Fishing The Coast, Oregon and Washington
April 2006

Jennie's Fishing Life

 

April 2nd

Oh, yesterday was fun! I put up the old April Fools page from 2004. I'll put it here, in case you missed it!
I had to get up early to change it back, so people wouldn't think I was stir-crazy! (I am, but don't tell!)
Man, I woke up at 4 and remembered it was Daylight Savings time. Now, for days I'll be saying, (as I yawn!) "Oh! It's 6:29, but it's really only 5:29!" Why do I still do that? The time is simply what it is!
Alrighty... off to do my mail. I'll come back and write in a bit! Good morning to you!
--I'm back. Sometimes my morning mail is full of business. Sometimes, changes to the board. Sometimes bills. You know, the regular assortment of day to day things. Oh, but some days, what an incredible assortment! --and what a way to start my day! It tends to be the way my mood is set, no matter how hard I try not to let it affect me.
Each morning I rise, and spend about 10 minutes with my Heavenly Father, in prayer. Then, it's off to coffee, the waggly tailed dogs, and my computer.
This particular morning, I read something hurtful. It was not meant to be hurtful, I'm certain. But, my overly sensitive soul took it to heart. It was regarding my health, and that I should be doing more, or getting out more, or something like that.... and it was someone that I knew, and knows me, and well... it stung! I let it sting. I shouldn't have, but I did!
It is times like these that I am so grateful that I have kept letters and notes from friends that encourage me. Please take the time to do the same!
I am certain that we are all recipients of notes like these. Save them for times when you are down! I was so lifted by this message, from a dear friend.
~~~~~~~~~~


Yep... no fishing happening! It's just... April!

This was received on the anniversary of my dissection:
Hi Jennie,
I remember one year ago very vividly. I was preparing to head for King City to look in on Mother and Margaret and the alarms went off. Pete set up a command center and people all tried to help, some in helpful ways and some not.
You were touch-and-go, and it was so scary.
You are a brave and tough woman, Jennie. You have earned more time on the planet "the old fashioned way." And you remain the primary parent for your boys and the go-to fishing partner for Bill. And you continue to support ifish.net. Wow.
I would wish that I have all your courage and stamina if (when) I am challenged so boldly. Life can be a challenge that demands a few days budgeted to getting over the humps, but the alternative is not an option. As my dear Uncle (who is 73) tells me, "Stay vertical."
Most kind regards,

[friend]
~~~~
Wow is right! See how that single letter that took that one person just minutes to write, affected my life so positively? I read these notes from time to time, and treasure them with all of my heart!
You know, I've also noticed something different lately, about my brother. He takes time to call me from time to time and he lifts my spirits. Sometimes I have been busy and short with him. Oh, Father, forgive me! Don't ever let me be short with him, again! I appreciate him so much! My brother has a new and strong relationship with his heavenly Father. That makes me smile, right here, right now! I'm smiling!
I've decided to add one more task to my morning routine. I'm still (and always first!) going to spend time with my Heavenly Father in prayer. Then, I'm going to sit down and write something nice to a friend, each and every day. I'm going to write something that lifts their spirits and encourages them, and something that maybe they will save for a time when they too, are down or hurt.
Would you join me? Can you imagine if we all did this, each and every day?
By doing this, I firmly believe that it summons a spirit of joy that is actually a gift to ourselves, in return.
"In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, `It is more blessed to give than to receive.' "
I find that when I do kind things, I gain an inner sense of accomplishment and peace. There is no way that I have found to replicate this feeling, except by making someone's day more special! A sincere spoken compliment to someone who is seemingly down can do miracles for both you, and the recipient. Try it!
OK. I feel better, now, and I'll feel even better after I write something to someone special!
I broke the chain!
I'm always amazed at how this cycle really works! Each one of us has the ability to break the chain! If someone says something that hurts you, the tendency is to pass it on. Don't let that happen to you! Change it! Turn it around and do something kind for someone. It can change your mood, and it can brighten their day, too! Can it get any better than that? I can't think how!
This week is going to be really tough. Bill's surgery is on Tuesday. I've got to do everything I can to add positive things to the lives of those around me, including my own!
Oh! I have to tell you one thing that really touched my life.
Two days ago, I lost my financial register for ifish.net. This contains really important information that is not duplicated, anywhere else.
This past week has just been crazy with all the plans for Bill's surgery, etc, and when I lose something, I don't rest until it's found.
I have turned this house upside down. I have called everywhere that I have been. I have called everyone who has been at the house. When I called the post office, my post office 'angel' answered. (Judy)
Do you know what? She prayed with me about it! Right there on the phone, she just started right in and prayed with me! I couldn't believe it! Now, that is service!
I felt this wonderful peace come over me. I still haven't found my book, and I'm still looking for it. But, I know that God knows where it is, and will help me get through this, one way or another!
Alrighty, Off for a walk on the river... and please-- "Stay Vertical!"

 

April 3rd

Tough stuff.
I just waved Bill goodbye.
The dogs so badly wanted to go with him. Is he going fishing, hunting, boat ride, ducks, Grandmas?!!! They know so many words!
"Surgery." The dogs don't know that word.
So, they wagged their tails, jumping up and down. Must be a good thing. Bill goes fun places, and he always takes the dogs. They wanted to go!
"I'm going to go."
Go! Oh, the 'go' word! He said that word! They know that word! More dancing!
"Bill, go, quickly! Before they catch on!"
The door closed, and their tails dropped... and so did mine. I don't like goodbyes.
I had given him a big hug. The dogs always get so excited when we do that. Little did they know that we almost shared some tears in that tight bundle. We were well on the way, but the dogs turned any thought of that to giggles, as they jumped up and down all around us.
All of the animals at the zoo, are jumping up and down for you!!! Kilchis started racing in circles, as he often does.
But now, I stare out the window past the spring birds feeding at the feeders, that he so dearly loves. The window cracked open enough for me to tell him goodbye, one last time. The birds flush around him, as he stops, looks at me, and returns the sentiment.
Now, tears?
Imagine a man so strong, with a big muscular chest and arms that are ripped enough to row the fastest of rapids! A man that runs his jet boat, the faster it goes, the younger he appears, and yes... that's a smile that washes over him, as he speeds across the glassy waters of Tillamook Bay!
"Lung cancer" he shook his head, disgusted. "Yuck."
I nodded my head. "Get it out of there, Bill. Go get it out, and come back to take care of your animals!"
He stood there in the morning spring air looking defeated. There are no smiles as he heads for his truck. A two hour drive, and then hours and hours of pre surgery testing.
I'm feeling so helpless. I want to go so badly, be his friend, hold his hand, but he needs me here. The surgery is tomorrow. I'm staying here to take care of the dogs, the chickens, the birds, the cats, and... the boys... you know, "All the animals in the zoo..."
Composure, Jen! I'm trying, but as I sit here with the dogs laying around me, like any other day, I finally let loose and the tears fall.
I turn around and Kilchis comes to lay his head in my lap. Who is taking care of who, here? My head falls, and my tears wash through his silky coat. "Oh, Kilchis... Mommy's sad. Let's go for a walk on the river."
I can't imagine how lonely it will be out there, but I have to go. It's all going to be alright.

