2020 Socially Distant Easter


The Adventurer, Vernon Wade

Vernon was born in the Pacific Northwest and still lives in the shadow of Mt. Hood, near the small town where he grew up. Vernon has spent decades wandering the hills, hunting mushrooms, camping and riding motorcycles into the remotest nooks and crannies to be found in the region.

April 11th, 2020. For the first time in decades, the Easter Bunny BBQ was cancelled, all because of the Damned Contagion. Amy and I decided we would celebrate the holiday between ourselves. It is important to maintain your normal routines when quarantined. With no guests expected, Social Distance Bunny BBQ 2020 was a low-key affair.

I started the morning with a leisurely soak in the hot tub before running the Bunny Jack up the flagpole. We flew it upside down, to signal our distress.

I made a mushroom omelet for breakfast, using morels Amy and I had found before they locked down the forest.

After breakfast, I boned a rabbit and prepared a roulade. Just because the party was only the two of us, there was no reason we couldn’t cook a rabbit. Without the pressure of hosting, I could spend more time on cooking. Rabbit roulade requires a good deal of preparation before it even gets to the Dutch oven, at which point close attention is required. If I let the heat get away from me all that preparation would be for naught.




Amy made her rabbit cake after I was through making a mess in the kitchen. The spiced carrot cake is a special recipe she has made at every Bunny Roast since the day we got married. I look forward to it every year. This year it was a little smaller, and in the spirit of the lock-down, she improvised the decorations with things she had in the pantry. I think it came out beautifully, don’t you?






Dave and Kel were going to get a bike ride in, but there was a cold, strong wind blowing, so they dropped by for a visit. They brought their own chairs and refreshments and kept their distance. I had a fire going in the dugout. We sat at opposite ends of the log and chatted, imbibing our preferred libation. They drank gin & tonic, I had a beer and Amy drank from a bottle of rose my brother and his wife gave us for our anniversary.  It was great to see them but it really brought home how much I was looking forward to seeing my family and friends. Damn the Contagion!



I got the rabbit going over the coals, and put some eggs on to boil. Dave and Kel left before I was done cooking. Without the pressure of guests, we ate a leisurely dinner when the roulade was finished, watched some television and retired early, postponing the egg hunt and barbequing rabbit until Easter Sunday.





The next morning Amy and I experimented with making dye for our Easter eggs. We used a mixture of pine needles and grass for green. Amy came up with some sort of concoction with turmeric which yielded a bright orange. The red wine actually turned the eggs blue and sparkly. We only did four eggs, but we still had a spirited hunt in the back yard.








There was a near constant stream of bicyclists rolling by. Elke and Brian paused on their ride to wish us a happy anniversary. They kept their distance and left after a short visit.




I’d boiled some rhubarb in an attempt to make a red dye. That didn’t work, but the rhubarb made a great base for my bbq sauce. I added garlic, chili powder, apple cider and vinegar, boiling it until thickened. I put a grill across the dugout and used cottonwood chips for smoke and cooked the legs and thighs I’d saved from the rabbit. A couple of potatoes went in the Dutch oven.






We had Peeps in a Puddle while the rabbit was cooking. Amy roasted some vegetables and we had bunny cake for dessert. Social Distance Bunny BBQ 2020 was a low-key but entirely pleasant affair. We went to bed happy, but hoping things get back to normal before next year.





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