Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Golden Gardens Low Tide

For someone who grew up at 29 degrees latitude (similar to San Antonio, Texas), Seattle has a strong seasonality. Its the shortening evenings, the ripening pumpkins, the Halloween costumes arriving at Value Village and the BACK TO SCHOOL displays at area retailers that give you the message that summer is going to be over soon and you should just get over it and plan the holidays.

Realizing this over the weekend (it is no longer light when Wren wakes before 6am) I flew into a panic to do all the summer things I had planned but have not got around to yet. This morning we made it to Golden Gardens by 8.45am for the low tide. Some of the beach firepits were still smouldering when we arrived and fishing boats were putting out from the Marina across a glassy surface of the Sound. In the distance the Olympics were a wash of pale blue with rare patches of remaining snow. The water was far out at a -1.8 foot tide. Wren loved the hermit crabs and I managed to capture a large crab in the eelgrass. He was missing one large pincer but still waved the single one around menacingly. We stroked anemones to feel their sticky arms and froze our toes off on the incoming tide. I found a tube worm that is not in our Beachcombers Guilde to PNW seashore life but it was interesting in having built itself out of shells and pebbles.

While Wren was willing to go along with the sudden urgency to Get Out and See the Sun Frost was not cheerful about it. I don't know what happened to the nature-boy who used to accompany me on all the icy low tides near dawn but he complained that beaches are sandy and lay on a towel with 3 volumes of Foxtrot comics. He asked whether coming to the beach with me instead of staying home to play screentime and read and do D&D would constitute a chore he could tick off on his weekly responsibilities. I said "no" in that kind of restrained way that means I am biting my tongue to stop saying "WTF?".

Big Orgre Fighting Guy is MINE
On the way home we visited Gary's Games for some more D&D miniatures and then had brunch at the Sunlight Diner. The boys set up all the miniatures and Wren clung to a huge evil green snake monster and a big Ogre Fighting Guy which Frost will have to reclaim in due course. I have now had my morning fix of summer treats but Frost is hoping to go bowling later and I am hoping to water the garden and do some cleaning of the garden beds while its pleasant out there. I have a few plans for fall planting (some new lavender and perhaps a tree) and have to clean out the old plants and harvest the next crop of tomatoes for canning sauce. Finally, I am going to do the weekly garbage battle.

Rant about garbage
Seattle recently switched to 'compulsory' green waste recycling. Green waste includes food scraps and recyclable food containers as well as yard waste and it gets collected weekly. While I love the idea of all that composting of city garbage it has made a lot more work in my garbage day. Now I get to drag the HUGE yard waste container weekly (instead of bi-weekly). At the same time they removed our glass bins and told us to add all the other recyclables to the one bin. My recycling bin is always overflowing by Week 2 - so much so that I lifted all 65 lbs of Frost up into the bin and asked him to jump around on it to compact it ("ew, there is GLASS IN HERE!"). That was then hauled down the stairs to the street. Finally, I have the regular garbage AND my two ancillary yard waste containers which have leaves and tree clippings. I feel like a mini city transfer center outside my house each week. At least the lack of diapers has reduced our garbage bin to a new lightness.

To add to my complaint - we have had maggots in the yard waste TWICE. They are disgusting little things that crawl up the sides and out. Why? If they could stay inconspicuous I would not object to flies breeding in my garbage but they must not Come Out. Another time, I became confused and dumped the green waste ON TOP of the recycling. Lets just say that the kitchen debris is not fresh so that was fun to sort out.

I was down at Storables yesterday and I know that I am not the only one facing these complications of our new Green Friendly Policy. The shelves with nicely screened kitchen waste collectors that you can be proud to have in your kitchen [rather than quick to eject from your kitchen] were doing quick business while I shopped for a reusable soap dispenser which Wren has claimed as some kind of weapon.

I guess summer is starting to sound like the Domestic Goddess is Ranting. I shall go and drink tea (drinking water has been one of those fall-by-the-wayside things) plus I need to continue my research into netbooks and reschedule the visit to the chiropractor I avoided by doing the beach this morning.

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