her cellphone--naturally.

   ...which leaves us with this highly unusual geocaching experience.  That's a pair of $5 bills folded and stuck under a vine on a live oak tree near a geocache we found hidden about four feet to the left of this scene.  Your guess is as good as mine regarding what this is all about.  Didn't belong to me so I chose to leave the money as found in case the next person needs it more than me.

And so it goes....

Monday, April 4, 2016


Nautical But Nice


Stuart, FL

This is a very nice gift shop featuring all manner of nautical things anchoring (pun intended) the very popular B&A Flea Market in Stuart, FL.  The top sign on the face of the check-out counter says;  Warning  You are entering a Red Neck Area   You may encounter  American Flags  Armed Citizens  The Lord's Prayer and Country Music

Fogeyisms tips our hat to owners Mel and Susie for making their support of the US Constitution and its 2nd Amendment, in particular, quite obvious.

I've never been in this shop--a must stop on every visit to the flea market--when it was not bustling with enthusiastic and well behaved customers.  < Smile >