Monday, January 25, 2010

Day's Journey

Up in the aerie with my glass of rosé, feeling unusually organized in the housework department. The house is fragrant with Sicilian chicken, a flavorful dish spiced with olives, capers, chili peppers and red wine; bedsheets are changed; the house is vacuumed; laundry's done; even the bathrooms are cleaned; and I've set a fresh batch of pizza dough on the pellet stove. Rainy days have their compensations it seems, though in late afternoon I did manage a walk, taking a slightly different route, not the one that includes snow geese because lately I've noticed it also includes a man who seems to have taken a shining to me and pops up more frequently than random chance - harmless I'm sure, but I don't want to have to deal. So I took the road at the bottom of which a few months ago I encountered a coyote, but when I reached the spot where I had seen it (and further down the road that day, a snake) I felt isolated and apprehensive. So I turned on my heel and went back up the hill. Then it started to rain again, at first a mist, then wetter and wetter, gentle though, and - especially for January - very mild, not unpleasant, but by the time I got home I was drenched as though I'd taken a shower in my clothes. Strange weather. Last night in bed I woke up from the sharp sensation of something, an insect, biting my thigh. I leaped out of bed, turned on the lamp, and there was a wasp, sluggish, malevolent, on top of the bedclothes - no wonder the cats weren't sleeping with us, perhaps they were aware of it or had been stung themselves. How strange to be stung by a wasp in the middle of the night in January in upstate NY. I'm just glad it stung me, and not, say, a little baby who would have woken in the night howling and a mother, if she didn't spot the unlikely culprit, might never have imagined the reason why.

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