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Friday, July 18, 2014

Wide awake

"If you want to attain just this, immediately practice just this." -- Dogen.

After a week in the 90s, it's become difficult for me to realize I can once again work outside all day. But it's nice enough out. I could go. But my habit now is to hide indoors at midday. Often I take a nap.

When you're over 65, you watch the thermometer more, and also the cloud cover. If it's over 86F (30C) out, and clear, with a hot wind, rural folks my age know they may do poorly at work with what's left of their "large muscle groups" in the direct sunshine. It's why we were, in former times, so often found sitting together in the shade shelling beans and offering pearls of wisdom to hard-working youngsters as they passed by.

The garden got huffy about all the time I spent on the barn, and in a fit of jealousy sprouted weeds all over. I'm putting in shifts now with paper and flakes of straw, playing catch up.

I can hear the zucchinis growing. I run with armloads of them to the steamer, the dehydrator, the grater, the bread bowl, and the oven. Blimps that got past me are sliced and heaved over the fences to the various flocks.

I yank out pea vines and drag importunate pumpkin vines away from tomato cages. I water corn and worry over the few, few blossoms on this year's tomato plants. it's good that we did not use up all of last year's sauce.

Whenever I pass the bonshō -- the "temple bell -- actually a length of steel pipe hanging from a lilac -- I may tap it with my fingers, politely, and give it a small bow. It now has a little white patch painted on it, with, in black:


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