Teachers, Nurses And Farmers

Oh, just one more shot of eastern Washington.

I had plenty of time to think lately since I have been deer hunting. Sitting in a tree just thinking. The deer are not taking this whole thing seriously but that is another story.

We are off tomorrow to San Demis to be with the Marauders. I thought of that name for them and they seemed to have liked it and have kept it. The marauder theme has to do with their spirits really, other than that they are pretty mild mannered. Mostly a bunch of school teachers or folks associated with a particular school. It is a Catholic school and sorry I don’t have the name.

Anyway, as I am sitting in my tree freezing my you know what, I was thinking about them. And I was thinking about the other people that I hang out with, 90% of them are either teachers, nurses or farmers. These are the people that I choose to have around myself. What do those three groups have in common or how are they different? At first they seem really different but they do have one major thing in common. They are all nurturers, is that a word?

L have surrounded myself with people that help me learn, live and blossom. Guess that I sort of lean on them for that to a certain extent. They don’t seem to mind. Thank you to you all.

Well, I have plenty to do today to make our escape tomorrow. It is supposed to start raining tomorrow so good timing. I’m not quite ready for that.

Happy Halloween to you spooky Caminoheads. Love, Felipe.

Archery, Architecture, Archimedes, Archipelago

The dear Archimedes’ grave.

Arches seem to show up in all sorts of places. Lucia, a true and blue Caminohead sent in this pic of Archimedes grave in Syracuse just to keep the whole thing going. Syracuse I think is in Sicily. Lucia is from Sicily.

Here is another random deal for you. James, the Most Interesting Man in the World in training, came up with this rattlesnake pic from our hunting trip. In the tall grass there, see the triangular shaped head. You have to look for it.

I hear him but don’t quite see him.

How about that Series game last evening? Wow, probably the best baseball game that I have ever seen. And that came after the Seahawks/Texans football game that was also epic. Man, we were worn out after all that. What a time of year for sports!

OK, well pretty random today. Some days are like that. Maybe there is a special name for that. See you in twenty four hours, love, Felipe.

Sunday Sunday

A fire in the stove to keep Felipe warm.

Just got back from Mass and tailgating with Catherine. Well OK, we didn’t really tailgate. We sat in the entrance to the supermarket where there are some chairs, too cold outside. But we talked to folks. Very foggy and spooky out there today. Good day for ironing shirts inside. Which I have to do as we are off on a trip Wednesday to San Dimas, CA, oh boy.

Father David had a great homily today. I will tell you about that in a moment but first he gave us a little talk how he was changing his style. For twenty years he has been always reading a text for his sermons and now he is switching over to just using an outline. Well, very good. I am all in favor of that. The less paperwork the better.

The scripture reading today was where one of the Pharisees asks Jesus, what is the greatest commandment? And Jesus is his usual cool manner boils down the whole code of Moses into two things. This is my own paraphrase, to love God and love your neighbor. So Father David started talking about love and came up with this which I diagramed:

L ~ for us to LIVE well, to take care of ourselves.
O ~ for us to OFFER ourselves, to be open and available.
V ~ for us to VALUE everybody and everything, to be grateful.
E ~ for us to ENJOY ourselves, to be in love with our situation.

Oh, that looks oh so tidy. Boy, that looks easy enough for even Felipe to remember, good deal. Thanks Father David.

Yup, love, Felipe.

What A Lovely Time

Cris recently at Niagara Falls.

Bekka, Felipe and Cris at Raven Ranch.

Well, Cris has gone and a vacuum remains. What a sweetheart and bright light! We hope that we will meet again down the road.

The weather remains gorgeous and that is almost disorienting for us Northwesteners. What is going on? It too much of a good thing and we don’t know how to handle it, right?

I just had Bible Guys which I was free to go to because Catherine wanted to drive Cris to the airport. We started studying the Book of Hebrews. I don’t think that I have ever done this book before not that repeating is a problem. There always seems something new to learn.

Well, time to get to work here at the ranch. Always something to wrestle with. Keeps us active I guess. So, have a nice day, love, Felipe.

One Heck Of A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood

The haws on the hawthorn hedge along Phil’s Camino. They will feed some of the birds all winter.

Man, the weather is gorgeous. It kind of gives outsiders the wrong impression of Seattle. We don’t want to let them know that it isn’t always rainy and gloomy. Not a cloud in the sky right now.

Last evening we had a fabulous dinner party over at Catherine and Dana’s in honor of Cris being here. We had buffalo pot roast and their own corn bread with a pear dessert. They know how to throw a dinner party believe me, all down home and elegant simultaneously.

