Saturday, January 22, 2011

What's Going on, Down-under...and Above Too

Demonstrating the use of a simple machine.
You can learn somethings digging a hole.  The soil here is an amazing micro-system.  The dirt itself is a clay-silt like mixture, mostly rock-free, which is sticky but very slick when wet.  Kind of like pottery clay.  The grasses and ferns have sent out copious networks of roots ans rhizomes, forming a dense mat of vegetation equaling the foliage above in biomass.  Lot's of earthworms busily making soil can be found, and of course all the fungi and other microbe, invisibly making it all possible.

Roots and stubble.
And its hard to dig through using shovel, boot, and back.  Fortunately, it comes to an end about 12 inches deep, so with some persistence and conviction, it can be dug through.  The soil here is a miracle of time, erosion, weathering, and the indomitable nature of life to caring on its imperative; grow and reproduce, carry on and survive, even upon the mother rock that was recently molten rock.
A hole for the foundation pier.  Need 22 of these...wanna help?

Digging requires an occasional break.  Fortunately near the holes above is a large pile of recently cut hay, aromatic and soft.  Perfect to sit down, lean back, and look up.
Meteorologists would love this
You can learn a lot looking up.  The weather here is a fast-paced parade of blues skies, sun, wind, mist, clouds, and rain, ranging from a gentle warm shower to icy torrents, falling at the rate of several inches per hour, or more. People here with common sense are seen carrying umbrellas.  The weather moving over the mountains is sliced and lifted, changing the energy dynamics of the moisture and heat.  Often the sky is clear at night, brilliant with stars.  As the morning progresses the skies alter from partly cloudy to mostly cloudy to rain as the day wears on.  The sky is sometimes clear over the mountains but cloudy over the ocean.  And vice-versa.  Clouds can be seen at several layers: cumulus, stratus, and cirrus simultaneously. 
What a show!
Pouring rain 5 minutes later. alas, no rainbow.

Next: Pigs and sheep and chickens, oh my!

1 comment:

  1. I will think more kindly of you now when I'm shoveling snow. The piles are getting higher here, and it now requires a good lift of each shovelful to find a place to put it. By winter's end I, too, may have arms like Popeye. "Let's put up a yurt" sounds more serious now. Breaking through the growth, and then the roots sounds like some difficult work, and maybe just a bit symbolic of what you're spirit is undergoing. The poetry seems to mirror the digging. When you get to the clear deep foundation there is satisfaction. But as with all works in progress, you need to do it again and yet again to finally rebuild. Shovel on, Mooddoggie!