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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Turning the wheel of days


Bees are in the crocuses and dandelions between the bucketfuls of hard rain. I'm trying hard not to get overexcited when I go out to the potting shed; it would be so easy to start potting up -- but there is still firewooding of the huge storm-broken branches, and pruning of  the forty fruit trees, and pulling the beds back together that were leveled by the chickens and ducks, all of which, every year, I am supposed to do first. 


And I'm just not finding comfortable weather -- whine, whine, but at my age even a little exposure can be an issue. So it's out to the potting shed to clean up, sort, and dream, egged on by a mighty chorus of unseen frogs along the creek.


For twenty-one years I've planted seeds in this room. It was a frightful mess when we first saw it in 1993, the tail end of a badly built shed with an algae-slimed chipboard floor both too slick and too punky to walk on. The kids demolished the floor and walls for me, yelping with joy as nail-studded panels crashed all round them. We brought home a load of antique bricks from a chimney that was free for the taking, and Daughter (then seven) helped lay a new floor in a herringbone pattern. When it was done we danced.


We scrounged fence boards for the new walls and put in windows that friends gave us from their scrap piles.


Two-by fours found around the place were leaned against the south wall and supported recycled sliding glass doors. For a decade this was our greenhouse for starts, then we needed one of the doors for a barn window and the present arrangement has a vertical glass wall.


Before I built the solar dryers, I sometimes set up our window screens in the greenhouse to dry apple chips. Worked a charm.


Soon, I suspect, I will give in to the call of the seeds. To the tune of whatever's on our local classical station (I hope it will be Chopin), I'll lean forward and back, rhythmically scooping soil into three inch pots and tucking tiny bits of life just beneath the leveled surface.


Another year will have begun.


And one can only hope.


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