In Spite of the Drought

We had our first meal from our pole beans on Sunday and Woody said, the beans will be coming in slowly and now and then.  But by midweek, he came in from the lower garden with six pounds of beans.  I froze five pounds and we ate one pound for supper. They will probably slow down now for a little while, then if all goes well, they will produce lots of beans. I Was able to freeze two pounds more on Thursday. Since the woodchuck ate ALL our broccoli, red cabbage and Brussels sprout plants, I froze nothing from them for winter.  Last year, I could only freeze 10 lbs of beans after Woody replanted them for the 2nd time and we started using  PLANTSKYDD and the hoards of rabbits eased off. .  I am hoping to make up the deficit of broccoli, etc, with lots of beans.  We’ll see. In the meantime, I froze three quarts of pureed patty-pans mixed with some yellow summer squash and five half pints of pesto so far,. 

Indira and I had a lovely visit in the sunroom, ten feet apart on Wednesday.  There are few friends I can talk about books with, but Indira is one of them.  She brought me a book by a Japanese author about traveling with a cat.  I haven’t started it yet, as I’m now reading Ali Smith’s WINTER. The actress doing the audio book of HE, SHE AND IT in the U.K. kept emailing me with questions about pronunciation.  As is common Sci Fi, many of the words she was querying were invented by me for the novel. Dale and I are sending out poems this Monday and last.  I have been writing fairly regularly, although the garden and dealing with the harvest takes a lot of time.

Lettuce lasted a month and  a half longer than other years, but this morning early, I went out to pull 85% of it that had bolted, leaving enough for one more salad.  The zucchini is going full blast. This week we’re going to try to make something called zucchini chips  and  pickles.  I’ve already made, eaten and frozen zuke soup. The yellow squash and especially the pattypans are doing well, but the zukes are over the top.  I gave five to Indira and we still have a surplus.

The drought goes on and on and on and on.  Everything is dry and flammable.  We water constantly and fuss about the pump, not wanting to burn it out, not wanting the well to go dry.  The air is dirty and oppressive.  It’s much hotter than it should be here.  Monday we’re supposed to break 90.  I’m  envious of my chosen daughter Melenie who lives in Eastshampton. They’ve had several downpours.  We haven’t had rain in over a month and none in sight. Even when they predict rain, it doesn’t happen.

Woody got oysters from our local oysterman. They are terrific. I always heard you don’t eat oysters in the summer, but nothing was wrong with these. They’re delicious  We had them raw twice.  I’ve been making many zucchini dishes of course.  Last night a saute of sliced zucchini, mushrooms garlic, basil, oregano, cumin, green peppers from our garden, Worcestershire sauce and tomatoes.  A good dish I’ll make again, but tonight it’s beans, lamb chops and potatoes.

Schwartzie suffers from the heat and lies as flat as he can on the floor. We have to watch out not to step on him as he is black and likes to lie across doorways to catch any breeze that may exist.  Mingus, being very short-haired, likes the heat.  Willow is in between. She has been going out on the sunporch more often lately.  She likes to climb to the top of the cat tree out there so she can survey everything inside and through the screens, outside.  They all seem to be sorting out Xena’s former roles.  Mingus comes for me when it’s time for supper or treats.  Willow has been patrolling and catching mice, dispatching them with a blow to the neck as Xena taught her.  Schwartzie looks pretty, that’s his job.

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