April 4th

Don't tell me!
Bill had tests all day, yesterday. He was all ready to have the procedure done and over with. He had been told a week ago, that it would be done on Tuesday. Tuesday. Tuesday.
Those kinds of things get stuck in your head. We counted the hours until Tuesday. Tuesday. Tuesday.
Tuesday morning! At 5!!! 5 A.M. Tuesday!
Imagine Bill's frustration, when all of the tests were complete, he was ready to go home, sleep, and get up early, when they broke it to him.
"We are awfully sorry, but we have had to change your surgery date. We will be able to take you on Wednesday."
I know. Bill isn't critical, and there is probably someone else who needs the surgery worse, on Tuesday. You know, people who can't wait. Bill can wait. It's alright. We understand... but, it's frustrating!
It's just that he was so mentally and emotionally prepared. I hated to see him drive all the way to Portland under stress, and back again, and then back again, today. That's awfully tiring! He was so mentally prepared! Oh, the hours, they drag on and on!
So, last night, Bill drove back to Tillamook to see his animals, but was a bit defeated. Everyone was glad to see him. I said to him, "Oh, Bill! All of the animals in the zoo are jumping up and down for you!"
Truth be told, the people at St. Vincent are wonderful, and it's no one's fault. It's just distressing.
I think I'll ride up with him, tonight, and leave the boys at the helm. Now, that will be interesting! I wonder what the house will be like, when I get home!
Actually, Andrew is about as responsible and as tidy as they come. David? Well, David is David and everyone loves him! I stepped on a banana peel on the way in here. DAVID!!!
Well, it's going to be a long, long, day. We can wait! We can do this! It's now churning through both of our heads...
"Wednesday... Wednesday... Wednesday..."

 

April 6th

Short recap:
Bill and I were at the hospital by 4:45, checked in by 5, and in surgery before 6!
He was in surgery for at least three hours.
He was in a lot of pain when he first came to, but told the nurses that when he woke up, he wanted to see me, right away. (Ahhh.)
I let him sleep while my sis and I went out to lunch. When I came back, he was much better. They had gotten the pain under control.
He's better, yet, today, but reportedly has a little nausea after I left, this morning. He falls asleep quite often as we talk. He's off morphine, but still on an epidural to block the pain. He keeps complaining that he's drowsy and that he doesn't like not being able to see a whole TV show!
Anyhow, I'm exhausted, and will be catching up on my sleep today, instead of on ifish.
I will get back to all of your e mails, starting tomorrow morning.
For now, it's off to a hot bath.
If any of Bill's friends would like the information on where to visit with Bill, please drop me a note, here, or feel free to call if you have our number.
Thank you so much for all of your prayers. The most hopeful thing is hearing Bill say, "Well, I think I'm going to make it through this, just fine." Before, I do think he was a bit skeptical.
I am just so thankful.
I was so happy to see Kilchis, Dee Dee, Molly, Jack, and the chickens! We went out for a walk on the river, and I drank it all in!
Somehow, though, there is a lonliness in the air, and it's not just that the river is closed to fishing. It's more than that. It's quiet, here, without Bill. That's odd, because Bill isn't the noisy type. It's a different kind of quiet; a quiet that the lack of noise cannot produce.
It's the lack of wild birds at the feeders, because the feeders haven't been filled. It's a lack of chickens squawking, because no one is walking by their cages. It's a lack of dogs tails wagging, as they follow him, all excited, out to mow the lawn.
I'm really looking forward to Bill making it through this, "just fine".

 

April 8th

Words sometimes just can't express, but this is why I live!

Download
I'm hoping that Bill can find a computer and download it, to lift his spirits!

I took my good camera, while out walking on the Kilchis, yesterday. It was absolutely breathtaking... and you know what? I get to live it, each day.
As David Jackson says, "Some people are foolish enough to believe that they have to die before they reach heaven".
Thank you, God, for the blue true dream of sky and for the river and for the sand and for the gravel, which is so many colors!
-The water that flows from nowhere to the sea, and for the creatures that live in water, and on land and in the air!
That's what Hallelujah means to me!!
By the way, I'm enjoying a little book that was sent to me by Jim Bernard. It's "Inspirational Nautical Poems and Prose... to keep you on your toes"
It's a delightful little book, dedicated to all seafarers and those who love the sea. Those living and those who have given their lives to the sea.
I just love it! It's simply and yet so meaningful!
Thank you, Jim!
If you are interested in purchasing a copy, I'll get his e mail for you!

 

April 9th

Life is whirling by with a slight limp. I tried to rest most of the day, yesterday so that I could visit Bill, today. Off, I go, soon.
It's dark out, today. Dark, warm and green! Spring has settled in around us... minus the sunshine.
It seems like it's been the longest winter I can recall. Each day that we have sunshine is blessed.
Yesterday, the rain poured, the wind gusted, and the cold bit at my neck and shoulders when I went out to the river, with the dogs. Just the day before, I had been pulling weeds in the flower beds, rejoicing in the warm sunshine. Oh! Those days seem so, so few! I think that we could all use a solid block of days, filled with sunshine just to lift our spirits.
A day on the river fishing for cutthroat sounds delicious, but seems decades ago. I want to do that again. And yet, the river is closed for two months, minus a week, or so! Can we make it? I ask myself that, each year.
Dee Dee the old dog, who I will write about, soon... well, she's getting old. She woke up, gobbled her treats, and promptly threw up at my feet. I have to struggle with her to give her pills, each day. One for allergies, one for muscle pain. She can barely make it up or down the stairs.
As I write, I hear her depositing more food on the carpet someplace. I'm certain my bare feet will find it. I guess that shampooing the carpet is on my list of "to dos"!
She rambles down the river beach at about my pace. There is no way that I can keep up with Kilchis, but it's nice to have that example of energy to strive for! It's funny. Sometimes all of the sudden Dee Dee will get energy and run, stumbling, awkwardly down the beach, with random spurts of joy for life. She reminds me of myself! I like her usual pace, but sometimes, I, too, catch that bug! I don't, however, throw up on the carpet.
Well, it's off to visit Bill. I'm certain that by tonight, I'll be walking at Dee Dee's snail pace. Maybe by tomorrow, though, I'll catch the momentum of Kilchis, if even for a short burst.
Short Bill update: Bill is doing reasonably well. They found the cancer to be of the aggressive sort, but they are confident that they got all of it, and much of the surrounding tissue.
He's feeling pain, but getting better, each day. He's frustrated by the mental effects of morphine. I remember that, also. It's a weird drug, and it plays cruel tricks on your mind. However, it's wonderful for erasing pain, and I'm certain that without it, Bill would not be nearly so comfortable.
The tubes that Bill sports, will be removed on Monday, and the forecast is for being released on Tuesday.
Bill, Jennie and Dee Dee. What a mobility impaired trio we'll be! And we'll all stumble down the river beach, watching Kilchis race and frolic. He's the picture of health, that we all strive for!

