A couple days ago I was given a cancer diagnosis…again. But this time there are no “if’s, and’s, or but’s.” In fact, the doctor who last time told me that I did NOT have cancer is the very one who broke this bad news to me. For the opposite result, see Good news!

Today I had the specialist consultation regarding this new cancer diagnosis. I guess it could have been worse, but it could also have been better–like, they could have once again reversed the diagnosis, which they didn’t. Oh well. 😦 Maybe there are only a certain number of times you can dodge the bullet….

Meanwhile, I went to my Classics class yesterday for some erudite distraction. We finished off Homer (the Iliad and the Odyssey) and did quite a bit of Hesiod. Tomorrow we are supposed to hand in our first papers, then finish Hesiod and do Pindar, then start a new unit on tragedy. Tragedy as in Aeschylus, my favorite playwright of all time.

We are taking things at a fast clip, indeed! The instructor is really, really good. ❤

And I’m preparing for my next camping trip, a solo over-nighter at a local Metro Park. See Earth Day at Scioto Grove, which is when and where I discovered that this new Metro Park offered backpacking campsites on a limited, but free, basis. I got signed up right away, and today I checked my reservation to make sure that when I get there, it will all be good.

It will. Except for the thunderstorms.

However, I hadn’t originally planned this camping trip to be on my own. But I misunderstood the availability of the person who I wanted to accompany me. Which is fine: I have a terrible thirst for one-on-one time with myself, especially in nature. Still, it did harsh my mood a bit.

So yesterday after returning home from school, I did a self-soothing exercise that I partake in from time to time when I suffer a disappointment:  I enjoyed my home anew.

Here is a little bit of my tour, starting with a still-life showing the layout of a case I’m making for a new archery bow (which is described below). Of course Ophelia had to help me! 😛

On the left is my Cabela Sparrowhawk bow; on the right the Fuse Focus.
The blonde and white Fuse Focus is the new bow.


My traditional wood arrows with feather fletching (required for SCA target archery) made by Dayrl Merrill of Viking Archery, who told me I should get arrows that were 28″ long. Of course I didn’t listen and got 30″ instead, which I couldn’t control at all. Now my friends David and Janet VanMeter have cut the arrows down to 28″ and put new field points on them. And I’m hitting the target with them 10 times out of 11. Woo hoo!


Ophelia waited patiently for me to pick up the archery stuff so that she could have pride of position!

The new bow is a Fuse Focus, a 20-pounder that I picked up at a whopping 60% off on my way this past Thursday to Aethelmearc War Practice . (For more on AWP, see Aethelmearc War Practice 2018).

I had been wondering lately if my 15-lb. Cabela Sparrowhawk youth bow is too light for me. So I wanted to try the next weight up if I could afford to do so, money-wise. This bow at Fin Fur and Feather on my way up to Pennsylvania was marked down from $99 to $40.52. I simply could not pass it up.

But guess what: so far I cannot even string the new bow, much less see how I shoot with it! 😛

On the other hand, I did a very nice job yesterday of stringing my Sparrowhawk at Scioto Grove’s archery range. And with my newly-shortened arrows (courtesy of my friends David and Janet VanMeter), I managed to hit the target 10 times out of 11 during each flight I shot! (I lost an arrow first time out this season). This is a MAJOR improvement!

I just read the weather forecast for the day I’ll be camping out at Scioto Grove: thunderstorms beginning the hour I arrive and continuing until the hour I leave on the next morning. Maybe I should re-think my plans?

I think I will call tomorrow and find out their next open date for a backpacking campsite reservation!

Meanwhile, here are some of the photos I took yesterday of my erstwhile Scioto Grove campsite, which is Backpacking Campsite No. 1. If only I could somehow import yesterday’s weather into the day of my camping reservation!


The Metro Park Rangers at Scioto Grove actually deliver free firewood to each backpacking campsite! And the campsite itself is also free. An amazing deal in this day and age…



You have to go off-trail to get to this campsite. It really is off the beaten path until you pick up the River Trail, but even then it’s only marked with an Exit sign. From the opposite approach, through the parking lot, you must spy out a steep path hidden in the long grass going down a gulch which levels out at the campsite:


I’ve never seen such beautiful pond scum!

Now for some random shots around the house:


Another captured item on my way to AWP: pink flamingo rubber boots from Cracker Barrel in Delaware Ohio USA. They replace the ones that died when I took a bath in a marsh recently….
I managed to drop the rest of my cash at AWP on this handsome pair of wool winingas, with the clasps already sewn in, as they should be, from Bad Ass Garb. Every Viking reeanctor worth their salt has some winingas. Just ask!
The never-ending geranium I pulled out of the trash heap at Walmart about 8 or 9 years ago.


“The Peace In Smiles,” left, and “Necessary and Beautiful,” right, 2016, graphite and Neocolor 2 on Mylar, Lisa McLymont. She is one of my favorite portrait artists, hands-down!


Doesn’t every downstairs half-bath contain both volumes of the Norton Anthology of English Literature for guests to peruse at their leisure?  If this is not the case, I’ve gone badly wrong…
Books in my favorite bookshelf…