5.13.13 Mother Nature
iphotos by george billard
I celebrated Mother's Day by honoring the original matriarch. Her majestic glory was fully on display at our lake property in Forestburgh (that's here
). Four of us took turns rowing across in the canoe to reach the waterfall on the other side. Engorged with the recent rains, it was noisy and boisterous, cascading down from the heights, splashing and spraying with refreshing vigor. The woods are just beginning to leaf out and the greens are so tender and vivid. Near the waterfall, the moss and ferns are impossibly lush and the trillium and jack-in-the-pulpit proliferate. A handful of pristine and velvety wood ear mushrooms were discovered growing on a downed tree trunk. We clambered up a very steep and rocky hill and found the top of the falls—a vertiginous drop with a very promising pool for summer dips.
fall from grace
This photo was taken at the end of last summer, so you can see how much less water there is at certain times of the year. I've seen some legendary waterfalls—in Yosemite and in Iceland—but there's something pretty spectacular about having one as secret and private as this.
Other sightings included several of these striped millipedes and a terrifying number of ticks, which we were picking off our bodies for the rest of the day.
In other news, G and I attended our first meeting of the local beekeeping society. It was us and quite a few gentleman of a rather advanced age—some of them second- and third-generation beekeepers! The meeting began with a mandatory recitation of the pledge of allegiance. They put the fear of god in us over how many things could go wrong with our hive (foul brood! mites!) but were also very supportive and encouraging. Meanwhile, the bees, those titans of industry, are already on their fourth honeycomb. All hail the queen.
The Bee's Knees
makes 2 cocktails
— 1/4 cup hot water
— 1 teaspoon dried lavender
— 1/4 cup raw wildflower honey
— 1 teaspoon orange blossom water
— 6 tablespoons gin
— 2 tablespoons lemon juice
Mix hot water and dried lavender in bowl. Steep for 5 minutes. Whisk in 1/4 cup honey until fully dissolved. Strain into another bowl. Place 3 tablespoons of the honey syrup, the orange blossom water, gin and lemon juice into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into 2 chilled martini glasses.