Monday, April 19, 2010


Hello darling. A beautiful late afternoon. It's cool and the sun is bright. I ought to be out on the back porch writing this. I'm still waking up from my nap, which I collapsed into after a mountain of food prep and its aftermath. There was a lot of reduced produce at the supermarket this morning, perfectly good but needing to be attended to promptly, unwrapped from an excess of plastic, washed or put away, thought about in terms of menu planning, etc., etc. I made cauliflower gratin, taboulleh salad, and pasta with broccoli rabe. Also I baked cookies. The latter could have waited, save for what I know is an appreciative crew.

I went for a walk at the conservation area this morning. Then I went to the market. Sometimes my world feels very solipsistic. I'm home by myself a great deal. On top of that when I go out it seems as though I'm always running into roughly the same half-dozen people. On my walk was the usual guy with his golden lab. Now at least we exchange hellos. There's also an older woman who I frequently see. Her car was parked there as I was leaving. At the market I heard a woman's voice, "So that's our lives - first a walk, then ShopRite." I saw her now. "Seems this is what it's all come to." Then at the head of one of the aisles I ran into someone else who I was quite delighted to run into, only I was there first and my shopping cart was loaded to prove it, so don't think I'm getting stalkerish. I'm crazy but not that crazy. Though I did enjoy hanging out on your property yesterday but that was Sunday and I don't make a habit of hanging out wantonly like that during the week. I smiled and said hi and he said hi and we both smiled and I fled and I wondered if he read what I sent but perhaps it was so over the top that - look, good contractors are worth their weight in gold during high season especially, so I take nothing personally and understand perfectly all sorts of sensible considerations that must take place whatever time of year. Besides there's no rush whatever. See how it goes. You like chocolate chip. How are you on oatmeal-raisin?

While cookies baked I stepped outside to toss scraps [see: food prep, above] in the compost and my next door neighbor called out to me to come see her chicks. Cookies done, I took them out of the oven, placed a few in a napkin, and went over. Wow, chicks...
chicklets... chickens. The chicks were bigger than I expected, more like baby ducklings in the urban landscape of my mind. My neighbor is the mother of three beautiful, thriving toddlers - but chicks - she knows how to care for them? She used to be a zookeeper she reminded me, but I had imagined lions & tigers. Maybe so, but also the children's petting zoo. She's got a group of 25 that will live out a delightful 10-12 week life and then (dispatched by the butcher) become dinner, and in her outbuilding another half-dozen chicks, smaller and of a different type. These, she said, will live 8 or 10 years, earning their keep laying eggs. I'm impressed, and if I were a different sort of person I'd be tempted to try my hand myself. But I know how it is. It would end up falling on D. It's like that with the garden, I'll confess right now. I adore flowers but find physical gardening work utterly exhausting. I do some, of course, but have to keep things on a level that I can do and enjoy - such as with today's flurry of food prep. Tomorrow I'll vacuum. I have my priorities, and marshal my energies. Everyday - I must write to you.

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