Month: May 2019

gardening

Apple Blossoms in the Woods

Sitting in traffic a couple of weeks ago on Route 110 in Chelmsford, Massachusetts I glanced over at an old apple tree blossoming in the woods. The woods have grown up around it, shading the tree, but it was still throwing out blossoms to be pollinated for fruit. The average apple tree lives about as…

Lifestyle

The Dip That Matters

I re-read The Dip, by Seth Godin.  I’m definitely in a Dip at my present job, and I have several opportunities to change being dangled in front of me.  So I figured I’d re-read this quick book to add some clarity to my thinking.  Here are my highlighted notes from my second reading of this…

History/Travel

The Pine Tree Riot

Maine is known as the “Pine Tree State” for good reason; it’s one of the state’s most significant natural resources. New Hampshire has plenty of this particular resource as well, but “Granite State” works just as well. That combination of pine sap and granite makes for a gritty edge. New Hampshire settlers were no pushovers,…

Habits | Lifestyle

Time Warps and Muscle Memories

May has thirty-one days in it.  That would mean there are eleven days left in it.  I know – math genius.  But psychologically, next weekend is Memorial Day Weekend.  The unofficial start of summer.  Time zips right along, ready or not. This morning getting out of bed was a little tougher.  A weekend of yard…

History/Travel | Travel

Rhumb Lines and the Great Circle

Whenever I take a flight of any consequence, I inevitably pull out the airline’s magazine to flip through.  I usually end up scanning the flight maps that appear in the last few pages of the magazine to see the arcs of the travel routes from various hubs.  I’m not a navigator, and I’m definitely not…

gardening

New England Hops

New England was once the hop growing capital of North America.  Like the population, it migrated to New York and eventually to the west coast.  But it all started here, introduced by the Massachusetts Bay Company in 1629, making it one of the original crops brought to North America.  Potatoes wouldn’t be introduced for almost…

History/Travel

Frogs and All

Yesterday, after thirteen lucky years together, our black lab Bodhi took his last breath.  Forgive me for this brief eulogy. There was the time you dug up every tulip bulb I’d just planted because you smelled the bone meal I used to fertilize them. There was the winter when we thought you escaped and were…

History/Travel

John Smith and New England

Captain John Smith is usually associated with Jamestown and Pocahontas.  And he’s most famous for his relationship with the Native American tribes in Virginia.  Smith was proactively aggressive with hostile tribes, but proactively friendly with peaceful tribes.  There are plenty of examples in colonial history where hostile and peaceful tribes weren’t distinguished when it came…

History/Travel

Choice White Pines and Good Land

I have a fascination with maps, and especially old maps, that dates back to when I was a kid tracing the route that we would take on family vacations.  When I started driving myself around I bought maps to help me navigate first the town I lived in and later New England and points beyond. …

gardening

Leafing Out

Mid-May; the time of year when the bones of the northern New England forests are once again masked in greens and yellows. Tree trunks, stone walls and other hardscape details disappear into clouds of leaves and shadows. The calendar says it’s been spring for awhile but it doesn’t really feel like it until the trees…