April Showers

April Showers

It is April! Attila is out in the garden every day now, although if it rains he takes shelter, otherwise he is busy out there. So far he has planted walking onions, garlic, and radishes. The rhubarb is peeking through, which is wonderful to see, and my rose, that came from my Granny’s house, has taken on a subtle green colour, a very good sign! Already Attila has a few old plastic garbage bins collecting run off from the roof, which he is using to water the garden.

Yesterday was cool, and windy, and sunny! When the sun hit the back porch I was out there, and it was so wonderful to bask in the sun for a few hours; fully outfitted in warm footwear, pants, and my parka. But this morning there is no sign of the sun, the sky is grey and everything out there looks dampish.

Because our financial resources are now rather strained, I decided earlier in the week to turn the thermostat down by one degree centigrade, to 20.5C. We found that during the day it made no difference to us, we did not even notice it. But slowly, over the course of a few days, we both began to notice aches and pains, and feeling a little chilled during the night. I attribute this to the lower temperature in the house. I do not suspect we are ill, because we have been totally isolated for 11 days, and although it is possible that we are coming down with something, there are no other symptoms of significance. I’ve turned the heat up again, so I expect that within a few days our stiffness, aches, and pains will melt away. I feel better already.

Years ago we bought a 10 lb. bag of beets. They were carefully cooked, then frozen in two-serving size packages. Then they were forgotten. It is appropriate and needful now, that we turn to our on-hand supplies. Yesterday Attila roasted carrots, and the beets, for our dinner. They were delicious, although the texture of the beets was a bit rubbery, the flavour was good. Luckily we have some fresh carrots, purchased almost two weeks ago. Since we have no greens at this point, our daily salads are no longer enjoyed. But we do have other vegetables, thank goodness.

I still haven’t figured out how to get groceries in while staying in isolation. The local grocery store has pick-up, which, when I looked earlier in the week, has a one month wait for an open slot. One has to go into the store to pick up the order, which is not ideal, and one also has to touch a lot of surfaces to accomplish the task of pick up. We tried in once, over a month ago, and it was OK, but not really as safe as I would like; that was the trip where Attila wore a mask, and the cashier smirked at him. They do not carry out to the trunk of the car, which would work well for us, but it doesn’t happen here. There is a pick up service person, a young entrepreneur with a car who is building a business for himself by picking things up to deliver for people in town, at a reasonable charge ($5.00). I haven’t fully explored that possibility yet. There is another store with select items of food that will bring it out to place it in your trunk, but they do not carry many of the foods we eat, they have mostly value added packaged fast food type items, rather than ingredients. So I am still searching for some sort of solution.

The grocery issue is one where the shocking closure of the non-profit Seniors Services in town is mind boggling. They run on public and private donations, and closed down weeks ago, making no efforts at all to develop systems of service for isolated seniors during the pandemic. Of all the organizations in this area, they are the most equipped to identify and assist seniors. They remind me of rats leaving a sinking ship. I hope they aren’t paying their own salaries as they sit this out!!!



Date: 8:34 AM EDT Friday 3 April 2020
Condition: Light Rain
Pressure: 101.2 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: 4.8°C
Dew point: 3.6°C
Humidity: 92%
Wind: NNW 23 km/h
Visibility: 19 km


“Sometimes people are layered like that. There’s something totally different underneath than what’s on the surface. But sometimes, there’s a third, even deeper level, and that one is the same as the top surface one. Like with pie.”
Joss Whedon, Zack Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen, and Jed Whedon
Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog, 2008


  1. Joan Brennan

    While I am sure you know this already, beets, carrots, radish greens are all edible. And chickweed, dandelion greens should be poking up. Also dock is good when the leaves are small.
    Glad to hear your Granny Rose will provide beauty and comfort again this year!
    Loving the spring. Loving the new shoots of hope I see everywhere.
    Maple season bit however. I collected enough for a boil- about 16L and managed to burn it after coddling it along for hours. And that was my harvest. Grrr.
    Good thing my bees made it!
    All love to you both.

  2. Sandy

    Would the young man pick up your groceries for $5? That would be a real deal. They closed our senior center here too. Even worse they had to close the food pantry at our church. There were a number of families who relied on the food they got there. I’m hoping they’re finding another way to get food to them. It must be amazing when your Granny’s roses bloom! Stay safe my friend.

  3. Joannie, I didn’t know about radish greens! Last summer I ate the whole beat plant, except the roots, my carrots didn’t thrive so there weren’t any to try, but radishes, we can sure grow radishes!
    Spring is such a great time of year, your garden must be bursting with greetings for you.
    Wow, 16 L of sap, that is great. That is really unfortunate that it burned. I have only made maple syrup with my Grandpa, in the 70s. He had a huge cast iron cauldron, suspended by chains over an open fire, we spent hours and hours and hours out there, such a great memory.
    The bees made it! Hooray! I admire your bee keeping, I wouldn’t have the nerve for it, it sure does not look easy.
    Love to you and your crew, stay safe dear friend!

  4. Sandy, I haven’t contacted him yet, the first available slot for online ordering is at the end of April, so I think I’d better get moving on this, it is a long wait for groceries! Wow, the help services shut down just when they are needed most, incredible. Going forward I will not support any organizations that closed shop and abandoned their clients completely. There is a lot an organization can do from home, mailing lists, telephone calls, all sorts of things, but here they have chosen to simply disappear for the duration.
    Granny’s Rose hasn’t bloomed yet, but every year the plant is stronger and hardier, maybe this summer we will see some roses!
    Stay safe dear friend!

  5. “over the course of a few days, we both began to notice aches and pains, and feeling a little chilled during the night. I attribute this to the lower temperature in the house.”

    I *have* wondered whether getting a cold neck and shoulders throughout the night could be a reason I wake up with the “neck thing” some mornings … but then it would be all mornings, wouldn’t it, since I turn the thermostat down to 68F every night before going to bed.

    Then again, maybe some nights the blankets inch down and I don’t notice, and others they don’t. I might just start wearing warmer tops to bed.

    We still have a lot of snow so there is no greenery showing yet.


  6. Kate, that is a great idea,to wear a warmer top to bed, to see if that makes a difference, maybe a turtleneck, nice and cozy! I know my hips ache something awful in the mornings when I don’t bundle up enough at night during the winter months.
    Snow! I don’t envy you at all, but if we still lived at our country house, we would be looking at snow too. I’ve said before living here feels like being in the Bahamas, a bit of an exageration, but really, the difference is striking, between the seasons at our Country House, and here at Mist Cottage. It won’t be long though, that sun is getting stronger by the day, and at some point it will make short work of the white stuff.

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