April 12th

Overnight, it appears, spring is upon us. No warning, no gradual change for me, or if there was, I was too busy noticing! Just poof! Spring!
As I opened the door this morning to let the dogs out, the spring birds were already up. I hesitated for a moment, feeling the difference in the moist warmth of the air.
Yesterday I hosed down our outdoors chaise lounges, and the dust of winter came peeling off in waves.
Bright! Clean! Spring! Andrew and I set them out to dry.
I filled the back of my truck with flowers and planted them here, there, everywhere that Bill would be convalescing. Something cheery to surround him will be good, I thought. I remember how healing Spring felt to me, as I began to get well. I still shiver when I think of that cold, icy blue sky of winter. How that first warm day of spring soaked through me, healing me, giving me hope! I'll never forget struggling to get my wheelchair over the door jam, and out to the fresh spring air, when no one was home to help me.
I continued my work.
I swept off the steps of the porch where sunflower shells had stuck in between the boards. At the end of the steps, I shoveled them up and disposed of them. It's important not to leave them in the dirt, as they mold, and cause disease for the spring birds.
Spring is dangerous for me. It makes me feel so alive, and I begin to move as if nothing hinders me. I played a little wild music on the stereo. Music with that heartbeat-disco beat to it, and it caused me to dance on the porch, with the back doors swung wide open. I didn't mean to dance! It just made my body move and I couldn't stop. I was surprised that I could still dance, even though my legs ached, and kind of gave at the ankles. Music is a force that drives me. I can't ignore it. I felt fluid, graceful, and young. Dancing in the sunshine! Oh, that's nice! I was so taken by it all, that I danced into the boys room, giggling. They laughed, too. Mom, dancing? Now, that's scary!
I let the chickens out of their pen to be free when Bill arrived. They free ranged around the field. Everything was perfect. The dogs laying in the drive, the cats on the porch, lazing on the warm wood.
I had set a fire in the woodstove to take off the chill, but the sunshine did a fine job of that, and soon, the house was too warm! All the more reason to let the fresh air in. So, all ends of the house were wide open, gulping fresh air!
Andrew vacuumed the house clean. I had dusted earlier, and set the boys to task cleaning, elsewhere. Fresh flowers were placed where Bill's ashtray used to go. That was a big improvement!
The river? It was doing it's spring thing. Quiet currents whispered in the background in between songs on the stereo. "Our house... is a very, very, very fine house..."
I had just nestled in to read a book on one of the cleaned lounge chairs when I heard it.
"Bill's home!" The dogs tails wagged from the excitement in my voice. Dudley Nelson had volunteered to drive Bill home, and sure enough, his truck was coming down the drive!
Hugs all around!
I was excited to show him around, and introduce him to the new flowers, the cleaned home, the home, the home, the home! You know how it is after you've been gone? Well, it's especially welcome, after being in the hospital!
I laid a fresh robe over his bed, and slippers at his feet. Out the cleaned windows was a view overlooking freshly planted flowers, past the cherry tree in full bloom, and onto the river. Stunning!
Bill is doing well. He hurts a bit, and he's moving very slowly. But, this, his home... this is the place to heal.
You know? Last week I was in such pain and so tired that I got on my knees and prayed to God to put me in an assisted living home. I really thought that was best. I was helpless! Hopeless! --and Tired!
My God has a wonderful sense of humor.
An assisted living home? How could I think I was not already here? He indeed answered my prayers.... long ago!
This morning I woke to dark and cloudy skies. I pulled back the blankets and began to rise. I couldn't move! I'm still moving slowly and painfully. As I stood, slowly, a terrible aura struck me, and a migraine hit, soon after. Oh yeah. I forgot. I'm a patient, too!
And so, we live in a beautiful, well kept assisted living home. We just have no one running it, but we hobble along, helping one another as best we can, with what we can.
I did far too much, yesterday, and I will pay for it, for quite some time!
Maybe I'll just turn on a little music...

April 9th

Life is whirling by with a slight limp. I tried to rest most of the day, yesterday so that I could visit Bill, today. Off, I go, soon.
It's dark out, today. Dark, warm and green! Spring has settled in around us... minus the sunshine.
It seems like it's been the longest winter I can recall. Each day that we have sunshine is blessed.
Yesterday, the rain poured, the wind gusted, and the cold bit at my neck and shoulders when I went out to the river, with the dogs. Just the day before, I had been pulling weeds in the flower beds, rejoicing in the warm sunshine. Oh! Those days seem so, so few! I think that we could all use a solid block of days, filled with sunshine just to lift our spirits.
A day on the river fishing for cutthroat sounds delicious, but seems decades ago. I want to do that again. And yet, the river is closed for two months, minus a week, or so! Can we make it? I ask myself that, each year.
Dee Dee the old dog, who I will write about, soon... well, she's getting old. She woke up, gobbled her treats, and promptly threw up at my feet. I have to struggle with her to give her pills, each day. One for allergies, one for muscle pain. She can barely make it up or down the stairs.
As I write, I hear her depositing more food on the carpet someplace. I'm certain my bare feet will find it. I guess that shampooing the carpet is on my list of "to dos"!
She rambles down the river beach at about my pace. There is no way that I can keep up with Kilchis, but it's nice to have that example of energy to strive for! It's funny. Sometimes all of the sudden Dee Dee will get energy and run, stumbling, awkwardly down the beach, with random spurts of joy for life. She reminds me of myself! I like her usual pace, but sometimes, I, too, catch that bug! I don't, however, throw up on the carpet.
Well, it's off to visit Bill. I'm certain that by tonight, I'll be walking at Dee Dee's snail pace. Maybe by tomorrow, though, I'll catch the momentum of Kilchis, if even for a short burst.
Short Bill update: Bill is doing reasonably well. They found the cancer to be of the aggressive sort, but they are confident that they got all of it, and much of the surrounding tissue.
He's feeling pain, but getting better, each day. He's frustrated by the mental effects of morphine. I remember that, also. It's a weird drug, and it plays cruel tricks on your mind. However, it's wonderful for erasing pain, and I'm certain that without it, Bill would not be nearly so comfortable.
The tubes that Bill sports, will be removed on Monday, and the forecast is for being released on Tuesday.
Bill, Jennie and Dee Dee. What a mobility impaired trio we'll be! And we'll all stumble down the river beach, watching Kilchis race and frolic. He's the picture of health, that we all strive for!

