Thursday, February 20, lunchtime

Miniature daffodil poking up despite last night's frigid temperature.

Miniature daffodils poking up despite last night’s frigid temperature.

This morning I staggered out with my ski poles to check my traps. I have mousetraps in the Mothership and in the yurt, and with this dizziness upon me I have neglected to check them for weeks. Only one mouse among them, which fortunately hadn’t been there for too long. Then the dogs and I walked wide around the outside of the fence along a route I used to call the Breakfast Loop. We walked intermittently across the frozen tops of vast eight inch thick pillows of snow and wide patches of dust-dry dirt speckled with the small green rosettes of wild mustards and tiny chartreuse dots of the weedy alyssum.

When I first moved to this land twenty-one years ago, I lived in a small trailer with two dogs and two cats. Summer mornings I’d get up and walk in my nightgown with the dogs running ahead and the cats at my heels around this short loop through the woods that felt so daring and wild. Then, living in the wild was new to me, and the forest felt huge, the canyon far away. We’d finish the little loop and come home for breakfast. Sometimes, later in the day, we’d walk as far as the canyon. It felt like a big adventure. That was before the house, before the garden, the pond, the fenced yard. Over the next couple of years our morning walk evolved into a much larger loop that took us to the canyon every morning. We, I, expanded to fill the space available, and the Breakfast Loop fell into disuse. My soul now fills these woods, knows every turn in that longer trail even under a blanket of snow, seeks the familiar expanse of the canyon daily as it changes through the seasons.

In recent weeks my outings have been few and short and mostly purely functional: fill the bird feeders, hang out laundry, hitch a ride to the doctor. Day eighteen of this mysterious dizziness finds me losing patience with it, yearning to resume my active life, eager to clean up the garden as it emerges gradually from the snow that covered it after Thanksgiving, longing to hike or ski the length and breadth of the forest. But this housebound month has also been good for me, forced me to really slow down and contemplate some things I’ve been avoiding, distracted by the roller coaster of the seasons outside. What, really, is my purpose? How do I intend to enter old age, alone or in companionship? How can I most effectively contribute to the health of my community and the planet? What do I need to change to improve my own health going forward?

The questions go on and on. The answers remain elusive in the dizzy fog that enshrouds my mind. The best I can do now is eat well, drink water and no cocktails, take one step at a time, and avoid stepping on the buds of spring.

Crocus sprouts popping up under lambs' ears in the spring garden.

Crocus sprouts popping up under lambs’ ears in the spring garden.

Best egg ever. Just for fun, and practicing for summer guests, I bought ramekins just so I could make baked eggs. For one, I cooked one piece of bacon to crispiness, added a splash of olive oil to the fat, sautéed finely chopped onion, garlic, and shiitake, poured that in the ramekin, crumbled in the bacon and some St. André cheese, added a splash of cream, and cracked a local organic egg on top. Baked it at 350 for ten minutes. Perfect deliciousness!

Best egg ever. Just for fun, and practicing for summer guests, I bought ramekins just so I could make baked eggs. For one, I cooked one piece of bacon to crispiness, added a splash of olive oil to the fat, sautéed finely chopped onion, garlic, and shiitake, poured that in the ramekin, crumbled in the bacon and some St. André cheese, added a splash of cream, and cracked a local organic egg on top. Baked it at 350 for ten minutes. Perfect deliciousness!

 

4 thoughts on “Thursday, February 20, lunchtime

  1. Lovely! (except for the report of the continued dizziness). Are the bulbs sprouting earlier than usual? It seems early, but then, I don’t have bulbs in the ground and I am not ready for spring, not ready for life to rush forward, want to shout “whoa”!

    Yummmm on the eggs!

    We are off to the Chiricahuas on Monday and will be gone ’til the 4th, by the way.

    L,e

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