Jon brought the chicken back from the village market after his Meditation class at The Mansion. “I think it is a cold,” he said to me on the phone. That’s when I told him I’d make chicken soup if he picked up the chicken.
An hour later, after lunch, I chopped the onion and my eyes didn’t sting until put them in the pot.
The light coming into the house has been strange all day. This morning it glowed orange on the bookshelf, now there’s a yellowish-gray cast over the farm. My neighbors, the mountains, are pale ghosts of the haze.
I can’t help but wonder if my eyes still sting from the smoky cloud that reached our town from Canada early this morning.
“I think I can smell smoke on my sweatshirt,” I said to Jon putting my nose to my sleeve. Can you smell that or am I imagining it?
Jon smelled it too even though he’s congested. Maybe his cold isn’t a cold, but the effects of the tainted air. The weather channel warned against going outside if you have certain health conditions, heart disease being one of them.
It’s been dry here. Not like in some places thankfully, but a small thunder shower a few nights ago is all the rain we’ve had in a long time.
Last spring and summer, when so much of the country was in drought or flooding, we got the perfect amount of rain. Enough to keep the grass green through September without it being too much.
I worry it’s our turn, the grass in the pastures is already mostly yellow. “It’s just dormant,” Suzy texted me, “protecting itself till it rains again.”
I know I’m fortunate to only be concerned about having enough grass and hay for the animals, and not about wildfires.
We’re promised a thunderstorm, but I don’t trust it even though the air is beginning to remind me of the color of the chicken soup simmering on the stove.
When the rain does come, it smells like a campfire and doesn’t last as long as the thunder. The ground under the big maples is bone dry, but still, I’m grateful for what we got.
It feels hopeful.
Jon says that dogs know hope. The way Fate will always run to the door when I put my shoes on, hoping to go to the sheep no matter how many times she’s disappointed.
Maybe the grass knows something like hope too. Like the potential of dew. Just enough to not give up.