April 12th

It seems that overnight, spring is upon us. No warning, no waiting, no gradual change for me, or if there was, I was too busy noticing! Just poof! Spring!
As I opened the door this morning to let the dogs out, the spring birds were already active. I leaned my least aching side against the door for a moment, feeling the difference in the moist warmth of the air, listening to their song.
Yesterday I hosed down our outdoors chaise lounges, and the dust of winter came peeling off in waves.
Bright! Clean! Spring! Andrew and I set them out to dry.
I filled the back of my truck with flowers and planted them here, there, everywhere that Bill would be convalescing. Something cheery to surround him will be good, I thought. I remember how healing Spring felt to me, as I began to get well. I still shiver when I think of that cold, icy blue sky of winter. How that first warm day of spring soaked through me, healing me, giving me hope! I'll never forget struggling to get my wheelchair over the door jam, and out to the fresh spring air, when no one was home to help me.
I continued my work.
I swept off the steps of the porch where sunflower shells had stuck in between the boards. At the end of the steps, I shoveled them up and disposed of them. It's important not to leave them in the dirt, as they mold, and cause disease for the spring birds.
Spring is dangerous for me. It makes me feel so alive, and I begin to move as if nothing hinders me. I played a little wild music on the stereo. Music with that heartbeat-disco beat to it, and it caused me to dance on the porch, with the back doors swung wide open. I didn't mean to dance! It just made my body move and I couldn't stop. It is so odd that every once in a while I can actually be normal. I pay for it later, but I love those days! I love them!
I was surprised that I could still dance, even though my legs ached, and kind of gave at the ankles. Music is a force that drives me. I can't ignore it. I felt fluid, graceful, and young. Dancing in the sunshine! Oh, that's nice! I was so taken by it all, that I danced into the boys room, giggling. They laughed, too. Mom, dancing? Now, that's funny! Rare!
I used to dance with them when they were young. Not so much, anymore!
I let the chickens out of their pen to roam when Bill arrived. They free ranged around the field. Everything was perfect. The dogs laying in the drive, the cats on the porch, lazing on the warm wood.
I had set a fire in the woodstove to take off the chill, but the sunshine did a fine job of that, and soon, the house was too warm! All the more reason to let the fresh air in. So, all ends of the house were wide open, gulping fresh air!
Andrew vacuumed the house clean. I had dusted earlier, and set the boys to task cleaning, elsewhere. Fresh flowers were placed where Bill's ashtray used to go. That was a big improvement!
The river? It was doing it's spring thing. Quiet currents whispered in the background in between songs on the stereo. "Our house... is a very, very, very fine house..."
I had just nestled in to read a book on one of the cleaned lounge chairs when I heard it.
"Bill's home!" The dog tails wagged from the excitement in my voice. Dudley Nelson had volunteered to drive Bill home, and sure enough, his truck was coming down the drive!
Hugs all around!
I was excited to show him around, and introduce him to the new flowers, the cleaned home, the home, the home, the home! You know how it is after you've been gone? Well, it's especially welcome, after being in the hospital!
I laid a fresh robe over his bed, and slippers at his feet. Out the cleaned windows was a view overlooking freshly planted flowers, past the cherry tree in full bloom, and onto the river. Stunning!
Bill is doing well. He hurts a bit, and he's moving very slowly. But, this, his home... this is the place to heal.
You know? Last week I was in such pain and so tired that I got on my knees and prayed to God to put me in an assisted living home. I really thought that was best. I was helpless! Hopeless! --and Tired!
My God has a wonderful sense of humor.
An assisted living home? How could I think I was not already here? He indeed answered my prayers.... long ago!
This morning I woke to dark and cloudy skies. I pulled back the blankets and began to rise. I couldn't move! I'm still moving slowly and painfully. As I stood, slowly, a terrible aura struck me, and a migraine hit, soon after. Oh yeah. I forgot. I'm a patient, too!
And so, we live in a beautiful, well kept assisted living home. We just have no one running it, but we hobble along, helping one another as best we can, with what we can.
I did far too much, yesterday, and I will pay for it, for quite some time!
Maybe I'll just turn on a little music...

 

