Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Deeper Shade of Gold

I had a busy couple of weeks. Guests from the Denver area (hi Marc & Diana!) and work and all that kind of thing, plus I was sick for a couple of days. Luckily (sort of) I didn't have to call in, so I didn't miss any work days.

The weather shifted from hot to normal Pacific NW summer, if there is such a thing, in this last little stretch. The earth is dry, perfumed with scents of hay and hidden dew when I weed. The chickens are growing fast--not getting bigger so much as stronger and they're having trouble peeping like chicks when I come out to feed them. Soon their baby voices will be gone forever, but I'm not sad about that. It's cute, but I find the soft clucks they make charming, and I love waking to the roosters crowing.

Speaking of roosters, so far we have just the two, Henry and a still-to-be-determined Wyandotte. The Wyandotte won't crow when I go out there, so I only see his neck stretch and his wings flap from afar. Henry will crow any time he feels like it, and he only protests a little when I pick him up. It's hard to tell if he likes getting petted and carried around, but at minimum he's learned that I won't hurt him and that he'll be able to go about his business again as soon as I set him down.

Fun times. If there's a hint of sadness, it's because I smell autumn most mornings these days, and it feels too soon. And yet, I'm anticipating that wonderful, soaring longing I feel that we call The Wandering that autumn brings.

It's been a very short summer, one of the shortest we've had since 2002 (or was it 2003?) I remember complaining about the wet, cold June. The talk around town is that we'll have a really rough winter this year. I wonder if I'll finally be able to try out my snowshoes. The girl has, but that's because she went snowshoeing on Mt. Hood with her grandma. So far, local conditions haven't called for them ever since I got them as a Christmas present, a present that I couldn't receive until after we thawed out. Of course I didn't need them anymore that year ....

Time to make lists and lay plans, and to plant onion and carrots to overwinter. Mother Nature won't wait and neither can I if I'm to have half a hope of spring leek soup.

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