|... driving through the pass in the Autumn ...|
Because of the speed with which they grow, hops are fun to watch.
Picking the hops is a joy for they are the magic ingredient in brewing beer.
But getting rid of the vines – that is the kicker in the fall. I asked if they were going to the burn pile but he looked at me in environmental horror. “No, I am composting them,” he said.
“We having been composting. A bear knocked over our barrel again,” I said.
“I saw a deer, a large one at the cabins yesterday,” he said. "I stopped and yell, 'Go deer.' It looked right back at me and didn’t move. Do you think your bear might be a deer?”
And with that, I could see that I can get my composting going again. I don’t mind attracting deer. I just don’t want a bear strolling across my lower patio.
Bonnie and I walked in the fall leaves this morning. They are strewn across the road that goes past my house to the beach, so thick that no one would know a road is underneath. On the walk to the east we stopped to check out both of Wyona’s apple trees, since she told us that if we have any time, we could pick them for her and put them in her garage. Her apple tree to the west of the house is one that should be the prototype for The Garden of Eden story. Even Adam would have stolen an apple from that tree. But only about 10 of those apples are left and they are hanging on high branches. Her red delicious apple tree is laden with fruit, large, shiny, every apple too big to fit comfortably in one hand. Bonnie said that the fall crunch is in those apples now – fully ripened and still hanging on the tree, they have that delicious cracking sound that comes when the skin of the apple is broken with the first bite.
|... close to the summit ...|
I think the CPR have marked some trees to be taken down, for there are splashes of black paint sprayed on the trunks of some of the birches that had now died. Bonnie went to look more closely at those dark marks. I hadn’t noticed them. But she has lived here longer, now alert to the quick movement of a squirrel off in the forest, or curious about the louder sound of the stream rushing under the road.
We can’t walk in the early mornings. I thought we could just go between here and the Pillings, but Bonnie Wyora showed me this morning that it is just too dark. No stars. No moon. Dark. So I turned my exercise into the daytime job of moving the rocks I have been collecting from one of the garden beds. I go deep with my pick axe and then try to separate out the rocks that can stay from those that have to go.
I would rather be walking, maybe even in the dark.