The dryness here has become very concerning. Our drilled well at the church has been pumped dry several times this week. This runs the batteries flat as the pump tries to suck water. Our garden is somewhat helped because of the thick mulch upon it. Elsewhere the soil is dead dry with dead grass and dead everything everywhere. One can see the hidden springs during a dry spell, for the grass is greener for no other reason.
We have been using the dry time to do other things than mow the dry fields. Robin has cleaned and picked brush along our woods and brook trails. He has been gathering fallen branches and taking them to our burn piles. Things are getting neater around here. I had forgotten how much time and dollars it takes to keep these fields mown. It is too dry to mow now without damaging the plants.
We have had a few young couples camping out here and spending time by our river. The boys work at projects too heavy for me to do. I put them to weed-whacking the riverbank up to our lawn.
After an hour or so of steady droning, all of a sudden there were screams and yells. They took off the top of a yellow jacket nest and a cloud of angry wasps came out. Speed records were broken as one of the boys streaked across the field and hid in the porta potty. It was very funny to watch them swarm the potty. We have all avoided that place for awhile.
Robin continues his battle to get his disability (acute scoliosis) accepted. He went to a meeting in Rockland this morning and the supervisor said, “We have proof you are running a campground. Therefore you can work.” Disability denied. This despite three specialists telling him he was worse than he thought, but he doesn’t have enough money for an MRI to prove it.
He helps me take care of the monastery as part of his living here, doing things slowly but steadily because of his back. His work consists of: “You folks can tent here if you like. Let me show you the path to the river.” Etc. And it is not a business. It is a retreat service provided by the monastery and we accept offerings, as does any church. And I sometimes trade camping for working the hard jobs so Robin and I don’t have to do it.
Robin is so angry he now refuses his food stamps to help us out. Don’t know why an agency founded to help the disabled has agents who are so cold and mean. You would think it was their personal money. They seem to have forgotten that annoying part of the paycheck that says withholding tax paid.
I have sent a photo of our swimming hole in the beautiful, beautiful Sheepscot River. Takes the cuss off hot, sweaty days. No sound at all except for the running water across the rocks; that is peaceful in itself. At the moment the river is as low as I have ever seen it in 65 years.
(Doug Wright lives over Head Tide Hill in Whitefield. He welcomes feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.)