Summer! The sights and scents of haying. The sweetness of fern, the hot aroma of wild sage, the occasional whiff of spearmint. The blast of heat up from the tractor, the wind turning leaves at the end of the field a milky silver, birds swooping down over the mowed grass. The rhythmic chugging of the baler, and the occasional snake, pressed flat to the hay, bound up with baling twine like a dull green ribbon.
Summer was also a time for farmhands, Onie and Herbie, who slept in the bunkhouse nearby. Herbie, thick and slow-moving, and Onie, lean like a string bean, showed up every day for noon dinner: a roast, baked potatoes, baking powder biscuits, a well-cooked vegetable, fresh milk from the Holstein out back, and molasses cookies or a slice of pie for dessert. Eating and talking didn’t go together; it was heads down and every man for himself. The potatoes were popped open with a whack of a fist and a sunny yellow pool of homemade melted butter soon followed.
This is the reason I first subscribed to Cooks Illustrated. Chris Kimball’s editor’s note was always the first thing I read. And because of wanting access to his story telling, I became a better cook. So it was with sadness that I did not renew my subscriptions to the entire array of resources after learning of his ouster from the company he started. Thank God he found(ed) another place to call home and another home for his stories… Go check out Milk Street.
Source: “Where the railway was, the river is now.” | Milk Street
It’s Chore Day And The Tablet Is On The Fritz Morning Coffee Muses
It’s early but the rains are already showing up today. Thunder is booming outside and the humidity is a thrice wiper today. Yesterday’s rains in the area started before noon and lasted pretty much thru the afternoon, hit or miss. That’s the thing about the rains we’ve been having, they cover a large area but the actual thunderstorms are usually quite small. If they hit you directly, you get poured on… If they only brush past you get sprinkled on. But if they miss you by as little as a quarter of a mile, you stay dry even as the lightning flashes and and thunder rolls. It makes for interesting days.
I went out this morning to snap my normal photo and the Kindle is being screwy today. Every time I restart it and open the camera all I get is a black screen and then it freezes up. I am not having a great day with that. Finally got the camera to work but can’t get the pictures off the tablet. I do not know what the problem is but I’m tired of fighting it right now and I’ve eaten up way too much time today on this… So short muses, long time cussing… Back tomorrow.
Not Too Humid Monday Morning Coffee Muses
For the first time in a week the cicadas are singing early.
The milkweed at the end of the porch is looking bedraggled from all of the stripped leaves. Leaves eaten by monarch caterpillars, one of which has decided to cocoon on the underside of my armrest.
It’s a nice morning to be out on the back porch. The birds are singing a bit early today. There’s a male cardinal chasing his reflection all around the Sport Trac. A mockingbird in the top of the kumquat tree. And a couple of chickadees and titmice checking out the feeders, front and back.
Yesterday’s rains managed to miss us. Today’s rains are starting out offshore. South southeast of Galveston. I can see them just above the trees, though we have high scattered clouds over us now. The weather prognosticators are foretelling of rain in our future, starting about 2 p.m. We’ll see how their oracle like foretelling matches reality…
The sun is warming this back porch up. According to the Weather Underground, it’s 84° and feels like 92°. I guess I should have gotten up and come out when Sherry left for work. It was a stunningly mild 75° at that time.
A Cooler Than Normal, Not So Humid, Morning Coffee Muses
How can I tell it’s not so humid? I didn’t have to wipe my cheaters at all this morning, that’s how. Yesterday’s thunder all afternoon must have vibrated all of the excess moisture right out of the air. It sure rained enough to seem that way.
The soundtrack of today is the chirping of crickets. A solitary male cardinal just spent five minutes working up the courage to fly to the feeder for some seed. He was headed for the feeder when he saw me and veered to the wisteria. He used different vantage points there to spy on me before moving to the red oak for a higher vantage point. He moved around the crown of the tree for a few minutes before flying down to the feeder where he sat and watched me for a bit before going for the prise.
Other than that excitement, it’s a standard quiet Sunday morning on the back porch. It Almost nine a.m. and the birds are beginning to sing. And, it’s time for me to start breakfast.