Old Town Hill & Salisbury Beach

Things are improving slowly on the work front, but I’m afraid next week’s monthly wrap-up will be on the thin side again. I did get one completely glorious day in! I took Wednesday off and went up to the North Shore with a friend and our oldest child. We visited Old Town Hill in the morning, a very pleasant area to ramble around and all but deserted on a weekday. For lunch we stopped in at Angie‘s, and then headed over to Salisbury Beach for a while in the afternoon. We hoped to see seals, as I have previously on visits to that beach. The tide was in (so their basking rocks were underwater), there was a lot of glare, and I forgot my binoculars, so we couldn’t be sure if any of the distant specks were mammalian. Still a beautiful afternoon.

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arthurian literature

Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur Book 13 – Grail 1

We had a busy start to the month here, and now it’s already half over. I haven’t had much time to write posts, so we are returning again to the Arthurian story, now entering its penultimate phase. I’m not super-fond of the Grail story as a story, but it does have a lot of interesting stuff, even if some of it plays oddly against all of the previous books.

We start with a throwback to the first part of the collection, the feast of Pentecost. All the knights have gathered per Arthur’s tradition, and a mysterious damsel arrives looking for Lancelot. He goes off with her to a nunnery, where a couple of his cousins are staying, and is introduced to Galahad, who is so beautiful that all of the nuns cry. Galahad gets knighted but doesn’t go back to Camelot with his relatives just yet; there’s some stage-setting to be done before he can make his entrance.

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monthly updates

February Wrap-Up

After an upbeat start to the year, this month was a hot mess. My job did a substantial layoff with no warning on Feb. 1, and the stress and higher workload that resulted from losing one third of my team dragged everything else down. We had to get the car’s exhaust system fixed, not cheap. I ordered a monitor for my home office, which the delivery company immediately lost track of. And somebody stole my bike out of the driveway.

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Maudslay State Park

Had my first visit to this park yesterday, on a cold, bright morning with a small group from Meetup. It’s an interesting landscape. Anywhere you go hiking in New England, you’re likely to be reminded that this is not untouched land by any stretch; stone walls and the relative youth of the trees keep it front of mind that a couple hundred years ago, this was cleared farmland. Maudslay State Park, in contrast, was a private estate not much more than 50 years ago, and the park system is actively keeping up some of the structures, so it feels a bit more manicured than many of the local spots I’ve seen so far. Still a lovely place to visit, with easy meandering trails, views of the river, and (according to the signs) plentiful flowers in season.

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Mt. Pisgah Hike

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Spent a few hours rambling around in the woods today. Lovely terrain, lots of variety but nothing too steep. The woods are very open, mostly young oak and beech, and there are a couple of nice vantages and streams to enjoy. A very warm day here — in a pre-climate change winter, these woods would been a foot deep in snow at least.