Yesterday I put Cris to work on two projects along the trail. We planted some new lavender plants and dressed up some existing ones. Then we planted the cover crop where the corn stood not too long ago. I’m putting visitors to work lately on things that I need done and that are directly related to Phil’s Camino. Just a few more things to do to get ready for the winter season. I need to mow the grass on the trail yet so it will be short all winter and that makes for drier shoes. Still trying to get some gravel on the inclines in and out of the streambed to make that less slippery. Not that I want the trail to be too civilized just Caminoesque.

Oh, and My Rebecca pointed out that I had been spelling the name of author of Pilgrimage wrong. She’s good at that. So, it should be Shriver, no c in there anywhere. Sorry Mark, good book though.

Speaking of good books I am really looking forward to reading Pilgrim Strong, Steve Watkins’ new offering. Steve will be up to walk Phil’s Camino in November. He’s bringing a copy for me all the way from Arkansas, trying to save on postage I guess. Looking forward to getting our heads together, our Caminoheads. Ha!

Maybe we will have a venison dinner for him. My window to take a deer is soon. The best time to take a big deer here is during the rut, that’s the word for the mating season. The bucks tend to get quite careless forgetting Felipe lurks behind every bush.

Well, that’s the news from Raven Ranch and Phil’s Camino. Hope that it is entertaining for you. Miss you, love you, keep going, love, Felipe.

Before First Light

Kaya and Wiley in the Colockum, eastern Washington. Love those classic Shepard ears! Photo by James Hyde, 2017.

Cris is here, sleeping off some of the travel wearies. She got here just in time for a big dinner last night with Wiley, Henna and James. They prepared the chukar partridge that we had brought home from the hunt. And then there was the second game of the Series on the tube, what a nail biter. So a party evening.

A good connection was made between Cris and James. He is working aboard a National Geographic ship that takes passengers on eco travel trips. He is on their dive team that takes folks on dives in these exotic places. He has been with them to Patagonia before and is heading down again soon so they were both talking Argentina. How fun!

Yesterday was complete with some great ups and downs. So glad that I have had all that inspiration about the North Star lately and keeping a steady focus there. Otherwise my life would be way too much of a roller coaster.

Having so much fun reading Pigrimage by Schriver about Pope Francis. Cris jumped right on it as she had never seen it before. The first part of the book has a lot about Buenos Aires and how the Church, geography and Argentine politics had a lot to do with his early formation. And now I am off to the second part about Jesuit training that was so influential. I have a new respect for priests that have been through all that, wow.

We have a walk this morning and I think that Catherine and Dana will be here. Then we have an invite to their place tonight for dinner. It is a place where hospitality abounds, so looking forward to that. Cris will love it. But inbetween I have some projects for us to work on planting a cover crop in the corn field and getting in five lavender plants along both along Phil’s Camino.

So, getting ready to make breakfast and get this show on the road. Getting light out and I can see it is overcast but that is supposed to burn off. Another day in God’s playpen! Love as always, Felipe.

It Was Hard Work

Wiley and Dad a few days ago.

It was hard work over the last four months of the harder stuff chemo. I lost ten pounds in the process. We gave that drug a good try but it didn’t do anything really according to the scan. So, we are off to the next hard drug in a while. I am doing some lighter weight stuff for a few times till I regain my weight and then hit it with that new harder stuff. Oh bother!

At home on Vashon tonight James is going to fix the gamebirds that we brought back from eastern Washington. Yea, the chukar partridge. The best way we have found to cook birds is to skin them, part them out, wrap in bacon and fry.

So Cris will be here in the middle of all that. Sounds like fun to me. Now to just make it through a few more hours of treatment.

Later, love, Felipe.

Back From My Scan

Color along Phil’s Camino.

Ah, back at the ranch after a quick trip to Seattle for my scan. Somehow I feel at peace right now compared to the usual anxiety that tends to build up at this time. I guess I am thinking about Cris coming tomorrow and that is keeping me occupied. Too busy to worry.

It’s a beautiful afternoon here. The barometer is way up. It is luring me outside even though I got piles of junk here in the living room from the hunting trip. Cris is coming have to straighten up. You know if no one ever came would we ever clean up? It is sort of a deadline.

She is coming in the afternoon tomorrow from Toronto. Somehow the timing is just perfect for me to pick her up after my treatment in Seattle. It is supposed to be a little rainy but then back to nice fall weather. That’s good because I’m going to put her to work while she is here. The trail needs help and the corn field needs more tilling. Then there is Tomatotown.

OK, I just realized that I have a walk in a few minutes. Kelly is coming I think. We were going to harvest any tomatoes that we could still find. Oh, and the Word Series starts tonight! Yike all of a sudden I am busy.

So excited about my new book Pilgrimage about Pope Francis. But that will have to wait for another day. Love you all immensely, Felipe.