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Lord of the Flies

Is it just US? Are others in Floyd County being bedeviled by clouds of tiny "gnats"--which upon inspection are a type of fly?What is the source? I'm thinking these are "wet vegetation" hatches. They  especially like to congregate above our windows in doors to the extent that you can't see paint underneath them.Phorid flies maybe? They are smaller than fruit flies. Wing length is greater than body length. Does anybody have a valid ID so that I can explore control measures?
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Local Color

There's plenty of color in the Southern Appalachian forests, as if hue and saturation sliders were nudged to the right by the Master Painter. In just the past week, we've had a remarkable intensification of the yellows, golds and reds that were so faint just ten days ago.And while the forest floor is temporarily also colorful with freshly-fallen scarlet and saffron hickory, oak, maple and poplar, that goes quickly to somber sienna and burnt umber. Except...We do see these occasional splashes of brilliant red berries clustered low to the ground and often hidden under fallen leaves.Can you identify what plant these berries … Continue Reading ››
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Sometimes, The Eddies

It is not easy standing your ground in a raging river.It takes constant vigilance lest you be swept off your feet and disappear below the surface of muddy and turbulent waters.In those times, it takes all the energy you have just to hold your place. You can do this for a while.Then, when and if you can, you seek out an eddy. The waters still flow there, but you take the chance to look around in that calmer hour to remember why it was you got wet in the first place.From that still place yesterday, I found solace in the … Continue Reading ››
Sign-on bonus: MV Pipeline gets FOUR of these!

Battlelines Shift, the War Goes On

I learned from a local reporter that there would be big news for Floyd yesterday afternoon. My hope was to hear that the Mountain Valley pipeline had been cancelled.Instead the news was that the pipeline would be routed north of our county. I did not immediately do a happy dance.My first impulse was caution. Could this even be believed, considering the duplicitous games the big utilities have played with communities all across the nation?And if true, how happy, how relieved could I allow myself to be?Another community was doomed to suffer what--presumably--had now passed over Floyd, by a matter of sheer corporate … Continue Reading ››
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The Parts We Don’t See

As it turns out, this very Amanita mushroom (about two weeks more mature this morning than it appears in this peak-of-life image) will be the subject of the children's sermonette this morning because Ann last week said she'd do it. And this is how that works out, predictably delegated away. Nuff said.I'll talk briefly about simile and metaphor. These are some of the ways the Bible tells stories to help us understand. I'll give a few examples.Jesus said "I am the bread, the vine, the good shepherd." Parables often used simile:  The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in … Continue Reading ››
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Photos and Front Porch Musing from Floyd County Virginia