The Scent of Suffield

When we were kids, one of the highlights of any trip downtown was the possibility of stopping at the gas station on Mountain Road. While the service guy sauntered out to fill up the family station wagon, the four of us would have our heads out the windows taking deep, gasoline infused breaths as, believe it or not, we loved that gasoline aroma.

Observer Celebrates 20 Years

The way I see it, it all started as we sat around the dining room table, my dad telling us stories about growing up while I was trying to hide my peas under my mashed potatoes. He was a good storyteller, and it was important to him that we knew what life was like growing up on the farm around the corner where he was the seventh generation to take his first steps on that patch of land.

Palm Warblers and Other Strangers

When my brothers and I were growing up, my parents were not on orange alert about strangers. While my friends were all being lectured about the dangers of unknown people in their lives, my parents were throwing caution to the wind.

King of the Woods

Back when we were growing up, we had one of those squat console television sets in our family room with rabbit ear antennae. It was one of my brother’s jobs to wrap hunks of tin foil around those rabbit ears and to adjust them based on the prevailing winds so that we could tune in our favorite shows.

The Acrobatic Nuthatch

Around this time of year my face is pressed to the window by our bird feeder watching the nuthatches scrabble up and down the tree trunks. The white breasted nuthatch is a fairly common visitor in these parts.

The Ongoing Quest

The other day I was talking to a friend about the good old days and the college experience. This was back in the time before social media and cell phones, in fact we didn’t even have a regular phone in our dorm room.


Our weekly pilgrimage on the trails around town helps us to lead a wide awake life. Earlier this fall, I had launched into one of my endless narratives while climbing the hills; my friends may or may have not had their hands clapped over their ears, but their peace on the trail was short-lived, as my faithful pup uttered a strange bark and bounded off after two woodland creatures.