Notations: Late March ’07

~ I confess I have several vanity searches set up on Google News to notify me of entries to Fragments, Slow Road, etc. There are more misses than hits with this alarm system, but sometimes in this way, I get a heads-up notice of some good news. Such was the case yesterday when Gary Boyd’s very nice review (which he added at, to my delight) came to my attention. Now, I’m bringing it to yours. You can read it over at Nameless Creek. I do so much appreciate his kind words, and now to keep the balance, we need another at Barnes and Noble. Hint.

~ We’ve a new rhythm going here as the days warm: Tsuga eats walnuts, husk and all, late each afternoon. He rouses the whole house with his heaves in the wee hours and chucks-up out the back door. Then, just after breakfast, he grazes along the edge of the driveway for long stems of grass which he clumsily chews in his meat-shredding (nut crushing) teeth. Binge-purge. Is there a doctor in the house? Meanwhile, Tsuga’s oddities are up for all to see, over at–another photoessay some of you have seen/read before.

~ If you are at all interested in what is happening (or about to happen) along the 469-mile length of the nation’s longest (and most heavily visited) national park, check out the online eNEWSLETTER of the Friends of the Parkway. I’m hoping to have something to contribute here each month, and would be appreciative if any readers have Parkway-relevant links, comments or resources you’d be willing to share. I’d be happy to compile them for this purpose.

~ It seemed like a bit of software that was meant to be. After using OneNote since I started teaching at Radford back in the summer of 2004, for the first time, I was going to have to pay to upgrade (to OneNote 2007) or stop using it. Doh. The March 31 deadline approached. I waffled. Then, in quick succession, I got three $25 coupons from Amazon. And then learned Amazon carried the upgrade for $79. I have my registered copy now, for $4. Sometimes, life is like a box of choc’lates. Ya never… never mind.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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