Friday, July 24, 2009


Pine Mountain News

Hello again from Pine Mountain. It is the middle of summer at the Pine Mountain Ranch. Captain Argus and Star Voyage have left to edit their medieval knights and fire breathing dragons episode.

I have mended fences and made more wood chips for the local landscape and plant nursery this week. The plants and fish in our aquaponics greenhouse garden are growing rapidly. It is a lot less work and produces more than normal gardening. You just have to keep the fish happy by testing the water and everything else takes care of itself. There is no weeding or cultivating. You still have to look for insect pests but that is about it.

Local news

Mt Pinos district ranger Tom Kuekes is retiring at the end of the month. He has been the district ranger since 2001.

The Shakespeare festival continues at the Pine Mountain Village Gazebo. The show starts at 8 PM and is in the twelveth night.

Well enough about Pine Mountain now it is time for the poem of the week.

Poem of the Week

"In a Station of the Metro" a tribute to Ezra Pound

by emily d stine

In a station of the metro, I lose my face
among the crowd. Blank stares and
backpacks dominate the sound.
Outside, women, perhaps angels
float by me in clouded advertisements.
Inside, a slow murmur of French
follows the squealing of the brakes.

The backpacks off, more suitcases on
and the subway underneath Paris
travels along. People on the subway--
always traveling, their lives strapped
upon their backs. I sit, I scribble
pictures and words, hopeful that I can
capture the story etched upon their face.

And now it is time for this weeks destination.


This Island nation is in the Altlantic in the section of islands known as the Grenadines. It is the eastern most island and misses most of the hurricanes that plague the other islands.

colorful buildings

The island was first settled by Amerindians in 1623 BC. The Amerindians came from Venezala in dugout canoes. The Arawaks took over in 800 BC and the Carib cannibals in 1200 AD. The Spanish conquered the Caribs in 1492 then left the island for larger islands father west.

The English under Captain John Powell landed in 1625. The English set up Tobacco and sugar plantations and brought indentured servants over to work the plantations. Descendants of these workers called red legs still live on the island in the poorer sections along with descendants of the African slaves.
Promenade Bridgetown

The slave trade from Africa began in 1644. After several failed attempts slavery was finally outlawed in 1834. The island was a British possession until 1962 when they tried Federation rule. that failed and the returned to self governing rule until they became fully independant in 1966.


The island composition is limestone and coral and is part of an upthrust reef caused by continental plate tectonic collision. The highest point is Mt Hillaby at 1100 feet.( 360 meters) The capital is Bridgetown. The island is divided into 11 parishes and has a population of about 280,000.

Parliament building

The climate is moderate tropical and averages 40 to 90 inches of rain a year. Because of the eastern position of the island a hurricane only hits the island about once every 26 years. Although sugar is still an important crop, the island has diversified into manufacturing,tourism and finance. The island has an international airport called Sir Grantley Adams. Island transportation is provided by Zedrs which are mini buses that connect the major cities.

We toured Bridgetown and walked on the promenade. Later we took a Zedr to Spreightstown then we went to Holetown. We went to the eastern beaches and found large rocks. The southern and western beaches are more what you think of when you think of a tropical island. We spent a week touring Barbados and were sad when we had to leave. The slower pace of island life is all too rare these days.

Pine Mountain Evening.

It is evening once more at Pine Mountain Ranch. We have just finished dinner of pot roast, mashed potatoes, and fresh corn. We are in the family room. I am sitting in my easy chair enjoying my after dinner coffee with a plate of sugar cookies. Tonight's coffee from is Celebes Kalossi. This American roast coffee has a smooth spicy syrupy taste with hints of oak flavoring. It goes well with fresh sugar cookies.
My coffee and cookies are gone now and it is time for bed. Good night all see you next week.