Archive - May 2006

May 16th

Aunt Olla gets carded

I went to the Fertile Hilton today to make sure that the plans for the big Settende Mai bash were all finalized, but Aunt Olla had left for Flom. Her friend Sybil, who came up from Minneapolis to play piano for the celebration, picked Olla up and they went galavanting.

They spent two hours at the Flom cafe, visiting with the locals, before Olla decided that they should go to Moorhead to the Pizza Hut. So, off they went.

May 15th

Swans nesting

It looks like mama swan has decided to lay her eggs atop the muskrat house in the middle of the swamp outside my window. Last year, the eggs hatched elsewhere and the swan family of nine moved over to this swamp in mid-June. This year, it appears as if they are going to do the whole family thing on my swamp.

May 13th

Twins show life

Last night, Santana pitched with his usual panache. Tonight, The Twins survived a start by Radke, coming back from a 4-0 defecit to win 8-4. Francisco Liriano pitched well in relief of the ever-mediocre Radke, striking out 5 in a little less than three innings.

If this were a sane world, Liriano would be in the starting rotation and Radke would be golfing in Florida. But it is not a sane world, and Twins fans are going to be stuck watching Radke serve up gopher balls for the rest of this season until he mercifully retires.

May 12th

Learning idiom

Leo asked me last night, "what does 'pretty darn cute' mean?"

I tried to tell him, but then had to ask why he asked. Turns out some customers had told Dot at the till that the Brazilian out back was "pretty darn cute." Dot passed the compliment on to Leo, who really didn't know what to think of it.

A couple of nights ago, Leo came back from English class so I asked for a report. Who else is in the class? I asked. "I couple of old bags," he replied.

May 11th

Busy with business

The geraniums are starting to fly out the door at the nursery. The real start of planting season usually doesn't come until Mother's Day, but a lot of people are trying to get ahold of particular items before they run out.

The nursery business is peculiar. We did 1/3 of our projected annual business from April 1 through today. If all goes well, the next 1/3 will come in the next 10 days. All but a tiny fraction of the final third will happen before July 1. Then, it is all but over for another year.

May 9th


Spoke tonight at a teacher recognition banquet in Thief River Falls. It was a good group. I had a speech in mind for the past month, but altered it a bit when I got there--told some stories about Olla's teaching career as well as my Grandma's comments on the old one-room schoolhouse ("not a lot of education went on").

May 8th

Busy season

After a crazy weekend, things stayed busy into Monday, which means we are going to be going crazy for the next four weeks. I fight irritibility and anxiety this time of year. Although I enjoy business immensely, a few little incidents can turn the enjoyment into peevishness.

The spring brings an overdose of human contact. Ninety-five percent of it is salubrious. However, it is the five percent which sticks in one's craw. For example, I caught myself spending time thinking about a man who was quite brusk and unpleasant this morning. What was his problem? What did I do?

Hooded merganser

Caught this cutie on the pond this morning. Boy, did he and his harem flee when I approached the shore for a photo.

May 7th


This little girl struggled to the counter with her tomato, and then waited to be checked out with a perfect bored expression.

Business has been crazy. Yesterday was wild all day. Joe gave three seminars. The morning sun shines in through the high windows in the school house on some participants in the first seminar.

May 5th

Princess Kay

The Princess Kay flowering plum blooms seemed to survive last night's twenty-eight degree temperature. Behind are red-twigged dogwood, just leafing out, and the lurid lime green poplar leaves.