It’s been six days of virtual silence. I’ve had 2 phone conversations, minor texting and emailing and yelled at/loved on Puppy.
Of course, it’s been six days of inner FIELD DAY. Like when you started Kindergarten and went to school all year, secretly thinking it was cool but knowing that you shouldn’t say so, and then at the end of the year comes a certain day: Field Day. Where classes are cut and sleeves are rolled up and everybody laughs and it’s like you’re a family together, playing games in the sun. I have an apparent playground full of little children, older siblings, parental chaperons, teachers and friends all doing red three-leg sack race rover in my head. And even, a couple kids far off just past the tire swing near the creek talking alone.
So, it’s been just me. The first day I did the west side of the road down the mountain to the River House: treacherous. Hawk and land-fill country. The next day I did the east side of the road: lovely. Mushroom and frog country. Today I did the creek on the east side of the road. The one the deer sprung from, but hitting it much further up. Turns out, it is the main creek which feeds the Gasconade. Almighty Gaagle search engine map function informs me that the creek is unlisted, which means I get to name it.
It’s an important creek, it’s the creek where I’m going to build The Aerie!
I dropped the farm Blazer off at the Workshop and went back up the cow pasture towards the dream house from the other end of the field. I just only roughly believe their might be an easier way through, but there isn’t. Instead I’d like to introduce you to the 5 billion tiny rose thorn cuts across my calves. You know those $70 fancy waterproof open shoes you bought? You were had.
It’s ok. We’ve already learned to live with broken shoes. So I’m thinking about how Mindless Wandering means you gotta trample a lot of things. I’m mowing down who knows who’s family estates. I mean it could be some kind of super-bad-bugs-club kind of mansion down there, forget those seeds, sorry flower. Just smashing through, and puppy is worse, he’s like at least 15 horse power of stamping around breaking little plants and bug-biting energy.
And it wasn’t so different when I left the city. I was on a real roll, you know when nothing can keep the pen down? When you have a sudden dam-burst infinity of tiny and immense things to say and you don’t even worry about what happens in the wash? The delta is such a long way off. But then I became aware of leaving. This altered things. So I partied, and really found the best of them, you know? The best of what any little burrough like mine can offer: they offered the kid of the housekeeper, really smart and bright but someone nobody pays attention to. And everybody was still Mindless Wandering. But instead of smashing the dark purpleflowers and the cattails, the rosebushes and the what-i-call-missouri-cactusses (made ya laugh), we were all smashing each other.
Not intentionally, of course. HOW GAUCHE. But people who called themselves family were just throwing a real hollywood right hook into each other’s faces. I wanted to call a time-out, but I wasn’t no umpire or coach. And now I might as well be an epoch away from all that.
So I made my way from the Cow Pasture, down the Easy Path, past the Selfie Statue Meadow with the Sitting Tree and I took that right I skipped the day before. Now we’re in the creek.
Oh Annie! I’m been chasing you my whole damn life! Ms. Dillard, you are now with me and I’ve read your book. It didn’t say one damn word about ticks! You filthy liar, making Nature seem tranquil and if you’re calm they’re calm, as if you don’t carry the parasitic echoes of every relationship back with you wherever you go. Everything has its price. As you say, my numberoneprimo lady, “Nothing is lost, and everything is spent.”
It’s decades cooler in the creek. The sun and the world take on an instantly calmer air.