Despite it’s governor, Wisconsin is a great state. There’s biological diversity, geographical diversity, seasonal diversity, National Forests, and culture (and I don’t mean just cheese!). It’s really a great place to live and explore. Today, we climbed up to the top of the shrine at Holy Hill. We had been there before, one January when there was a wedding going on. The steeple tower was closed and the stairs were covered with ice, so we peeked into the chapel only and didn’t get the full view. I’m glad we went back because this is worth the 178-plus steps!
Not far from the Hill is a county park with trails for hiking, cross country skiing, and snowmobiling.
I really love the seasons here – yes, even winter. It’s not like people in Wisconsin stay indoors for 6 months. They go out anyway. I just wish that fewer of them used gas-powered toys as part of their recreation. These fall days, though, are almost too precious to bear. The sun is still warming us enough to make hours out in the chilly air pleasant, and I hesitate to come inside at all. Nights are coming on sooner and colder, though. We go to bed earlier; we eat more. We muse about hibernating like bats in their caves. And we love the whole thing. Change. The Earth. Being alive. I am grateful for it all.
Musing about batcaves is right up your alley for the environmental horror of white-nose syndrome. Cuddling with sleeping bears isn’t much better, for they too wake and raid unattended Tahoe cabins only to gain criminal reputations and meet lamentable ends under the human penal code. Polar bears, starved out on the drifting ice, don’t have enough fat to make it through the winter. Grizzlies, God help us, once ranged from Alaska to Mexico, but now can only get a good winter’s sleep in the Northern wastes.
Keep thinking about your squirrels. There isn’t any shortage of them. They don’t hibernate. They just sleep most of the time snuggled close with their kin and covered with their big fluffy tails. If they wake, they get up for a mid-winter snack of buried goodies or birdfeeder treats. Winter agenda: Sleep. Snuggle. Eat. Snuggle again. Sleep some more. It sounds like a good survival strategy to me. Life could be worse.