Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Dispatch from the Deep Freeze

Out to Pasture
Originally uploaded by Contrary Goddess.

Well, when it is really cold, life is harder. Or, viewed another way, not much of anything gets done except trying to stay warm. Which is ok. It is February -- how long can it be cold at this point? It is so cold now, however, that the rocks in the cow shed that I normally use in her grain bucket to slow her eating are frozen to the ground and I can’t even kick them loose. The drain for the washing machine froze up. If the wood you are sawing is wet, you end up sawing through ice.

Since hunting season is over, the big critters are turned out to the neighboring pasture. The tops die but there is still green under the hummocks. And it needs to be eaten anyway. It didn’t take but one trip out for them to get used to my trek down the hill after morning milking to open the wide gate. For awhile I was bringing them back in before dark but lately I’ve let them stay until after evening milking. The longer they eat the better, and they don’t ever give me any trouble. The photo was taken before it snowed a couple inches of dry powder this afternoon.

Our wood stove most often has wood in the stove part, drying it. The load we put in this afternoon was oak. Oak has this smell to it, like puke except pleasant. I notice it mostly sawing. But when this batch got hot in the oven, it reminded me of something but I couldn’t place at first -- when I was at this big horsemanship school with 300 horses and rooms full of tack and tractor trailer loads of shavings. I didn’t know it then, but they all must have been oak. Kiln dried oak, because this afternoon the smell of my house took me right back to bedding all those stalls. To tacking Etcetera for Jeanne Vaire and singing Marshall Tucker songs at the cesspool lounge with Skip and “please pick up line 2” and all of greebie road. To Benson and was his name Todd (I’m sure it wasn’t quite that, or maybe it was) and Holly who has pointedly not spoken to me in years. To fish legs Yanowitz and blind JB and the twins Denise and Debbie and oh my Fizz’s bar. Eating at Perkins and weekend barn duty. My horse to be Lucky, and Out of Luck Charlie (also a horse) who no one loved. Except me.

All that, and more, from one smell.


Madcap said...

It is February -- how long can it be cold at this point?

This is a different question in our two parts of the world. Sigh. I'll have to console myself with junket, I guess.

I'll probably be back before then, but if not, Happy Valentines to your heart chakra. Squeeeeze.

the Contrary Goddess said...

I miss you MC! And I can tell you, life is a LOT different at 32 than at 0 degrees. The rocks were not frozen to the ground this morning, and the wood doesn't have ice in it and isn't all frozen together and the animals can actually get a drink before the water freezes.

Dramaw said...

It was freezing here in Richmond yesterday and at about 4:00 our power went out!! Unlike most of our neighbors we have a wood stove with a flat surface that you can cook on and plenty of food we could cook on top of it. (not to mention a generator in the shed). The power doesn't stay our too long anymore but it is out long enough to make you think about how dependent your are on it. With gas being so expensive we are not too quick to pull out the generator any more. I am recovering from surgery so havnen't gotten outside much but seeing frozen water in the dog dish was enough for me. Love reading your blogs. Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts with us.

Eric said...

Ah….the sweet, smell of perfume! Today's market is flooded with hundreds and hundreds of different fragrances ranging from floral to woodsy. Most women love the smell of perfume, wearing it even when going to the grocery store. The problem is that perfume allergy for some women, is anything but nice.

the Contrary Goddess said...

The problem with perfume is . . . it stinks! And what is it with 18 different colors of eye-shadow? I saw an old photo of me the other day with some (very small amount) of make-up on and I looked raccoon eyed to myself. But prefer how someone really looks -- I find it much more valuable to define beauty without augmentation. But that is probably another subject.

Anonymous said...

Hear, hear! A made up woman is an illusion. If an illusion will do for you, then any illusion will substitute for any other.

But when only a person will do, the field of what satisfies narrows appreciably.