Thursday, October 6, 2011

Spawned Out

 Did you ever have one of those days when you feel kind of like this guy? It's obvious that he's seen better days. No more running with the school, chowing down on fresh seafood or chasing the ladies for this old timer, he's all spawned out. From the look on his face I would say he must have been having a great time- either that or the water was really, really cold.
 Today I feel kind of like this fish looks. Yesterday was one of those beautiful fall days that we get on occasion in October, so I couldn't stay inside. You never know when they will come again so any last minute yard work or outside projects have to be done on such a day. I had mentioned to my neighbor that I would trim her rose bush a few days ago, so yesterday I thought I would take advantage of the weather and get it done before the weather changed. I didn't realize at the time what a monumental job it would be. I set up  my step ladder and brought out the long handled clippers and went to work. Holy Toledo- that bush was huge! I could pretty much reach all the outer branches without much trouble, but trimming the inner branches was a bit more challenging. I had to reach in past the ones I'd just cut.By the time I finished cutting it and hauling it away, I had a couple hours invested in that project. I knew that I was brushing against the thorns, but it didn't seem too bad, a few scratches here and there. It wasn't until last night that I realized the full extent of the damage. My right arm looks like I tried to separate two tom cats in an alley fight. If I'd had brain number one I would have donned my old Carhartts jacket and done battle with that bush. Stickers and thorns are no problem for that tough fabric. I'll be sure to wear it next time I trim a rose bush; if there ever is a next time.
 Speaking of stickers and thorns, I'm reminded of the time I was served creamed nettles on the farm. For those not familiar with nettles, they are a green plant that grows wild here. They are usually residing alongside other plants, kind of pretending to be innocent, but they aren't at all. I don't know their proper Latin name, but their full name here is stinging nettles, with emphasis on the stinging. If you should happen to brush against them with your bare skin, the little prickly barbs get you and the stinging sensation can last for an hour or more.It feels kind of like an electric shock.  For the life of me, I don't know why anyone would want to eat  such a thing. We were living on a farm for crying out loud, instead of eating wild, stinging plants, why not grow something edible like spinach if you want to eat something green? I never understood the logic of some of the decisions, I was just the unhappy recipient of them. It was bad enough that we were served nettles at all, but one of the ladies who was sent to town to cook for the men working there decided to cream them and put them over mashed potatoes. Frankly I've seen better looking things in a litter box. Needless to say, I didn't eat supper that night. Ah well, I least I'm still around, which is more than I can say for that Humpie in the picture, but if you've gotta die, I can think of worse ways to bite the bullet.

10 comments:

  1. Creamed nettles sounds nasty. But whatever we were served, I wasn't ruined for plain steamed nettles, which I still regard as delicious.

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  2. Hi Jeremy- I think you were spared some of the early culinary experiences that folks early on had to endure. Like anything, there will be those who love what others can't stomach. I know folks who like rutabagas and hominy too. To each his own I guess. Those creamed nettles were pretty gross though- right up there with the bear liver mush.

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  3. That's it, I'm going through the backyard here to find some nettles to cream into a soup to feed these kids when they've been bad. What's that you say? You don't want to stack wood? That's fine son, come on in the house for a nice hot cup of creamed nettels. One cup of that and stacking firewood might not seem like such a bad thing. LOL I so miss Hoonah!!

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  4. What a great idea Erika- a universal punishment! That cracked me up. I don't know how I ever passed up that idea when the kids were home. Something to keep in mind for the grandkids though- thanks. Hope you're doing well gal.

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  5. I am, I blogged today about how God let me know he was listening and I was not alone. Such a wonderful feeling.

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  6. TBBOTTS
    Our 19 year old son Alex was fortunate enough to spend summer 2011 in Hoonah with Aldwin Harder - fishing with him. Aldwin and my wife and I went to high School together here in Kansas. Just wanted to let you know that I stumbled across your blog and really enjoy your writing. My wife and I were lucky enough to come up there this past July for one week and it was so beautiful and so hard to leave and come back to Kansas where at that time it was averaging 110º every day. Ugh. Anyway - wanted to let you know how much reading your stories has kept Hoonah fresh in our minds. Thank you for what you do Sir.

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  7. Creamed nettles...yum! :)

    Glad I don't remember any of that, love you dad!

    Autumn

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  8. That's so cool that there's other people gettin onto your blog now....I remember nettles just fine...even remember haftin to eat em steamed time or two..but never creamed....Hmm..might hafta try that;-) Haha..love you! P.s. my friend from work tried your muffins....said he commented on your muffin man blog. Love ya..AJ

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  9. Hi Perway- it seems a little odd addressing you this way. I'm not sure if this is a Ms or Mr or your first name, but in any event,welcome to the blog.I'm always happy to have folks reading along. I just spoke to Aldwin the yesterday. He purchased some king salmon from me through his business- Huna Fish Co. I'm glad you got an opportunity to visit here. Though I've lived here for thirty five years, I never tire of looking at the scenery here.I can't imagine 110 degrees-that would be like living in hell I'm afraid. When it gets much above 70 here I darn near melt. Thanks again for commenting and I hope you continue to enjoy the blog. I look forward to hearing from you again.

    Hi girls- I think you kids were fortunate enough to escape the creamed nettles incident or disaster as it was. That was reserved for us unfortunate slobs who were working in town at the time. I know there were other culinary delights you had to imbibe though, so my heart goes out to you. Love you girls!

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  10. Haha..guess we were the "fortunate ones" dad...we got the salmon pea wiggle..or whatever that nastiness was called..blech! I cannot stand hominy either..I tried it one time and it came outta my mouth just as fast as it went in...don't have much issue with rutabegas, as you do, nor turnips or any such thing..but I have had bear meat when Craig shot his blacky and I can tell you that is one of the nastiest things I have ever had since Sy the bull's tongue! So neat to see people from out of state commenting on your site...hoping to see that # escalate..I tell everyone about your book as often as possible....love ya..

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