Saturday, September 27, 2014

A Short Porch Sit

It was 9:30 before I stayed up this morning. I’d arisen twice in the night to the relief of myself and the dog. When I came out of the bathroom this time, she was lying on her back, where she’d been rolling, and was watching me. That’s one of her ways of telling me that it’s time to go out again. Putting on her leash (and my jeans) I take her out to relieve her herself. Planning to sit in the swing a bit this sunny morning, I take her to the truck and dry her off with a paper towel, so she won’t soak in her dribble as she watches the world with me.

The swing feels cold but comfortable to my bare back. The dog lies down tolerantly. She really wasn’t planning on staying outside, though she’s all for it when it’s HER idea. The sun is bright and the sky only partly cloudy. I didn’t know what to expect today after the bright pinkness of the sunrise yesterday.

The barrage of acorns continues here. My home is surrounded by white oaks. I had to cut one this year that was growing into our stained glass bedroom window. The biggest oak, on the far side of the house, has expanded its reach over the years and now drops acorns on this side. I hear them hit, come bouncing down the slope until they hit the little four-foot section of flatter roof that combines with our three-foot overhang to give us a porch on this side. Then, they give one final bounce before landing in the lawn several feet below. The Mighty Dachshund watches them land, finding it mildly entertaining.

I must cut the big oak this winter, as much as I’ll hate to. It provides a lot of shade for our house, but it’s limbs keep growing into the house roof and scuffing the shingles when the wind blows. One even made a hole, which must soon be repaired. It also has a limb that begun battling the chimney. When I was younger, I kept the limbs trimmed out of the way. That hasn’t been an potion for a couple years now. The chimney needs to come down, but so does the oak.

For one thing, when I built the screened in porch on that side, I stopped digging the hole for one post when I reached a huge root about 18 inches down. That means if the oak ever goes over, the porch might, too. The tree has good lean away from the house, and we catch any wind going, here on this hilltop, so removal seems wise.

My mind turns back to the scene at hand, when a little group of chickadees start hunting for bugs in one of the oaks on this side of the house. I imagine that it takes a lot of bugs for something with such a fast metabolism. Other birds call from the woods below us, as they, too, hunt for their daily food. Blue-jays seem to predominate, but I hear some crows in the distance, too.

I love the fall, with all of its scents and sounds and scenery. It was better when I worked outdoors, of course, because I was totally immersed in it then. Now, I have to just grab what moments of it that I can. The colors are beginning to get pretty.

I remember the snowy appearance on the autumn leaves going into the mine yesterday. It almost looked like frost was on the hardwoods and pines alike, but it was only whitish dust from the limestone road. I remember the days when the road behind my maternal grandparent’s house was gravel and the “snow” on the trees there was reddish, from the red clay of the road.

Sitting here, I see all the brush and briars I’d like to cut from the edge of the woods and wonder if I’ll ever get to it, considering the hours that I work these days. I guess I won’t worry about it; Heaven won’t be any brighter for me leaving behind a neater lawn edge.

 The Mighty Dachshund gets up, walks to the door and stands there. She has made her wishes known and I obey, like the loyal servant that I am. Time to begin the day! © 2014


Sunnybrook Farm said...

You would sit around too much if it weren't for your little hound! I wish you were just down the road, I would put that oak to good use.

kymber said...

i love it when you write about your days and what you are thinking, Mr. Smythe. whether you know it or not, i learn much from you. thank you, Sir.

your friend,

Gorges Smythe said...

I'll probably test out my chainsaw mill on it, SF, and give the wremaining wood to neighbors (or sell it).

I'm glad you enjoyed the piece, kymber.

Chickenmom said...

Lots of acorns here already. The squirrels are really, really busy. I wonder what that means??

Gorges Smythe said...

I don't know, but the deer are loading up at my place, Cm!