A comfortable and lonely silence has settled on the cabin in the woods.
While alone time is high on my list of must-dos, it’s been a treat to have the Significant One here with me, at least for the majority of the time since I became a man without a full-time job. She flew back to her career several times, but overall she’s been here. She was cooking healthy choices, alluding that I should shave at least once every three days and mentioning that the shower stall needs more than a cursory wipe-down each week.
We walked about a mile and a half a day on dirt roads while conversing about where and when we would see one or both of the whitetail deer family units. We pointed at eagles and the osprey. Oh, and we picked raspberries. She floated on her newest inflatable luxury raft, and Ellie swam in circles around her while I sat in my chair and turned the pages in books that I never thought I would get to finish.
It’s been a good summer.
I got the automatic Uber texts this morning after she landed on the tarmac of her concrete world. The notifications are sent to my phone whenever she rides with a car service; it’s not a bad idea. Tomorrow she will begin to handle many long phone calls, each loaded with a new problem to solve, a new issue to contemplate and resolve. She probably won’t be slapping mosquitoes.
With the mute button activated, I’ll keep my phone on the for-now cold woodstove. I only call people back at this stage. It’s better for me than answering with my mind full of other things. Most people don’t want you to pick up anyway.
Today has been a hot and quiet day. The grass seed is finally taking hold over the newly buried septic tank, and I still have more rocks to move. Today it was just too warm and sticky to think about those things. The fishing was slow, but so was I.
We went into full it’s-too-hot-to-do-that mode. Ellie swam and rested on the lake’s edge, and I got through a few more chapters. Supper became a clean-up of several partial dishes of this and that. They have been refrigerated and waiting for hot, quiet days when it’s far too warm to cook.
Chili dogs with leftover bacon and one half of a Saran-wrapped beefsteak tomato was but a short repose from my month of fresh salads and chicken grilled multiple ways. I’ll do a full-fledged haunting of the produce section in a couple of days. I’ll be squeezing things and looking for brown spots on others, trying to stay out of the way of true enthusiasts of fruits and vegetables
Darkness comes faster in August. The vast shoreline only whispers the echoes of summer inhabitants who were forced to return to their own ringing phones and the overly-paved universe where many dwell, not by choice.
Tonight, it’s Boston’s first album on the Bluetooth with a heavy backup sound from crickets, and Ellie sacked out beside me on the old green couch. I can get back to writing with purpose in the next week or so. I will take a northern swing—to the top of Maine—over the next few rainy days. I need to see some family. I’ll probably do some fingerpainting and swinging with the youngest and prettiest Cotton.
I am not saying goodbye to summer, but I am contemplating how I will tell her that she should be doing a little laundry and packing up a few things. It’s never too early to prepare for the time when she must go.
From the Jagged Edge, we remain,
Thanks for all the support for the books, donations at the BuyMeACoffee app, and the wonderful notes of support. I appreciate you all so much.