Sunday, April 24, 2016

It’s my first overnight stay . . .

here at the cabin since we opened it up from its winter hibernation. 

I would’ve been up here sooner but as usual, nothing good comes without a price. This season, apparently the price is going to be paid to the plumber. It took us a month to get someone up here to look at the pipes and fix the winter's damage. And now the pump has stopped working. 

Once again I am reminded how integral water is to life. Or at least, how integral running water is to a nice couple of days up here at the cabin.

Aside from the water problem, it is as quiet and peaceful and astoundingly beautiful as it has always been, with 17 bazillion different shades of green playing a constantly changing visual symphony around me.
As the trees slowly leaf Big and Little House Mountains disappear behind them.
Soon the cabin will be encircled in a fortress of green and the mountains won’t reappear until late fall.

Sitting here on the porch, drinking my early morning tea I can hear the wild turkeys calling, and nearby there’s a woodpecker going crazy on a rotten tree. And a hundred other sounds fade in and out as the creatures go about their morning ways. 

There doesn't seem to be anything as insistent as the mockingbird in our yard in town who cycles through her entire repertoire at the top of her little bird lungs every morning, perched in the lilac just outside the living room window. She even drowns out the weed whackers and lawnmowers that seem to go from dawn to dusk every day from the beginning of March to the end of November in town, although she can’t hold her own against the life flight chopper or the ambulance sirens from the nearby hospital. Or the cacophony of police and fire engines screaming through town.

On the other hand, there are no mice in the house in town and when you turn the faucet on the water comes out without having to go down to the cistern and pump it up the hill. 

Or not pump it up the hill, so you have to call the pump guy to come out and replace a worn-out machine that’s just tired of shoving water 300 feet through a 1 inch black plastic pipe for the past six or eight years. However long it’s been since we last replaced the pump. Not that he's going to come out on a Sunday morning anyway, no matter how beautiful it is up here.

It’s always something up here, a constant struggle against a space that was perfectly happy before we took over and attempted to tame it.

The spring ran just fine at the bottom of the hill before we captured it, forced it into confinement in a cistern, rammed it into a pipe and sent it upwards against gravity.

The woodpeckers found plenty of dead trees to knock against before the cabin was built, although I am sure they appreciate the bounty of carpenter bee larvae seemingly stored just for them in our eaves, waiting for them to drill out each spring.

The mice had plenty of surfaces to run across before we provided them with our counters, and even the ants probably managed without us somehow. 

The only thing I’m not sure about are the wild turkeys. I can’t imagine how they could possibly have conducted their courtship every spring without me, sitting bundled up in the cool dawn light, paying rapt attention.