31 March, 2019 “That’s what’s up”
I know a barista at Starbucks; she’s been a steady employee for years. She’s calm and efficient and reliable; I know Starbucks is happy to have her. The location is always busy and our exchanges invariably brief and to the point. But Friday I was there with a client and it was slow and she was spraying tables and wiping them. As she passed our table I showed her the phone with my handsome nephew’s picture. She stopped in her tracks, spray bottle in her left hand and cloth in her right, stared at the picture for a moment and simply said “That’s what’s up.” I could not have been more charmed. It was the absolute last thing I expected to hear – and therefore of course the perfect thing.
Oops – I’m inserting this after I finished the whole post. It’s too great to leave out. I first met Wesson in September of 2015, when he was five or six weeks old. There’s a great picture of him in 2015 on this post if you want to compare. He’s still brand new IMO, but you can see him when he was really brand new in this blog post: This just in!
There is a snake picture later in this post – just giving advance warning. I’ll put it nearer the bottom.
Evelyn and I sent a box of Fannie May Mint Meltaways to my nephew Wesson and his family in Blacksburg earlier this week. My grandmother (my mother’s mother, a.k.a. “Gran”) and her husband (“Grandaddy”) always had them at their house in Arlington, VA when we were growing up. Except we called them “you-know-whats.” And they were only green – no brown ones. And I think they were larger, but perhaps they only seemed that way because I was smaller. And these boxes are only 9 x 9 rows; I am certain the boxes at Gran and Granddaddy’s house were 12 x 16 or bigger. But they taste just as great now. Man do those things taste great.
I need to put another picture in here. It’s not a great one – but there’s another new osprey nest beginning on my normal route. This one is over near Fulton Bank in Stony Point. These are (I’m thinking) young, inexperienced birds who are coming up here late in the season. They don’t exude confidence and their nest is haphazard. I’ll go back this week and see if it’s improved. This was Wednesday:
Wesson and his dad (my brother Shane) found a recently emerged (and still muddy) Eastern Gartersnake (Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis) while we were hiking at their home in Blacksburg at 11:00 this morning. There will be a picture later in the blog post. Ophidiophobes, you’ve been warned! When I googled that word – because I love words, and I’m not making this up – the third google hit was to a link called “luxury rehabs.com.” I’m not even kidding. You can attend a luxury rehab to treat your fear of snakes, if it is somehow causing difficulty in your life.
The moon has been waning this week and the sky’s been clear a lot so I got a few decent images. I took this one Thursday morning (3/28) at 6:20. It’s officially a “waning crescent” moon, 48% full. This was relatively low in the southern sky, and it had only risen at about 2:30 that morning. It had risen at 49% full and it set at 12:30 that afternoon at 45% full:
Here’s a pileated woodpecker from Bryan Park Tuesday when Evelyn and the dogs and I were hiking there. Look at the size of this hole!:
I’ve mentioned in earlier blog posts my father’s favorite tree was a dogwood. Evelyn just planted one in our backyard; it’s just leafing out for the first time. We have an older, more established dogwood in the front yard. This is one of its blooms from today:
Evelyn also planted a favorite tree of mine in the backyard, and it’s blooming for the first time this year. Redbud flowers are edible and delicious; next year when this tree’s a bit more established I’ll grab a handful and eat them. Eating redbud flowers has been a spring ritual with me since I began hiking with Ivory and Nicky on the Appalachian Trail in about 1990.
I actually just walked out back – it’s 8:30 Sunday evening – and ate a small handful of buds so I could write about them with the taste in my mouth. They’re what Spring tastes like. IMO.
This just in – one more picture from this weekend. Photo credit for this one goes to Evelyn:
Thank you Evie! She also took this one of Mackey and Turner while we were driving to Blacksburg yesterday:
Anyway, I’m running out of gas (figuratively speaking). Let me post the picture of Shane and Wesson’s garter snake from this morning and hit the sack:
Have an excellent week! Come back next week! All best,