quarantine green forage
Sunday, March 29 2020
It was another rainy day in the pandemic, which has still yet to peak in New York City, where pandemonia similar to what happened in Wuhan, China two months ago (and Italy two weeks ago) is already well underway. Up here on Hurley Mountain, things remain tranquil. Though possibly exposed a week ago by a careless shop owner, Gretchen has not developed symptoms, and the chance that she will (at least for that exposure) is becoming increasingly remote. The quarantine has served one very useful function in that it's kept Gretchen from wading out into society and possibly picking up the disease. She tends to take far bigger risks than I do, and, though she most certainly wants to avoid the coronavirus, I worry that she might not be vigilant enough in a landscape full of possible contamination (unlike the one around our house).
As I have for weeks now, I had trouble focusing today on anything but articles about the coronavirus as I found them on the various news sites I frequent ( TheAtlantic.com has had a particularly good run of articles, though, without a membership, I am forced to read them using the archiving site archive.ph).
It's unhealthy to sit and read depressing articles all day, so I took a number of walks today despite the rain. One of these took me along the escarpment just west of the Farm Road and then down across a wetland back to the Farm Road and then back home. Later today I went out with a collander and collected rosette leaves from garlic mustard north of the house and in the wooded ravine east of the artificial mound housing our septic field. Since we're trying to minimize our shopping during the pandemic, it seemed prudent to take advantage of resources that can easily be foraged, particularly something green so early in spring.
I'd seen a taco emoji this afternoon, and that had me craving tacos. So Gretchen made a meal of spicy cauliflower tacos with cole slaw, and I added to the options by making a big pot of chili and cooking down the garlic mustard into a twiggy green mass. That garlic mustard wasn't quite as delicious as Gretchen and I had hoped; it tasted unpleasantly "planty" and was full of tough fibers from the leaves' long stems. Combined with chili, though, it actually kind of worked in a taco.
At around 8:00pm we had another Google Hangout happy hour among the Mercy For Animals Diaspora. We're all feeling cooped-up and lonely these days, particularly Allison, who has not left her apartment building for sixteen days. She's perhaps a bit too worried about the coronavirus, though it's hard to say what I'd do if I lived in a place as urban as the one she lives in (in Miami).
The highlight of happy hour came when Dan introduced us to a video entitled "Poo Flip," a backwards video of a gentleman who shat an enormously long turd from his ass as he did a flipping fall into a body of water. Since the video is backwards, the turds are seen rising up out of the water alongside our hero, assembling into a long dark snake (complete with a hook at the end) and then surping up into the gentleman's asshole just before he lands on the platform.
A burl west of the Farm Road.
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A large broken-off evergreen west of the Farm Road.
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A tree rising out of the wetlands just west of the Farm Road.
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