The May Letter from Lance…..

April 27. Rain is forecast for today...I stopped Leslie from watering the flowers as she hadn’t seen the weather report. Rain is forecast for a week; we still need it.

May 4.  I needed a haircut badly, so Leslie got out the shears and did a fabulous job.  Most folks with Leo planets or ascendant are vain about their hair…I am with Leo rising, but she did such a good job we decided to hire her to cut my hair from now on.   Of course, I like this new situation as she is much more interesting and prettier to talk to than my barber.  She needs a haircut, too, but won’t let me do it.  More clouds and light today rain, but they promise a high of 78 and sunshine later this week.  And since they just opened our lovely state park, we will probably have a picnic then.

May 11.  Heatwave.  It felt like we were let out of school yesterday and today.  Sunshine and record high temperatures gave all of us a big lift.  I wondered when we first moved here why I saw so many decks and outdoor eating areas behind the houses here in Western Washington.  Now I know why. We live through months of rain and the “Big Dark.”  But when the Sun comes out, everyone wants to be out in it eating on their decks or at the beach or out hiking the trails.  It’s our reward for months of delayed gratification.  Suspect you’ve heard about the nasty invader that has folks really rattled and afraid around here.  Asian giant hornets were discovered in Custer  a few weeks ago, and now they have set out traps trying to catch the first arrival of Murder Hornets before they get established here in Western Washington.  These two-inch dangerous hornets look like a scary movie headliner and have a sting that really hurts and has killed more than fifty people in Japan where they came from.  They murder beehives and kill all the workers, which is why all the farmers who need bees to pollinate their crops want to stop their spread NOW.  Custer ( pop. 366) is the first little town south of Birch Bay.  Named for the first postmaster, Albert Custer, the whole town is an elementary school, Tony’s tavern, an auto repair shop, and a very quiet post office run by Susan, who always asks if we are ok after not showing up there for a couple of weeks. It’s a delightful spot to mail something, and you seldom have anyone in line to slow you down.  Leslie always clucks with Susan when there and gets any local news that is important. – ok, a little gossip, too. So, we are on alert that the murder hornets may be in our neighborhood. Of course, the name Custer brings up some ugly history, but I think the Lummi Indians have the truth captured in a bumper sticker I saw:  “Custer had it coming.”  I wish you could have been in the car with us as we hit the two-lane backroads with windows down and the sunroof open.  The forest is so GREEN you can’t see in more than 20 feet as ferns, cedars, pines, and a wall of leaves create a cool dark space crowding the skinny Birch trees this area is known for.  Leslie says the air is green at times, and it so fabulous to drive down quiet roads cut right through the heart of the forest with green walls on both sides of the car.  And the air thick and clean.  And very odd to me is that a few miles down the road, the forest ends and vast stretches of flat farmland appear.  And there is a mixture of pastures, dairies, and huge fields filled with raspberry vines which are now covered with a thick coat of new green leaves.  Scores of tiny yellow-white flowers have appeared on every branch of the blueberry bushes – kind of hard to see unless you are close up.  And here we are in early May, and many farms are already cutting alfalfa hay.  The smell around these fields is another kind of “country perfume,” and you almost believe you get some vitamins just breathing it in. And if you are in the car with us, you get to sing along.

“We ain’t got barrels of money, maybe we’re ragged and funny, but we’re travelin’ along, singin’ a song, side by side.“

Sending you peace and love from Birch Bay, Washington.  Be well.  Love,  Lance

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