Homer's Travels: November 2021

Monday, November 29, 2021

Where Has This Month Gone?

November is almost over.  It feels like this month and year have gone by in a blink.  After posting nine times in October, my creative juices dried up and this is only the fourth post of the month.  So, what did I do this month?

I continued to walk towards my now seemingly unachievable goal of walking one thousand miles in 2021.  The heat of the summer shortened my walks and while I've tried to make up for that by doing more and longer hikes this fall, I'm pretty sure the thousand miles are out of reach.  In November I didn't help the situation when I took several days off from walking for various reasons.

The Olympic Curling Trials were in Omaha this month.  I managed to go to only a couple matches.  In the past I have been a lot more enthusiastic about going to see the curling live and in person but this year the interest wasn't really there for me.  I did manage to see both men's and women's qualifying teams compete.

The same week as the curling trials I received my Covid-19 booster shot.  I decided to switch it up a bit and got the Moderna booster to compliment my first two Pfizer vaccinations.  I was a bit tired after the booster but it lasted only twenty-four hours.  Just in time for the Omicron variant.

We spent Thanksgiving day at my Mom's house.  The Wife prepared the turkey, stuffing, and bread.  Mom and Ernie's kids provided the rest of the feast.  The food was great and the company even better.  It felt nice to feel comfortable in a group setting again.

Finally, today is the fifth anniversary of GV's passing.  Sometimes it feels like it was aeons ago.  Other times it feels like it was yesterday.  The flow of time, especially the last two years, has a weird way of changing day to day and emotion to emotion.

The holiday season has now started.  I put the tree up on Saturday and most of the exterior lights and the oversized Christmas balls in our oak tree on Sunday.  While I feel the season it feels somewhat subdued.  Maybe it's the warm weather we've been having and the lack of snow.  Maybe it's that I've really been feeling my age lately.  I'm sure things will improve once the ground is covered in the first blanket of snow. 

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope y'all aren't tired of all the Christmas commercials that are already filling the airwaves.  If I were King they wouldn't be aired until after Thanksgiving.  Now that Thanksgiving if finally here, let the holiday season officially begin.

Wishing everyone a happy, bountiful, gut stuffing, and safe Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 14, 2021

Book: Nicholas Thomas' "Voyagers: The Settlement Of The Pacific"

One of the greatest exploration and colonization events in world history is the settlement of the pacific islands by people in relatively small watercraft and little or no navigational technology.  Men and women boarded craft and headed out onto the vast pacific ocean not knowing what, if anything, lay over the horizon.  No greater leap of faith has humanity ever made.

Nicholas Thomas' "Voyagers: The Settlement of the Pacific" gives a cursory account of how this magnificent feat was achieved.  The book did not go into the depth that I hoped but I suspect that is because primary source material is limited.  Most of the book is based on western explorers and islanders who traveled with them.  There is rarely mention of local histories but I suspect that is because these histories were oral and thus many have been lost to time.

As I read this book my thoughts went to those intrepid people who embarked on one way trips to places unknown.  I imagine, for every expedition that found and settled a new island, uncountable others perish from hunger, thirst, and the power of the sea.

I gave this book four out of five stars on Goodreads.  I wish it had more depth and detail but if it had it would be more a work of speculation than history.

Friday, November 12, 2021

The First Snow Flurries Of The Season

I went for my first cold walk for the season.  Today the temperatures never topped 40℉ (4.4℃) but the wind chills were well below freezing.  I think this is nearly the perfect weather to walk in.  I didn't sweat even tho I dressed warm.  To top it off we had our first snowfall.  Well, to be honest, it was our first snow flurries of the season with nothing sticking once it hit the warm ground.
A couple snow flakes on my fleece glove.
The flurries were light with short bursts of light snow blown by the unending wind.  It gave my nearly fifteen mile walk an almost magical feeling.

Can't wait for our first real snowfall, yet to appear in the forecast, so for the briefest moment the world can be clean and quiet.