Posted by: David | May 16, 2009

Middle May

This is a busy time. The grass is beginning to grow very fast. Been doing lots of mowing. The rains have been adequate, but a little watering has been needed for things like the tiny onion plants. Here’s a pretty lame video of me watering the onions. And the peas. The onion plants are still almost invisible.

The asparagus have been poking through the weedy layer of compost I spread over them last fall. We almost have enough to cook up for a meal. They ought to start producing a little more soon. They’ve been in for 4 or 5 years and I’ve taken pretty good care of them.  I even replanted some new roots a few years back. We wish they yielded more.

There were lots of mustard seeds that survived in the compost.

At work, the college celebrated commencement last weekend. It’s always inspiring to see these fresh young faces happily going through this doorway that’s simultaneously an entrance and an exit. I’ve only missed commencement once in the decade I’ve worked there. It’s a necessary closure for my mind and heart on the meaning and purpose of all the work we do at this wonderful little school.


The day started out gray, but turned sunny. Afterward, the families and friends of our Class of 2009 gathered in clumps for hugs and congratulations, then scattered all about campus, packing trucks and cars, and leaving that sad vacuum in their wake.  Not to worry, we expect another record-breaking class of first-year students in just a few months. And there will be plenty to do this summer.


Was supposed to go for a bike ride afterward with a coworker, but that fell through. I couldn’t locate anyone else to bike with, nor could I seem to motivate for a solo ride. So I bought a bottle of fancy vodka and went home. I’m way overdue for a bike ride. Last time I rode was last Monday. The college gives everyone that day off. It’s called “Commencement Breather Day”. So I rode to Henniker and Hillsborough along the river. 

Roadside Detritus: I found a bungee cord and someone’s keys.

Today is my best friend’s daughter’s bat mitzvah celebration. I’ve been visiting the family since Thursday. I am staying in my friend’s home office in the cozy and nicely finished cellar. I have to put the laptop away and get ready as the house will become very active in just a little while.


  1. You know it’s a good time when the tale ends with,

    “So I bought a bottle of fancy vodka and went home.”

    You sure know how to pamper yourself, David!

    Yes I do. I also know how to quickly drain a bottle of fancy vodka. 😀

  2. I’ve never been good about exercising with someone, but haven’t really gotten into biking…maybe that lends itself to that more. I am always afraid of slowing someone down or the opposite…them slowing me down.

    This is the essential problem of group rides, along with the hazard of interfering with motor traffic while thoughtlessly blabbing with riding companions. Not to mention meeting times, directions, etc. Each person added to a group ride increases complication level by factor of 10. I end up riding alone 90% of the time and I’m not a racer so I don’t worry about speed at all, whether alone or with people. Although I do like to see how many miles I can clock in the first hour of a ride (personal best: 15.7miles). I don’t ride with racers (or racer wannabes) either. My avg. speed is 13mph.

  3. Among the mustard seeds, ¿isn’t that asparagus? And the keys, ¿what do you lock up with plastic keys?
    Remember I told you about some 60 or more downloads of 500 megas. So I wrote to the “provider” (if that is the company that givesd me the internet connection) and immediately they sent back some 45 dollars…but the next bill was again for a long list of 500 mega downloads. So I asked an engineer who does internet security for the Defense department here, and he said that downloads of that size were technically not possible, but when I looked online, I saw that kids write to each other about how to download 10 Gigas daily.

    And I see you have had to water your onions. I thought that onions could grow where little else grows, because Sancho Panza used to eat them like apples, bite into them the way you bite into an apple, and so he had them in his saddle bags when he accompanied Don Quixote. —

    Also, in that little odd house where I once lived I watched a neighbour plant onions on top of his cave where the ground was just clay and sand.

    Yes, I fertilized the asparagus bed with seedy compost last fall. I’m culling out some mustard plants and leaving some to grow among the asparagus, which have a fairly short window of harvest time.

    I don’t know what your security engineer acquaintance means by saying large downloads are impossible. With a high speed connection any amount of data can be transferred in relatively short time. Someone is either using your connection for their own purposes (probably stealing movies), or your computer is infected with some kind of trojan. In the latter case you would probably notice a performance issue.

    The onions need to be watered when they are tiny young seedlings so they don’t dry out and die. There are varieties of onions that grow in harsher conditions I’m sure, but the onions we usually grow are fairly fussy. They like lots of water, loose, fertile soil, and need to be kept weeded. I’ve heard that there are middle eastern peoples that eat onions after the fashion of Sancho Panza.

  4. My imp claims those keys. Seriously. They’re one of a kind, right?

    You know my first thought when I saw them on the road was ‘whoa! imp keys!’

    Everything is one of a kind.


  5. “I’ve heard that there are middle eastern peoples that eat onions after the fashion of Sancho Panza.”

    That is interesting. There are lots of Arab traits in the Spanish language and life, lots of words, but I never heard that Sancho’s onion menu would be one.

    “I don’t know what your security engineer acquaintance means by saying large downloads are impossible. ” He said that the technology was not available in Spain. That seems to be so. I read you have to have two IPs, steal bandwidth, download through various connections; somebody gave me a complete calculus saying that with my present connection I could download 10 gigas a day. — Anyway, the provider returned the money and then overcharged again exactly the same way, so that now I think that they are simply disorganized.

    • I think my mistake was in my fixation with the 4 Gigas “in a day”. I think both these people were looking at the intervals of only 22 minutes between the two downloads. — The first of these also knew my computer, the one I had before, which was very old.

      This blabby geek cannot really begin to imagine what happened with the internet connection(s) in your building. It sounds like your internet service provider charges by the amount of data you send and receive. Do I have that right?

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