Of birds and baking

The tides of the internet were not flowing our way for a few days- a major diversion up river required other focus, and since I had allowed all my new notebooks to get mildewed, the words, for a time, retreated into the paper and byte-less ethers.

This is not to say a lot didn’t happen.  One friend’s vet said the family dog needed a dozen enemas. This news came at a rather high stress point and reduced me to hiccups, especially after seeing the dog in question scrooched up into a furry,  inverted V shape, post enema the tenth.  (Which turned out to not be enough, but there it is.  Diagnosis is difficult.)  In another state,  a battery of pills were prescribed for the squadron of diarrhea-and-barf-ridden canines there.  People were breaking their legs, falling down, nails were rising up out of the dirt here as if they were zombies bent on devouring everything in sight -especially tires. Verbal fisticuffs abounded.  On the positive side, the rabbits, deer, and turkeys came back at long last, which has been quite wonderful.  There’s also a nesting pair of falcons!  I had the usual moment of cognitive dissonance on the way to an appointment this morning, too.  Passing the gentlemanly black hound up the road who no longer barks at our car but, rather, magisterially nods his head as we pass, and reveling in the spectacular green wall that is the oak leaves here for a short time in spring, I was rudely interrupted by the site of a man with a bulldozer mowing down said trees.  I mean, REALLY GENTLE READER.  We should all be planting trees in truth, not mowing them down.   It looked like, essentially, senseless destruction.  He was so lucky, that guy! Because I was late and thus didn’t feel the time was available to pull over and ask him what the _ _ _ he was doing, leaving a swath of ugliness with no apparent utility.

All the myriad other things, too, of course.  Plus it was my birthday which was an odd combination of grateful elation and dead bang panic.  But that’s normal on some level.   Among all the other pressing matters of late, the unsettling experience of seeing myself as I apparently am has been happening, and I realized that quite often I embark on things with no sense that I will succeed. (Probably no one else has this issue, right??)  I also realized that was pretty silly.  So it was that yesterday when the sourdough bread came out more or less perfectly, and I was shocked, the Partner sighed and looked at me as if to say: ?????.  But this recipe is kind of intimidating- from the TARTINE book, it is a high ratio of liquid to dry ingredients and one mixes an inchoate seeming mass which, over the next several hours, turns into the singing, crusty brown and lacy interiored bread of our dreams.  It is total alchemy. There is always reassurance in the world, somehow, and it does seem easy to overlook at times.  But you can be saved by bread.

And also by hummingbirds.  Being frozen, the feeder in our garden was out of commission over the winter.  We hadn’t seen Tyrant for a few weeks and were both a bit concerned about his irritating little bossman self.  So it was that as I was out mentally preparing witty ripostes while pulling weeds and dead branches into piles in the back, I heard a particular TWCHERPT!  I didn’t look up, heard another, louder TWCHERPT FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!  and then a third which clearly said LOOK UP HERE NOW!!!!.  Which I did, and saw Tyrant, inches from my head.  He then did that huge upward zoom hummies do in display, and flew around as if in a cartoon all over the garden at top speed and volume.  He then pulled up right in front of me and we were eye to eye.   I was overjoyed, of course, and also amazed by the fact that this tiny creature and I have an actual relationship.  Magic really is afoot- a hummingbird remembered me.   I’m surer than ever that if you start from a basis of love, you will see things that feed your heart and soul and make your life full.   Sometimes it is hard to know what the truly loving thing to do is, but it must always start from a place of respect and honesty.

SO, even though I really did intend to bite the bullet today and do my taxes online which still makes my hackles go a bit sideways security-issue-wise, I found that I was missing a crucial piece of information (about last year’s taxes which I have blanked out because- well, because ARGH! to last year’s taxes) and thus could not proceed.  There’s still two weeks of high test procrastination possible!  And also? Today is the official start of baseball season.  What could possibly go wrong?

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