Realized late yesterday afternoon that I was suffering from cabin fever. I was edgy, irritable and my back was killing me from sitting on the couch. We spent far too much time watching television and I really need to be doing something. Lately, I’ve been keeping Wally from doing too much because his knee has been bothering him. I’ve got plenty to do today. I hope that the wind dies down from what it was yesterday afternoon: it was brutal!!! Wally and I had a heck of a time getting the row covers back on the beds. At least the wind will help dry out all the mud.
I’ve been reading Wendell Berry’s The Unsettling of America and while it is a slow read, it’s interesting. He writes:
“And nowhere now is there a market for minor produce: a bucket of cream, a hen, a few dozen eggs. One cannot sell milk from a few cows anymore;the law-required equipment is too expensive. Those markets were done away with in the name of sanitation–but, of course, to the enrichment of the large producers. We have always had to have ‘a good reason’ for doing away with small operators, and in modern times the good reason has often been sanitation, for which there is apparently no small or cheap technology. Future historians will no doubt remark upon the inevitable association, with us, between sanitation and filthy lucre. And it is one of the miracles of science and hygiene that the germs that used to be in our food have been replaced by poisons.”
Luckily, that has changed to some extent with Farmers’ Markets, etc., but what interested me in particular about the above paragraph is the statement that we have replaced the germs that used to be in our food with poisons. Isn’t that the truth?
Craigslist is both addicting and aggravating, but mostly addicting. I can’t seem to get away from reading it. One posting in particular really got to me: a woman advertising her services as a horse trainer. She said that she has five plus years experience with horses (whoopee!). She said that she is not claiming to know everything about horses, but she’s learned quite a bit from the best horse people around. She’s worked with a grand total of three horses, one she put 30 days on; another 90 days and the third she still has. Well hell, I ought to contact her and get her to put some days on Sudi, she only charges $10/hour. NOT!
Christmas Day Wally and I watched two videotapes of Buck Brannaman and we both enjoyed them very, very much. Buck takes such a grounded approach to working with horses, none of the glitz and gimmicks that so many of the others use, not to mention there’s more advertisement in their programs than there is actual content. We watched a Chris Cox episode yesterday afternoon and at the end, we both looked at each other and said, “did you get anything out of any of that?”. I so wish I could attend one of Buck’s clinics, but that simply isn’t in the cards, at least not for the coming year. I honestly don’t know what’s going to happen with the horses in the coming year. Right now, I’m feeling like horses are nothing more than a frivolous endeavor. If I could sell one or both of them, I would, but, most horses are worth close to nothing these days. In fact, this may sound horrible and of course we’d never do this, but Wally and I were discussing feeding the dogs and cats and how it has become more economical to buy a horse for meat than it is a cow or a goat. Really! He’s seen horses go through the auction for less than $100 and a horse would provide an awful lot of meat. I don’t think I could butcher a horse, but …
In general, I think the World is going to hell in a hand basket. We heard on the news yesterday that over 100 Sears and K-Mart stores are going to be closed due to lackluster holiday sales. Think of all of the people that each of these stores employs and how many people are going to become unemployed when they close. Great, more competition for the few jobs that are out there. This morning, the news informed us that due to unrest in the Middle East, oil prices are going to go up. Both Wally and I have been very happy that (1) gas prices have been more reasonable than they have been; and (2) the winter has been warmer than the past few winters so we haven’t had to use quite so much electricity or kerosene. If gas prices go up considerably, that’s going to kill any trips to South Mountain to ride and of course, grain, food, etc. prices will go up. Lovely. Can I just crawl under a rock for the rest of my life?
Maybe 2012 will be a better year for us.
Until later …