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We stand once again on the cusp of another Memorial Day long weekend. Driving over to Middletown last Wednesday, the traffic on 17 was heavy, Sullivan-inbound. The winter was cold and very wet; every … more
Maybe it was the low rumbling of the Town of Bethel’s sweeper and paving trucks bouncing down my street this week or maybe it was a result of having been seriously ill all winter: I’m not … more
The glorious sun-splashed weekend which led up to our partial eclipse this past Monday was of course but a feint of hand by the fickle weather god. Damp and cold have returned and it’s back to … more
A March thaw is upon us and the question now really becomes: has the Snow Man departed these parts for good or is this thaw some kind of cruel joke played on us by a smirking Father Winter holed up … more
One of the prime pleasures of reading the “Sullivan County Democrat“ is this paper’s utterly lovely, abiding, and seemingly peculiar devotion to our County’s past. I write … more
One year ago I took my annual vacation and flew off to Berlin, Germany. This year I decided to head north to visit “my Home and Native Land,” Canada, where my entire family (excepting me, … more
In just a few days, we go into our final quarter of 2023, the year’s final ninety days. Of course, at the end of each year, people ask themselves whether they have had a good year of it, how it … more
In my experience, the week after a long weekend is a particularly quiet one around here. City folk have departed. They are busy settling kids into school. Sullivan locals are looking for the best … more
  If you read this newspaper and if you are a reader of this column, you will have noticed that I haven’t been contributing as much lately to the Sullivan County Democrat. As most readers … more
The poisonous pall that drew its oddly beautiful tawny surplice over our heads last week has slipped back to the North this week leaving cleaner, moister air settling in over Mongaup Valley and … more
In all but name, the Summer of 2023 has arrived. Beer and bags of ice are selling briskly; by late morning motor traffic is heavy on 17B and a line of cars builds quickly whenever a light turns red. … more
Surely, you, too, Reader, have noticed that this spring’s foliage in Sullivan County has been a kaleidoscope of color, almost as fantastical as the foliage of fall. Right now as you buzz down … more
Our April days have warmed and lengthened beautifully now to the point that you, Reader, can sometimes sit with a book on your lap or read this newspaper outside until almost 8:00 PM without a lamp. … more
April 7 – Glugg glugg! and hubba hubba! Yesterday, alerted by a friend to go down by the Lybolt Brook, I came upon a pool of glassy water full of what appeared to be four-eyed frogs. But wait! … more
March 3 – What with the sudden spate of snow storms hitting us in the past few weeks it has sometimes of late been difficult to safely enjoy a good brisk walk around Smallwood’s … more
February 3 – This past weekend I decided to go into New York City to celebrate my birthday with friends. Like many hereabouts who don’t have a NYC job anymore requiring regular visits, I … more
January 20 – While the Snow Gods have mostly danced far to the north of us so far this winter, those who live around Mongaup Valley and Smallwood, NY know very well that February is typically … more
December 30 – And here we are at the end of another year of life, dearly-precious, damnably-short life. 2022 has been a year of happiness and sadness for me, but sadness, alas, predominates. We … more
Once again, Dear Smallwoodian and Dear Mongaupian, we have reached the antipode of the Sullivan year. Where oh where has golden June gone, now? Days are short, nights bitter. Snowflakes fly at any … more
December 2 — This past Saturday, the Saturday after blessed Thanksgiving, two dear NYC friends and I attended the Smallwood Civic Association (SWCA)’s Turkey Trot Get Together on … more
November 18 — This week the first snow arrived in Sullivan County. As winter storms go here in the Northeast, this first snowstorm was a small one. The ‘expat-Canadian’ in me has … more
October 20 – I write to you this week from Berlin, Germany, a city which I once called home from 1981 to 1993. They were the happiest twelve years of my life, played out against the background … more
October 7 — The nights are chilly, really chilly, and each day on our way to wherever we are going we glance at the trees edging Rt 17 or Pucky Huddle and see that what was just yesterday … more
With the first day of summer this past Tuesday, there is lots of news to report about the goings on in and around Smallwood. Over at the Smallwood Civic Association (SWCA), the Association Board is … more
With a shining Memorial Day behind us, we the people of Mongaup Valley and Smallwood and Sullivan County are now in our high season “element.” Our element in incipient summer is a … more
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