Monday, November 7 2022
location: rural Hurley Township, Ulster County, NY
Today was so beautiful and warm that I wore a teeshirt and shorts when I went to gather a backpack load of firewood some distance down the Stick Trail at noon. The wood I gathered was from a tree I'd tried to cut down some years ago but had chickened out about after cutting most of the way through. It had stood for a long time this way, but eventually a wind blew it down onto another tree. Today I had to cut through the trunk in a couple places to get it to fall all the way down. After that, I bucked the whole tree into pieces, though it was much more wood than I could carry home today. When I weighed my load, it came to about 72 pounds, which isn't that much. But I found carrying it as far as I had deeply exhausting, especially given how little I'd eaten today. After I'd put the wood in the indoor wood rack, I ate two bowls of Special K with Chobani oat milk, which was exactly what my body was craving.
But I didn't feel quite the same for the rest of the day. The exhaustion from carrying that wood lingered, making me feel almost like I had a hangover. I had to relax for a time on the beanbag.
This evening as I was lying in bed, Gretchen took a call from a friend and proceeded to have a loud conversation about her anxiety before the mid-term election. I've been so anxious about that subject that I've been mostly avoiding the news for the past couple weeks. Having to hear Gretchen talking about it (even through a closed door) was going to put me in the wrong mental state to sleep peacefully. So I got up and went down to the greenhouse to sleep. It was plenty warm down there, and I didn't need the heat. Conditions did cool fairly dramatically overnight, but I was able to make it to daylight with just a single blanket and no consumption of electricity.
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