Spring is Here, Marvelous Things Happen All the Time


The sun is out today. The daffodils are in bloom. Spring is here. It’s been an odd winter, very warm until a hard freeze in January where it got down to 6ºF, -14ºC. It was a dry freeze, followed by a week of very cold weather.
And yet we had just a single snow until the end of February and the beginning of March. But those are fading memories already and it is time to get ready to garden.

Chickens on a spring day

This morning a momentous event happened. I have been following the Japanese runner, Iino Wataru, 飯野航. He started running on June 7th on the Arctic coast in Barrow, Alaska. On August 24 he ran near our place and we were able to visit with him along the side of the road. Yesterday he made it to Panama City, Panama. And this morning he finished the last bit of his run spanning the entire length of North America.

He ran a total of 14,000km, 8,700 miles, through the US, Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. During the run he used three pairs of shoes. The first pair he used from Barrow, Alaska, to Vancouver, BC.

In Vancouver he purchased two pairs of shoes, a trail running shoe and a road shoe. He ran wearing a different shoe on each foot. After running 5,000 miles in those two pairs, this is what they looked like when he finished.

Wataru shoes after 5,000 miles.

He said he will buy a new pair of shoes in Panama.

Wataru had many adventures along the way, curious bears coming up to him in The Yukon, changing his route due to forest fires in Oregon, a 100 mile race around Big Bear Lake in California, truck drivers in Mexico who stopped to give him cold drinks, two dogs in Guatemala who ran with him for 20 kilometers, and meeting hundreds of friendly people everywhere. He says the people in Central America were especially kind and welcoming.

From Panama he goes back to Japan for a spell. On May 1, he will fly to Columbia and begin his run from the northern tip of South America to the southern tip in Argentina.

I doubt you will read or see about this incredible feat, but it goes to show that every day people around the world are doing amazing things all the time.

It’s been a while since I have posted. Sorry about that. Previously, I was using a commercial plugin to send new posts as emails to those of you signed up. However, I wasn’t pleased with that plugin, and have privacy concerns about the major plugins such as MailChimp that offer such features.

But, I am working on a solution. Thanks to ChatGPT, my programming skills when it comes to WordPress (which this site runs on) and the programming language WordPress uses for its backend, php, have improved to the point that I am ready to create my own solution. So before too long, I will be back to emailing new posts to you.