A little rain to keep us sane after a stretch of high 30°’s.
Lisa and I were in the bush a few days ago. We picked 8 freezer bags of Huckleberries. It’s nice to find them plump and plentiful. Scarlett and Cooper are coming to visit and they love them.
The garden is booming, we have too much broccoli. It is being given away and frozen, but still threatens to bolt. I made broccoli and cheddar soup the other day and it was a big hit.
The peas are just about finished. The second planting of lettuce is coming along nicely. It will bolt quickly in this heat. I am considering another planting to come due in fall, perhaps some radishes and beet greens as well.
Yesterday I wrote an email to the managers where I work asking for a raise. In the email I justified the reasons I felt deserving. I didn’t send the email, I figured I would have Lisa read it over tonight before sending.
This morning I was called into my managers office. He closed the door and gave me a raise, the exact and generous amount I asked for in the email that was never sent.
I fucking near fell on the floor, for the raise but also that I had written the email the night before.
Lisa called it manifesting or co creating your world through the energy you put out. I said it sounded like a bunch of bullshit to me. More of a coincidence I figure.
Regardless, I’m thankful, very fine day.
Five Finger Road.
Some nights don’t feel quite right. Was hotter than a three dollar pistol today. Not a cloud. Willow and I went out looking for comets and stars. The moon was waxing, close to going down. I remember these hot summer nights, but not fondly. The best was being in Lake Windermere, diving at night, not being able to see the bottom or sky.
The smell of water in the air as the earth cooled is unmistakably summer. Willow was startled by a toad. She barked. I got her away from it before she got over her fear and ate it. I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t have agreed with her and damn sure it wouldn’t have agreed with the toad. Sometimes you have to run interference.
The Milky Way is turning, sticking straight up and down. The backroads are calling, with their sides of long grass and dark trees. Hoots, loons, birds calling their final chirps, coyotes yip yiping, and stars moving like anything else matters.
My granddaughter, covered in raspberry scratches and mosquito bites, wondered the pea patch and brought her bounty to me to open for her. She could get into them if she had to, but she is kind.
Willow goes for a stick!
Lisa and I were up the creek this morning.
The valley bottom and roads are absolutely crowded with tourists racing in every direction at once, all in a hurry to have fun and see as much as they can in the time they have away from the city. It sure keeps you on your toes while driving with folks doing the damndest things. The ambulances and STARS helicopter have been busy the last few weeks. That’s summer for you!
I made the mistake at stopping at a summer market. It is a touristy place and I rarely stop. The prices were beyond belief. Even the tourists were complaining at the till, $14 for a small basket of cherries, $7.50 for a few leaves of lettuce. At that rate, I have about $100,000 worth of lettuce in my garden I can’t give away! I also had people nudging and bumping into me. They obviously didn’t get the memo about the Covid pandemic and the importance of social distancing. I got the hell out of there. Lisa thought I was nuts to stop in the first place.
Lisa and I got off the main roads and turned behind the mountain and followed the creek. We stopped and walked a familiar trail, breathing easy away from the ruck of the maddening crowd.
The flowers are out in abundance due to our wet early summer. Willow enjoyed a swim.
Once back home we decided it safer to stay put.
Not a lot of hot weather. Rain in-between sunshine. I’m okay with that. The world’s seemed to have gone strange. I hold onto what’s familiar. Not because it will save me, but because it’s the only thing I know.
The garden is teeming. We can’t grow enough to be self sufficient. Even if I started shooting all the deer around me, it would be a tough go. The new spuds ease the pain of reality, and there’s something cathartic about picking your own lettuce.
We trade with friends; pickles for rhubarb, weed for meat, firewood for jelly. . . it’s a trick we play to think we are beating the system.
If this is all we get I’ll be happy without the heat.
A fine week. Busy as a one armed paper hanger. Still time to enjoy the morning dawn and evenings before the sun goes down. The garden is raging, carrots and pea pods. The broccoli and cauliflower have heads. If it heats up they will want to bolt. It feels good not to be responsible for the plants, although I planted them. We had small carrots and squash for supper tonight. We can’t keep up to the lettuce. How I wish I could save it for winter when fresh vegetables are scarce. It’s easy if you let it be.
Damn good hike. I’m not used to hiking with so many people, but it was worth it. The dogs got along, that’s important. We headed where I left a coffee cup, used for booze, a few years before. It’s not like me to leave anything behind.
