"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Monday, April 12, 2010

Weather Report, With Nostalgia

Finally, the nasty weather has subsided. It seems we had all our nice spring weather in February, when it was so unseasonably warm it was freaking everybody out. Everybody walked around dazed, in their T-shirts and shorts, saying "can you believe this?" over and over again. Farmers would add "It's gonna be a bad year for tree fruit." Liberals and worriers would talk about global warming, even as they threw the frisbee around or lit the barbecue.

The weather reverted to it's normal miserable cold rain for most of March, and people breathed a sigh of relief. It's ugly and no fun, but it's what we're used to, we said, as we trudged through the knee-deep mud. But as the rain and wind kept up steady week after week, and the sky stayed stubbornly the color of snail-slime, and the sun became a distant memory, I began to long for more unseasonable weather. I began to daydream of visiting my Dad in Tucson, a place I usually refer to as "that God-forsaken desert."

As a teenager, I loved the rain. I found it romantic. But then, I also wore a red bandana as a belt and kept a spiral topped notebook in my pocket at all times so I could write down a poem whenever the muse struck. I fell in love with wildly inappropriate people and smoked too much weed and too many bare-butt camels and wore cowboy boots for two years straight, summer and winter. I read Burroughs and Hunter S. and Tom Robbins and took up abstract painting and collage art. I dropped out of school and contracted herpes and hitchhiked across the country, all in the same summer.

I was kind of an ass, I guess I'm saying. We mature, thank God, though God knows it takes some of us longer than others. My mature self likes the rain a whole lot less and doesn't find knee-deep mud that is at least half animal-shit to be romantic in the slightest. I find marriage a lot more rewarding than promiscuity ever was, and weed just makes me jumpy these days. I do, however, miss the spiral topped notebook, and whatever brand of youthful obliviousness it is that allows one to call oneself a poet without irony.

The good weather brings it's own set of tasks. Just about every day I tether the ponies and let the goats out to browse. Ostensibly, this is to save the grass in the large pasture as much as possible for later in the season, but also it's nice that it allows me to sit in a folding slingback chair with a magazine, loosely holding a stick and calling it work.

At last, I got Homero to put up the clothes-tree. I have no intention of trying to air-dry clothes in the winter or when it's wet, but running the dryer during the summertime feels like a sin.

Fixing fences is constant work. Poppy pony mashes down the field fencing trying to get at the green grass on the other side, and the goats mash it down trying to get at the blackberries. The long term solution is better fencing, but it's just to depressing to think about tearing out fencing that we put up with so much sweat and tears and at a cost of well over a thousand dollars less than three years ago. We'll probably keep patching it for another five years and THEN replace it all with something better.
The pear tree in full bloom. It's been blooming strong for two weeks now, but it's been too cold and windy for any bees to be out. Finally today the tree is covered in bees. Hope that means we'll be getting some pears in the fall.

Well, this creaky old ex-poet is going out to let the goats out. Enjoy the sun, everyone!


polly's path said...

I would gladly trade you some hot days for those rainy ones you've had. We hit the low nineties last week and somehow i feel cheated out of spring. But that's living in the south for you!
Say, Aimee, my last batch of yogurt came out a little runny. I will probably end up straining it some, but have you any idea what the cause is? I usually let mine set in a crockpot filled with warm water overnight, covered in thick towels, but I used the oven method you mentioned here last week. Maybe we have different ovens. Mine stays at about 140 if i leave the light on.
Just wondering.

Aimee said...

I've never quite been able to achieve the texture of commercial yogurt and my respond has been to learn to love the yogurt I got. However I may try buying commercial starter instead of relying on the culture in store bought yogurt. 140 is a little high, somewhere between blood temp and 110 is probably better. If your days ae in he nineties try just putting it in a sunny window!

Milkweed said...

Love this post, Aimee. Please, girl, you are so not an EX-poet. This piece is pure poetry. Thank you!

Penelope said...

ok, i'm no expert, in fact I've never even made yogurt, but a friend of mine swears by using kefir instead of yogurt as a starter, she said it makes amuch thicker goat yogurt. Anyway, it's worth a shot.

The Idiot Gardener said...

That nostalgia made me laugh. I never did abstract painting, though!

Gail V said...

Milkweed was right about the poetry in your writing, Aimee. I knew I liked your spirit, especially, for a reason. My start was a bit like yours, only 10 or 20 years earlier.
Keep on.

Michelle said...

You're an incredible writer. Your first four paragraphs? The start of a novel! :-)