The Rambling Writer Takes a Hike Above Lake Whatcom

Phew. After “The Year of Constant Physical Therapy” and various other medical interventions (for both Thor and myself), I’m revisiting my attitude toward a cyborg body. In my first science fiction novel WILD CARD RUN originally published (cough cough) several years ago, my heroine embodied my own young and agile attitude. She expressed horror at the notion of installing her brain and spinal column into an eternally youthful and healthy cyborg body. Now I say, “Bring it on!” But in the meantime, I’m happy to say that Thor and I are both recovering our hiking fitness, and recently took an ecstatic Bear dog on one of our favorite rambles up old logging roads and forest trails above nearby Lake Whatcom to a lovely overlook with views of the lake and Bellingham Bay. (Lake Whatcom Park on the map below)

Spring in our Pacific Northwest forests, especially after this unusually rainy and cold winter, ushers in an explosion of fresh green and wildflowers. And when we’re lucky enough to combine that lushness with a sunny day, the light and life fills us to bursting with delight.

Among the fresh blossoms are one of my favorites, wild currant, with its pungent scent:

Vanilla leaf hasn’t yet put up its slender spires of tiny white blossoms:

Salmonberries will ripen later with translucent orange fruit: (Watch out for the prickly stems!)

Shy bleeding-heart were my Grandma Sara’s favorite: (Here at the foot of an old cedar among the ubiquitous sword ferns)

Thor pauses on the trail to admire the ocean spray blooms:

Trillium are always special:

And let’s not forget the fresh nettles, so useful for stews and herbal remedies: (But don’t touch with bare skin!)

Soaking up that light among the mossy big-leaf maples: Back to the delights of Forest Bathing! What are your favorite places to “bathe” in nature?



You will find The Rambling Writer’s blog posts here on alternate Saturdays. Sara’s newest novel from Book View Cafe was recently released in print and ebook: The Ariadne Connection.  It’s a near-future thriller set in the Greek islands. “Technology triggers a deadly new plague. Can a healer find the cure?”  The novel has just received a second Cygnus Award, for Science Fiction. To celebrate, for the month of May it’s on special discount here on our online bookstore at just 99 cents!




The Rambling Writer Takes a Hike Above Lake Whatcom — 13 Comments

  1. I’m with you — if a cyborg body were safe and reliable, and within financial reason, I’d be one of the first to sign up. I definitely didn’t appreciate my young, healthy, easy-moving body back when I had it. [wry smile]


    PS — pretty doggie!

    • Thanks, Angie — Bear is a real sweetheart. I have all sorts of philosophical/social issues with the possibility of life-extension and cyborgs, but as I age, I definitely wish for some replacement parts!

  2. Oh, sign me up for the cyborg body!

    Oh, that beauty. I’m too much of a city girl to recognize but a handful of plants, but I adore looking at their varieties. And I love walking in forests. I would so like to move to an area that 1) has rain more than a couple inches a year and 2) greenery to walk in.

    • Sherwood, I understand that longing. (Although when we’re in the middle of our long months of gray rain, I do anything I can to get some sunshine.) But I do love all the green — if you’re able, come for a visit!

      • I’ll be up that way next month, taking the train up the coast to Portland and east to Minneapolis, then back. I am so looking forward to the greenery!

        • I love train trips! Thor and I just watched the 1974 film of “The Orient Express” (anticipating the new film coming up), and it was so fun. I rode a steam train very much like the one in the film, from Santiago to southern Chile, and it was fabulous. Buen viaje!

          • Oh, wow!

            I used to take the Orient Express from Paris to Vienna, when I was a student in Vienna. I loved it.

            • Wow, indeed! I’ve never before talked to someone who had actually taken the Orient Express — lucky you! Check out the film if you haven’t see it; quite amusing performances. The train itself is worth the viewing.

              • I didn’t experience any of the luxury stuff–I was a student–but I had a seat on that train!

                Will have to check out the film. Thanks!

  3. Since I spent some time scrambling through caves created by rock falls and earthquakes at the Pinnacles last week and somehow managed to strain both my ankle and knee (neither of which were wonderful to be begin with) without even noticing when I did it, I’m all for the cyborg body. it’s the uploading your mind sans body that I object to. I want to be able to move and touch and feel and smell and see and so on.

    And every time you post I find another place I want to go visit and hike around!

    • Nancy, I’d love to welcome you, too, for a visit and some hiking! Yes, my gut feeling is that a cyborg body (as I explore in my SF novels) would be missing essential, non-scientifically-definable connections with our natural world. But some tuneups like new knees or a neck/spine that could actually turn without pain would be great.

  4. Sherwood, you should write a blog about your student days, studying abroad, and of course the train trips! I’d love to read it.