The hills are steep, they always will be.. The snow, hard from the slide, unforgiving, slippery if not careful.
Hunter had it planned. Bree’s Mom and Dad, sister and husband were along. Lisa and I played dumb. Not hard for me.
I was up the week before to check the trail. The snow was hanging on. I figured right, it would be mostly gone by Canada Day, I always think it wouldn’t take many years of chilly weather before the glaciers grew back. It’s too bad we measure everything in lifetimes.
When the time was right Hunter asked his soul mate to spend the rest of their lives together.
Lisa said from the first time she met Bree she knew her and Hunter would be together forever.
To be able to share such a special day was wonderful.
The garden has taken off. The peas have outgrown the fences. I’m not sure if I should try to extend them or let the vines strangle themselves, thus slowing the vines. Since I am a lazy gardener I will let nature take it’s course.
The cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and kohlrabi are taking over. We have some hot weather coming up and I hope they won’t bolt. My experience with broccoli and cauliflower is limited, so will just have to wait and see.
The first spuds should be ready in a week and I’m looking forward to them.
It is the eve of Canada Day. The Valley is full of people wanting to celebrate, yet not sure what is acceptable or where to go. I noticed many people just wondering around town aimlessly today. Maybe we are turning into zombies with maple leaf tattoos!
The world is changing and there is plenty I don’t understand or know how to navigate.
Last week I had my first Zoom meeting with four other people. It was a business meeting. I found it awkward. I didn’t realize how much I rely on body language and looking into peoples eyes to understand what they are saying. From my perspective I was half blind.
I believe they were also at a disadvantage, however they were more experienced with the Zoom experience than I. They were also all younger than I. Perhaps the only disadvantage was my age. Like I said the world is changing, social cues are also changing, for instance I’ve never felt bullied by something someone wrote on Facebook.
Two of the people in the meeting, were obviously not interested in being there. Although they were the ones who requested the meeting they were disengaged. Maybe it was the hour (early).
Everyone was in a makeshift office, kitchen, bedroom or home office made to look impersonal, or professional as they have been taught, no personal pictures at your desk etc. A bright spot was when a dog barked, I made light of it, but it fell on deaf ears, they were gone to shut up the dog.
To be distant in such an environment is easy, to be engaged is difficult.
I failed at this first meeting. I am getting old. There are new ways I don’t understand. It’s unlikely, at my age, I will ever get it. That’s okay with me. I prefer my meeting face to face, even if it’s six feet apart.
And that’s coming from someone who doesn’t even really like the company of people.
Rare Yellow Orchids
Lisa thought it was a good idea to take a trip behind the mountain and look for Yellow Orchids. I thought it was too early.
We walked to a spring where we have found them before. It was tricky as we had to find a crossing to the creek that was running quick. Sure enough, Lisa was right (should I have doubted?) and the Yellow Orchids had just started to bloom.
Oregon Grape, blossoms promising a good year of ‘grapes’.
We also noticed plenty of young cones on the pine and spruce. Oregon Grape is covered with blossoms, possibly suggesting a good crop of the sour pitted fruit.
Young Pine cones covered in pollen. Pine pollen is used medicinally for many ailments. I told Lisa it is also said to boost testosterone, she said, ‘we should take some home’. I chewed on a few cones on the way home. Very sweet. Sure enough, I was harder than algebra when we pulled into the driveway. Unfortunately, Willow wouldn’t let me get close to Lisa. What nature gives, nature also takes away.
It has been a damp year so far. The plants and trees seem to be enjoying it.
I’ve been watching a nest of Crows at work. The mother was quite throughout, she sat on the eggs only to leave for a short while. Once the eggs hatched she was constantly busy going back and forth for food for the hatchlings. It rained a lot and there were worms on the pavement, plenty to choose from.
I had to climb to the third floor to see them. Sometimes my work didn’t take me there, but I did it anyway each day. I always said I’d bring my camera, but I didn’t.
Every time I looked at those birds I couldn’t get over how much bigger they got, day after day.
Today they sat on the edges of the nest, all three black and shiny, confident, if they are lucky they will always be so, the mother on a branch above, her eye on me, trusting, but knowing I can never be trusted.
They looked at me. It’s said Crows can recognize faces, I wondered how those wings worked and when they will figure out they can fly.