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Splashing down after two years’ Peace Corps service in Armenia

    I had not been back in Shady Side for even an hour before I was using a tumble dryer, an appliance I hadn’t seen for nearly three years. In Armenia, where I spent 27 months serving with Peace Corps, a washing machine is a luxury. Clothes are always dried outside on a line. In winter, laundry freezes hard.       It had been very dry here in Chesapeake Country, but rain threatened the day I arrived at Peggy’s house with a giant suitcase, much of it filled with dirty washing.

The local hunter’s choice for a half century

      Celebrating 50 years of business, Rowell’s Butcher Shop in Prince Frederick is still a family-run business. Started by Ernest Rowell, now 90, it was handed over to his son-in-law, Ron Weimert who sold the business to his son, Darrin Weimert, 50, Rowell’s step-grandson. Weimert now runs the business full-time under the watchful eye of Pop Pop.

Yes, that’s a plane coming in over busy Rt. 2 in Edgewater

      Before the plane could fly out of Lee Airport, pilot Bill Friday had a lot to check.       Are we clear for runway? Is this dial in the off position? Is the crossfeed on?       I sat in the back of the 4,000-pound light aircraft — the Federal Aviation Administration’s name for a small airplane that typically seats six or fewer people — trying to scribble down everything being said.

A true story

    I don’t need psychics to convince me that ghosts are real.     My own ghost supplies all the proof I need.

Make more of your retirement years

     In life, the first act is always exciting. The second act … that is where the depth comes in.          For advice scripted in the movies, that pronouncement from the 2010 movie Grown Ups is worth considering.          Now that you’re newly retired — or are planning your retirement — you’ll have time that needs filling.

Action is needed to rescue our iconic species

     A handful of vehicles, mostly pickup trucks and SUVs, lined up behind a small steel gate on a warm summer morning. Inside them was the regular 7:30am crowd, striped-bass fishermen patiently waiting for the Thomas Point ranger to arrive to give them access to one of the Bay’s most sought-after fish.     In opening the gate, the ranger is allowing the men their daily shot at a species that can often grow upward of 50 pounds and offers some delicious eating. Excitement charges the air.

Rehabilitator Patricia Terrant has them under her wing

      Every spring and summer, baby animals are orphaned alongside highways and in backyards. Find one and you’ve got a quandary: What do I do now?       A person who can answer that question is Patricia Terrant of Blue Angel Rescue in Lusby. Terrant, 65, a Certified Wildlife Rehabilitator, has been saving animals, mostly birds, since 2015. 
How Barby Harms became a picker
    Picking is the age-old trade of finding valuable items in other people’s junk. With the debut of American Pickers on The History Channel in 2010, the profession experienced a resurgence. That year, the show was the Number 1 non-fiction series among television viewers.

Growing and thriving over 43 years

     Do you smell the roasting smoked turkey legs? Hear the clanging of steel as jousters meet on the field of battle? Spot courtiers from the 1500s showing up in everyday scenes?       Yes, it’s that time of year again. The Renaissance Festival is Chesapeake Country’s unofficial sign that summer is ending.

Must we eat our way out of this problem?

     Stopping at Bob Evans Seafood in Shady Side, Lou Hyde reports he routinely finds blue catfish in his 240 crab pots in Herring Bay. Some of the horned invaders are so fat that he tears up his pots cutting them loose.       Mick Blackistone, fishmonger, worries that they’re eating juvenile crabs.