A May Morning

Spring: the leaves popped on the Manitoba Maples along the creek back; serviceberry bushes bloomed white together with the spirea;  daffodils, mine at any rate, ended yesterday; the hummingbird returned last weekend, a few days early; the red-breasted grosbeaks returned to the feeder.

A long, harsh winter left some ornamental bushes bereft of leaves. My gorgeous Vibernum “Shasta” has growth only at the base, but the branches are green when I scrape them so I have hope. No hope for the Purple Smokebush and the Blue Mallow, I’m afraid.

Most of the roses and clematis have survived except for a little beauty—Blue Sprite clematis—that appears to be gone. But one’s never sure with clematis and it was buried deep so it may come along.

At the local nursery—Hills—I found two hybrid tea roses on their own root! I couldn’t resist and bought four: 2 dark red Royal William and ¬†2 pink Royal Kate. They are supposed to be disease resistant and have a strong fragrance.

Writing: I’m within sight of the end of my first draft of my new Dangerous Journeys mystery with Anne McPail. This time she’s in Spain, her life endangered by her concern for a mysterious little girl.

Ontario is in the midst of an election. I see the Conservative Party is trying to position itself as the party of hope. Hope, as demonstrated by planning to eliminate 100,000 civil service jobs. A mythical number, neatly dissected by an editorial in the Globe and Mail. Hudak appears to pull these numbers from an imaginary hat. How many civil servants do you know? I can count at least three, not including the teachers, hospital workers, doctors, nurses, firefighters, police and whomever else the party fears to cut. That leaves social service, and labour and the environment, all unnecessary from its collective point of view. The ones I know are not at the top, not even managers, but workers who are on the wrong side of senior and likely to be cut first. Hope? Not too much. Read the editorial here. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/editorials/can-tim-hudak-win-election-by-100000-job-cuts/article18629579/#dashboard/follows

That’s about it for this Sunday in May.




‘Snowmageddon’ slams mid-Atlantic; utilities race to restore power – CNN.com.

Commentators on Canadian news sites are full of self-praise, along the lines of ” Come on folks, this is routine in St. John’s.” Yes it is, but they are used to it, and the people down in Washington are not.

We had a taste of this last year. Four big snowstorms and the guys who plough were all on strike and it lasted for weeks. The schools were closed so often that I had small patients of kindergarten age who only had been to school a few days by the end of April.

But the streets were kept open, most of them in town anyway, by neighbours who used their snowblowers on sections, and others in pickup trucks with ploughs attached.

We usually have three big storms a winter, and two of them have passed us by, staying well South of the Great Lakes. Great you say? Maybe, but we will need water this summer, and the snow is a big source. Besides, yet another winter with temperatures below -20 C means more roses and other perennials missing from my garden in the spring. I say, bring on the snow.