April 14th

The rain just pours, and pours and pours. The air bites, cold. The wind blows the seed out of my freshly filled feeders. Sigh. I'm tired of this.
I've done everything I could to force Spring to really happen. My bulbs are planted, my spring feeders are filled. I have my swallow homes out. My hummingbird feeders have fresh food. All I'm missing is, well, Spring!
I have a lawn chair out on the river bank. I've had to go out and drag it back to protection about 5 times, now. I patiently put it back the moment there is sunshine, hoping that it's an extended thing. That the warm sunshine will last! But, then the wind blows, and I find it buried in sand, or half way in the river ready to blow away in the nasty weather!
My sister tells me that our cousin from San Francisco is ready to move back there, "I can't do it. I can't live here, anymore. It's depressing!"
It's been a rough year. It's not usually like this. Is it? Or, have we forgotten how usual this is, and the last couple of years we have been lucky?
I guess this is why it's so beautiful and green, here in Oregon. It does rain. It does rain, a bunch!
Every day I get up and look at this weather forecast.
All I have to do is to take one glance, and then I close that page, real fast. I don't even read it much, anymore. I just see an endless row of rainy pictures. I cannot, for the life of me, remember more than one sunny picture in a row, in ages! Ages! Really! The best we get is "slight chance of showers" and a peak of blue sky.
I think of my friend Stan Fagerstrom, who recently moved to Arizona. Just in time, I'd say! I can imagine that this morning he might go out on his porch to enjoy a fresh glass of orange juice to read the paper, enjoying the 80 degree morning, a blue sky, and a calm, still air.
It is spring in Oregon, even though we can't really tell. If you look closely, you can't deny it. The cherry, apple and pear trees are in bloom. The spring birds are here, believe it or not, and carrying umbrellas, I'd think. The green swallows, the bandtail pigeons, the hummingbirds.
(Too funny... I had been talking about banned people and put "banned tail pigeons" above! I corrected it! Still, funny!)
The steelhead are leaving redds all over the river. It's been a good run.
Oh! By the way, we have very few hummingbirds! I was talking to Bill about how amazing it is, really. We talk about 'bad' steelhead runs, but it is mostly a mystery, because you can't really see to count them. We can really SEE a bad run of hummies, and this year is one. We have so few! I wonder, though, if they aren't sticking around with Stan in the sunshine of Arizona. I sure would! I'll ask if mine are there. Wouldn't it be fun to tag their little feeties, every year?!
I'm off. At least my house is clean, and I'm getting paper work done that I ordinarily wouldn't.
As I glance outside, the hills, the lawn, clear up to where it meets the sky is a million shades of green. When it does sunshine, here, there is nothing in the world, like it! I have to admit, it's making the hills and fields absolutely deep, rich, and gorgeous-green.
When the sunshine happens, there will be nothing like it in the world!
So, I'm just going to put up with the rain, and I'll just dream of others, who are enjoying sunshine, elsewhere.
You know, 'those who say sunshine brings happiness, have never danced in the rain.'
I believe that is true. I've tried it, and I'm turning on the music, right now.
Might as well!

 

April 16th


Kilchis says "Happy Easter!"

This song was in my head when I woke up. In fact, I sang it FROM bed. That's not very nice, I take it, when others are still sleeping! Kilchis jumped up on my bed and brought me his Easter Bunny.
He knows! He knows!
He knows when Easter is here!

"He Lives" by Alfred Hackley.

I serve a risen Savior
He's in the world today;
I know that He is living,
whatever men may say;
I see His hand of mercy,
I hear His voice of cheer,
And just the time I need Him
He's always near.

Chorus:
He lives, He lives,
Christ Jesus lives today!
He walks with me and talks with me
along life's narrow way.
He lives, He lives,
Salvation to impart!
You ask me how I know He lives?
He lives within my heart.

In all the world around me
I see His loving care,
And tho my heart grows weary
I never will despair;
I know that He is leading
thru all the stormy blast,
The day of His appearing
will come at last.

Chorus again.

Rejoice, rejoice, O Christian,
lift up your voice and sing
Eternal hallelujahs
to Jesus Christ the King!
The hope of all who seek Him,
the help of all who find,
None other is so loving,
so good and kind.

I can't believe this, but when I woke up, there was snow on the ground! It's melted, now, but it was snowing!!! I promise it was!
The Easter bunny has to go, now... to hide eggs and candy! Hop, hop, hop!


Do you remember the Easter Elk that came to visit me on Easter Morning, a couple years ago? Click on it for a bigger picture.

 

April 18th


Redds everywhere!

There are redds, everywhere! There are steelhead swarming the river! Everywhere! I've never seen so many! If you didn't know better and with the crisp, cold air of late, you'd think it was chum season and Fall!
I so wish we could just take a cruise down the river, but neither of us are able to row. I can't ever again, and Bill can't temporarily, due to his surgery.
We can't fish, either. The river is closed. It's just as well. Both for the steelies, and for our current health. If there was ever a good time for my back to go out, or Bill to have surgery, it would be now. That is, unless the springers start to show up, early. That would be tragic! We are hoping that by the time Bill is well enough, the springers will be cooperating!
Walking, however, is good for us.
It hurts too much for me to lean over and put on boots, so I'm most likely to be wearing my tennies. It's a sure bet that my feet are going to get wet. Bill can't mow yet, so the grass is overgrown. It collects rain and soaks me to the bone.
I pull on a warm coat, and of course, Kilchis knows that we are going to the 'river'.
Funny the words dogs pick up. It's a challenge to talk about it without his extreme tail wagging and excitement. It makes everyone laugh. A "walk" or the words "go" or "want to" or "river" or "fish"... anything! Frustrating! Sometimes I want to talk about going, and not go quite yet. Not a chance, with Kilchis around! He has even learned to spell, now!
Dee Dee, on the other hand, is almost totally deaf. She has been a major concern and source of sadness around here, as of late. She's now 14. She has lived a wonderfully full life. Only this last year did she have trouble at the duck lake. Bill nearly lost her one day because she couldn't hear the whistle and got lost in the cold and icy lake. She headed back to the truck on her own, and could have easily been run over by a country train that runs the length of the lake.
Bill came home defeated. He was of course glad to have her safe, but it hit him hard, as he fully realized that his hunting life with his beloved lab was coming to an end.
It's terribly sad to take her to the river, call her, and have her not hear us. She lifts her head, sometimes, but confused, looks around and goes her own way. I yell "treat!" to her, and she doesn't respond. It breaks my heart. The days of her youth and hunger and wellness are coming to an end.
It's hard to swallow the fact that all of my memories of her active days are all that I really own. Days that were filled with the boys swimming, throwing sticks for her, and racing her to go get them. Those splashes in the river are now reserved for Kilchis. The boys, also, have outgrown that folly. Kilchis would have so loved companions like the boys were for Dee Dee!


David and Dee Dee... lifetime friends

And so it is that the ever bouncing Kilchis and I, occasionally with Dee Dee trailing slowly behind, head to the river to watch the steelhead in their dance of the redds.
Usually, we are tickled to see four or five of them working on a redd. But, lately, the entire width of the river is full of dark, dancing forms. Black shadowy ballerinas, swirling, shooting up and back, and darting here and there, for position.
If they sense our presence, they'll hide back in the riffles, those fairies of the river, and only when we have been still for a good deal of time, will they return.
Kilchis drives me nuts as almost crazed, he digs holes on the river bank, shooting dirt everywhere! This always spooks them away. The entire river bank is a torture track of Kilchis holes, that may well break someone's leg, someday!
"Kilchis, No! NOOOO!"
Kilchis is a dear. He really is. He parades his toys around the house like a small child, needing approval and attention. He never rips or chews them.


Kilchis and his beloved.

