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In which the sequestering continues, but we find things that need done

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I can't help wondering if we are all going to be permanently scarred by the pandemic, afraid to hug our friends or shake hands, or even hang out in public again.

For now, of course, none of that is an option.  Everything non-essential is closed...including the trail heads.





This sign was a bit worrisome, as "slide area" is the designation for what happened in the region six years ago, killing 43 people in a neighborhood adjacent the trail.




The Whitehorse Trail is not a pristine wilderness adventure trail.  It's a reclaimed railroad grade, converted to a multi-use (non-motorized) trail by the Snohomish County Parks.




 The trail had been on the "we own it but don't have money to build it" list until after the mudslide in Oso, when an anonymous donor gave them a boatload of cash to retrieve the trail from the blackberry brambles, re-deck the 22 bridges, and open it to the public.  The grand opening was originally scheduled for this Spring.  The planned festivi…

In which I finish a dragon and try to re-jigger an art grant

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If you've been in a Zoom, Teams, or other online meeting with me lately, you would have seen me multi-tasking to keep my hands busy.


Jim and Monica and I each started making dragon puppets last week.  Jim finished his very charming paper bag puppet in a single day.  Monica is still working on hers.  I finally finished mine today!




Most people I'm meeting with now have worked with me for years--decades--so the sight of me mucking about with yarn and thread during meetings isn't new.  



Holding still and staying quiet in a chair is always hard for me unless I have a kinetic task, and craft projects are an acceptable option for librarians, especially librarians who work with kiddos!  



As soon as she was finished, I took Tam outside to meet the Dragon.





Then, we toured the back yard.  Tam roared at the pea sprouts.



She chuckled at the chickens.




Tam is a little afraid of the dogs.  They think she is fascinating, and they want to pull out her stuffing.



We're making all these drag…

In which we're staying home and trying to squint at Spring in the distance

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Spring seems far away.





Now, the clouds have moved in








The ten-day forecast calls for rain, followed by showers, mostly cloudy with showers followed by rain: normal, but not welcome.



The day after Fee got new shoes, most of the trails closed.*






In other news, yesterday was Foxie Loxie's birthday.  I found his AKC Litter Certificate when I was excavating my desk at home.


We celebrated by going for a walk on the Whitehorse Trail out of Darrington.  We talked about cake, but we didn't make one.




Like many of my friends and neighbors who are locked down, I've been making bread.  There's something about making bread that makes staying home more cozy and less claustrophobic.


In which, in the midst of crappy times, there are still things to make us laugh

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I won't lie:  the pandemic is bad.  





There's too much time to stalk the news channels, to rant and rave about various elected officials who may or may not be idiots, and way too much time to worry about the uncertain future.
I remind myself that I'm perfectly capable of improvising under less-than-perfect circumstances--that is, in fact, what a lot of library work involves (not to mention farm tasks! and endurance riding!  and pretty much everything I do!).

I can use the tools and materials I have to address the problems I encounter, and I will be fine.
So, I've been digging in the garden and working on my puppet.

I've also been touching bases with friends online, making sure everybody has what they need, if not everything they want.  And between us all, we've managed to come up with some stuff to laugh at.

I'm going to put some laughable stuff here for y'all.  If you have something you think I should share, send it, and I'll put up another post.  

In which there's an update from the Plague Zone: it's hard but there are dragons

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"I didn't go to a circus until after I was married."    -- my mom, reflecting on quarantine measures for polio




I heard someone interviewed on the radio last week who bleated something like "there's never been a real epidemic here in living memory," and I thought, "what are you, about eleven years old?"
My mom remembers clearly that summer was called "polio season" when she was growing up.  Summer was when poliomyelitis would strike--fast--leaving children paralyzed and unable breathe without machine-assist.  Polio terrified my Gran, and she kept her kids in their own yard all summer.  No trips to the swimming pool, and definitely no fairs or carnivals or circuses where there were sure to be crowds.  That was normal child-rearing stuff then.

Polio isn't even close to the only real epidemic we've faced "in living memory,"  for crying out loud. 

Epidemiologists have been Monday-morning-quarterbacking the response to Swine Flu i…