Ramble with Storm: Hedge apples, pawpaws, magic & my wife

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Mulling things on my morning ramble with Storm, the family’s mixed Lab.

On the east side of the south pit, 16 hedge apples had rained down since the last time Storm and I passed Thursday morning.

And I thought we might not see any regular hedge apples this fall.

My wife believes in the magical powers of hedge apples. I don’t. But I believe in the magic of our relationship, so when the hedge apples begin to fall, I collect one each morning until she has enough to imbue their magic throughout the house.

It has its rewards.

If you are interested in some of the supposed magic of hedge apples, click here. Or here.

I found it interesting that I found hedge apples down the day after I traipsed around on Chicago’s Southeast Side with John Vukmirovich for a story about pawpaws.

The difference is pawpaws may be the great American fruit, while Osage orange are not native to our region. They are native in other areas.

The other interesting thing is that I think all the hedge apples came down Thursday evening in the great storm.

From the description my wife gave of the rain and wind, it sounded like we had a microburst.

But since the Tea Party clowns shut down the government, nothing is updated on the National Weather Service site news for our area. However, you can still find the definition of microburst.

Set out in darkness again this morning, even though it was after 6 a.m.

It was starting to lighten as we came off the extended ramble. And I heard several sandpipers. My ID of them is not good enough. They might have been something unusual, but I cannot tell.

A belted kingfisher squawked on the south pit, but I could not find it. Canada geese, just a couple times, honked off in the distance.

The big surprise, other than the hedge apples, was the carnage on the old rail bed, now a trail, above the south pit.

Five trees came down in Thursday’s storm and blocked the path. I was able to finagle a way around all five, but I think later today I will collect some of our boys and some of the neighbor’s and do some cleanup.

Near home, a gray squirrel sprinted across the street and up a telephone pole. The meathead, naturally enough, gave his obligatory chase.

A black squirrel hopped across the street in front of our house, unseen by the meathead. And peace reigned.

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