Saturday, December 31, 2011

The cold comes and goes

We know we are having a mild winter for this part of our planet - daytime temperatures have been mostly in the mid-40's (Fahrenheit), with the occasional cold day. Our temperatures differ from those farther inland because of the temperature of the ocean water here. So even though the mountains have snow, we often do not. And even when we are warmish, just a bit inland (the nearest town) can be MUCH (20 degrees or more) colder. Today it is raining. The wind has been from the south, so it is warm (mid -40's). Earlier this week we had howling wind from the northwest, and it was cold (never out of the teens and low twenties - yes, we know it can get colder.)

Our experience of the cold thus far is that the tidal cove tends to freeze near its edges at low tide. In places, the water seems to freeze mid-stream (much like a waterfall can do) as it is running to the cove floor and out to the ocean as low tide approaches. Then, as the tide rises, the ice is lifted, melts at bit, and what remains floats giving a lovely white spatter - much like a fancy moving lace collar - to the edge of the cove at high tide. The gulls do not like to land on the ice, so they are crowded into a smaller area at low tide, which seems to lead to disputes about who can be where.

Mama Bear and Papa Bear have been impressed with the way people here take care of each other. Sawyer's Market made 15 turkeys available to the Westside Food Pantry at its distribution before Christmas. People registered for a drawing, and were delighted at the time of the drawing (you had to be present to win.) These people were happy for everyone who won, whether they personally won or not. One woman cried when she won - she is working, her husband is not, they need food assistance to help make ends meet. Another woman declined the opportunity to register - she said she would not need a turkey, and others would. These people share what is available.

Mama Bear has been cooking. She has tried one of the recipes from her fall cooking class - it turned out well. It was a Bolognese sauce that went with pasta, a Bechamel sauce and freshly grated parmesan reggiano cheese.. We had a romaine lettuce, spinach, green onion, dried cranberry, freshly grated parmesan reggiano cheese, glazed almond salad dressed with an olive oil/balsamic vinaigrette dressing and fresh bread with the meal. She will be making another recipe from the class for New Year's Day. It is a pork loin with a port wine fig sauce. Let us hope it, too, turns out well.

As this year ends, we hope all will find peace and comfort in the new year, with abundant opportunities to live, to laugh and to love.

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