I like to start my day with a bit of aerobic exercise on a stationary bike while reading something inspirational and informative on my Kindle. Just finished up Go Wild by John Ratey and Richard Manning, about the benefits of eating and exercising like our ancestors. They point out that we humans love a view. A wide open vista makes us feel safe because in primitive times, a favorable campsite was one enabling folks to spot the approach of danger in the form of lions or other wild beasts.
This makes sense, and explains why some of the earliest pioneer women, led to the middle of a thick, dark forest of Douglas fir, were instantly prioritizing a clearing….please, good husband, before I go completely crazy?
Well, I'm not afraid of wild beasts or anything else approaching through our surrounding forest, but this craving to see into the distance explains why, this year, I've had so much satisfaction from clearing the blackberries and underbrush from our woods, why I wanted to hack back the thirty-foot diameter forsythia in the middle of which had grown up a lovely volunteer black walnut. I wanted to see farther! I wanted to watch the rays of sunlight shooting through and lighting up the leaves.
The culminating project involved waiting for the tree services guys to show up with their chainsaws and excavators and in one day of loud work take out a decades-old tangle of horizontally growing wild cherry trees in the ancient front orchard. We had discovered three or four small oaks fighting their way up to the light, and now they'll be freed to be our oak grove of the future. This is the view from my kitchen sink, and suddenly I don't feel so smothered. I was almost shocked at how much it thrilled me, the sight of my husband on his tractor, tilling up that weed patch that had been turning up a higher percentage of dandelions ever since we got married right on this spot 45 years ago. I loved this fresh start.
I must back track here to say how completely distressed I've been over the news lately. I was annoyed at myself for spending one of the most golden Autumn days ever visited upon us, a day when my darling grandson Nolan was running around here, glued to my smart phone with earbuds, watching everyagonizing moment of the Kavanaugh hearings. And it literally made me sick! My blood pressure went nuts. The rank injustice of it. Anyone with half a brain and an ounce of intuition could see that Brett Kavanaugh had done this horrid thing Christine Blasey Ford described, and had been conveniently too drunk to remember it. The fact that we have people in control of the country who think it's perfectly fine for such a man to sit on the Supreme Court is intolerable. I have no sexual assault survivor story to tell, but if I didn't live three thousand miles away, I could have gladly joined one of those "mobs" wanting to beat down the doors of the court. And I guess I'm not the only one across the country who feels this way. I see articles discussing the anxiety the Kavanaugh hearings have triggered in women everywhere.
But now I think, for my own sanity, I'm going to have to stop checking my phone so often to hear whatever disgusting , appalling new lies Donald Trump is spewing. I want that despicable, odious man out of my brain, our of our lives, out of the White House.
Yesterday, after raking down the old orchard, Herb scattered the special grass seed. It's supposed to be tough, drought resistant, ready to withstand whatever comes along. We'll have to be that way too. Planting it seems like a positive thing to do, and now, whatever happens on November 6th when the ballots are counted, we will be right here at Wake Robin Farm, watching this new green grass sprout up, and that will be good.