Though I am still thinking about tree rings,
the spinning of time and spirals,
life has taken me on other adventures.
My last weeks of summer break started with well
challenges. The above photo is what ended a
week of very little water use in the house.
Thank goodness for the privacy of many acres
of forest.... what DO city folks do if their
indoor facilities are not in service?
After a summer with almost no rain,
my twenty year old water pump decided it
had had enough. Most of the plants in the vegetable
bed had to be dug up in order for the small tractor
to dig out my well. When the men and heavy
equipment moved into the center of my
garden, I did my best...
which wasn't very good!
Once the work had finished, I still had to use the
well sparingly and wait for the chlorine to flush out
before drinking. I've been visiting a friend up the street
to fill water bottles, and taking very short showers,
but luckily I am no longer digging little holes in the
forest floor to use as my outhouse. As of today,
I think the water may be safe to drink again.... yipee!
And with the start of the school semester, it was days
before I got into the garden to repair the damage
caused by clumsy men's feet and the huge tractor wheels.
Finally last weekend, I graded, re-edged, spread topsoil
and copious amounts of mulch. In the house,
I am speaking my gratitude to the water
as it pours from my shower, and appreciating
the quiet click of the water pressure tank
that replaces loud growls
and roars of the old pump.
sprial post along the trail at Moore State Park, Paxton, Mass
Out and about in the world of teaching,
classes are in full swing, and two days a week
I am pulled away from RavenWood and forced into
much more social interaction than I've had all summer!
My class, Exploring the Natural World, visits numerous
parks, farms and ponds to draw, photograph and collect
materials for mixed-media work.
Yesterday was a breezy, cool fall day for our drawing
trip to a nearby state park. I walked the "Enchanta"
trail from the parking lot through the forest to the pond.
Looking up, the damage from the ice storm a few years
ago is still very evident and many piles of limbs and brush
sat on the side of the trail. These higher elevations
were severely damaged in the storm and what used to
be a relatively thick stand of trees is now open and airy
because so many trees were so severely thinned.
At the end of the trail, a lovely pond where I became
obsessed with photographing the clouds reflected in
the gently moving water.
I was mesmerized by the undulating surface of
the water and the changing patterns
of clouds forms.
I thought of Monet's huge water lilly series and found
myself longing for a smooth wood panel and oil paint.
On the way back along a road,
I thought this tree was painted with orange.
Upon closer inspection, I discovered that it
was hollow and the blaze of orange was
sunlight reflecting off the interior.
It was really quite magical....
a tree filled with late afternoon sunshine.
Back at our meeting place,
a stand of American Chestnut hybrids
is growing nicely. I've been watching
the progress of this important project
for years now. Most of the native
American Chestnuts were killed by
disease years ago. These trees
are a hybrid with a European Chestnut,
I believe, and finally this year look more
like trees than small sticks with
I'm happy to report that while I write,
the rhythm of raindrops taps away
on the metal roof, the first serious rain
in weeks! I am hopeful that the garden
might last a few more weeks now. I
haven't been able to water, and
felt horrible watching things wilt and
dry up. Thank goodness for