Sunday, May 26, 2019

Spring, soreness, snow, and a Yellow Peril

As I set off on my morning run yesterday I thought, "Ahh, it's finally spring!"

For like the fifth time in the last month.

It was a glorious morning. The sun was warm and the air was close and filled with the scent of spring -- moist soil, growing plants, mowed grass and weeds, the first hint of decomposing compost.

Nona the Wonder Dog dashed about checking every everything that smelled interesting. She was so intent on following her nose that she kept casting her ball aside and forgetting it. As I'd launch into the sprint portion of my walk-a-block-sprint-a-block workout she'd scamper to catch up and I'd notice that she wasn't carrying her ball. At the end of the sprint we'd have to backtrack and find it. It was a bit irritating to the part of my soul that thinks making progress along a particular route is important. The morning was so beautiful that I couldn't stay irritated and I couldn't help but enjoy the backtracking as much as the progress.

It was my first good workout since tweaking my piriformis a while back and it felt really fine. This morning at 5 a.m. I'm paying for the layoff and new beginning as joints and muscles complain. There's simply a cost to be paid, and it's little enough in exchange for feeling good.

This morning as I log the daily weather observations I see that the air temperature fell only to 53 degrees overnight. Today's forecast predicts the arrival of another moisture-laden weather front, but this time it doesn't look like it'll be accompanied by frigid northern air. If that proves to be the case we'll have rain and thunderstorms rather than freezing drizzle and snow.

The last snowstorm, only six days in the past now, had and has all the usual idiots clucking like Chicken(shit) Little over global changing. Seems we've never had snow so late in the season. However, we had 6 inches of snow on May 23 in 2010, less than a decade ago. So far this month we've had 6 inches of snow, and that's 4.9 inches above average (OMG?). Not even close to the maximum in only the last 126 years, though. In 1898 15 inches of snow fell here in May.

Scale, context, perspective. Butt I digress.

Last evening as I was cruising past NAS Kimball (IBM/Kimball Municipal) I happened to espy a Yellow Peril. Of course I stopped. I dashed through the flight office, looking for the driver of the aircraft. No one was in sight. The FBO office was empty. Well, never mind, because outside on the ramp...

Before I could take that picture though a fellow in a leather flight jacket came out of the flight office behind me.

"Are you the Stearman?"


"Do you mind if I take some pictures?"

"Not at all, that's what it's for!"

Beautiful airplane.

This one was born in 1943.

You can read all about the Stearman here, and about forty-'leven-thousand-million other places.

I know not what others think, but when I see a Stearman...

Especially as beautiful as this one...

I can't help but think of the tens of thousands of Naval Aviators who learned how to slip the surly bonds in this aircraft.

May each of you enjoy the bountiful gifts that accompany living a life.


  1. Yay for the exercise, and the N2N wasn't called the 'Yellow Peril' for nothing... :-) But THAT is a beautiful example!

    1. More than a few budding aviators fell while flying the N2N, and they are among those we honor tomorrow. That fact was among my thoughts as well yesterday. Exercise is good, and pain is weakness leaving the body. Thanks for stopping by!

    2. i am thinking my Uncle Darrell, the Hellcat driver, learned to fly in one of those.

    3. Probably not, but perhaps even this very one. It's a touchstone.

  2. You were covering the ground "Scout Pace'. Walk fifty paces, run fifty paces.

    1. I can't count that high, especially with my running shoes on. So one block run, one block walk. Mostly I can't mess that up.

  3. Love going up in those things,
    sure hope he offered you for a ride,
    I would have been all over that...

    1. He was just stopping for fuel, as is often the case at NAS Kimball. Seeing and photographing was more than enough for me.

  4. Very nice photos of a beautiful bird.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt