Good morning all:

Weekly wisdom from deep within the north woods:

“Be a yardstick of quality. Most people aren’t used to working in a place where their life depends on it—logging.” ~ From our north woods everyman, Claire

Our neighbor’s had a few trees knocked down – one tall dead pine and several hanging over their cabin. I appreciated the logger’s concern over my vehicles, especially the possibility of the dead pine ‘exploding’ on impact and bits flying the Duck’s way.

Tuesday evening we had Vai and Adrianne’s birthday dinner at the close-by Outpost Lodge. Aside from a fine time and a fine dinner we also were shown a movie of logging operations in this area using footage shot in the 1940s and ‘50s. Amazingly rough work, mostly performed in the winter, and every step taken could be your last unless you planned for it. It’s time for my hot coffee and a few more thoughts of these guys plying the ice and logs on the Mississagi River—brrr.

A wonderful week – has been had with Adrianne, Tevita, Vaioleti, and Viliami, we’ll sorely miss them when they pull out this evening for their, through-the-night, run back to the ‘Nati. Mind you, that doesn’t mean Marcia and I won’t grab a several hours worth of serious napping—something Marcia claims is sorely needed.

They did it all (except for catching fish). In the fishing department anything worthwhile managed to jump off the hook and only the little stuff stayed. Tevita truly had a “Conservation” Fishing License. But, ATV rides, boat rides, Kayaking (Vili for 2-minutes), even a visit to the local Alpaca Farm were all hits. At the Alpaca farm Vai declared that Alpacas were “talented eaters.”

Vai even managed a horseback ride on her birthday. Vili was more appreciative riding in a wagon, any kind of wagon.

Tuesday morning – it was a little after two in the morning and Adrianne was standing in our bedroom’s doorway; “I need to take Vai to the hospital” she calmly stated, “breathing problems.” By two-thirty Vai was strapped in her seat, Adrianne driving, and I was the navigator as we set out on the hour and a half run to the border and the closest USA hospital.

To make a long story short, she is fine. Fine that is, after receiving two breathing treatments, two syringes of some oral medication, and X-ray, and two nasty shots in her booty. By 6:30 we were all parked at a nearby 24 hr Wal-Mart waiting for the pharmacy to open at 9:00. By noon she was back at Northern Comfort eating and playing heartily.

Animal Planet – the color shift to fall has begun as we look at the forest across the cove from us and the trees on the roadways. In a short while the color, especially the bright red sugar Maples, will be spectacular. But, at the same time it’s also with a bit of mixed emotion.

Last evening’s “Blue” moon was spectacular; nevermind that it was proclaimed as “no it’s yellow” by the young-uns in camp. Maybe it was just a bit brighter as we remember astronaut Neil Armstrong, a hero who gave and expected little in return.

I just received word of the passing of our neighbor, Bonia Shur a composer of note and a wonderful person to have happened in my life. As my Jewish friends offer; “Hamakom y’nachem, etchem b’toch sha’ar availai Zion v’Yirushalayim.“

On a more pleasant note, cannot forget to congratulate Derek, Marin, Kellen, and Dinah on starting their new school year in grand fashion—nice going you guys!

Make it a great week everyone. Today it’s a very Happy Birthday to bro. George

Archives – Saturday, July 31, 2004
It really was “once upon a blue moon”. Here let me explain after I have a bit more of this great and fresh mug of Colombian java sitting next to me.

My flight was booked late and I ended up sitting way in the rear of a Delta MD-88, window seat, next to the starboard engine. I was Miami bound, paying no mind, my head buried into my latest read, Garrison Keillor’s “Wobegon Boy”. I guess it was the plane’s shuddering and banking that caused me to look up and out and beyond the engine cowling. The very last of the day’s light reflected off the cloud tops to the west, casting some great shadows and a variety of pinks in the distance. Around me the clouds were already black. It was then that I noticed that the cloud tops would glow intermittedly, much like Chinese lanterns. I stopped reading and just sat and enjoyed this wonderful spectacle. Since the thunderstorm was affecting airport traffic we ended up circling a bit. The lightning, the banking around the various cloud formations, the shuddering, and the views, made an otherwise non-event into something very beautiful. Today’s full “blue moon” lived up to its promise—for me at least.

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