It is not as good as Motorcycle Therapy, but will do in a pinch.
The day began much as yesterday was; dreary, wet, and a bit breezy. By 5pm the sun was out and it was quite nice. After three trips out to the pasture with the Corgwyn, each one with a few less layers on my body, I decided it was time to crank up the lawnmower for the first mow of the season. I live next to people with the nicest lawn in the area. It is tended and fed and weeded year round, and my neighbor is out there mowing almost all year. My "lawn" on the other hand, is mostly moss with a few dandelions interspersed. There are a few blades of grass that stand up here and there as well. When those lovely dandelions begin to bloom I feel really bad for the neighbors. I half expect to wake up some morning and see little baggies tied on every yellow "head" so as to catch the seed and keep it off their lawn. So, when I looked out this evening after a trip to the post office I decided it was time to mow down a few dandelions. The air was crisp and the mower started right up. The sun began to shine through the woods as dusk approached. It only took a short time, but I felt as if spring was really going to come to Washington state. How do I know this you may ask? The dreaded nettles are sprouting everywhere as are the thimble berries and blackberries. The Japanese cherry is just ready to pop into bloom, and the Asian pear is covered with buds. Then, of course, add the really rotten allergies and that pretty much is a guarantee that the pollen is flying.
In two weeks the Hood Canal Bridge shuts down for six weeks as they put some new pieces in place. That pretty much takes care of riding out on the peninsula for those six weeks. I have little desire to ride down through Bremerton and up through Belfair, Hoodsport, and several other tiny towns to get out to Sequim. Riding the Canal is quite pleasant, but the ride thru Bremerton and Gorst is not. So I will bide my time on the pedal variety of bike until mid June. I am not sure if there will be a toll put on the bridge when done or not. I remember as a kid going camping out on the Olympic Peninsula quite often and paying the toll back then. As bad as our dear Governor has messed up the budget (yeah, like there really even WAS one!) it would not surprise me to see toll booths suddenly appear. FYI, the ferry system in Washington State is actually considered part of the state Highway system. The "toll" on THAT highway system has gone up substantially since I moved here. I believe it has pretty close to doubled in the seven years I have been here. All of the boats are sorely in need of replacement, but it isn't going to happen any time soon...except perhaps on a small island near here that is the play ground for the rich and famous. While they are in our county, they have an area code that is the same as the big city across the sound. What they want, they generally get. Another island north of here has been without a car ferry on and off since before Christmas. While they have a good size Naval Base, it is accessible from the main land, so I don't think the politicians lose sleep over it; the business people, on the other hand, have really suffered. When they can make it to another summer there is a collective sigh of relief as the ferry system gets a lot of tourists, who in turn like to wander through the small shops and studios. The wonderful "Highway System" also throws in a peak season surcharge during the summer months. I remember the first year I was here the fares actually went down when the peak season was over. Now they use it as a way to raise the fares. prices go up, but the never come down. Then the ferry system runs more in the red, as the locals use the system less, because the cost is so high, and on it goes. So, I wish to call "baloney" on the whole "ferry is part of the highway system" thing. I doubt that the city folk would put up with toll roads; especially if every eight months the toll goes up and never comes back down. Can you imagine how they would feel if they were charged $11 each way to drive five miles? (That is how far it is from my closest ferry to the dock on the other side of the Sound.) Try it, Mayor Nichols, I dare you!! And you thought charging for plastic garbage bags made the folk red in the face...
So, as the sun sets on the Olympic mountains, I sit and again appreciate all that I have. Sure, I whine, I complain, I can even get down right nasty. But when all is said and done, I love it here and would not trade my place for the finest house on that nearby island. I may have a few dandelions, and a lot of nettles, but it is my place of peace. The eagles and osprey are nesting. The heron must be as well as they have become quite vocal as of late. It is a heck of a lot of work to keep up and i wouldn't have it any other way. I feel alive when I am finishing a chore or project. I answer only to myself (don't let on to the dogs, please), and I also spend a fair amount of time talking to myself. In the end, all is good.
Song of the day?
"Take me out to the Ball game"
Welcome home, kid.