Friday, August 16, 2013

all around

Why did I mount Rosie yet again so early in the morning? At just shy of 6:30, the sun is up and out, so I cannot say I'm chasing a sunrise.

Maybe it's because I have so much to do that I want that burst of energy that comes from riding a moped early, when it's so cool that you wonder if gloves would have been a good idea.  In August.

Maybe. But I don't think so. I think it's that morning rides are addictive. Hey, Rosie, let's get going and see what we can find!

I pull out of our driveway just as the sun comes in through the old orchard. The one with the trees that routinely drop too many small apples. Of the kind you'd appreciate if you were, say, into applesauce.

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I point Rosie toward Lake Waubesa. It's always so pretty there early in the day!

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Monet-like. River Seine, Lake Waubesa... There are similarities at the break of a faintly pink dawn.


Back on the moped. Up the hill, surrounded by fields of corn and soy, corn and soy and corn...


Feeling the cold wind, looking to the right, to the left.  Seeing these guys at the side of the road. Exotic hens? Not likely. But then, what else?


And the cranes. Still congregating in the emergent widening strips of sunlight. Fields of spent gold.

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And finally, rounding the last turn, picking up the road that leads me through the fields tended by the truck farmers. The market -- the landowner tells us. They only care about Saturday, when they'll take their stuff to market.  Is this surprising? Are we troubled by people who work and work and work because there's money at the end of that tunnel? Don't we admire that here? Who commands greater respect -- the person who says I work so damn hard! ...or the one who says  -- I don't kill myself on the job. I like to have time to twiddle my thumbs, to think about ... existence!

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Home now. And suddenly we're rushed. Ed's up and on his way to his world of metal milling machines, I quickly finish breakfast...

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...and get back on Rosie, pointing her this time toward campus. I need to check in with my mailbox there, with the stack of papers and messages that accumulate during these weeks where work takes place mostly out on the farmhouse porch.

And then it's evening and we gather our tennis rackets and ride Ed's motorbike toward the pine shaded tennis courts.

On the way back Ed almost throws us by swerving to avoid hitting an animal. What is it? -- I ask, but it's obvious --  I only need a confirmation.

It's a sleek, gray coyote. I'm protective of Isis and so I hope he stays clear of the farmette, but secretly, I am not unhappy to see coyotes here. Did you notice that I haven't posted any photos of deer this summer? That's because I haven't seen any. You know, deer? That gorgeous animal that eats the leaves of your baby fruit trees? And leaves behind ticks with lyme? There've been plenty of dog ticks this year, but we've not found a single deer tick.

And that's a very good thing.

We're almost home now... almost. Passing the fields worked by Farmer Lee...

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...thinking about her now. (To a commenter: no, we do not have enough land to offer her.) About all of it -- the farming, the marshlands, the foods that we can eat in the summer that are grown just minutes from where we live.

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Supper is simple. Our own tomatoes and cucumbers. A local cheese, eggs, market corn.

This is the classic summer's end. The flavors of a robust harvest. The colors of late August.