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.



Saturday, April 15, 2017

Happy Easter



















I'm negligent in everything my blogging responsibilities these days, but I did have time recently to take these pictures of spring blooms off of Stutts Creek in Redart.

Slowly but surely Nature is bouncing back to life after the doldrums of winter.  Green leaves are sprouting, dandelions and buttercups! flowers are blooming and yellow pollen is covering everything.

I'm getting excited because my May, my favorite month, is just around the corner.

Happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Tour de Chesapeake 2017







These pictures, taken in 2012 when everything was lush and green, help illustrate how quiet, peaceful, scenic and flat our county's roads are.








Flat and quiet roads are important when you're training for a half-marathon, as I was when I took these.







Flat and quiet--and scenic-- are also important when you're bicycling.






Once a year, Mathews County holds a major bicycling event, the Tour de Chesapeake.  

Not to be confused in any way with the highly competitive Tour de France, our tour involves a day of leisurely cycling through scenes such as these, and includes lots of activities for avid and casual cyclists, friends and family.

Friday night there's an opportunity to cruise the beautiful East River and learn something about our local history.  Saturday morning the 101 miles of routes that cover Mobjack, Gwynns Island, Bethel Beach and New Point Comfort will open to bicyclists.  Chesapeake Bay Paddling will offer kayak and paddle board trials; the Bay School will host an art show and sale, and the weekend of fun culminates with a seafood feast and party at Williams Wharf--my favorite part of the whole weekend.

Open to the public and overlooking the beautiful East River, the Party at the Wharf includes live entertainment from Lynda Smith and 7th Street--a fabulous band that can coax even the most awkward dancer out on the dance floor.  (Ask me how I know. My middle name is Awkward. My other middle name is Uncoordinated.  But the music beckons!)

This year's weekend of fun and festivities will be on May 20th.  If you live here and are interested in volunteering, if you wish to be a sponsor, or if you wish to participate and need more information, contact the event director at Email:  tourdechesapeake@gmail.com.

Check out the Mathews County Visitor and Information Center and the Tour de Chesapeake websites for more details.

I'll be volunteering at this event and will be the awkward one on the dance floor Saturday night, so I hope to see you there!




Saturday, March 18, 2017

Spring Break







This endearing structure lives in a field near the end of the road at Freeport, just up the road from Mathews. I stopped in recently on my way home from having lunch with a friend in Saluda.










The wonderfully weathered wood and the vestiges of vines made it impossible for me to drive by without stopping to say hello and take a few shots.










Pretty soon, the weather will take its turn towards warm, and the weeds will take over my house greenery will take over everything.






There are signs that the process has already started.


I just returned from a once-in-a-lifetime cruise with Baby Sister, which is why this blog hasn't been updated in a while.  On board, we saw tons of live music from bands of the 1970s, including Firefall, Ambrosia, Little River Band, Player, Orleans, and my favorite:  Peter Frampton.  Although the best days were the ones at sea, we also visited Cozumel and Key West.

Now, it's a slow return to the town called Normal Life, where my workload will gradually increase, and much of my spare time will be devoted to work for the Mathews County Visitor and Information Center.

But I do still vow to keep up with this blog.

I hope all is well in your neck of the woods.



Monday, February 27, 2017

Daffodils





Although the calendar still says February, 










Mother Nature is telling a different story.







Our daffodils are blooming, trees are budding, grass is growing and March hasn't even arrived to the party yet.

The temperatures will be around 80 the next few days.  Osprey have already been sighted in the local rivers and creeks.  The song birds are singing.  The frogs are frolicking.

I'm not complaining, but it's unusual.

Welcome, Spring.  I know you're not really here yet, but it's good to know you're on the way.


Monday, February 20, 2017

New Point









On Saturday, after going for a long walk, I took my new camera for a drive down to the southern end of the county.










My new camera and I are still getting acquainted, 
a process that's going to take forever a while. 







One of the places I stopped was Bayside. 










a bustling wharf and fish-packing plant back in the day.








The weather this weekend was remarkably warm for February.  Daffodils are already starting to bloom, certain trees have buds, and my back yard already could use a good cutting.

Most everything is still this dull blah brown of winter, though.  

Last weekend I was in Dillon Beach, California, where everything was green and beautiful.  We took a day trip to Calistoga, my new favorite small town where I would like to spend the winters when I win the lottery.  

Note to self:  Start buying lottery tickets, please.  Thanks.

In other news, I'm traveling to Atlanta this week for work, but when I return the weekend weather promises to be warm and wonderful once again.

I'll definitely spend more time becoming acquainted with all the gadgets and gizmos and settings on my camera, because there's way too much much to learn.

I hope all is well in your world.

-CBW




Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Williams Wharf





These pictures of the old railway at Williams Wharf were taken four years ago.









Williams Wharf has undergone quite the transformation in the past few years. 










Sadly, this very photogenic piece of history is no longer there. 






But, happily, new life is being breathed into this site.   

A wonderful addition to the community, the William and Catherine Owens Water's Edge Center, is currently under construction and promises to be a world-class community center and home to the Mathews crew team.  

Click here for more information on Williams Wharf, the Mathews Land Conservancy, and the new project.

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In other  news, I am excited to be preparing for a trip out west to visit wonderful friends I've made through this blogging gig.  Somehow, even though I'm empty nesting, my life seem to be busier and fuller than ever.  That's not a complaint, it's just a surprise.

I hope all is well in your world.


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Queens Creek










These shots of Queens Creek were taken during a recent froggy foggy spell.








The light was low,








and the colors rather drab.







The zoom on my new camera is pretty amazing, though.  I'm still in the novice stage and have too much lots to learn, but I am looking forward to getting out in warmer weather and experimenting.

Although these pictures may be a little drab and dull, my life has been anything but.  My son is spending the semester in Valencia, Spain.  It was a little nerve-wracking to send him off with really only blind faith that he was going to arrive safely and be OK.  But he seems to be flourishing and thriving.  I couldn't be more proud of him on this once-in-a-lifetime adventure.

Daughter is also thriving in UVA's Architecture School.  She, too, is talking about studying abroad at some point.

In other news, we recently celebrated my father's 76th birthday. A grand event with fresh seafood, the party was a success except for the $50 Golden Corral gift card from Baby Sis that "went missing."  After two days of hand-wringing and "Can you look through that nasty garbage one more time to be sure we didn't throw it away?", I am pleased to announce said "missing" gift card was located safely in my mother's pocketbook, where it had been resting comfortably all along during all the commotion and associated hullabaloo.  *sigh*
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In two weeks, I take off for Dillon Beach, California, to reunite with dear friends I've made from this very blog.  Since we are short-staffed at work, and I am doing several people's jobs in addition to my own, to say that I'm excited for this little break away from everything is most assuredly an understatement.

Last but not least, I will be blogging for the Mathews County Visitor and Information Center starting next week. Once it's up and running, I'll link it here.

That's it from this neck of the woods.  Hope all is well where you are.