Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Day 2

I was fall-down-the-stairs tired when I was walking out to the pasture with a lead rope and halter, collecting Merlin for the short errand to a neighbor's home down-mountain. Tired because the day started at 5Am and even though it was only 1Am, I so needed a nap. The bowl of scrambled eggs was used up, converted into the energy that saw me through a rainy morning of usual chores. I re-bedding the piglet pen, fed the boar in the barn three-day old potato soup over his pig chow, and milked the goat. I had fed the horses, sheep, and goats their hay. I had hauled water in excess of 300 pounds in five-gallon buckets. I had hoed, weeded, and mulched the entire kailyard and prepared it for winter seeding. I had a loaf of bread on its first rise in the kitchen for a meal a hundred years away and had walked the dogs and cleaned the house. I was tired.

But it had rained through the morning and this bit of sun had lasted over an hour. Merlin was dry (good, since I was about to harness him and hitch the cart) and if I waited much longer I worried I would hit School Bus Time (not ideal for horse drawn vehicles on winding roads). So i gathered my horse and brought him to the lamppost in front of the house to groom, pick feet, and harness. Within twenty minutes we were headed down the road in the meadowbrook. His tail swishing, my body relaxed, and my mind grateful as hell that Merlin would be doing the traveling on hoof while I finally got to sit.

Just two miles was the trip, a short ride down the mountain and back to return a laptop to a neighbor I had borrowed. She was at work so I was given instructions to stick the computer bag inside her mud room. A simple errand, but it made me laugh. I was driving down a country road by a horse cart to deliver a computer. What a weird and wonderful world we live in where a single woman can do this on a Tuesday afternoon. I cashed in a happy check right then and there.

The wind blew and gave me my second one. I felt energized again. No longer tired, but alert and attentive to my surroundings. I watched a juvenile red-tailed hawk fly ahead of us from tree to tree. A doe watched us from 30 feet away, not bothered by the carnivore in the cart but enchanted by the herbivore in skins and bells. I waved and her eyes met mine and she dashed off. Smart girl, her. I am no friend of the whitetail. I have recipes ready and an eager rifle.

We drove there and back again, a decent ride without the protestations of the last few trips Merlin has offered. I stopped feeding him grain and it helped, at least on this short drive. When we pulled into the driveway I met the UPS man who had one package for me, thin and mysterious (the package, not the man). I opened it and was deligted to find a back ordered book: a hardcover of the unabridged Legend of Sleepy Hollow. New York State's best folktale!

The afternoon was overcast but warm, humid even. I planted some Annie's Heirloom seeds: a Winter Density Lettuce and a Bloomsdale long spinach. I ordered some cheap row cover cloth online to extend the season a bit. I still have plenty of kale but the last of the tomatoes, cucumbers, and basil came inside today. I picked the basil leaves and ground them into pulp and shoved them into a ball jar with some olive oil: quick and dirty preservation till I gather some pesto recipes online and get some ingredients at the Stannard Farm Stand tomorrow. We have plans to drive down in the morning in the cart. I'm all out of cheese, green (non kale) veg, and coffee. I'm also low on flour. Ergo: trip to provision!

Lunch was skipped, but dinner was a slice of oven-warmed bread and a slather of mayo, topped with a garden tomato slice and some bacon. An open-faced BLT was exactly what I needed and I savored it. I'm still full, and far too tired to write about Antlerstock - but I will soon, as it is coming ever so closer. It's not even 7PM and I am nearly ready for bed, but happy in my tired state. So much work is getting done around here, so much effort and sweat, improvement and time in sun and rain. It's only 2 days into my Staycation and I am feeling as beat as an Amish mother of six, so goodnight for now, and if you want to see pictures of today look at my Facebook page.

P.S. Sorry for spelling or grammar mistakes, not even spellchecking tonight.

P.P.S. No new birchthorn updates until I get on to a computer that let's me log into my BTblog, and these 12-year and 10-year-old computers don't have the OS that allows such fancy work. Honestly, I'm grateful I can even update the blog!


Blogger beccaWA said...

I'm considering a heated water hose. They're pricey, but with your setup sounds like a winner.

September 17, 2014 at 10:49 PM  
Blogger Su Ba said...

Sounds like a good day. That's the same contentment and joy I get from working on my place. A full day of living your own life instead of kowtowing to someone else's ideas of what you should be doing. Living on a homestead, no matter how small, is the life for me too!

September 18, 2014 at 1:01 PM  

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