Friday, January 14, 2011

Shrimp, Snow and a Flock of Waxwings

Winter has come in earnest and brings a white, frozen presence that alters the landscape and our routines. The Wednesday storm was quite a blizzard and managed to dump well over a foot of snow in a swirling blowing mass that was impressive in it's intensity. It became a day of rest as school and work schedules were changed.

My month-long sore throat returned only 2 days after finishing the 10 days of antibiotics. A second visit to the Dr. yesterday and she STILL claims I have post nasal drip.... though my nose is perfectly clear, I have no cough, but the agony of swallowing continues... Nothing helps - not salt water rinses, Cepacol lozenges, Cloraseptic spray, Throat Coat tea, Echinacea tea, and tincture, Eldeberry, Thyme... I can't eat - even swallowing water is difficult. The pain radiates into my jaw, my tongue. my teeth and my ears. The rapid stress test was negative, so no more antibiotics... It's going to be a long weekend.

They are setting out shrimp traps today and the season should be interesting and one for the record books. There is lots of shrimp, thus LOTS of people gearing up - to drag and trap. The draggers can tow thru traps and take out weeks of work and hundreds of dollars of gear in a night. The price is up too - they are talking .90 a lb... last year it was about .40. It's an unexpected benefit from the Gulf oil spill and I hesitate to celebrate our good fortune, when I know that others are suffering.

Yesterday afternoon I was enchanted by sweet bird calls from a large Oak tree at the edge of the yard. A closer look revealed a flock of 40 or so Cedar Waxwings roosting and chatting with each other. I was struck by the connectedness of the group and how they interacted in the branches.

Today the political climate of our time was vividly displayed in 2 different but equally meaningful events. At last, Wiscasset School Board banned the use of the term "Redskins" for their basketball team after years of wrangling and discussion. This has been a divisive issue that the town clearly and loudly did not want to change. They were unconcerned for the true Natives' feelings or thoughts. No, it was their 'mascot' and they wanted to keep it at all cost. Finally, the discussion is over... just in time for our new Govenor LePage to tell the NAACP to "Kiss his butt" when he refused to meet with them....
Happy Martin Luther King Day!

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