October 22Posted on: October 22, 2012
I just love productive days. The weather is holding, 68* today and mostly sunny, so a good day to be outside. I dug up a pound of Jerusalem artichokes. It’s too bad they don’t keep well, so I guess I’ll just keep adding them to meals while they last. I did relocate some of them. Hope they take.
Then I cleaned out the onion beds and planted some garlic. While in the garden, I dug up as many of those darn creeping weeds with the geranium like leaves; I really loaded the wheel barrow full. I know they’ll be back, but at least these won’t be tilled in.
I took down the fence charger and pulled up the cord, storing it all in the barn ready for next year. That’s one to add to the Winter Prep-Fall Chores list, since it was a new addition this summer. The wire at the top of the fence can stay in place I guess, will have to see how it fares this winter.
Then I washed sheets and hung them out on the line; next was all my laundry. The day is still young; maybe I’ll go for a walk.
I ended up on the public side of Eagle Beach for my walk. It’s wonderfully quiet this time of year: all the tourists are gone and the kids are in school; I had the beach to myself. I walked for a bit then found a large piece of battered driftwood to sit on. Where this piece of wood came from is anybody’s guess: Lake Superior is a huge lake; it might have come from Canada or the other side of the bay. Even though it’s cool, I took off my shoes and dug my toes into the damp, rocky sand; I just can’t help it. I sat there for a while watching the waves gently lap at the shore, trying to think of what I wanted for this coming winter. Try as I may, my mind kept drifting. I remember a night so long ago, when Pete and I were new to the area and still working on our house in the woods, long before we split up. It was a warm August night, the moon was new, and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. Sitting here on the beach at midnight and looking at all the stars was mesmerizing. There is no light pollution up here and the sky was lit up. From the bay the view out to Lake Superior is more than 180 degrees and that night there were so many stars I could actually see the subtle curvature of the Universe. I will never forget that night.
I dug my toes a bit deeper and felt something sharp. Digging with my fingers I found a nice piece of hematite to add to my rock collection, and stuck it in my pocket. After disturbing the sand, I was visited by a couple of squawky white and gray seagulls, curious if I dug up anything for them; Annoying little creatures, but part of life on the lake. Almost immediately, there was another shriek, and another; they have some kind of code in that caw, I swear. Soon there were a dozen of these pesky birds swooping down, their raucous cry piercing the quiet, parading up and down the shore or fighting with the next one for a piece of twig. Good thing I didn’t have any food, or they’d never leave.
My attention kept coming back to the first house on the other side of the break-wall, which separates the public beach from the residential section with the marina. That first house is where John and his co-workers live. I’ve been seeing John as a massage client for a year now, and I’ve gotten dangerously fond of him. During our many hour sessions together, he has told me much about himself, and past relationships; and how he never wants to be emotionally tied to anyone ever again. Wish I could say the same.
I pulled my focus away from that house to watch an ore freighter chug its way across my view, miles out. Last year, during a particularly violent storm, a thousand foot freighter took refuge in the much calmer waters of our bay. It was startling to me to see this huge ship, anchored calmly. I had forgotten how vast our cove is, at least five miles across: the ship looked like a small toy boat in a big bathtub. It stayed for two days, and then left quietly during the night when the storm had passed.
On the news tonight there was coverage about a riot in Miami. Seems an entire district didn’t get their food stamps, due to a computer glitch, so they stormed the local social services office. When they couldn’t get in (some smart worker quickly locked the doors!) the crowd went on a rampage, breaking into stores, looting, setting fires. There was little the police could do because of being short manpower due to cutbacks, so they just barricaded the area off from more people entering, and let the crowd burn itself out. Apparently one of the caseworkers took charge of the rest of the employees and got them upstairs where they jammed the elevator doors open so it couldn’t be called down. The guy then put a sign on the elevator doors on the main floor “out of order”, and duct taped over the call buttons so it wouldn’t show where the elevator was. (Got the duct tape from his Bug Out Bag). Then he got the janitor’s keys, and locked the stairwell doors behind him. Fast thinking! Not knowing how long they would be there he had them fill up all the waste baskets with water. He said that way if someone did break in they wouldn’t hear anyone flushing and give away their location. What a smart guy. The final count was 7 dead, 126 injured. One of the dead was a caseworker who wouldn’t retreat, and when he tried to get to his car, the crowd beat him to death. If people will do this because their food stamps were late, what will they do if something really bad happens?
2 thoughts on “October 22”
Jerusalem artichokes, not everyone would get the reference, J. chokes is understandable to some of us, but some have never heard of them.
That is scary. You’re right. If this is the result of “just” missing food stamps what will they do when things really go bad?