Thursday, August 15, 2013

the news cranks out wild stuff that i can hardly bear; back at home, rains keep coming though they say it's still not up to a normal amount, and with the humid air, and the puddles of water here and there, come a lot of bugs, mostly flies and mosquitoes. i thought the mosquitoes were mostly in a different part of texas, since it's so dry here, they just about have to wait for someone to spit. but if we're having an almost-normal year's rainfall, almost ten inches altogether (people really love it when we get an inch, they keep track, they measure the inch, it's almost like they feel it as it slowly works its way down into the grass) - then the bugs are going to move in, reproduce fast and make their presence known.

meanwhile it's gearing up for a new school year, and that means, police all over the roads, to prove a point, reckless drivers, vehicles that aren't double-cab trucks, and a certain amount of not-knowing-where-one-is-going. also a lot of furniture-moving, and house-fixing. our own house is due to be painted, which will make an enormous difference in our self-image, and one side of me just wants to hang around all day, fixing it up a little, growing a couple of scraggly vegetables. most of my vegetables got fried out by the sun; until i figure out how to make things thrive, it'll be a little rocky on the vegetable front. but what i really need is a band, to go out and mix it up with the texas scene.

i'm on a short vacation, but i should be preparing for the classes i teach soon; in any case i bumble around, try to get exercise, piddle away at my writing and shirk away from the intense hot midday sun. actually summer hasn't been too bad, except that the onions can't survive that kind of searing intensity, but it was broken up especially well by these gonzo trips out over the high plain into the sacramentos and up in the clouds. maybe that's why i'm in a fog now...everyone else seems to be ok with this relentless sunny fly-swarming swampy scene, while i'm basically plotting, how to shoot on back out of here. and i'm reflecting on the personal difference between feeling like a "texan" and feeling like a "new mexican".

now it could be that the bears out there, alone, could make it difficult, and could put a scare in us so that we wouldn't want to keep going out there, and camping high in the mountains, with only a thin nylon tent between us and the stars. the bears are mostly attuned to things like the smell of peanut butter, and aren't so concerned by property lines, or etiquette such as announcing your presence with "hoddy ma'am" or "howryall?" they just kind of come in and take what they want, and get somewhat offended that you might object or shriek when you look at them. i'm sure they're still up there in those high piney mountains, where we were, and where there weren't very many people, and i'm sure they have some awareness that it's mighty dry, mighty flat, mighty downhill all the way in every direction. but i think we can worry about that when the time comes. for now, it's back to the city: a slightly busier street, a certain amount of readjustment and settling in, and a slow shortening of the days, and a cooling off with the "monsoon season."

next year, i'm a grow some okra, and maybe some better peppers, planted earlier, and maybe figure out how to get my onions around so they don't get so much direct searing heat. i'll try to get the hang of this sultry season, short as it is, & get something good out of it, besides just the good feeling that it'll end before you know it.

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