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Turkey Tracks: August 2018 Update

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Turkey Tracks:  August 4, 2018

August 2018 Update

What a lovely summer I am having—complete with terrific visits from the families of both sons.  Since I have not been able to travel to see them, I am so grateful for their visits.  And I cannot get over how much the children have grown.

Bryan, Corinne, and the three girlies came in early July and were here for the 4th.  These girlies are almost 8, 5, and 3.  Here they are, having hiked up Mt. Battie to the top of the tower.  We had some really hot and humid weather while they were here.

Mike, Tami, and their four (almost 15, 12, and 11) and 13 in February 2019 came later in July and just left this past Thursday.

I am missing them all already, of course.

Summer is family time in Maine.  So I have not gotten much sewing done—either of quilts or of clothes.

The Mt. Battie Modern mostly “traveling quilts” wrapped up, and I’ll post those pictures in another post after I catch up on what needs to be done around the house and yard.  There are still some blocks to be finished for some folks.  My quilt is missing one, for instance.  It will come in due time.  And, some labels.  I’m putting the binding on my Valse Brilliante (Willyene Hammerstein) quilt now.  So, there will be pictures of it soon, too.  “Long Time Gone” just needs 6 more pineapple blocks—I love making those.  Then I can begin to sew the sections together.  What a fun project.  I almost need to make another one (no!) to incorporate what I learned in the process.

Meanwhile, there is rotten wood on an eve that might be housing a red squirrel nest and is letting in ants into the dry storage areas on the third level.  There is always something with a house, isn’t there?

As I said, more later…




Written by louisaenright

August 4, 2018 at 1:37 pm

Books: William Kent Krueger’s SULFUR SPRINGS

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Books:  August 4, 2018

William Kent Krueger’s SULFUR SPRINGS


SULFUR SPRINGS is Krueger’s 18th book in the award-winning Cork O’Connor series, which are mostly set up near the Boundary Waters and great northwoods area of Minnesota.  I say “mostly” because as some of the novels do, SULFUR SPRINGS moves the major characters to other locations.  SULFUR SPRINGS takes place in the Arizona desert south of Tuscon, where refugees from violence in their own countries try to cross the desert to reach the safety they seek in America.  In the process, these refugees fall prey to all kinds of “coyotes” who seek to use them in some way.  Krueger describes, too, the useless “wall” that seeks to block passage.  And as is true with all Krueger’s novels in this series, there are plenty of plot complications and mysteries to unravel.

I’ve read the series and am now awaiting the 19th book, due out later this month.  I especially like the native American spirituality that runs through all of the series, especially as O’Connor matures.  O’Connor’s grandmother was full blood Ojibwe, or Chipewa, or Anishinaabe.  And, Cork is now married to a full-blood Ojibwe woman, Rainy, who is also a healer.

Here are some quotes I especially enjoyed.  This book is published in 2017, so is written within “Trump World.”

I headed first thing to the hospital…to check on Jocko.  I felt responsible for the beating he’d taken, although I knew it was something he wouldn’t blame me for.  It was just one of the risks of doing the good work of the Desert Angels, which I understood.  The faces of Juan and the women and the children stayed with me.  Maybe they weren’t innocent in the eyes of the law, but there’s something more important than the law, and that is simply compassion.  That might sound strange coming from a man who’s spent a good deal of his life behind a badge, but laws are made by human beings and human beings are not infallible.  We make laws for all kinds of reasons, and not always the right ones.  One of the most powerful motivations for the enactment of lefislation is fear, and when you act out of fear, you risk becoming exactly the kind of monster you’re trying to bar the door against.  I couldn’t help thinking that we were putting those women and children—and the men, too, who came looking for nothing more sinister tha a job and a quiet life—through a monstrous ordeal.  And I understood why Peter and the other Desert Angels were willing to risk everything to help them (226).


A lesson from my earliest memories of my grandmother Dilsey, who was true-blood Iron Lake Ojibwe:  Land is not insentient; it is possessed of spirit.  Gazing down, I couldn’t help feeling that the fence and all it represented was a great violation of the spirit of the land.  The mind-set that gave rise to the fence was a great folly, the idea that a thin wall of steel and the imaginary line it demarcated could stand against the tide that swept across the desert, which was the tide of time and changing circumstance.  Politics were of a moment.  Sentiments shifted. nations rose and fell.  Steel rusted and crumbled.  But the desert and the flow of life across it would continue after that fence was nothing but scattered rubble among the cacti and the fear that built it was long forgotten (236).


I thought about the music I’d heard playing, the dancing in front of the taqueria, the brightness with which the homes, even the shabby trailers on cinder blocks, were decorated.  many of these people worked hard at jobs that no one else wanted and were poorly paid, I was sure.  But it seemed to me that there was something resilient in their spirit, some essential quality that kept the music and the dancing and the color alive.  I thought about the people of my own heritage, the Anishinaabeg, who’d been lied to and cheated and herded onto reservations, who fought against poeverty and all the ills that came with poverty.  But the Ojibwe I knew well, my family and those I counted as friends, had in their spirits the same resilience I saw reflected in
Gallina Town.  And I thought, as I had so many times before, that what’s important to a human being, any human being, isn’t the wealth that comes from money, but the richness that comes from community, a sense of connectedness to family and to friends and, as Rainy and Henry would probably have said, to the spirit of the Great Mystery that runs through all creation (260).



I am now reading one of Krueger’s stand alone novels, the award-winning ORDINARY GRACE.

Written by louisaenright

August 4, 2018 at 1:14 pm