Thursday, May 01, 2014

May 1st

They fly by, these months of spring! May 1st already! In my childhood years, May 1st was a day off from school. Not unlike an American Labor Day. But I never thought much then about the reasons behind the holiday. My thoughts drifted toward May flowers and spring willows and I still think of forgetmenots and English daisies (even though we have none of those yet) when May 1st finally arrives.

Outside, it is still gray and on the cool side. In fact, I don't quite wake up for the 6 o'clock coop opening and when I do get up, it is with the same indifference to the weather I've had the entire past week. Because a week without sunshine feels a bit of a cheat to me.


(The chickens love to hide in the garage when there's rain. It means we have to hose the place down on a regular basis.)


Still, after almost a whole week of sore-back issues, I wake up nearly healed! Tight, yes, things are tight there, but the pain is just an echo of something that was.

So it's rather funny that after breakfast...


...and after some mild digging around the raspberry patch (just to test how things are working in my various joints and muscles), I leave Ed to finish up a small segment (he's pausing here to consider the chickens)...


...and I go to my newly scheduled appointment with a physical therapist. Now, that guy has seen back issues! He admits that a quarter of his patients come with back pain. We are a sore-back nation!

I tell him that I am rather miffed that being as active as I am, I should still have these back events that leave me immobilized for a full day and then barely hobbling along for the remainder of the week.
You should be happy it's only a week. Most people can't shake it that fast.
Yes, but Ed at home, he's older and yet he digs and lifts boulders...
You have predispositions.

Oh damn those predispositions! I have the energy for twice the amount of physical work I do each day. Why should I slow down?
He looks at me with pity. Because your range decreases with age -- he says with his 37-year old wisdom.

I do walk away with a list of back strengthening moves and they all feel rather tame to me (a few cobras, a few wall pushes -- you know the type) but okay, I'm set for now. And I tell him -- this better not happen to me again! And we both laugh.

Another visit with Goldie, my daughter's cat...


...and now I am back at the farmette and just as Ed and I are to resume our digging, the rains come down. Not too bad, but enough to make you reconsider.

And this is when I remember that today is the first day of our local Thursday evening farmers market!  We don't have great expectations. Sure, there may be asparagus next week, but you can't expect anything now, not when there has been no sunshine to prod a growth spurt.

But, it's good to see the farmers at their stands again. And I pick up some greenhouse cucumbers...


...and I admire the flowers and I ask the market guy --- where are the baguette people??
Oh, you know, they're French... he teases.

Indeed. The French take May 1st seriously too. It's a holiday in France and I suppose that's reason enough to hang back a little, even if you're here. I understand the difficulties of having waffling holiday allegiances when you live suspended between two cultures.

The rain comes, the rain goes. We work a little, retreat a little. But I know this: by the weekend there will be sunshine! And that's a good thing.