Book, Gardens, and Heat
I have been reading a book by Leslie Marmon Silko called "The Turquoise Ledge". In the heat we are having (95 degrees F. at 8:00 tonight) I think of what she said about the Pueblo People's rhythm of work. She said that if the moon was up people might go out to work their fields at midnight, then go to bed when it began to get hot during the day. By 9:00 in the morning here it is already Hot, so this night rhythm schedule makes sense to me. Also, I've got to find a better way to irrigate the food.
Everyone has been complaining that their gardens are burning to a crisp, true. But when I ask what kind of mulch they are using the answer is either None or a thin layer of newspaper.
When we first laid down a garden bed everyone kept saying, "Are you sure you need That much straw?" Yep, I was. The six to 8 inches of straw put around the plants, as soon as they were big enough has now compacted and rotted down to four to six inches. As the mulch shrinks I just keep pulling extra dry straw around the plants and soaking it, too. My garden May still die from the heat. But I no longer have to go to the farmer's market for greens and we're getting a few green beans and peppers. The tomatoes are full of blooms. We didn't get it planted until after the person sharing the garden had finished her semester of school, mid-May. So all of our food is behind everyone else's.
I just keep telling the plants that if they can hang on another four to six weeks it should get better and I'll do all I can to help them.
Tonight we only had 20% humidity! Amazing! Our Lowest is usually 40% and it gets up to 75%. That's when you go outside and start dripping so that you take an outdoor shower before the indoor shower. But that 95 degrees felt like 80, because the humidity was so low. The trade off is that we have fire hazard warnings everywhere and the garden has to be watered twice weekly instead of only once. Most people who aren't mulching are watering daily with limited success.
I wish I were more of a friend to the Earth. I don't think we have all that much water Or that much electricity to waste! I like the night schedule and have Always wondered why the Ozarks doesn't have a siesta. Too much European work ethic, I guess.
I lost the air conditioning over this last weekend and discovered I Could still live with a box fan in the window and a ceiling fan, IF I took an afternoon nap.
Now that my thermostat has been replaced and the outside unit cleaned of lots of grass clippings, I have turned it up from 74 to 76, and am comfortable. Yah, I know you keep yours at 80, but do you Work from home or go to an air conditioned factory or office which is cooler? I try to do laundry after 9:00 at night, to put less of a strain on the power grid. I hang what I can on a drying rack in the garage, which is like an oven. All of this Isn't just selfless love on my part, unfortunately. My utility bills in this smaller house I rented after Ann's death are Horrid! Wonder if they make solar panels for renters. They should, but of course they can't be allowed to get too cheap, or what would the fosil fuel burners do?
I love birds the way Ms. Silko loves snakes, and I respect, but do not hate snakes either. I'm finding that the birds are eating as much from the feeder in this unusually hot and dry Summer as they do when the ground is frozen, almost None of the time last Winter. I like feeding them and listening to them. But how to keep them from munching too much in the garden? That I don't know and will have to see if another gardener or conservation agent does. I don't mind sharing, but I can Use the food. I'm not willing to harm the birds. Any suggestions?
The Europeans who came to what is now the Southwestern U.S. thought the Pueblo peoples were lazy for not working in the heat like they did. I vote to work at night and for me the light or lack of it makes no difference. My only worry is about the two-legged Big critters which come out at night.
My new healthcare aide does an excellent job, but comes early in the morning, well, early for someone who starts laundry at 9:00 PM. Or later. I hate having my day chopped up and always feeling short of sleep! But then she, like many working poor people here has both a night job and a day job, so she's always short on sleep, too. Brain fog is no laughing matter when you are trying to do something creative, or learn ASL by 9 or 10 hour emersion days. When all your body wants to do is Sleep, time alone is Precious and murdering the phone feels Quite reasonable!
Well, I can Thand Blogger for taking up Another Hour of precious time, Remember, don't Evwer put an exclamation mark in "labels" I just spent an Hour of sleep time Trying to remove this, after the word Tired! My speech went dead time after time, so did Braille, no way to find what I had written. A grumpy Good Night!!!!!!