He performs the same attention grabbing antics on the river bank. He digs holes, looks up as if to say, "Aren't I good, Mom? Look! Don't I dig well?"
Most of the time I praise him. As long as no digging goes on in the garden or yard, I'm fine with it, and I usually do praise him. But, lately he's confused when I say no, due to the steelhead show.
I get well up on a hill and point to my feet. "Dig here, Kilch!" He obeys. "Oh, gooooood dog!"
Molly the cat scampers in the background, hiding in Kilchis' old holes, and pouncing on butterflies and bugs.
My eyes again set in to focus on the fish, and I'm dazzled by their grace. It truly is a water ballet! Knowing full well how lucky I am, that most people don't get to witness this on a regular basis, I feel blessed and humbled.
I have several people write to me about how envious they are of my surroundings. Some folks, even a little testy in saying so.
Others write to me, suggesting that they don't know how we sustain all of the blows that we have endured, lately.


My beloved Kilchis River Valley

Which is it? Am I lucky, or doomed?
It might seem that some have it easier, and that some have it harder. But, I really think that life is equal for all of us. Extreme, or otherwise, it's just about opposites...the 'Yin and the Yang' of life.
A dear friend of mine, after hearing of my latest back injury, Bill's lung surgery, and the news that Dee Dee might have liver problems, said, "You deserve a break, today!"
Well, yes. We do!
As I look over the land that I have been blessed to live in, my mind wanders. It's so beautiful! It is extremely beautiful! I am so, so lucky, indeed!
And this, as I look over the bubbling river currents, and the surrounding hills of a thousand shades of green, and the sun that peeks through the clouds after a strong downpour... This is my "break".
And this life is more than I could ever hope for!
...and again, this I hear:

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday;this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings:and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any--lifted from the no
of allnothing--human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

ee cummings

April 20th

Holy smokes! I have never seen so many steelhead! I can't help but think of the fun of drifting a shallow, low water jig through, here, but then I have to slap my mind. "Jennie! These are spawning redds!"
Oh, it's the same lust I feel for fish tanks, I guess. I giggle as I think of just a tiny, teeny little rod and fly! Wouldn't that make one giggle? It would, this one!
I'm naughty. OH! Goldfish on!
M uh ha ha ha!
But, at the same time, my fascination holds me fast. I can't move while I watch!
I am drawn to the river time, and time again. I'm hypnotized. Out of nowhere, in the middle of anything and everything, I rise from whatever and wherever and walk, slowly, methodically, purposefully to the river, where I watch. I've never, ever seen anything like it! I want to share it with the world, and yet keep it mine-all-mine all at the same time!
This is no place to play! Now, run along dear!
There's nothing to see, nor is there room for you, here!
This is my Steelhead spot, and there's no room for two!
It's a single standing perch, with a wonderful view!!


We have redds like crazy, and on them, active, breeding steelies! Oh, a hundred or so? Is that not amazing? You can even watch as the hen shakes from side to side, digging! And then, the competing bucks lobby for position, bickering, prancing, dancing, fighting for a place! It's breath taking! Both of my arms are sore, and nearly to fall off from shading my eyes from the sun to see.
I have a place where I watch. The higher up you get, the better. It's a kind of a perch, where the brush hides me, yet I can peek around to see.
Last night, we were in the middle of dinner when it hit me. I rose from the table, and without a word, walked outside. I was being called to go watch, yet again. I didn't even ask, "May I be excused?" I didn't even announce my departure. I just up and left. That's how strong the call is! I've worn a path deeper than any I've worn from fishing!
OK. I'm leaving. See ya-- There are spawning fish to be seen!

April 21st

Please welcome "Ripple Run Resort" to ifish! I've always thought that they should be on ifish. All good things happen sooner or later! They are here! Whoo hooo! I just love this place, and I can't wait to stay there, someday!

I can't get used to my artificial heart valve. It's noisy. I was assured I wouldn't even notice it by now. Heck! My kids can hear it across the kitchen as I cook! I stir to the beat.
I write music all in one tempo.
I enjoy photography, but when I take pictures, I have to time it, in between the beats of my heart.
Once, in a quiet doctor's office, a lady kept looking at me, strangely. I knew she could hear me beat. I kept trying to muffle it with a magazine. Maybe two magazines? Three? I broke out laughing and told her.
I think people that do get used to it have more padding of fat layers on top. Since I'm thin on top, it pounds so hard that I shake. Sometimes so hard that when I try to relax, I think it will vibrate me right off of the bed.
One guy looked at me improperly, staring at my chest. I was about to get irritated when he said, "Jennie, your sweater is moving!"
Sometimes, when I want to rest, I feel like I can't. It won't let me. I want to scream, "Take it out! Make it stop, just for a while! Turn it OFF!" And then, the thought of someone screaming to get their heart to stop makes me laugh, so I can never finish being mad about it.
Last week, it bugged me so much that I called my sister and said, "Take it out! Make it stop!" She laughed.
It feels like it's not right, not natural. Sometimes it's really scary and as I listen to it, it makes me afraid it will stop on it's own. Will it last? Why is it there? What a trip! I look down at my scar and yes. The evidence is there. The scar runs the entire length of my chest, and then another, across my collar bone. That's where the heart and lung machine was.
Wow.
Marfan tissue is so delicate! Tissue paper! Both eyes, my chest, both legs where stents were put in.
My carotid artery is ripped, still, and healed over. Will that go next? How fragile am I? I just kind of split open from my neck to my thighs. Do fish get marfan? This could be handy! Auto filet!
I don't know why no one has started and "I hate marfan syndrome" club. Or, even a Holiday where affected people and people who have lost loved ones can celebrate just one day of hating it. We deserve that! Don't we? What a terrible affliction! An affliction that just one day makes a person split open? This could be a great horror movie and it's real!
I'll never forget the day it happened. I was so calm! I gathered my kids by my side, knowing full well what was happening, and full well that I would probably die. I told them both how much I loved them. I held their hand and told them that it was alright if I died, and that it's alright to cry. I told them how proud I was of them. But, I was so calm about it. Eerily calm!
Of course, they thought I was a drama cow, but I knew! I knew! Scary! I even knew that they thought I was overdoing it. But, I had to continue, knowing it could be the last time.
Andrew was born with marfan. He was born blind.
I'll never forget how after his surgery to fix his eye, I waited with expectation for him to see the world around him. I was so excited! But, it happened slowly, and nothing happened at first, at all. It took over a year for his 7 year old brain to learn to use his new vision, to make out images and report back, what they were.
The first time was when he saw stars in the sky, and he ran inside, screaming, "Mom! Mom!" I thought that he was hurt. I had totally forgotten about his eyes, by that time.
"There are stars in the sky!"
His little voice carried clear through the cabin at Black Butte, and all of the family heard. It was huge for me. He was finally putting it all together. Andrew saw stars in the sky. Real stars, for the first time.
After that, things were fresh and new for him. He saw ships on the bay. He saw mountains. He saw things he'd only seen in books, close up. Taking him across Neahkahnie mountain one day, he discovered the Ocean. "What is that?" He marveled as I pulled the car over to explain. That trip is never the same for me. The ocean is bigger to me.
It's a miracle.
I don't take much for granted. I celebrate things. So does he.
Having marfan has taught me to appreciate life.
Living in pain has taught me to sing joyfully out loud, even when I don't feel like it.
Last night, I sat upstairs on the deck in the evening mist and watched Andrew wander towards the water. I got out the binoculars and followed his pace as he paused, hands in pocket, and stared into the water.
That's my dear, dear, Andrew. I breathed deep, in between beats of my mechanical valve. His long, lanky marfan arms and legs looked lithe, like a strong wind could blow him down.
But, he's amazing and resilient and strong, and he knows that he has marfan like his Mother, and he has seen. Yet, he never talks about it. He has a quiet understanding that I'm sorry he has to have.
He has views on life, much older than his years.
As I watched Andrew I breathed deeply, wanting to cry, but instead washed over with pride! What a neat kid! I wish that with all of my noisy ticking heart, he didn't have marfan syndrome.
I haven't cried in months, and it's building up. I need to release that, someday. It's hard like a rock when I go this long, without crying.
Life is fragile for each one of us, marfan or not.
But I can hear it, ticking within me. I'm not ready for it to stop.
The doctors tell me, "Jennie, worry when you can't hear it anymore." I know they are right, but still... It bugs me.

