Apricot tree, April 2020. After blossoms and in leaf, the next step of the beginning.

Spring. A season of hope laced with atmospheric capriciousness. Nature’s cycle of beginnings and endings. Winter into spring, dormancy into growth, darkness into light. Beginnings and endings in other arenas, too. Notes from beta readers nudge me toward my manuscript-in-progress. They’ve marked the end of my wondering if anyone will find this new story interesting (they emphatically do!). The 2022 Fort Walla Walla Museum Living History season begins this Sunday, with a 4-person ensemble piece I’m honored to be part of (details here):




I’m trying to figure out if it’s the beginning of the ending, or the ending of the ending, of Friday’s time on earth. Which of two appetite stimulants will work best for him at this phase? This week he’s hidden in corners and under furniture as if to say “I’m going to lay down here and die.” Then, he rallies.


Have you ever noticed how nonfiction books dealing with fear about the future come back to the notion that change is inevitable but our reaction to change is a choice that is under our control? Yet those of us who write fiction are instructed to “throw rocks” at our protagonists (mostly, but not always, metaphorically).


You seem to be metaphorically scuffing your toe in the dirt more than throwing rocks.


I’ll blame that on spring, Lily. Indecisiveness permeates the weather right now. On April 4th it was 72 F; today, for the second day running, we have a small accumulation of wet snow. Three wee asparagus spears have come up this week. Good thing I stroll around the garden every day, as I noticed them in time to cover them with straw before the sub-freezing overnight temperatures set in. Again.

The beginning of April 15, 2022, Walla Walla, WA.

Who cares about asparagus? I just hope the frost won’t kill the apricots.


I’m cautiously optimistic that it hasn’t been quite cold enough to hurt the apricots, 9. The recent bitter cold has mostly been the result of a nasty southwest wind. That’s where today’s snow came from, too. And, to answer your question, I care about asparagus! Last year the ten crowns I planted produced only spindly ferns but this year I’m hopeful of a small yield, especially since the region’s first commercial harvest of asparagus was destroyed by the recent cold snap. Walla Walla’s elevation is just shy of one thousand feet so we don’t get hit quite as hard as the nearby foothills of the Blues and the fabled Blue Mountains.


The Blues are definitely developing some snow pack, which is great for the overall water supply but if it melts too quickly it could cause flooding. If you want to hear ceaseless muttering about the weather in the style of Goldilocks, hang out with wheat farmers. It is always too hot/too cold, too wet/too dry, never “just right.” They never seem to find the nirvana of Baby Bear’s bed and get a good night’s sleep. No wonder these folks look so tired!


Now, where was I?


I have no idea.

We were talking about food. What’s for lunch?






Yes, Lily. I opened another can this morning because tuna water was the one thing Friday ate voluntarily yesterday. Today, he turned his nose up at it. The goal of providing him with gustatory pleasure as well as nutrition is a moving target. Sick-ish picky older cat or actively dying cat? Beginning or ending?


Fixating on possible outcomes really isn’t helpful, and I probably didn’t need a third cup of coffee this morning, either.

Time to switch over to herbal tea and living in the moment, where there are no beginnings and endings, only now.


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