Thursday, April 1, 2010

This Week

My tomato seeds sprouted. Sometimes I think that nothing in the month of March could make me happier than seeing the delicate loop of a tomato seedling.

I made a perfect pizza crust. And by perfect, I mean it formed a perfect rectangle, filling the baking sheet from edge to edge, with not a hole in sight, instead of looking like a ragged representation of Maine. And I topped it with Mom's homemade mozzarella.

I rode my bike to work. I heard the river feeling its way around half-submerged rocks and downed trees. I startled ducks from the bank, which I feel guilty about, but I love to watch them fly what looks like only a few inches above the water. Yesterday, for the first time since last fall, I passed families.

Aaron and I planted peas, radishes, carrots, beets, swiss chard, spinach, arugula, mustard, and onions. The earth was warm and dry - it has been unseasonably warm, and we had no snow in what is usually our snowiest month. I learned that hoeing, unlike biking, is something my body must relearn how to do with grace.

I've had a hard time falling asleep. My chicks are due to arrive in a week, and every night I feel just like I did when I was little and it was Christmas Eve. Every year I thought I'd never be able to fall asleep, and that the night would drag on minute by minute, and Christmas Day would never come. My excitement and anticipation overwhelmed me, just as it does today, and eventually it would exhaust me and put me to sleep.

I started The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, and so far I like it very much. Whenever I read it, it offers me a few sentences or a passage that I connect with, and that seems to represent how I feel at that moment. Yesterday, it was this:
Any game where the goal is to build territory has to be beautiful. There may be phases of combat, but they are only the means to an end, to allow your territory to survive. One of the most extraordinary aspects of the game of go is that it has been proven that in order to win, you must live, but you must also allow the other player to live. Players who are too greedy will lose: it is a subtle game of equilibrium, where you have to get ahead without crushing the other player. In the end, life and death are only the consequences of how well or how poorly you have made your construction. [. . .]
Live or die: mere consequences of what you have built. What matters is building well. So here we are, I've assigned myself a new obligation. I'm going to stop undoing, deconstructing, I'm going to start building.

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