I got up today at the usual time and web-crawled my way thru the morning 'nets with the coffee. As 6am was approaching, I couldn't help but notice that the sun rises later every day now and I love this about living at this latitude. This has been the first time in recent history that I actually embraced the notion of "summer" as something of a positive and not the negative thoughts of the past.
Summer worries me due to the heat and hurricanes. But we live away from the floodzones of the Lake now and with the garden, summer has come to mean grow in the sunlight. With each week and month after mid-March, I see fruits set and plants branch and leaves explode and fade. It has been truly marvelous to be alive this year.
Of course, with all this "growth" comes harvest and preservation and if you have read any of the past months postings you know I've been up to the elbows with canning/drying activities. I haven't written about all of it because it gets as old to write about as it is to read.
Here we are in the beginning week of August and most of the spring plantings have faded but I still have peppers and eggplants and butternut squash and the sunflowers I managed to refrain from beheading too soon. There is a bed of sweet potatoes as well but that won't be touched for another 2 months. The beds of rangy tomatoes need a good addressing so I thought if I hurry, I'd get an early start of it before the sun chased me back inside.
As I worked and listened to the chickens take turns squabbling I thought it had been a few days since I looked at the back plot. I need to check out how the squashes were doing. I think the zucs and yellow crooks are played out for the year. (That and the stink bugs have pretty much kept me at arm's length.) The luffah is really going to town now and I need to cut a lot of it back because I can't see the gourds any longer due to the vines.
The black-eyed peas are still producing and I need to pick and clean another pot of them for dinner tonight. But first I pick another dozen butternuts out of the rows before they burst. We did very well with the 4 plants and I need to make a boatload of soup/puree for the freezer. And if you could see all the Carmen peppers I picked. Sadly, because I was loathe to use pesticides & herbicides, some of the peppers have small brown spots but I chop them up and use my vacuum sealer to freeze this and can easily cull the bad bits away. I save the best ones to give to the neighbors. So those went into the wagon to process this morning.
I got busy with the pea shelling and thought I'd give a friend a call to catch up with her while I was otherwise engaged. After we finished sorting out the ills of the world, I saw I needed to empty the compost pail before I added more pepper seeds and such. So off I went to the Back 2.
The chickens are hot. Ginger is sitting and laying at the worse time of day to be indoors and I see I need to get that extension cord out there and set up the oscillating fan for them. And it occurred to me then we haven't had rain for a week! So, since the potted plants need to be watered, I stopped what I was doing and headed off to get the hoses hauled out. Which of course reminded me that if the pots need water, so do the herbs in the kitchen garden and the Guavas out front!
As I stand there watering the herbs, I feel this glorious little waft of wind blow against me and I think to myself, "man, a beer would taste so great right now!" (and it wasn't even 10:15am yet) (on a Sunday)
Keeping up with all there is to do every day means there is a lot of neediness out there. But every now and then what I really need to do is simply stop and breathe deeply. Way down deep in my lungs and remember, be a human being, not a human doing. Be in the moment. It is fleeting. I thought back in April: here is all this newness and potential! Let's see where it takes us!
And it's been dragging us along almost every day since then down the needy road. We need to plow NOW. Get those seedlings growing, mulch, mow, fertilize, weed. Pick. Clean, mulch. Pick. Can. Clean. Cook. Freeze. Clean. All the time thinking about the next thing that needs attention. That is the nature of Nature. Everything is on a schedule.
But there comes a time when a cold beer on a hot Sunday morning is what I need. And so I did. And then I told you about it.