April 22nd

It's an absolutely beautiful day, and I'm laying low. I'm going to read magazines. I love it when new monthly magazines come out! So much to read!
The sun is shining! That means that I can make use of the chaise lounge that we drove out to the river! Kilchis will be happy. He is so funny! He doesn't go out to the river much, if someone doesn't go with him. He's just a little boy, you know! But, with Mom out there, oh, the holes he can dig!
I think I'll smoke some fish on the Traeger. Maybe some duck, too? Duck jerky? Oh, yeah!
You know, I always get so excited about 'laying low' and doing nothing, and before you know it, I have a million things planned that I could do.
Plant dahlias, clean the flower beds, get my tackle ready for coastal springers...
When I was in high school, I complained to a friend that I was bored. She said, "Oh! Jennie! Bored? How do you ever manage to be bored? I have so many things to do that I never get bored!" I was so intrigued. What was that like?
Well, I know, now! I live that life, and there simply are not enough hours in a day!

 

April 23rd

Update on Bill- Bill is slowly recovering. He can't seem to do it fast enough for his satisfaction, though. I am amazed each day at his recovery, yet he is frustrated with it! I have to keep reminding him. It's funny. I'm certain I was the same way! It's hard to tell day by day that you are getting better after a serious surgery, but if you look at it in terms of a week, it's amazing! I said to him yesterday, "Bill, not even a week ago, you couldn't make it through the grocery store. You were in one of those electric carts, with your head down, sleeping in the store!" He said, "Oh yeah..." (laugh)
The doctors are totally convinced they took out all of the cancer, and that he won't have to have either chemo or radiation. We are pickled tink!
Praise God!
How many of you are sunburned? I can feel it in the air, again this morning. Cold and crisp! it's going to be another warm, sunshiny day. Every year at this time, it's a clothes changing party all day, for me. I get too warm, then too cold! It's a change from... hey? A swimsuit?!?! A sundress?-- to warm sweatshirts if I get sunburned and chilled, or when the wind picks up, or the evening or morning chill sets in.
Each day I ramble through the yard, looking to see what bulbs have sprouted green. Sometimes I even dig in a little, to search for bulbs and their changes. I know! That's cheating, but I do peek!
I just can't wait to plant a real garden! But, it's been late, as we don't even have ours tilled yet! Let me tell you, though, about the neatest seeds I've been introduced to. I meet so many neat people through ifish, and they do so many neat things!
New Dimension Seed
These Asian seeds are so awesome! Each year I have more fun mulling over what to plant, but this year we can do it all online and get premium, natural seeds!
Sue Berg, owner of New Dimension Seed is the wife of a fish addict, "Chrome Bumper" as known on ifish. I'm really excited about the recipes on the back of each packet. They look awesome! And they are all color coded as to when to plant them. Take a browse around! These seeds are compact, high yield and fast to bear. I'm sure you'll find them enticing, too! And.. it's not too late to start your garden!
I did some catching up, yesterday, and called some of my friends that I hadn't heard from in ages. I had a lovely time, talking on the phone, laughing... It's what is important. I wish everyone would take the time to do that, now and then. It sure makes for a good day!

 

April 24th

We like to eat at the Mexican Food place in Rockaway. What's it called? Oh yeah, Mazatlan Mexican. It's good for what it is, and they have little coupons, sometimes, in the "Tillamook Shopper" insert.
But, last night, I just wasn't in the mood for 'greasy'.
I'd always wanted to eat at Pirate's Cove in Garibaldi, but hadn't made a true effort.
So, with Bill on the mend, we decided to give it a go. He was feeling well enough, so we took off early for dinner. A nice 5 O' clock arrival should have us in and out, before the Sunday night dinner crowd arrived, and before Bill's energy gave out.
My physical therapist recommended eating, here. I had heard some other comments about it that weren't so inviting. I needed to know, myself.
I am guilty of saying that there if you want to have a good meal while living in Tillamook, you need to learn to cook it, yourself. Since living here, I have mastered chinese food, a darn good bbq, some wonderful Italian dishes, a cooling Tzatziki, some tasty taboulah, well... you get the idea!
So, seated overlooking Tillamook Bay on a beautiful, sunny day, we began our eating adventure.
My first reaction was, "Wow, the menu is spendy." But, really, it was pretty much in line. I think it's just been a while since I've been out.
Nearly everything was twenty dollars or so. Knowing that, I was free to pick from everything except for the lobster inclusive dishes.
The place was clean and the waitresses were all very busy, swabbing the decks and wiping down tables, all the while, smiling and friendly.
The place has a seventies look, from the glass dishes in the curio cabinet, to the pale mauve tables and lamps, that were so popular then. I almost expected to see those old glass grapes on each table. Remember those?
I ordered steak with crab and Bill, a good rib eye.
The salad came, and my blue cheese dressing was wonderful. The pickled beets on my salad were so good that I asked for more! Bill's chowder was really tasty. So far, really good! We anxiously awaited the entree and were not disappointed!
My steak was the best steak I'd had in ages! It was a small 6 ounce, just as I had ordered, but the flavor was out of this world! It was perfectly prepared and oh so tender! Bill's was also wonderful!
Our waitress was so friendly, and we spent the entire dinner chatting with her, trying to figure out how we felt we knew one another. Turns out, we had lived in all of the same coastal places. I still don't know how, but I know this gal from my past.
For dessert, we split a creme brulee (my personal favorite!) and a good cup of coffee.
I think the money was well spent. We don't dine out often, so it felt good and right. We left, just as the place started to get busy. Perfect!
We recommend Pirates Cove, and we'll be back!
Next time you are fishing T Bay and you want a nice dinner afterward, stop in and relax... have a nice meal. It's very good!

