Monday, August 7, 2017

Clamming





Middle Sister



I'm only a month late, but here are more photos from our July 4 
clamming expedition on the East River.





Ronnie



Middle Sister and her fabulously wonderful boyfriend Ronnie did all the hard work of raking for clams while I took on the arduous task of supervising from the comfort of the boat.








If you've never been clamming before--and I hadn't--you pull the rakes through the mud and sand until something bites your ankle you hear something hard hit the rake.










Then you carefully pull the rake up and toss the tasty morsel into this ingenious contraption of a basket that floats courtesy of an inner tube.








Although I forget exactly how many we they caught, there was enough for several dinners.








And they were gooooooooooood.







There are several very serious reasons why I've been negligent in  every aspect of my life my blogging duties.  My mother was hospitalized for a week for a-fib.  They finally sent her home and she's resting until she can get back to see her specialist in a few weeks.  In the interim, a 3-hour surgery for my father ended up being 8 hours when the surgeon nicked his kidney and a vein, causing massive bleeding.  After being hospitalized for a week and then sent to a rehabilitation facility, he had to return to the hospital for a second surgery in the same place due to massive infection.  Right now, my sisters and I are taking turns spending the days and nights with him, because the staff in charge of his care at the hospital can't seem to keep the story straight, there are so many things to monitor.  His hospital is an hour away, so juggling regular duties, work and his caretaking have been a challenge to say the least.

Right now, he's supposed to be in the hospital for several more days before returning to the rehab facility in Gloucester for several weeks.  He's less than happy about this, so in addition to worrying about his physical state, we have to be strong and positive for him.

Hopefully he'll start to get stronger soon, but in the mean time I'll likely be absent from here until some aspect of life returns to quasi-normal.

I hope all is well in your world.

 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Mill Lane







This rusty rustic building lives at the end of Mill Lane in Bohannon.








I was able to take its picture on a July 4 boating adventure that included Middle Sister and an afternoon of clamming.  




















After clamming, we enjoyed a family gathering that included food, food, food and more food. Followed by food.

Then we watched the wonderful local fireworks display from another boat on Stutts Creek.

A good time was had by all.

Pictures of the clamming adventure will be forthcoming.

Happy July.


Sunday, June 25, 2017

Heron








This heron lives








and wades 










and fishes 









on Callis Creek in Redart.  






I caught him recently searching for supper amid the local oyster operation.


All is as busy as--if not busier than--ever in my world.

I hope all is well in yours.



Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Main Street Makeover








Lots of exciting things are happening in our little downtown area. 









After more than two decades of work, the Mathews Main Street Committee's 
efforts are finally paying off, and we're getting a major makeover face lift.








Work started on the block near my favorite Mexican restaurant, Mi Casa Azteca. 
(I love Mi Casa and try to go there at least once every two weeks.)








There was some impact to traffic--to the extent Mathews has traffic--and some roads have been blocked off and closed, but all businesses have remained open throughout the reconstructive surgery work.







New sidewalks, curbs, gutters and landscaping enhancements are among the improvements being made to our quaint Court House area.

Although there may be some minor inconveniences along the way, I personally can't wait to see the end result.


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Heron







Well, here it is the last day of May, and all I have to say is, where has the month gone?  








It seems like there was one sunny day, when I managed to see this heron across the creek.  

And then the rest of the days it rained.








(Please disregard the strange object in the upper left corner of these two photos.  Not only am I a self-taught photographer, I still haven't mastered use of my new camera, which is immensely smarter than I am.)








Yes, the month of May flew by in a blur of wind and rain interspersed with a day or two of the normal sunny, warm, gorgeous clarity that is typical this time of year.  Whether it's due to the rain or I don't know what, we've noticed the stinging nettles have arrived much sooner than normal.  There are tons of baby nettles lounging about in Queens Creek.  They normally don't make an appearance until late June.  Farm-grown oysters are growing at a very rapid pace, and there are way more snakes than usual for whatever reason this year.

Aside from those casual observations from this unscientific observer, life is whizzing by at break-neck speed.  I am looking forward to something settling down soon, but until it does I take solace in staring out the back window at sights such as these for instant blood-pressure-lowering relief.




Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunrise









This beautiful beginning to a day occurred several weeks ago, at the end of April.






May is my favorite month, and this year I seem to have missed it--all I did was blink and it's practically over.  All I remember is it was hot for a day or so, then it rained for what felt like weeks, then it turned cold, and now it's all but done.






It's astonishing to me that Memorial Day weekend is upon us so soon.





I'll be ushering in the summer with a cookout on Sunday.  Middle Sister will be in the creek on Boyfriend Ronnie's boat.  Baby Sis and Boyfriend Mills will be here from Richmond.  And my blog friends Lauren (from Nashville) and Angie will be in attendance.

It's my favorite weekend of the year.

Speaking of weekends, this one was a pretty busy one here in Mathews.  The bikers who visited for the county's annual Tour de Chesapeake enjoyed breezy but beautiful weather.  The party at Williams Wharf was once again spectacular.   You just can't beat dancing to live music watching the sunset over the East River.

I hope all is well in your world.  Thanks for stopping by for a small glimpse into mine.


Sunday, May 7, 2017

May Faire 2017





Saturday was an interesting day in Mathews.  The inaugural May Faire, devoted to springtime, May Queens, funnel cakes, clam chowder, and local history from 1600-1791, was launched.  

OK, so it wasn't necessarily devoted to funnel cakes and clam chowder. But from my booth, that's pretty much how I saw it.  The frigid brisk winds kept ushering the smells of food my way, making it very difficult to stay focused on telling passersby about the lovely items for sale in the Mathews County Visitor and Information Center.





In addition to a working blacksmith, an archaeological dig, musical performances and funnel cakes a pound cake competition, there were representatives from the Wolf Creek Cherokee Museum in Henrico on hand to talk about their culture.



This was sort of like a mini-Market Days, spring time edition. 





























I sat at the Visitor Center booth with my friend and across-the-creek neighbor Frances.  





We were lucky enough to be situated right next to Ed Jordan and his wife, who is a remarkable artist.

They came to Mathews several years ago, all the way from Idaho!




Although the day was way too windy! brisk, and there was an episode or two of light rain, the foot traffic was light but steady.  Former May Queens (CBW represented the class of 1982) were recognized and Bayside Youth Ballet performed maypole dances.  




A good time was had by all.


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Kayaking






Here in Mathews, it's been raining for forty days and forty nights what feels like forever.  Just when you think it can't get any drearier, it rains some more. Today it's supposed to clear up.  But so far, nope.

It's still overcast.




I took these pictures of the new kayak launch at the court house this morning after a six-mile run.  I needed some pictures of the court green for a blog post I did on the county's visitor site, and while I was there I decided to stop in to see how this place was doing.

One of these  days, it will stop raining I intend to bring my kayak here and do some exploring.  It's a great launching point.





There's a lot of activity in the court house area these days.  In addition to some pretty major improvements to the streetscape, a new pavilion has gone up right near the kayak launching site.



On days like today, it would be a nice place to briefly escape the raindrops while staring towards Put-In Creek. But here soon, the sun will be out again and it will provide a nice respite from the impending heat and humidity that inevitably accompanies summers.

Speaking of heat and humidity, my favorite month, May, is right around the corner. It's my favorite because everything here is so green and warm.  Although it can be stifling hot, it's usually not the same oppressive heat and humidity that June, July and August usually bring.

This year there's another reason to like May, and I wrote about it on the Mathews County Visitor and Information Center's blog.  (Click here.)




Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Oysters










These cages, which are used to grow oysters, live off Stutts Creek in Redart.









I've been lucky enough to sample many of the oysters pulled from these cages, and let me tell you what: They are tasty.  Especially when they're fried.








Last night I was treated to a dinner of fried oysters--fresh from this oyster farm--and a cucumber salad.  Let me tell you what again:  TASTY.






After a long commute, a brutal day at work, and another long ride home, something as simple as a fried oyster and a slice of cucumber swimming in balsamic vinegar and sugar can really make all the stress and worries of the day evaporate.

Thank you, Mr. Oyster.