Travels with MaryE

Most things I love best are about good light and good timing. That's where the adventures start. Don't be in no hurry here. Here you'll find a little bit about bluegrass music, fox hunting, life on the road, time on the mountain, and a whole lot about other things, too.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Ever Wake Up....?

Ever wake up and wonder what to write about? I know what I _should_ be writing about (bluegrass) but I'm so contrary that I rarely do what I _should_ do. So it's August 6 on the mountain and I wake up to what feels like frost. I've left both the top and bottom of the stable door in my room (I don't live in a barn; it just has a stable door) open all night (ah! fresh air) and the temperature has plummeted. Mind, it was about 100 just 3 days ago. Fall is on the way. There must've been something to that snow plough I saw mid-week. The locals see the signs in nature. Better hunt my wellies. Anyway, the local foxhunt (and I've never been to one in America!) the Rombout had their opening cub meet yesterday and I sure wanted to go...but you know that hesitation you sometimes have going to a new place where you don't know a soul and wondering how you should dress and all those things? I was having it big time. It might have had something to do with having to be there at 6:30 a.m., too, though surely it was a lovely time of day. So I didn't go. Now today I'm all bruised from kicking myself for failing in the courage department. I must be getting old. Those doubts never would have stopped me ten years ago. At the HITS Horse Show in Saugerties last week a woman told me that people over here _don't_ follow the hunt - the only people you're going to see are the mounted field. I don't get that. Over in Wales at least half the folks involved with the hunt are what are referred to as "foot followers;" in the good ole days they actually did walk with stout sticks and the traditional garb (moleskin trousers, tweed wool jacket, flat cap, vest and wellies or leather boots); nowadays they're mostly following in Land Rovers, Suzukis and other 4WD vehicles.

There aren't so many flowers in the garden this year; maybe conditions weren't right, maybe the deer found them delicious. But somehow I surprised myself with the cut flower arrangement I threw together Friday night before my sister and her friend arrived. It looks pretty nice on the big table in the room that's all delicate green and pink and flowery anyway. A sort of tall arrangement with various colors of lillys, liatris spicata, rudbeckia, echinacea, daisies, moonbeam coreopsis, veronica, sedum, russian sage and a few other varieties to round out the mix. Mister Pip the cat has been enjoying nibbling on them the last two days.

Last night some friends came over and we made this big meal. There was roast pork in jerk sauce, my sister was supposed to pick up chicken at the local fireman's barbecue but got there after it was all sold, so I went into high gear and made my special pasta sauce with plenty of onions, sweet peppers, hot italian sausage and a few other secret ingredients. We had to scrounge and come up with the rest, but found some nice asparagus, sweet potatoes, and the friends brought along a delicious Waldorf salad. I also made my spicy guacamole; turns out a couple of the guests don't like cilantro (imagine!) so I made 2 batches - with and without. It turned out we had way too much food...and a very strange mix! We rose to the occasion and polished off a lot of it - even before tackling the homemade apple-raspberry pie from Roger & Alyce's fruit stand topped with a scoop of Ben & Jerry's ice cream. Does life get any better? No wonder I'm so willowy .

So this morning I wake up and a fall-ish nip is in the air and I have to put on long trousers and even a flannel shirt. I find my thoughts turning back to Wales and the joys of following the hounds, the warm cozy scent of horseflesh, the easy camaraderie of the foot followers, the sight of the gorse and the bracken on the moorlands. I'd better get on with this bluegrass book..Wales is calling me.


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