Saturday, September 29, 2018

A Small Huge Step

Last night after evening chores I did something I have not done in over seven years: I spent a night off farm. You read that right. Until last night I had not slept anywhere but this home because getting away was impossible. There was a surplus of complications and responsibilities and a deficit of desire and resources. But things are slowly changing here and shifting slightly. I was able to load up the truck with the dogs and drive half an hour into Vermont to my friends' home on a mountainside. There I set up my tent on their land, joined them in an amazing chicken dinner, and then we sat outside under the stars with a campfire until we were all ready for bed. While out there we watched a red fox hop along the edge of their property and stars fall from the sky. We talked, laughed, and shared the little adventure I was having - my first night away. When all the feasting was over and the conversation became mostly yawns the happy couple returned to their cottage and me and the dogs retired to my 2-person tent.

This was not an adventure of epic proportions. This was just 12 hours off farm, after evening chores and back in time for regular morning feeding. But it was something I couldn't do until recently. It is why I sold the sheep and goats (along with needing to cut back on expenses). Not because I wanted to camp one night, but because I needed to get to a place again where I could. As I venture back into the world of dating I want to be able to get away a little.  I want my farm and the fine work of it: but as long as I am single and there's no Cold Antler Farm television series paying my mortgage or a NY Times bestseller being published: I needed to change things up.

And the best part of the small trip: I wasn't worried. While over in Vermont sleeping under the nearly-full moon with Friday and Gibson around me in a snug pile: I knew things were okay back home. I knew that none of the lambs had escaped their pen and were in the road. The sheep that did that had been sold. I knew that there was no baby goats to worry about or does needing milking at 6AM: they had been sold. I knew the pigs were sleeping under their straw in the barn. I knew the horses were fine in the field. I knew the hawk was sleeping in her mews, full from a crop of quail and on her perch. And I knew the cats had run of the house and could care less if I was gone half a day. They had food, water, access to inside and out. I had made this camp out possible because I needed it, wanted it, and taught myself a night away was possible. It's a small huge step. A level up.

Future adventures will be as small, an overnight backpacking trip. A day trip to a B&B with the dogs. Nothing that doesn't involve them as I can't imagine going anywhere without them. Gibson is turning nine and we have never spent a night apart, not one. Friday, the same at 3. We're a unit that isn't going anywhere but that's okay. This is enough for right now. And I'm glad we all made it.

Oh, and when I got back this morning everything was just fine. I let out a sigh so long yogis felt it across the sea.