Ralph Higgins

Ralph Higgins
color pencil sketch by Gayle Higgins

Quotes I Like

"If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools."

– Plato


Sunday, May 15, 2011

My Weather Dog

It's May 15th and it's snowing heavily again here in Siberia. There for a minute we thought spring had sprung and so did the bulbs Gayle planted. The flowers she planted popped out of the ground enthusiastically, anticipating summer sunshine, but global warming fooled us again. It's been fooling a lot of people. And a lot of scientists. Now Gayle's flowers are frozen, my dog is white on the top and the natives have gone back into hibernation. I think our reclusive neighbor saw his shadow again.

Speaking of my dog...I've decided he's going to be my "weather dog" from now on. I can get a good sense of weather conditions by simply opening the door and letting my dog out. If he comes back in wet on top and dry on the bottom, it's raining. If he comes in white on top, it's snowing. If he's white on top and wet on the bottom, that means it's snowing and the creek is running, but if he comes in with huge balls of snow in his fur, it means that the snow is too deep to get the car out. I'm still waiting for him to come in warm on top.

It reminds me of Noah sending a bird out of the ark and when the bird came back with a leaf in its beak, Noah knew land had emerged from the water. Yep. We primitive mountain people learn how to read nature's  signs.

Before this latest storm hit, I took Dakota for a walk in the forest, which is pretty much a daily thing when the snow melts.  I can read the signs in the forest like a real Indian. I stopped at a dead tree that had been ripped open by a bear searching for grubs. Being an astute observer, I determined that it had been a large bear. I could tell because the claw marks were at least eight to ten feet up the stump.

When I hear a growing roar, like a train, and I see the trees moving, I can tell right away that the wind is coming up. Flatlanders may not understand these mysteries of nature, but we mountain folks pick up on this stuff. And when my dog is wet or white on top, I know it's time to head back to the base camp on Greenhorn Ranch Road. And, being the experienced tracker that I am, I can always find my van in the forest, because it's red and it doesn't resemble a tree.

Sorry about this blog, but I had spent a lot of time today writing an intelligent and informative political piece, but Gayle read it and talked me out of publishing it. I thought it was powerful and hit the nail on the head, but she thought I'd make enemies and find myself on the "no fly" list. Since dinner is ready and I had to write something, I let my weather dog in and guess what...

Yep. White on top.


  1. Couldn't wait to here your rant about this. You didn't disappoint at all. Love your sardonic humor. When do you get off vacation and start your next book?


  2. Ralph, I hope it snows a lot more so you will have nothing to do but your blog!

    Great reading!

  3. It's raining down here in mid MAY! I can only imagine what you are getting up there.

  4. I like that inorder to post to your blog you must first copy some scrambled letters. This keeps dyslexic folks from making comments. NICE!

  5. Thanks guys.

    I was wondering if anyone reads this stuff anymore, but your responses are always encouraging.

    I usually forget I have a blog and, Chuck, I didn't even know you had to unscramble letters to make a response. That must be a new blogspot thing.

    And Ed, it looks like heavy snow tonight, so maybe I'll pop some anti-depressants and jot down something inane.

    Malcolm - As soon as I pay for the production costs of the Huckleberry book, I'll come up with something. Thanks again for your help on that project.

  6. The random letters aren't s rambled but you DO have to copy them EXACTLY. A challenge for us linguistic challenged guys.