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May 15, 2012: Enormous Changes at the Last Minute

This is another stolen title—this one was the title of Grace Paley’s short story collection. I think if you are acknowledging that you are using someone else’s title, and say why, this is acceptable. Too, you lend legitimacy to your use of the title by urging your readership to read that person’s work. (So please read Grace Paley’s short story collection.) There is a caveat here – whenever I use other writers’ titles, I feel as though I’ve planted yet another seed of regret. Once again, I say, dang why didn’t I first think of using that title? Perhaps if I had, Grace Paley would be now pondering second hand title usage.

The explanation: Pete and I are now in the process of making enormous changes in our daily routine in because we are now in summer break mode. Pete’s done with classes, and so am I, that is until fall. Our focus is now on doing home projects. An apt descriptor is “Martha Stewart meets Godzilla.” We got a lot to do.

We have been talking about selling this place, and we will if the coal mine goes in. But in the meantime, we are having a good time doing our innumerable projects. People visit, and say “wow, you’ve done a lot of work here.” But they really have no idea because they have not been in on the day-to-day work. For example, no one saw me shovel full dump truck loads of gravel into the horse pen. I once did an entire load in a day-and-a-half.

My daily routine is again changing. Used to be I’d get up, eat breakfast, and write. Then I took to getting up, cleaning the horse pen, and writing. Then I took to getting up, cleaning the horse pen, eating breakfast, and taking Signy, Tinni, Ranger, Rover, Peaches, and Jenna for a walk around the loop, then writing. The day before yesterday, I got up, cleaned the horse pen, ate breakfast and with Pete, took Signy, Hrimmi, and Jenna on a walk, and then writing. Yesterday I got up, cleaned the horse pen, and with Pete, took Signy, Hrimmi, Rainbow and Jenna for a walk, and then writing. Today I got up and cleaned the horse pen, ate breakfast, and with Pete, took Signy, Hrimmi, Rainbow, Jenna AND Siggi for a walk, then wrote. I’m not too worried yet about writing getting pushed further and further into the day. After all, there are 24 hours to get it done.


Today we did the trail loop, a rugged up and down stretch. I presumed that Frosty Traveler would find this challenging, and she did. But it did not tire her out. As I watched her run around, it occurred to me that we really did get lucky. Our purchasing Signy for a very high sum was (I thought at the time) a frivolous gesture, born of sentimentality. After all, we did not need another horse, much less an older brood mare. But we ended up getting an extraordinary foal, and this sweetened the deal. Maybe we should have named her Sucrose.

Our enormous ongoing projects now include finishing up putting up the NRCS hoop house. Pete has been happily working away. Like many guys, he really enjoys building projects. Yesterday, as he worked, a Moose stood on the far side of the fence pulling at the bark on a tree The moose seem to like our place. This spring we’ve had up to five strolling around in the yard. Rainbow will bark and sometime chase them, but this on her part is now just an obligatory gesture. It’s like she is on the verge of retirement, but still wants to appear useful.

I will go riding this evening. As I did yesterday, I’ll take Tinni out first. His trail name is Scout. Yesterday he and I checked out the trail and determined that it’s safe to walk and ride on, although limitedly.

Pete and I are going to do the competitive trail ride this year, so we need to get the miles in.

Enormous is bigger than huge.

Next: 159. 05/15/12: An Adventurous Life