Friday, August 25, 2006

It's just about that time. . .

It's almost September, which up here, means that it's almost time for hunting season. Llano is the "deer capital of Texas", so hunting is big here.

Now, honestly. I'm not sure how they can claim "deer capital of Texas", because I've seen, at most six deer in the 5 weeks we've been here. If that's what it takes to be the "deer capital of Texas", then the rest of Texas must not have many deer.

Seriously, though. What it does mean is signs everywhere for a Hunter's Appreciation dinner, which sort of boggles my mind. I'm guessing the deer aren't throwing it.

The festivities are being held Labor Day weekend, but, sadly, we won't be here to enjoy them.


What we have been able to enjoy recently is the Harvest Trail, a two-weekend thing that the local wineries do each August. Last weekend, we visited two area wineries. Although it's a bit o a stretch to call one of them an "area winery", since it took us nearly an hour to get to it and it's practically in Austin. It was well worth the trip, though, as the wine at Flat Creek is quite good. They had quite a crowd, none of whom, I hope, was there to hear the musical entertainment. If Michael Stipe was dead, he'd have been spinning in his grave over the guy's version of "Losing My Religion".

It never ceases to take my breath away when we come up over the crest of a particularly good hill and get a really nice view of the area. A lot of people think Texas isn't pretty and, before I came to the Hill Country, I was one of them. But this area is really magnificent. There are times you think you can see clear into Oklahoma, the views are so good. It's hard to put it into words. One of these days, I'll remember the camera, so I can actually get some pictures of it.

Of course, it'd be my luck it'd rain if I did that.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

It's the eleventh plague!

There are butterflies EVERYWHERE right now.

Seriously. You can't go anywhere in this area now without seeing them.

Apparently, lots of rain followed by dry weather and lots of heat combined to create conditions favorable for major amounts of a particular species of butterfly. And they are nearly impossible to avoid.

We drove to Fredericksburg last weekend and there were times we'd see mini-swarms of them along the road. We kept wondering why there weren't any birds there, picking them off. I think the birds are scared of that many butterflies. Like the butterflies could join forces and take out a bird, so the birds are being extra careful.

It's a good thing we filled the windshield washer fluid before we moved, because we probably went through half of it just on that drive. Those little butterflies (they're not very big, but they far make up for that in the fact that there's something like 47 billion of them, it seems) make a reasonably icky mess on the windshield when they smack into it.

I did see a bird swoop down to pick one off yesterday, but it was a slow bird. I nearly hit it. That would have been bad.

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