Ramble with Storm: Rain on Spehn

SHARE Ramble with Storm: Rain on Spehn

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

Well-known gambling expert John Grochowski worked the sports desk for many years at the Sun-Times.

The poor guys trapped in cleaning up and editing copy from sportswriters find their fun where they can, usually in word play, snippy quips and headlines.

One Grochowski was hoping to use in some form was “Rain falls on Spehn mainly on the plain.” I don’t think he ever figured out how to squeeze in that play off the famous line from “My Fair Lady.”

The late Spehn was the long-time outdoors writer for the Sun-Times. When I moved to Chicago after college, I learned to fish the lakefront by reading Spehn in the mid-1980s. Thinking about, I am closing within a few years of his tenure as the Sun-Times outdoors guy.

I remembered Grochowski’s hoped-for headline this morning as the meathead and I started out.

The rain over the weekend fell overnight Saturday, so it did not impact our town’s celebration of its 25th annual Pumpkin Fest.

With the nice weather, the crowds could enjoy a beautiful early fall weekend for the festival. And the joint was hopping, which explains the utter explosion of energy in the meathead this morning.

So many new and interesting smells awaited him–both in town, from all the people and booths, and by the town pond, with the fireworks Friday night and the tractor pull Sunday–that he was frantic with interest in life.

I think all the hubbub impacted the wildlife in town and out, too. Only heard a few Canada geese flying off the lake to the west. No mourning doves in town.

At the town pond, the great blue heron came up out of the south pit, walked across the trail on the other side of the bridge over the neckdown between the two old clay pits and slowly waded into the south end of the north pit.

I think the heron is becoming acclimated to us. I am not sure that is a good and natural thing for herons to become acclimated to humans and dogs.

Boy, did the sight of that leggy bird slowly crossing the path draw Storm’s interest, as I caught him in the pose at the top.

A ragged flock of Canada geese flew low over the town pond on their way to feed in the just harvested cornfield to the north.

Back on the edge of town, a lone mourning dove sat on a wire by the grain elevator.

Near home, the meathead felt obligated to chase a gray squirrel up the red maple by the neighbors behind us, then repeat the act of futility at another one by another neighbor’s gnarled old elm.

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