Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Some days I feel like the dog from The Jetsons, who keeps running and running on his treadmill but can't seem to make any progress. The extra 2 miles each day with Nora is working out fine so far, but I do notice the loss of another hour in every day. And I started yesterday with a hair appointment, followed immediately by a professional portrait session for the firm, followed by a somewhat vain attempt to get a whole day's worth of work done, followed by grocery shopping, followed by running home to make dinner, all of which was bracketed on both sides by walking the dog, tending the birds, and checking on the bunny. And I still needed to run back to the church garden to do the harvest before the food pantry does their next distribution - but I finally decided to just blow that off until this morning.

Rick woke me up early at my request so I would have extra time to run over and pick whatever was ripe. I thanked him, then flopped back in bed as soon as he left. Nora is learning that it's not "time to get up" until my clock radio starts playing, so she just flopped back down too. But by 6:35 we were up, leash in hand and headed down the road. We discovered that Nora is afraid of cows, in spite of the fact that she comes from cow herding stock; but I put her in a sit to distract her, then fed her a few treats while the cows watched. She still gets nervous about them, but at least she isn't trying to hide behind me while we walk by them. I bolted some breakfast, watered the new birds (lost another chick over night. I hate that part.) and headed over to the church garden by 8:00 or so.

The swiss chard is going crazy, and I picked three full bags. I could have picked more, but was worried that I'd overload them; swiss chard seems not to be one of the default garden plants in this area, and people seem hesitant about what to do with it. But I also picked a bag of zucchini and pattypans and other squash, and if I'd had time I could have gotten another half-bag of snap peas. But I was getting hot and sweaty, my fingernails rimmed in green from the picking and (most importantly) running late for work, so I headed off to the food pantry. When I got there, the door was locked.

Now, those of you who have a calendar and know how to read it (a category which apparently does not include me) already knew that today is, in fact, not the 1st Wednesday of the month but rather the 5th. The food pantry distributes on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month, and I'd just gotten into the mindset of delivering produce every other week. So there I was, late for work and sweaty whisps of hair curling into my eyes, with 4 bags of very fresh veggies and no where to take them. I ended up at the Plymouth Senior Center, where they laid everything out on a "free for the taking" table for their members. The swiss chard absolutely befuddled a few of them, especially the red-stemmed varieties that look like rhubarb. But hey, the object of the game is to put fresh local produce in the hands of local people who need it. Mission accomplished, more or less.

But while I was in the garden, I took a peek over at the pumpkin patch. We planted 6 pumpkin seedlings in the pile of sod which had been set aside to compost last fall, and the vines were really taking off last time I looked. There were blossoms everywhere, and even a couple of fruits - but these definitely don't look like pumpkins. I'm starting to think someone switched the tags at the garden center. Does anyone know what the item in the center of the picture is?

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