The Life of an Inn-keeper At Majestic View Bed and Breakfast. Good Intentions Gone Awry…

My son Benjamin works in web design, sales and marketing, and SEO. He tells me that one of the things I can do to increase internet presence for our business – is daily blogging, sharing photos and videos, and spreading it to Facebook, Instagram, Google, Yelp, and so on. I have to say, I really enjoy writing, and I like the idea of doing some of my own marketing, but the truth is, this is just darn hard to keep up with, and sometimes there just isn’t the time or energy. Perhaps I should hire someone to do this for me, but I digress. Here I am, writing, so lets do this! There is so much I could share. The past couple of weeks have been extremely busy – with all hands preparing the house for what we call “the busy season” which kicked off this weekend (Memorial Weekend). Maria and the girls are busy cleaning every inch of the house, stocking shelves with needed supplies, and all those other things guys like me don’t necessarily think of. My mind goes to the grounds, the house exterior, flowers and gardens, miscellaneous repairs, organization, and getting my boat and fishing gear ready. Maybe if I get a complete CRAP DAY, like last Sunday (it was cold, windy, and rained the entire day) – I may use that to scout for fish, wildlife, and bears. Incidentally, I am seeing black bears on a fairly regular basis in the evenings, and the King Salmon are beginning to stage in and around the mouths of the rivers, the fishing hole, and so on. I am hearing some good reports. Otherwise, I have had two major projects. Around here – we have what the Russians call “pushki” – Wild Parsnip. It’s a native, noxious plant that is photo reactive, that is, get any plant residue on your skin when the sun is out, and you are in big trouble. I’ve found that it’s WAY WORSE than poison ivy. Maybe not as itchy, but the damage it does is severe. Burns up to 3rd degree, blisters, ugly red spots and scarring. So I have chosen a portion of our property, and I have declared war on it. Locals say it is difficult to impossible, but I am a determined, tenacious SOB! I am setting this up like a scientist – with test plots to see what works best. My pappy (James), I’m sure, is looking down on me with a smile. I always swore I would never garden because it was my most hated chore when I was growing up, but here I am, being a sod-bustin’ farmer! It started with some major tillage. I wrestled with a 16 hp tiller that was a real beast. Got to know each other intimately, and even rolled down the hill together a time or two. I spoke rather harshly to it at times, I must admit. But eventually we got the job done. I’ve been raking pushki roots, and grass roots, which make up the primary basis of the top 6-8 inches of the soil anyway. My test plots will include good old fashioned use of shovel to dig up roots, Roundup, salt, and vinegar solutions. Meanwhile, I have a vision for a field of wild flowers that our guest can enjoy from their rooms and balconies. We will see how it all turns out! Other news: I went into our unit called “The Bears Den” to replace a towel rack – but the closer I looked, the more I saw that the entire unit needed a facelift. I was well into it before Maria discovered what I was up to, and we had some disagreements about time management (she’s right, I could have spent my time in a place that needed it more), but I am a bit of a perfectionist, and sometimes get tunnel vision, I admit.  So, I repaired scratches and scrapes, holes and divets, took away of the old assisted living handrails, and added some new towel racks, scrubbed the floor, polished the wood, did the windows inside and out, and gave the whole thing two coats of fresh paint. Good news for anyone staying in The Bears Den – it is all fresh and new and waiting to welcome YOU! Moose Manor will get the same, as will all the decks and walkways, and you know what – it’s time to stain the entire exterior of the cabin. Which brings me back to where I started. When does a guy have time to blog? Ben cautions me about making my blogs too long, or too personal. “It doesn’t appeal to the masses”, he says. Well, he’s probably right, but we will have some of that coming before too long. Next week I have fishermen coming, and bear hunters, and five or six days of scenery and wildlife tours. Stay tuned for some cool stuff. In the meantime, some of you may enjoy following my war on the pushki, and my vision for wildflowers. Well just remember, it all started with a field of  7’tall plant material, several years of it actually, that needed to be knocked down, cut up, and removed. It looked a little something like this…

I started with this. Tried to till it, but the tiller just got tangled and it killed the motor. Went back to square one with an industrial weed whacker made by Honda. It was a monster and I want one!

 

 

 

 

 

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