Sunday, July 24, 2016


On this very hot and muggy day, something pushed Ed and me to do the unpleasant, the unthinkable, the totally wrong for the day job of farmette maintenance.

Rototilling the courtyard. Clipping dozens and dozens of spent lily blooms.Weeding the out of control strawberry patch. (Let's call it the former strawberry patch, because I have to reimagine that space next year; all those berry plants simply support the tastes and habits of the groundhogs and chipmunks. No more! Next year, there'll be flowers. Of the kind that appeal to no animal that passes through this way. Divided day lilies come to mind.)

More: after a rather toasty breakfast (did I mention it's a hot day?)...

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(with a cool view toward the side beds...)

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... Ed turns all soft and amenable to doing things I've wanted to do for a long time now: trim some of the big limbs from ancient old trees that are overhanging the large flower bed. He takes out his power saw and we get to work.

By now we're completely drenched. I've chased off scores of insects and still we continue. But at the grape trellis, we finally slow down. Our vines are nearly ruined by an invasion of beetles. Ed's discouraged. I vow to come back and work here on a cooler day, though I doubt we'll have a spectacular grape harvest. For now, we do some mild weeding and, too, some mowing around the new roadside flower bed and then we turn to the wonderful, blissful, without doubt most heavenly of  all possible diversions -- we take turns standing under a cold shower to wipe away the grime, sweat, and slapped down bugs. Sublime.

So the garden looks pretty okay again. Let me post a few photos. The entirety, that's so important to me:

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And today, I'll break out of my general reluctance to make art out of individual blooms. Macro photography (super closeups of individual flowers) is not really my favorite thing, but right now, the most spectacular lilies are in their final chorus and somehow I feel compelled to make an exception -- to recognize their infinite beauty, down to the very last vein. Here are three close ups, just because I want to remember this moment in their brief performance.

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And one more, with just a little distance:

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And now I really will expect no more grandness from the flower fields. I'll be satisfied to watch it do the gentle retreat.

Even as today, there is no indication of a retreat.

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Late afternoon. It's still hot. This is the time where I love sitting behind Ed on his motorcycle. We take it over to the nearby corn farm, where the earnest family of farmers has just finished picking a batch of bi-colored corn. And I think  -- we're so very fortunate.  Corn that will be cooked minutes after picking. Inexpensive, delicious. Remarkably delicious. Just ask Snowdrop.

And speaking of the little one, in the evening the young family is here for dinner. They vote for a meal indoors. Who can blame them? The humidity is so high that each time I step out with my camera, the lens fogs over.

Snowdrop is very happy to have her daddy home again (he'd been away for a few days).

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She's also pleased to eat her share of predinner snacks -- carrots and roasted beets for her.

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And she is delighted that ah ah eh is willing to play with her the game of "toss the stuffies."

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We eat. Yes, corn is on our plates, to Snowdrop's delight.

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An after dinner walk...

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End of a weekend. I'm already looking ahead to the week before us. That is, of course, tomorrow's story. A good story, I hope: for you, for all of us.