It’s February and winter is still on the lam. Well yes, January brought some snow, but it’s hard to believe this is Wisconsin in winter. Here at Sontheim temperatures hover in the balmy mid 40’s and occasionally tumble below 20 degrees. The migratory birds are confused and the Canadian Geese can’t make up their minds if they should be coming or going. On any given day you can watch great flocks fly South, only to see them return on the next day to head North again. It is astonishing to watch such confusion and it makes me uneasy when I think of our Hummingbirds.
Other than experiencing the strange effects of climate change all else seems fine at Sontheim. Our Sophia had a rough encounter with epilepsy last year while Sam and Lilly experienced good health and unfettered romps in the woods. All we know is that the seizures started after Sophia had received her lyme disease booster and Dr. Sander, our trusted family vet, and I suspect that the vaccination may have been the trigger.
All together Sophia had four seizures, the first of which took place in the early morning hours on 8-24-11. We tried medication which unfortunately she was not able to tolerate. So I decided to treat her with food. Sophia’s fourth and hopefully final seizure was on 11-01-11 and thankfully there has been no recurrence since.
Recently our Sam also gave us a scare when I heard him give a sharp yelp while he was out of sight. All I know is that something must have happened to his rear end, because for several days thereafter he was not able to take the stairs. In consultation with our vet I gave Sam some Rimadyl to ease his discomfort, and sure enough, it did not take him long to be his usual rambunctious self again.
While all things seem right on our beautiful patch of land high on the bluffs, nothing seems right in Wisconsin. For a year now, our beautiful state has being torn apart by the divisive politics of Governor Walker and his cohorts in the State Legislature.
The Assembly just passed a mining bill which will roll back long-established environmental safeguards. All 183 pages of the bill were written behind closed doors by the republican majority and their mining company lobbyist. As with the bill that stripped collective bargaining from workers’ rights last year, this bill is being rammed through the legislature without public input. As it stands, bill AB 426 will give mining companies the right to rape our land by looking the other way when they divert water from our rivers, when they deplete our groundwater through high capacity wells, when they pollute the air and dump mining slag into our pristine wetlands. And all of this for the mere promise of a few hundred jobs. Or should we also mention the millions of mining dollars that are flowing into the coffers of the six republican incumbents who are being recalled by the people of Wisconsin!!!
All across our nation, the fight is on to preserve citizens’ rights and quality of life. 2012 has barely begun, but it is already clear that it needs a lot more than a just little bit of love. Oh Charlie Brown, how I envy you Your Christmas Tree.