Clark County now reports a total of 560 cases so far of the virus, up 50 since last week probably because of an outbreak in a food-processing plant in Vancouver. On the plus side, we are still sitting at 25 deaths, which means that no one else has died in three weeks, and then it was just one more person. Only 10,516 people have been tested.
On Wednesday, my sister Sue, my great-nephew Søren, and Luke and I went hiking. It was a hot day, and we hiked up a logging road on Dunegan Mountain. This hike was not listed on any of the hiking sites but again a hike that my SIL Nancy found. Sue had been there twice before and said it was her new favorite. The hike was all uphill but at a gradual rise, so we huffed and puffed, but it was not too hard. At the end, we had to climb a steeper hill to get to the top of the mountain. On the way up and at the top, we had great views of Mt. Hood, Mt. St. Helens, and Mt. Adams. The view of Mt. Adams was best on the way up but obstructed at the top by trees. This was a fun day, and we got a lot of exercise even though it wasn’t a long hike.
On Thursday I was quite lazy because I felt tired still from the hike. On Friday, I finally cut the rest of the orchard. Since then, I have been doing some weed-whacking on the slope below our house. There was so much rain in May that in no time the grass back there got to be about waist high. I went out there and worked on Monday and that made Wayne come out and do it, too. Sometimes that works, and sometimes it doesn’t. In this case, I was using the rinky dink weed whacker with the battery, and it doesn’t last very long. I started with the little battery, and it ran out after a half hour. Then I put in the big battery (well, Wayne did because it is too big for my hand), and then I had to change the string, and finally the big battery gave out, actually after not much longer than the small one. So, I went in. Wayne stayed out quite a bit longer and made a lot of progress. On my way in, I was tired and hot, and I was trying to get through the gate onto the back deck while going up the steps and trying to get past Luke, and I tripped and smashed my knee into a step. So, the rest of the day I spent in bed with an ice pack. Yesterday, I went out again to weed whack for about a half hour, which was all the time I had before the battery went dead again.
On Friday, I finally got the second package of seeds and bulbs that I had ordered the day after the first package because I couldn’t tell if they got the order. It only took the first package four days to get here, but it took the second package ten days. Saturday was our only wet day, but I planted everything that day anyway. It was just a little drippy by that time, but in the morning, we were awakened by a huge thunderclap right above our heads. During the morning, we heard more thunder off in the distance, and then later on, it just poured all afternoon and evening. It’ll be interesting to see how my beds come out, because by the time I planted the last batch of bulbs and seeds, I couldn’t remember where I put everything else. The peonies were obvious, because they were already coming up, but otherwise, just some of the flower seeds were sprouting. I could have a messy looking garden by the time everything comes up. I have now learned to make a little map of each bed.
Something else that came out this week were the flowers on my pink dogwood tree. Christine’s dogwood was in full bloom a couple of weeks ago, and mine hadn’t even started. She only lives 15 minutes away, but that’s what the change in elevation does for you. We are at 1000 feet and often have snow when they don’t have any just five minutes drive away.
I finally figured out where the empty package came from. It wasn’t from Book Depository at all, although I had to interact with another idiot customer service person to find out. I explained that I was trying to find out if the package could possibly have come from the U. K. All they did was send me the same information that came in my Amazon email. I answered, “Thank you very much for that information, which I already have. Can you please tell me if the package could have come from the U. K.?” to which they answered no. Then Sunday, I remembered that I had placed an impulsive order with a bookstore in England after receiving a beautiful flyer tucked into a book from a different place. The addresses did not match nor was that company name on the package, but I thought again about subcontracting and asked them. For once, instead of some confused answer, I got an apology and a statement that they would try to track down the merchandise through Royal Mail (good luck with that) and if they could not find it, they would give me a full refund. Unfortunately, I had ordered a used vintage book, so they can’t replace it, although they could certainly replace the stationery and notebook I ordered. Actually, it looked to me as if only the book might have come (or not come, as the case was) from that other place, so I still may get those.
And now we have another puzzle. This morning I looked at the mail that Wayne collected from the mailbox yesterday, and we got a not so charming message from someone popped into our mailbox. (Just this really irked Wayne, because he’s always saying it’s illegal to put something in a U. S. mailbox, although of course people do it all the time.) Now keep in mind before you read this that we live in the country, not in any kind of official neighborhood or incorporated town or village. The note said, “Please cut and maintain your fence line. A Neighbor.” Now, we have the largest piece of fenced property in the neighborhood except perhaps the farm at the end of the road. I’ve never noticed whether their place is fenced or not, but ours is fenced on three of the four sides. We don’t keep any animals, so it’s not like our cattle are getting on the road. None of our grass is on the road or anything. It just looks messy. I usually trim along the orchard, because it’s right in front of the house, although I have not done it this year, but I have never been down the rest of the road and around the block with the trimmer. Nor does it look like anyone ever has. This fenced property includes a largish pond and a full pasture. So, what I want to know is, why would anyone care if it wasn’t trimmed? The only neighbor I’ve ever known to trim along his fence line is the family across the street, and they have about six boys who do it. I am further offended by the note itself. If there is some kind of problem I don’t know about, why could this person not have presented himself or herself at our door to tell us about it? Or even signed the note? Or sent us an email? As far as I know, we’ve been perfectly pleasant to all our neighbors, including the time one of them came and asked if someone could cut down one of our trees that was overhanging the road. Wayne says not to worry about it, but it bugs me that someone would do that. Although there are a couple of houses in our neighborhood that look more suburban than rural, most of them don’t, and we don’t live in a neighborhood where we’re required to keep the appearance of our house at a certain level. Finally, that’s an awful lot of fence line, and we’re 69 and 74 years old. The fact that we’ve been weed-whacking our backyard for three days and it’s still not done should tell them something.
So, someone appears to be a busybody unless there’s something I don’t know, and if there is, I wish someone would tell me. I asked Maja about it, but she was just shocked. We do have one new neighbor from Portland, and it’s possible that they’re still mentally stuck in suburbia, but I don’t want to assume it’s them.
Finally, I have seen both our beaver and our goose family this week. I’ve seen the beaver beavering back and forth across the pond, and one morning when I was walking Luke on the road next to the pond, I looked over and first saw the gander and then the goose with at least two goslings next to her. So, that is nice, because every year we get some sort of waterfowl down on our pond, and so far I have never seen the babies.
I got one of those “Memories” pictures today on Facebook, and it was of the beans and onions I picked last year on this date. No sign of any beans this year. The only thing I’ve picked so far are salad greens. I don’t know if that’s because it’s rained so much or because the forest has grown so much since last year that I’m not getting enough sunlight in there. I know I have a problem with that.
And that’s it for this week.