Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Perseverance of Spiders and Fried Green Tomatoes

    I have had a Robert the Bruce experience over the past few days as I have been inspired by watching a spider.  On Sunday morning as I got into my old beater van to drive to church I noticed a spider had made a web from the outside mirror frame to the van door.  As I drove to church on Highway Two the spider's new web was ruined. He clung tenaciously to his web as it fluttered in the 60 mile per hour winds I had generated for him. Eventually he made it to the shelter of the mirror itself.   Later that afternoon I returned to my van only to find the spider had rebuilt his web while I was at church. The web was once more destroyed as I drove back into Snohomish to put the tithing in the night deposit at the bank. This process repeated itself on Monday as I drove to the Evergreen State Fair to do a shift as a volunteer at the Honey and Beeswax exhibit.  The spider's web was destroyed as I drove to the fair, the spider rebuilt the web while I was in the fair, and the spider's web was destroyed again as I drove back from the fair. Each time the spider ended up clinging to the mirror to find shelter from the wind.
A wiser choice for a "Web Site"

    I went out to my van on Tuesday morning and noticed there was no spider web attached to the outside mirror. I got into the van, thinking the spider had wisely given up and built his web elsewhere. As I was driving through Snohomish on my way to the Beez Neez I noticed the spider had merely moved his web into the van itself. The new spider web was attached to the metal cage behind the passenger seat and the ceiling so as to be located above and behind the head of any passenger in the van.  In the new location the spider web was protected from the wind and suffered no damage on its way to and from the bee store. By moving his web into the van, the spider eliminated the need to rebuild it every time I drove the van. There is no shortage of insects inside my van as I often transport bees and occasionally leave a window open.  I think there is a great moral in this story.  While perseverance is definitely a virtue, its also a good idea to occasionally reassess our situation and see if there isn't a better way to reach our goals.

      I am very grateful to my friend Jeff Thompson, who earlier this year gave me a gift of 12 tomato plants. I've had so little success with tomatoes in the past that I wasn't even planning to include them in the garden this year.  Since I had them, I went ahead and planted them.  As it has turned out, we've had a fairly warm and dry summer, much better weather for tomatoes than what usually passes for summer in western Washington.  I am currently experiencing a bountiful tomato harvest. I'm sure I've picked at least five gallons of tomatoes over the past few weeks, with lots more still on the vines.  Late blight, the bane of tomato growers in western Washington, has yet to rear its ugly head.  I'm sure the main reason for success has been the warm sunny summer.  However, I recently learned on You Tube that a deep mulch will also help prevent late blight.  Apparently it spreads from the soil when the plants are wet.  Watering from below, covering the plants with plastic to keep them dry, and a thick mulch covering the soil all are supposed to help prevent late blight.

     In the midst of this plentiful tomato harvest I got a hankering for fried green tomatoes. I don't think I've eaten them since we moved back from Texas in 1993. I looked up some recipes on the internet and made some last night.  I know its not the healthiest way to eat tomatoes but they sure hit the spot.  I'm pretty sure the terms "healthy" and "fried" are rarely used to describe the same items on a menu. Linda make fried zucchini a few times every summer. I like the fried green tomatoes better because of their tangy flavor.

No comments:

Post a Comment