Eclipse 2024

Risa (and a couple of dozen other people not in frame) taking pictures of the blazing horizon during totality.

Risa and I made the drive out to Presqu’ile Provincial Park to catch the eclipse on the shore of Lake Ontario today. The show was mostly out of view, with clouds fully obscuring the sky from a couple of hours before the moon took its first bite of the sun until after totality was over. We did get the experience of transitioning to twilight during totality, which brought an unexpected surprise: looking south over the lake, virtually the entire horizon looked like it was on fire compared to the dark clouds and water.

As soon as the light started returning after our 2-plus minutes of totality, most of the people who’d spent hours waiting and watching by the shore with us started packing up and leaving, like jaded Blue Jays fans trying to beat the traffic home after the 7th inning. And sure enough, they missed the late-game rally: the sun finally peeked out from behind the clouds several times during the back half of the eclipse.

The sun peeking out from behind the clouds and moon after totality.

It wasn’t the show we’d been hoping for but was still an enjoyable afternoon in the park with some unexpected surprises.

Be vewy vewy quiet

Two signs about birds in Presqu’ile Provincial Park are meant to caution bird lovers. The first instructs people to approach a viewing area quietly so as not to disturb birds on the beach:

Avoid disturbing shorebirds

Another sign in the park alerts parkgoers to the danger presented by the bird hunt allowed in the park:

Waterfowl hunt every other day

The perplexing thing is that these signs are both on the same post:

Conflicting signs on the same post

On Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday, it’s Lookout #3. On Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, it morphs into “Look out!” #3. I hope the hunters are using silencers so they don’t disturb the birds.

Dodgeville’s fifth

Mural on a garage overlooking a parking lot

I published¬†my first public post on this blog five years ago today. Writing a blog always struck me as kind of a funny thing to do, so I always wanted to have fun with it. My work largely requires me to fix problems (occasionally of my own creation) on relatively short timelines so I’m used to quickly identifying issues and researching solutions to the various technical absurdities and contradictions that I encounter. I suppose that mindset translates into my Dodgeville ramblings as well.¬†In a lot of ways, updating Dodgeville is a release valve, a way to get something off my chest or to put aside some other problem for a few minutes while I slap together a post. Although I write primarily for my own enjoyment, I greatly appreciate that you, my loyal half-dozens of readers, accompany me on my journeys through the city, the countryside, and the boxes in my basement.

The topics I cover are frequently hyper-local and the posts often more detailed than necessary. Indeed, something as minor as repaving of a road around the corner from my house merited a grand total of six posts (so far) examining the results. A big empty field has been the subject of three recent posts. And on days when I’m too lazy to go outside, I just write about random things I pull out of boxes in the basement. I’ve sometimes thought about resubtitling Dodgeville from “Random wanderings and wonderings” to “Stuff within a five-minute walk of my house and sometimes not even that far.”

One of the eternally frustrating things about blogging is having too many things to cover and not nearly enough time to write about them all. So my digital archives slowly fill with clippings, links, pictures, snippets of potential posts, research reminders, and large projects that just haven’t come together yet. Some of those projects have been hanging around on my to-do list since 1994, waiting for technology to advance to the point that I’ll be able to do justice to my vision. One project idea that I had in 2006 will finally be coming to fruition this summer. Many others continue to bide their time, already born of my 1% inspiration and awaiting my 99% perspiration. Still other posts await because they were no longer timely when I finally got around to writing them, but will almost certainly be topical again at some point. Yet more ideas never made it into the serious consideration stage, including Bruise of the Week, Grave of the Month, and The Daily Sock. Consider yourselves lucky.

It’s been three years since I did one of these anniversary posts, so rather than going back and picking out my favourite posts since then, I’m going to put up a short gallery of a few interesting pictures that never made it into full posts for one reason or another. As always, thanks for reading, and I hope you accompany me for another year of wanderings, amusement, outrage, and signs. Always more signs.

Check out the random gallery below the fold.

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