Saturday, March 12, 2016


There is something strange and wondrous about spring happening in February. Welcome to Texas! I have now gotten about as far away from Alaska's seven months of winter as is possible while remaining in the USA! (Okay, there's always Hawaii, but Texas is warm, and affordable!)

I am starting a container garden, because the prospect of starting a larger garden while dealing with owning a house and settling in, and starting a new job, seemed a little overmuch. Despite any husbandly jokes about Scarborough Fair, no, that wasn't what I was thinking when I started parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme. And cilantro. And basil. And oregano.

I may have gone a bit overboard on the basil. I could only find it in seed, so I started two trays to see if any of it would take. Now I have twenty little pots with basil seedlings, and I'm thinking... pesto? Okay, I could thin it down, only keep a bunch or two... Or I could have a glorious profusion of basil. I might have to plant some in dirt, though, because that'd be a lot of pots.

One of the joys of living off a base is watching their pilots play while I'm sipping tea out in the backyard. Another is the delightful profusion of cultures for small-city Texas, including two Asian groceries. One of the drawback is the inevitable puzzling head-cocked stare at a complex chart on the small airport wall, trying to decipher just where the base does their coming and going, when, and how to fly around them reliably. Thankfully, there does seem to be an easy rhythym once you get into it, but "Just stay between the local TV station's towers and you'll be good" won't be incredibly obvious until I've flown a bit here.

Given a year, I know I'll get the rhythm down: where to fly, when to plant, when to switch from building a fire in the fireplace to grilling outside. Not yet, but it's coming. Strangely enough, though, when I find myself slipping and talking of "back home" when comparing here to there, I still mean Alaska, not Tennessee. Sometimes, I wonder if that'll ever change: I first really learned to put down roots there, and they dug deep.


  1. I understand the appeal of learning new "mysteries" and rhythms about a new place; we went through that when moving to Alaska from the St. Louis area, 13 years ago.

    But the reason we're up here is because Alaska got under my skin 40 years ago, when stationed on Adak. It rarely lets anyone go.

    But you're welcome to consider the largest state your home-away-from-home while in the 2nd largest state. And July & August are nice, here. :)

  2. *Points at basil overload and snickers* Mom Red wanted "a few" basil plants. One freezer shelf of pesto (pre cheese) later . . .

    But do NOT as ask about the carnations. One pot is now six and ALL managed to survive the winter (thus far). Redquarters may have carnations instead of grass by this time next year.


  3. LOL, it'll grow on ya... Re flight patterns, 3000 and dive for the field... :-)

  4. If you can make pesto, there's no such thing as "too much basil".


  5. And if you still have surplus basil plants on my next visit, I'd be happy to adopt one or two ;)