I absolutely loved Peter, Paul & Mary. I use the past tense only because Mary Travers died last year not because I still don’t love hearing them: I do.

They had a rare blend of voices and had impeccable taste as far as the material they chose to record. Usually they recorded other people’s material but they always made the material their own.

They were all excellent songwriters, too. My first concert was Peter, Paul & Mary at Carnegie Hall in 1965. It was magical, they were great!  It was the first concert I ever went to:  I was a sophomore in high school.

Their first album “Peter, Paul & Mary” (1962) is still very high on my all time list of records to play.

They sang with passion and worked at it. Their singing very seldom was mannered. They left behind many memorable albums and most of them are still in print. I never get tired of hearing them.

And if you have not discovered them it is still not too late to explore their discography. You will be in for a treat.

I do not claim to be a perfectionist. I know what the perfect cup of coffee tastes like. I make it at home. I use a certain brand of coffee and make it exactly the same way every time.

But when I go away I have trouble finding a good cup of coffee. Hotels are the worst. I do not know why I can’t duplicate it there. They provide coffee but it is never the same.

I will look for a local diner when I seek a good cup of coffee. They usually have it down right. And I do not like Starbuck’s despite the millions who go there.

I will be gone for about two weeks. And will not get home soon enough to, again, make that perfect cup of coffee. What is a morning without a good cup of coffee to start it off? I do not go like going anywhere without it.

Something endearing about my wife is she does not want to harm any thing even an ant. Life to her is very precious. She will release an ant or a spider she finds in the house gently outside.

It is because of her, we have seven cats and four dogs. Of course I have learned to love pets and dearly love each one. Each pet has their own distinct personality.

It is true you can’t easily go away when you have a menagerie of this size but to me that is a small price to pay. Each pet is lovely in their own right. And they give much more to me then I give to them.

Her sanctity of life and love of pets is definitely a quality of her I have fallen in love with. And every day I am reminded of this by each pet I come in contact with.

My wife had to remind me I am not always good at listening. I can go on and on with my own agenda and not respond to the other party. Thank God for mates! They sometimes can remind us of our faults. There is no doubt a person wants a mate who is not a yes person. Can you imagine how boring it would be if your mate acquiesces to every thing? Thank God for mates who tell you the truth and can also do it gently. We are all flawed and a good wife is worth her weight in gold.

There was a dead female cardinal laying near my car.  I could not tell how it died by looking at it but I felt sorry for it.  Usually when you see a cardinal its mate is somewhere nearby.  Cardinals mate for life and somewhere was a male cardinal who must have been mourning its death.  I hope it is able to find a new mate.

Your houseplants teach you patience.  As a rule, they are slow growing and if one starts to falter it might take awhile for it to flourish again. You might have to move it to change its lighting, adjust the amount of water you give it.

Then you have to wait to see how it responds. That usually requires time and patience. You know it is doing well when it has new growth and or flowers.

You always have to wait to see if your adjustments to its care bares (???) fruit. And plants also know when you love them and there is little discord in the house.

“The Secret Life Of Plants” was a title of a book. And some may scoff at its premise but I believe the whole world is connected.  Nothing exists in a vacuum.

And you are well rewarded when you go to the trouble of learning how to properly take care of them. Each plant is different.  Like people.  I watch my plants carefully.

And I mourn when I failed one. And it dies. Your house plants always teach you patience.

I can’t be fifteen seconds or more from a pen that writes. My wife likes click pens. The only trouble with them half the time or more they do not work (or are “unstable”, my words).

I spent fifteen minutes or more gathering all my pens in the house that I could find and sorting them.  I pulled out the Bic pens, which are usually reliable. Then I put a collection of them in three different spots in the house.

One is now in my office, one in the living room and another near the computer. Now I know exactly where they are. I am no more than a few seconds from any of them in the house.

Of late, I was getting a bit frustrated finding a pen that works.  This was driving me a little crazy–finding a pen that writes immediately.

Now I can sleep more soundly. I know exactly where all my Bic pens are. They usually do not disappoint me. And if they do, I just throw them away. They are cheap.

I am no longer going to entertain the idea of frying up any trout I catch on my camp/fishing trip in May. I remember last year keeping a little bigger sized rainbow trout than normal to eat it for dinner later.

I had placed it on a stringer in the water. It started bleeding from the gills. I could not bear the thought of it dying that way. I released it and permitted it to swim away. This year I will let all the trout I catch back in the water immediately. My days of killing fish are now gone.

Sometimes no matter what you do you lose.  My wife told me to pay the “lawn” guy who worked for about two and half hours.  He cleaned out the gutters, cut some branches off our large pine tree and did some raking.

He asked for $85 which I paid him.  When I told my wife how much I paid him, she screamed I paid him too much and literally threw a tantrum screaming, “He cheated us.”

I told her I knew that was a little high he charged us and we did not discuss what we were going to pay him before hand.

It is also true going up on a ladder and cutting branches was a little dangerous although I did not tell my wife that.

Anyway, I got the silent treatment from my wife the rest of the evening.  Sometimes even when you do what your wife asks you to do you still get in trouble.  I will just try to cut my losses.  And not make it worse.  And hope she decides to talk to me later.

Spring finally arrived. Today was its entrance. The forecast said it would hit seventy today. The sky was perfectly blue with not a cloud in the sky and all I wanted to do was go fishing.

There was one small detail to overcome–I had not gotten my license yet but you get the idea how beautiful the first day of spring was. The countdown was over.

And I know it will have arrived for good when the days melt into each other and I no longer think about spring. We creatures take the weather for granted awfully quick but not too long.

This is a temperate climate. And the weather changes before you know it. Today I will celebrate spring. At least, for one day.

Every time I pass a river or creek I want to look upstream or downstream. I don’t know always know why. On certain bridges, I hope to spot a great egret or a snowy egret, a considerably smaller bird, although both are completely white.

It always has something to do with the unknown. I never know exactly what to expect. Even when the river is parallel to the road I still try to peer between the rapidly passing trees to see what I could see.

Every body of water fascinates me from no matter from what vantage point I view it–car, train, whatever. I have been this way as long as I remember.

I keep my eyes peeled for any ducks or other kind of birds that I pass always wanting to identify them. I was amazed that one of two visiting friends (from NYC) could not identify a bird as common as a male cardinal. I guess you do not see many birds in the middle of the city.

I have always made it my business to name the birds I see. And if I see one I don’t recognize, I try to remember some distinct feature of it so I can consult my bird book and properly identify it.

I always pay attention to the birds around me. I grew up in the city but my Mom had a garden with all kinds of things in it including tomatoes and all kind of flowers, an apricot tree and even a fig tree. And that is, of course, an incomplete list.

On weekends my Dad often took us to the mountains and seashore and lakes. I owe both of my parents a great debt for introducing me to nature. I grew to love birds and took care studying them and loved to identify them–even from a speeding car. I learned to respect nature and the wild.

To me the music is always about feeling.  Yes, I want the lyrics if there is any to make sense and be well integrated with the music.  The music is always about feelings.  Sure, I want the musicians to be competent on their instruments.  Yet it has to be more than that.  Each musician needs to care about their song, the notes they are playing.  The audience always knows whether they care or not.  And that is the first thing I listen is the feel of the song.  It is either there or it is not.  The music is always about the feelings of the musicians and how well they express them in their music.  The best music expresses the inexpressible and you walk away enriched.  It is always about the feeling the music engenders.