The sun made a rare appearance in chilly Seabeck today. From my spot on the recliner, I pulled back the comforter and soaked in a few rays streaming through the skylight. Housebound for nearly two weeks with pneumonia, it didn’t take much to lure me outside. I bundled up the best that I could and slogged my vitamin D deficient body down the gravel drive way to the mailbox. Jasper tugged on his leash, urging me to pick up the pace.
Jasper stopped every now and again, tilted his head toward the tree line and inhaled with growling snuffles. I joined in, huffing perfumed air of evergreen, cedar, sword fern, and the earthy duff of fir needles and decomposing maple leaves beneath my feet. Fresh air and sunshine were healing tonics. I past the quarter-mile marked by the mailbox, hung a right, and continued down the winding asphalt.
Knees and ankles stopped clicking. Hips loosened, and I realized that for the first time in several days, I was breathing through my nose. Paradise.
My eyes seldom left the roadside path and ditch, partly because chronic vertigo kept me focused on footing, but mostly because my inner-scrounge never gives it a rest. I am always looking for something of extreme value in ditches. I’ve never found anything amazing, but I often see several species of mushrooms. It’s early for shroom-hunting. Plus it’s a poor idea to eat ones growing alongside a road or other areas of potential pollutants. But the hunt helped the miles go by. Mostly, my eyes fixed on the metallic blue and silver of Bushe beer cans. I’ve never drank Bushe beer, but it seems popular, at least among litter-bugs of Seabeck.
Everything is green in Seabeck, all year long. The ditches were clogged with thick grasses and weeds. I eyed a few clumps of dandelions and remembered several recipes for sautéed greens, tea, and even dandelion wine. I’ve never eaten dandelion, but I promised myself to get out into the back yard tomorrow and gather a few. The winter dandelions are not as large as ones found in the summertime and there are no blossoms for wine, but it’s comforting to know that I could eat weeds all year long if I wanted too.