Time Spent with Meredith Baker: A Season in America

Time Spent with Meredith Baker: A Season in America

Accompany Meredith Baker in her trusty camper, Snowball, as she shares her tales of traversing America amidst the 2020 pandemic. From the uncrowded grounds of Camp Concrete in Washington, to the sparkling waters of the Mississippi Bayou, join Meredith on a journey of her reflections of the past year. Listen in as she encounters friends old and new, tries gator gumbo, and visits our national parks all while the sounds of nature enhance the wondrous, wandering year of a 76 year old, former Swan Lady. Her writing from the road will leave you tickled and soothed as she effortlessly brings you with her over the course of 18 episodes… good thing you’re sitting up front, she likes the company.

Episodes

December 1, 2021 9 mins

Cabbages and Carrots: good, clean fun.

As we take our last journey with Meredith for the season, we accompany her to her friends' home for some good company and, as always, a good meal. She contemplates the journey of age and adventure, reminiscing of her time as a vegetable artist, daisy picker, and cabbage laborer. Did you know that cabbage washes up nicely? W...

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Old Sweaters: gray skies and the warmth of old friends.

In our penultimate episode of the season, Meredith urges all of us to watch “Amend” a documentary about the 14th amendment, and fills her time by falling in love with Jazz. She moves through Florida to South Carolina and then to North Carolina, visiting her daughter, granddaughter, son-in-law and their nois...

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November 17, 2021 10 mins

Quirks and Quiddities: farewell to Ocean Springs.

Leaving Gautier Mississippi, Meredith heads to a friend’s house spotting quirky signs and t-shirts along the way. When she arrives, they reminisce on old spelling words over carbonara, collards, and crunchy salad. She continues on with Willie Nelson as her traveling companion, heads East past Fortress Mausoleum &...

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November 10, 2021 9 mins

Technical Difficulties: mental health challenges.

 

Waking up on a 23 degree morning, Meredith zips through the challenges of staying warm in frozen temperatures, considers how Texas is suffering in the unexpected cold, and what makes for good mental health. She shares with us her mother’s end of life plan and her healthy mental health qualities. How are we? Wel...

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November 3, 2021 6 mins

Bookends: a jar of spring daffodils and the pursuit of happiness.

It’s a chilly February evening as Meredith watches the egrets rise on the bayou against the setting sun. She compares our political landscape to the landscape of various trees before her. “A metaphor to learn to live together in the pursuit of happiness.” The news may flood our daily lives but hop...

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October 27, 2021 6 mins

King Cake Baby!: oh my!

Tired of being cooped up in Shepard State Park through days of rain, Meredith wanders around Lowes and Walmart for something to do, feeling like something’s off. Hopefully, just the weather. She walks us through her “Camping in an RV cookbook”: Top Ramen, Quesadillas, raisin toast and butter, tea and chocolate, jazz and a drink… the list ...

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October 20, 2021 12 mins

Pascagoula: soap, propane, and s’mores.

While accompanying her friend to the auto body shop, Meredith recalls our country's own “advanced collision”, or the insurrection at the capitol the previous week. They grab some Dr. Peppers to wash down the week.  Then after a failed attempt to wash her hair in the sink, she heads out to get propane for Snowball suds and ...

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October 13, 2021 6 mins

Woolgathering: under the sweetgum trees, a smoky fire.

Beneath the trees in the Mississippi Bayou brush, Meredith sits by the fire swatting away the “no see ‘ems”. She daydreams, “woolgathering” as she calls it, of who she was in her past lives, was following a cattle driver? A sailor who traveled around Cape Horn? An immigrant running to safety and freedom? She...

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October 6, 2021 5 mins

Jupiter and Saturn: align across the bayou sky.

A few days before Christmas, Meredith contemplates all of us coming together like Jupiter and Saturn above. As winds blow leaf circles on earth, she considers the great divide between humans and seeks mother Mary’s wisdom and comfort for our “collective unease”. So much work around Christmas time, baking, cleaning,...

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September 29, 2021 9 mins

Unexpected Visitors: who’s in my bed.

Falling asleep in glasses creates some uncomfortable evenings, but that’s not all. Waking with a start, Meredith discovers avocados rolling around under her covers. After ridding Snowball from some unwelcome furry guests, she receives a packet of notes and reflections from her brother and catches up with him over the phone. ...

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September 22, 2021 15 mins

Short Story Long: we don’t need no stinkin’ punctuation.

Battling no-seeums and an over-zealous, over-sharing, oblivious neighbor, Meredith camps out at Davis Bayou, Mississippi. Why this man confides in her, she'll never know! Meanwhile across the bayou, barbecue with friends, a rosy sunset, and Christmas lights make the evening. They invite her to try alligato...

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September 15, 2021 11 mins

A Side of Dry Tortugas: sounds like a good complement to alligator meat.

Meredith, leaving her daughter behind after a lovely visit, hits the highway accompanied by Willie Nelson. She thinks back to when her son joined the Navy, comparing the rag-tag young men enlisting to the “tidy convicts” she worked with while she was a correctional officer. Her heart aches....

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September 8, 2021 8 mins

Bright Friends: celebration of travel and nature adventures.

Meredith carefully crosses the Rocky Mountains through dangerous wintry roads. She arrives in Strasbourg, Colorado and observes several characters on her overnight stay. She cleans off Snowball, who resembles "a wet dog come from a swim", and continues on through Colorado to Kansas then to Missouri, Il...

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September 1, 2021 11 mins

All Will Be Well: white-out in Parachute, Colorado.

Meredith reflects on her many trips back and forth across the country from 2010-2017. She finds herself surprised at the uncommon quiet in Sturgis, South Dakota with what would have been the time for one of their famous motorcycle rallies. She stops for the night near the autumn colored Twin Falls, Idaho and th...

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August 25, 2021 12 mins

On the Highway: making tracks across the colorful country to stay ahead of the weather. Meredith revisits Camp Concrete, Washington and plots her course for the winter as fall begins its approach. Admiring the life-sustaining duties of the nurse log and the seafoam green light through the cedars, she finds peace in nature. She gets to know the local campers and their concerns. News of the pandemic ga...

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August 18, 2021 8 mins

Give Way Ye Gates:  a visitor comes to camp with a steamy and unexpected poem.

Meredith answers an unexpected phone call and before she knows it, she’s agreed to host the friend at Camp Concrete next Tuesday… Six feet apart, of course. When her friend arrives they sit and indulge in sweet dark cherries and discuss Hamilton the musical… well, her friend discusse...

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August 18, 2021 13 mins

Camp Concrete: spring unfolds as we ponder this most unusual season.

This week, Meredith considers how she will spend her time in the pandemic. It is early May. “There’s only so much cooping up a person can do”, and so, she takes to the woods. Amidst the tall cedars of Camp Concrete, Washington,  she appreciates the sun through the trees, the gentle breeze, the...

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August 18, 2021 9 mins

Go Forth: Traveling alone across the country. 

Meredith encourages us to Go Forth. To wander and enjoy the journey as a wayfaring stranger. Indulge in our wanderlust because, afterall, home is where our hat is. She questions what it is that drives us forward. How do we move through the world? “Can we step into the unknown? Do we have the luxury to choose travel ...

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Accompany Meredith Baker in her trusty camper, Snowball, as she travels across America amidst the 2020-21 pandemic. From the tall cedars of "Camp Concrete" in Washington, to the sparkling waters of the Mississippi Bayou, join Meredith on a journey of her reflections of the past year. Listen in as she encounters friends old and new, tries alligator stew, and visits our national parks all while the sou...

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