Liz Writes Life 7-25-17

July 25, 2017

Liz Writes Life

Published in Siskiyou Daily News, Yreka, CA

She was sitting on the highest wire of the new deer-fence extension that Jack built. Knowing she might be skittish, I began talking in a soft voice asking how life was treating a hummingbird in our dry area. She had been sipping from the red bee balm flitting from one to another. Now she was checking me out. Instead of wearing my typical turquoise t-shirt, I had chosen a pink-patterned one this morning.

When I finally stopped talking, she took up the chatter. Chirp chirp gurgle gurgle chirp. It was a very long response. When she stopped, I asked more questions: How are your babies doing? Where is your nest? Again, she responded with a pretty long story. We conversed like that for several minutes. Honest, we did! Then she took flight and flew towards me hovering about two feet away and then decided I was not a giant flower. Sure wish I could have understood her. Two days later, we had another, though, shorter visit. Life is sweet in unexpected ways.

Jack picked our first small ripe tomato. It was getting bottom-rot, so he cut off the bottom and divided the top in half. Just enough for us each a nice bite and it was delicious, but too-short lived!

On Friday, I irrigated twice as long as we have been and the plants sure needed it. I spent time making new furrows in the corn and re-hoeing the irrigation-bowls for the cantaloupe, watermelon, zucchini and sunflowers. The giant bottom leaves on the cabbage were interfering with their watering, so I broke those off and re-did their irrigation bowls too. While I gave the potatoes extra water, I saw the tops of red ones, so I hand-dug a handful. This week we will have fried-red potatoes. Yum!

One evening, I transplanted the one to two inch-tall flat-head cabbages, pre-soaking the soil really well. They looked good the next morning and should be ok.

Oh, something ate another whole big onion and chewed on another. Maybe it is the possum that started coming at night eating the cat’s left-over food. I make sure there is no food left-over now. Anyway, I decided to pull the onions as most were quite large — got about 30. I left 19 smaller ones in the ground. Had planned to lay them out under the pine tree to dry, like I did the garlic last month, but I figured some would likely get eaten. So I put them in two plastic tubs in the garage up about five-feet high.


I’ve talked with the nicest folks and foreigners that are hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, when they come down to Etna. Last week, I chatted with a man from the Netherlands and this week one from Scotland. Yes, he started at the bottom of California and is pretty much on schedule, but the still-deep snow in the Sierras slowed him down. He figured the snow was 12 to 15 meters high and the tops of trees stuck-up looking like short Christmas trees!

I looked it up and a meter is 3.2 feet. So, even at his lowest estimate, the snow is 36 feet deep. Amazing!

J-H update

Friends of French Creek continue their concern of alleged unpermitted activities at the J-H Guest Ranch. Apparently, the new bigger-top tent also has a new and improved sound system affecting neighbors throughout the day and into the night. Friends said that when J-H is confronted with the fact they are doing unpermitted construction, like the recent new neighboring houses, the leaders claim they are working on a solution – yet they just keep on.

A major concern by those opposed to the proposed expansion of J-H Guests is the very real threat of fire and the campers being trapped. The recent Fay Fire on S. Hwy 3 forced an evacuation notice for French and Miners Creek Roads, including J-H Ranch. Cal-Fire stated the narrow dirt road into J-H on French Creek cannot accommodate fire engines that would be needed to fight fire and opposes any expansion from the 387 guests. J-H has sued the state agency over the issue.

Friends of French Creek also said an Etna business owner was recently harassed for having a “Stop J-H Expansion” sign and was told they would no longer patronize the store if the sign was up. It was taken down. Several other signs have gone missing and a game camera actually caught one thief on video.

The Friends will attend the Siskiyou Co. Board of Supervisors’ meeting on Aug. 8 at 10 a.m. to update the board of these concerns and more. I am for businesses in our valley, but the expansion of J-H guests from 387 persons does not fit the Scott Valley Zoning Plan, is unsafe for various reasons and adds tremendous traffic and noise for those living on French Creek Road. For more info on the Friends concerns, attend the board meeting.

Water meeting

The Siskiyou Water Users Assoc. will hold its annual meeting on Monday, July 31 at the Guild (was Greenhorn Grange) at 300 Ranch Lane in Yreka. Time is 6 p.m. Board members will be elected and there will be updates on the Klamath dam destruction issue. Bring a dessert to share. President Richard Marshal and board members Rex Cozzalio and Bob Rice addressed the Siskiyou Supervisors at the July 11, 2017 meeting regarding the California Water Quality Control Board and its Water Quality Certification process and bias for Klamath dams removal. More will be discussed at the meeting.


Scott Valley Protect Our Water will meet this Thursday, July 27, 2017 at the Fort Jones Community Center. Time is 7 p.m. Siskiyou Co. Dist. 5 Supervisor Ray Haupt will provide info on a variety of issues.

Liz Bowen is a native of Siskiyou County and lives near Callahan. Check out her websites: Pie N and Liz or call her at 530-467-3515.

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