 

April 25th

Each morning I have two beautiful violet green swallows that sit on the weather vane, singing. It's a constant song of three solid tones, and pretty soon I'll be writing a song for them. In 4/4 time, and dolce, it rings out,"Dee, Cee, Aaaaaa. (rest) Dee, Cee, Aaaaa."
It drives my kids crazy, but I actually got up and sat at the piano and wrote an accompaniment for them. The kids don't have perfect pitch, and when they figured out what I was up to, I got the usual, "Oh! You disgust me!" They are envious.
But perfect pitch is not what it's cracked up to be. It actually drives me batty.
It clogs up my brain. Who wants to think about the tones of a car horn? Or, which key a commercial jingle is in? When I hear a melody, I can't just enjoy it.
No, it's B flat C, F, and G. Get that outa there! Or, I see the keys of a piano in my brain.
In Music History in college, they have a session where you need to memorize the keys of certain classical tunes. I passed that in a breeze, and not because of my memory! They'd drop the needle on the album, and ask what piece, what composer, and what key. Tada! When the teacher found out I had perfect pitch, she was not pleased! Well? Opportunity knocked.
Anyhow... my cat and I sit and listen to the D, C, A's all morning. Just try to get that out of your head!


Click Jack for a larger image.

The spring air is thick, this morning. It's one of those warm, sodden (is that a word?) thick air days, where a squishy layer of air is lush full of fresh grass and greens. There are clouds in the sky which hang low, and make everything heavier, compactly dense and yet more rich. It reminds me of the soft, warm soil in the garden, and everything that is full of life and growth and energy right now.
Oh! And sure enough, the first goldfinch showed up in a flash of joyful buttery yellow, yesterday! I was thrilled! I adore the first goldfinch of spring! Here he is!


First Gold of the year!

You could just sense his joy as he arrived and flitted from basket full of food to feeder. "Oh!" He seemed to say, "It wasn't this good where I have been! I'm so glad to be back!" He whirled and twirled and flit from one basket to another, taking a taste here and there. He was really noisy, and I hope he was alerting his friends! Usually we have a whole flock show up. This year? Just one so far! Funny!
He had a winsome whistle that was joined by the other purple finches that came last week. The whole pear tree was full of them, yesterday!
I have to go to Portland, today, and I'll be so glad to come home to all of this! It's a spring celebration, and I don't want to miss one episode! Do they have TEVO for the episodes of spring?
And hey-- I sincerely believe that when the finches are settled, the spring chinook start to bite at the coast. Get ready!

 

April 26th

I was sitting out on the deck, this morning, a fresh hot cup of coffee in my hand. I was wearing shorts for the first time this spring, and enjoying the full feel of the sun on my legs. I ran my hand over the scars on my legs, and thought how unattractive they were, but that I didn't mind. God had done such a wonderful job of healing the wound, and the scar represented life to me! I was proud of that, and proud that I was able to recognize my good fortune.
I sat back and closed my eyes and listened to the river, bubbling just yards away. Kilchis was laying at my feet, absorbing the heat's rays, too.
It is Spring, ladies and gentlemen! Dig in!
I came downstairs to make an appointment with my eye doctor. I've been unable to wear contacts since my surgery and without my glasses, which are by now wobbly and broken, and fall off of my nose, I am actually, legally blind.
Woe is me, I thought, and dialed the phone.
They weren't able to make an appointment for me until June! I was a bit uncomfortable with that, but wrote down the appointment and thanked them, anyhow.
Bummed that I would be straining to see for another month, I made it to my computer, and leaned in to read. I rushed through my mail, but paused long and hard, at this note from a dear friend.

One day, there was a blind man sitting on the steps of a building with a hat by his feet and a sign that read: "I am blind, please help."
A creative publicist was walking by and stopped to observe. He saw that the blind man had only a few coins in his hat. He dropped in more coins and, without asking for permission, took the sign and rewrote it.
He returned the sign to the blind man and left. That afternoon the publicist returned to the blind man and noticed that his hat was full of bills and coins.
The blind man recognized his footsteps and asked if it was he who had rewritten his sign and wanted to know what he had written on it.
The publicist responded: "Nothing that was not true. I just wrote the message a little differently." He smiled and went on his way.
The new sign read:
"Today is Spring and I cannot see it."

It hit me like a rock that although I am appreciative of some things, I am yet so far from realizing the full extent of my luck and good fortune.
Today is Spring and I can see it!

 

April 29th

What a beautiful morning. The sun isn't shining, but it's Spring! There are birds, everywhere! I have four feeders outside my office window, and the finch of all colors are flitting here and there and everywhere! The birds are in full bloom!
One lone swallow is singing off key. It's usually d, c, and a, but now, although in the same interval, it's c, b flat, g! I wonder why?
I can't wait to get back into fishing. I've never taken such a long break from it! EVER! Not since I was in Junior High, I would guess!
Bill and I are talking about just going to fish on the lakeside for trout. Anything! Neither one of us, now, can launch a boat. Not for another couple weeks, I'd say, anyhow. Oh, I can't wait!!! Tell me the time is soon!
We've gotten our spinners out and cleaned them, getting ready for springer season. If we were able, I'd be out there, right now! Early or not, here we'd come!
Instead, I'm doing things that I can do. Like planting new plants. Tomatoes, peppers, setting up planters, and working with potting soil and flowers. I'm planting bulbs from last year. Some had already sprouted, in their peat moss!
The cherry tree is in full bloom, and already some of the leaves are showering off in the breeze. It's beautiful, but sad that it's already time that the beautiful bright pink tree is fading to green.
Instead of feeling sorry for myself, not fishing, I'm doing my best to Thank God for the health that we do have, and celebrating the things that I'm lucky to have. Soon... Soon! I'll be on the river, again, where I belong!

FISHING THE COAST
A journal of my adventures.

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