Here I sit in “Sunny Sequim” feeling personally insulted that the weather had the nerve to drop snow on us. There’s no real reason to complain as it amounted to only three inches and started to melt a few hours later. After forty-six years in Alaska I certainly have no right to whine! But the truth of the matter is that the snow arrived one day after the garden seeds arrived in the mail. Wash the car—it will rain. Receive garden seeds—it will snow.
Yes, those big, fat flakes pouring straight down (no wind—yay!) were beautiful to watch. The quiet enveloped us. Snowfall seems to be a signal, too, for the birds to descend on the feeders in the yard—several different types of seed feeders plus some suet hangers. House finches, sparrows, and wrens converge on the vertical caged feeders while juncos, finches, mourning doves, red-winged blackbirds, and a towhee or two land on other feeders or glean what the others drop on the ground. One enterprising flicker has figured out how to squeeze his head through the cage and stretch his long beak into the hole for seeds. Strange diet for a flicker. The suet doesn’t interest this one, although his friends love it. There’s no shortage of insects for the flickers this winter as we see them caught in spider webs.
The Anna’s hummingbirds are out in force, too, and besides slurping up sugar water from all their feeders they will pilfer insects from spider webs. Hmm, they could teach the flickers a new trick.
The weather caused a number of cancellations over the weekend, one of which was our second Covid vaccination. It’s rescheduled for next weekend when happily temperatures will be in the upper 40s. Having the two shots, however, won’t alter the stay home/stay safe routine that’s been perfected over the last twelve months. Unfortunately there are too many people who refuse the vaccine to make it safe to return to pre-Covid times, and we’ll be wearing masks for many more months. Anticipating that, we’ve built up quite a diverse “wardrobe” of masks.
Masks that give others insights into our personalities have now taken the place of Tell-the-world-what-I-think T-shirts. I’m grateful for several reasons. One, masks are cheaper. Two, masks are warmer than T-shirts. Three, masks are easier to store and wash. Four, I look better in a mask than in a T-shirt. We now wear book-themed masks and maritime-themed masks. Fair trade, eco-sourced masks. Bright, Indian prints. Even underwear masks. Oh, let me explain. Early in the pandemic search for elusive masks, we found a package of white cotton masks made by—Hanes. Yep, looks and feels like underwear material. Well, we have to give the company credit for a quick solution to the sudden demand for masks, now don’t we . . .
As a writer, I actually embrace the requirement (opportunity) to stay home and do what I like best—research, write, and read. The other activities in my life are easily taken care of through Zoom meetings, some of which are large enough that no one can tell I’m busy outlining my next chapter on notebook paper.
Seriously, though, the past year has helped me discover the focus of my writing, and in doing so I have one novel in its second draft stage and another in its planning and plotting stage. And without consciously realizing where I was headed, I’ve finally settled on historical fiction as my preferred genre. I appreciate my blessings and am grateful.
The pandemic is scary. It’s no respecter of persons. It’s an equal opportunity evil for all. My personal response in no way makes light of the horrors being experienced every hour of every day in every country. It’s just one response of many out there that seeks to find something positive out of the negative. That’s human, and thank God we are still humans formed in His image!