Monday, July 13, 2015

Happening Now

It's been a mixed bag here lately.    I'll start with the negative, so that we can at least end on a more positive note.

Tomato plants are dying.  One by one.  Day by day.  It's like a friggin' Agatha Christie murder mystery out there in my garden, and all because of the black walnut roots that are still left in the soil from 2011.

Black walnuts contain juglone, a substance that's toxic to all kinds of vegetables and plants.  Basically, the juglone gets into the plant's vascular structure and blocks it.  Plants can sometimes tolerate a certain amount of juglone, but as they grow, the juglone has an increasingly crippling effect.

This why they can seem fine for a while, but then, right when they're getting big and blossoming, plants will suddenly die of juglone poisoning.  Even if you uproot a black walnut tree, the roots will continue to leak juglone into the soil; if black walnuts fall into the soil, they can remain hidden until they sprout--all the while, leaking juglone into the soil, which surrounding plants draw into their roots.

I like Gothic fiction.  In a sense, black walnut trees are the gothic vampires of the plant world.   So you'd think I'd like black walnut trees.  But I don't.

Then, the food allergies acted up again last night.  Or at least I thought it was food allergies, which is why I blasted myself with benedryl and then wondered why it didn't really work all that well.

I figured it out when I woke up at 3 a.m. with a raging ovarian cyst.  This is the same thing that sidelined me a couple of weeks ago--and it kind of explained why I seemed to be having an allergic reaction to foods that I've been known to eat without incident.

If I tried to communicate how frustrating the histamine/hormone problem I've been dealing with for the past several years has proven to be, all that would come out of me is one long, piercing shriek of frustration, so I'll refrain.

It's an exercise in patience.  And mine is wearing thin.

So let's shift gears and accentuate the positive now, shall we?  Although I wasn't able to bike yesterday or today, on Saturday morning, I biked for more than 25 miles.   So that was good, especially since I swam a mile and a half on Thursday.

In retrospect, this may be the reason why my body went into mega freak-out over the weekend, but probably not.  I suspect it simply freaks out because it wants to.  It is my body, after all, and that kind of sounds like me.

I painted the bedroom.  Thank heavens that job is done.

I got a line on a research idea on Atwood's Alias Grace.  Not sure what I'm going to say, but I at least have a sense that I'll have something to say.

I made a nice little batch of pesto ravioli this morning; given the little blast of warmer weather we had over the weekend, I think I'll be making pesto again this week.

Because I felt like I needed a pick-me-up, I also made homemade fig newtons today.  They're quite lovely.

And I plan to hit the blueberry patch again, by god, I can promise you that much.  I don't care if I look like a doubled-over version of the little girl from The Exorcist, I will pick more blueberries this week.

It's July, and July is Blueberry Month, and I will conduct myself accordingly.

Because in the end, I think it's best to remember the wisdom of Sugarland.  "Psssh--It happens."  And when it does, just "let go laughing."

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Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote, "Life is short, but there is always time for courtesy."