Friday, July 22, 2005

and the moon is blue

As the summer progresses, it continues to surprise me. So far, the main surprise has been how quiet July is, and how contented I am with that. I don't know if it's "old age", as I joke so frequently, or just that after a packed year at university my body and mind was requiring some down-time, but more often than not after work each day, I come home to make a supper, maybe bike to the swimming hole, read or write a letter, and sleep at a reasonable hour. In summers past, mostly because of the contingent of friendly people our age over on the Oregon road at the "Hippie Summer Camp", we (Mat and I) would come home around 10 or 11 each night, still having to ready ourselves for the next day. It was a tiring schedule but one that, because of the energy and fun of seeing our friends and having adventures, we somehow never got tired of.

Now the surprise is that you never know what's around the bend. Three friends of the Oregon boys arrived for a few nights' stay on their way around the island, and suddenly there we were again, over on the land, smelling wood-smoke and eating food cooked over a fire, drinking semi-cold beers and talking about all kinds of things. We took them to Indian Brook last night, rather they took us because it was thier car, but we showed the way. The North River, the one we live on and swim in always, is lovely and refreshingly cold, but the place I'd go more often if I had a vehicle would be Indian Brook. It is a wide, curving pool under a tall bridge, with rock outcroppings at varying heights, perfect for jumping from. The water is somewhat warm and very deep, and colored a rich tea-brown due to the tannic acid that leaks into rivers all over the island from vegetation high in the mountains. There are usually people you know there, and indeed last night as we clambered down the gravel path with towels slung over our shoulders there were familiar heads bobbing in the river.

There is talk that later in August, more of the "Oregoners" will come up for a week or so, take a vacation. August is when it all seems to happen here--people come for visits, parties are thrown, more tourists are around so our workplaces get busier too. The weather (touch wood) is idyllic, the gardens lush. I'm looking ahead to August with a mixed feeling in my belly: a bit of dread, because of the stress of managing time, a bit of excitement, and a bit of sadness. Once you're launched into August, it's soon over.

In other news, we've been having a real heat wave. And at work, the kiln's been on a lot, so I spend my days coated in a thin sheen of sweat. From time to time I'll wet the back of my neck and my face with cold water from the tap. It doesn't help a whole lot. And then, right in the middle of the hot week, didn't we make hay at Kathy's! Of course, that's the way it goes, you have to make hay in the hottest part of the summer, so the grasses just cut in the fields will dry and turn into sweet hay for the horses. But it was hot--in jeans, a long-sleeved shirt, and closed-toe shoes, hauling heavy bales up onto the wagon, stacking them, transferring them to the haymow. At least there were water breaks, and then when you ride somewhere you get to sit on the bales, bouncing and swaying along the fields and over rocks.

Last night I walked home from the Oregon property by myself around midnight. The moon was full and I took my time, the air was still a little warm. At the part where you cross the bridge over the North River, I stood a while and looked up at the moon, and down at the river. It was a dark dark blue with gleams of white on it, and looked metallic and swift in the darkness. Then I walked home and went to bed.

From the soundtrack for the major motion picture, "The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood":

"It's the middle of summer and the moon is blue,
And I'll be around waiting for you."
--Bob Dylan

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