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The NDN Silver Blog

We awakened this morning to a perfectly clear day, cold beneath a a bright sun and a still-faint breeze. Our first discovery was a bird beneath the east window: one of the male chokecherry birds, known to the outside world as the evening grosbeak, apparently stunned by a collision with the glass, attempting to recover […]

Another warm and sunny day, another day of treacherous wind turning the air cold once more. The skies are nominally blue, the grass just as nominally green, but the brown dust driven on the wind is overtaking both. Last night I saw what appeared to be a new smoke plume to the north; today, the […]

Yesterday’s vicious afternoon winds blew in a cold front that has dropped today’s temperature by a good twenty degrees. It’s only fifty now; i recent days, we would already have hit seventy by midday. It’s a matter of perspective, of course, but this morning felt colder than any January dawn. The meadowlark felt it, too, […]

Here, it’s officially the first day of spring. Yes, yes, I know; the equinox was a couple weeks back. But in our small space, the first day of spring is the day the first meadowlark sings. I walked outside a little after seven this morning to the golden prairie bird’s bell-like call. It took me […]

There are days when all I want is the light of an impending storm. We have a simulacrum of it today: not real, because it holds no precipitation, at least not for us. But we have the clouds banding a pale blue sky, puffs and whorls of gray now hovering above what is an increasingly […]

A third day in a row of brilliant dawn skies succeeded by a soft and gentle gray. Yesterday’s clouds granted us perhaps a dozen tiny scattered raindrops, no more; whether today’s deliver any remains an open question now. The day feels hopeful, despite the colonial holiday derailing our usual patterns now. We don’t observe Easter […]

A day that began beneath the warming glow of a chrysalis sun has once more given way to the cover of clouds — soft and gray, and gathering close, holding no rain for us but the possibility of a little snow high up on the peaks. Such snows, brief and passing fast, were visible yesterday, […]

Finally, a day that feels like spring. By that I mean the way we think of spring feeling, not how spring, especially at this early stage, typically manifests here. In this place, it’s the hardest, harshest season, usually far colder than the mercury would suggest, earth and air and sky and everything in them routinely […]

It’s been a hard few weeks, these days that braid winter and spring. Spring is always frankly terrible here, battered by the wind and air choked with brown dust, pollen, and regularly, smoke. We have both felt just as frankly terrible all week, and I awakened this day to my worst morning yet: sinus congested, […]

Yesterday’s brutal winds blew in a cold front that left every bit of surface water with an inch-thick layer of ice this morning. Dawn arrived on a gradient of amber and gold, turning fast to blue in a cloudless sky. Now, the air is warming at last and the sky remains utterly free of clouds, […]

The wind was up early today, very nearly with the light. Now, it’s busy battering everything in its path, stationary or not, ripping up what remains of the topsoil and sending it flying, shrieking and gibbering outside the door like some demonic trickster. It has also blown the clouds in on all sides and overhead, […]

There are times when I really miss our tipi. It was a casualty of a fierce April wind some ten or twelve years ago. We did our best to salvage it, but it was shredded, and some of its ancient poles had been snapped like the thinnest of twigs. We’ve talked about putting up another, […]

We awakened before dawn, in time to see a giant full moon descendant: an amber balloon drifting slowly downward in a rose and cornflower sky. The air is bitterly cold, but the wind still sleeps, and just for a moment, the promise of spring feels possible once again. Already, though, the birds are awakening, a […]

Clear and cold. We awakened this morning, for the first time in days, even weeks, to a perfectly cloudless sky. By mid-morning, a few puffs of white were scattered around the horizon like bolls of cotton, and now at midday, they have begun to coalesce and climb. With this much sun and wind, it’s unlikely […]

Yesterday’s weather brought us a faint dusting of snow overnight and a renewed cold, bitter and deep with a blade-sharp edge. The wind is rising again at this moment, and while snow till falls on the peaks, it’s unlikely that we will get anything more than a wall of dust driven on the icy air. […]

Some weeks are harder than others. That’s especially true at this time of year, when trickster winds and weather conspire to make mere existence a misery. Harder still when there are markers everywhere — of grief, of loss, of less nameable things, at the end of a year of unprecedented grief and loss and the […]

Last night’s snow mostly measured up to the forecast: a little more than an inch, scattered here and there by the wind so that it amounted to not much more than a dusting overall. Dawn broke amid a mix of clouds and sun, melting the thin rime early and leaving the ground its usual spring […]

We awakened this morning to beautifully clear blue skies, warm air on a gentle breeze, and the absolute absence of anything looking remotely like weather, never mind winter. Now, evening is here, and it’s been snowing lightly but steadily for three or four hours already. Some prayers do get answered. Of course, in a land […]

Snowfall surrounds us on all sides, but here it remains stubbornly dry beneath a pale white sky. The clouds continue to contend with the sun for space, while the wind stays low and relatively slow, preferring subtlety for the moment to its more usual spring belligerence. It’s a hard season, and often a lonely one, […]

On this second day of spring — or, rather, the season’s first full day — our small world seems bent on bringing back winter. Or, the mercury is high enough: mid-fifties at midday, albeit no match for yesterday’s unseasonal mid-sixties. But the winds that bedeviled us yesterday only in the latter half of the afternoon […]

The first official day of spring has brought us other firsts, too: an amber dawn, more likely in autumn than now; Cricket prancing with his first hunting trophy of the season, a giant prairie dog; the harrier, back after an extended absence and also on the hunt. A new world, indeed. And not so new, […]

The last full day of winter, and spring has already settled in, if only for the moment. It’s clear and bright and beautiful today, air warm and wind only a gentle breeze. It’s enough to inspire thoughts of the work of the warm season. It’ll change, of course, and soon. The forecast for next week […]

For once, the midday air is warm and almost entirely still. Official spring is still days off, but today, you can feel life rising on all sides. It’s a season for scattering seeds, and in fact, Wings spent part of the morning preparing for exactly that task. No, it’s not time yet; best-case scenario for […]

The storm raged all around us last night, but produced only the faintest dusting of crystalline white. Midday, and every trace of snow is gone, but the air is bitterly cold and the wind cuts straight to the bone. It’s hard to reconcile the wintry feel of the day with the first emergent green, spreading […]

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