The Tulip Rush

Even with reservations, the rush was on to get into Roozengaard. No reminders to stay 6 feet apart while waiting in line or in the bunched up starting gate. And they’re OFF!

We looked for the path less taken. The crowd thinned the further you walked away from the tulip store and coffee stop. The workers were taking a beer break outside the fence and then covered head to toe, they mounted their tractors and were off, the tractors’ blades tilling the rows. A nephew raced down the row and back again trying to keep up.

Would he be as excited if the machines were automated and robots did the work? Robotic machines are already on some farms zapping weeds automatically. How soon before they invade this Tulip world? Terminators eliminating migrant workers’ jobs.

On the way down the rows, everyone seems joyfully immersed in the Van Gough dashes of color, strollng through a impressionist landscape. This is probably more sensory saturation than I will get viewing the traveling 3-D Van Gough show.

Eddies in the stream of Agritourists allow for selfie and group photo opportunities, holding visitors’ attention briefly before the willing subjects swirl out and merge once again with the flow. The bright sun on this almost freaky spring day makes the colors pop.

But where are the birds and the bees? Nada.

There are inherent risks in Agritourism? The sign does not greet you when plunging into the fields of color, but it sits at the end of the rows facing away as if embarrassed to give the bad news. So the return trip can be clouded with doubt about acting in a “negligent manner”. What does that mean? Not paying attention to the chemicals, the dust, the run-a-way tractors and….COVID blended into the warm Skagit Valley air.

What the Heck! Throw caution to the wind, enjoy the bliss and let the tulip color spectrum sooth your troubles.

About Whittoons

Cartoonist, and community organizer who has covered the globe as a doodlebugger, gandydancer, supernumerary steward, Able Bodied Seaman, Wireman, monkey man, Night Baker and dishwasher, Hobo, hitchhiker and husband.
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