Friday, September 17, 2010

Winds of Change

The weather has finally dropped a few hints that fall is coming soon: cooler daytime temperatures, nights in the 40s and 50s, dryer air, and the glimmering of autumn colors on the trees. The breezes that sweep over me when I'm out working in the field have a cool undertow to them -- a refreshing change from the blazing heat of July and August.

The seasons change in such gradual, sometimes imperceptible, transitions that I often find myself whipping my head around to say, "what happened to summer/sweet corn season/longer days/etc.?" Summer passes quickly -- as we all know! -- and the time comes to adjust to a different time of year and pace of life.

Changes are happening behind the scenes -- new vegetables to enjoy in the kitchen and in preservation, new breads to bake for fall, little possibilities cropping up for future endeavors. It's too early to know how things will shake down, but change is coming, and the best I can do is to slow down a little, enjoy the ride, and remain open to whatever will be.

I enjoyed two evenings of relaxation this week, taking time away from the kitchen to head down to the county fair with the Renaissance Man. Yes, I indulged in fair food, including lemonade, birch beer, and a pumpkin donut, but I kept walking all around and back home to mitigate some of that intake!

Last night, the weather turned stormy, with pelting rain and fierce winds, making me glad I had stayed home. (The Renaissance Man, on duty at the Sustainable Energy Network booth, was not so lucky.) And, as it turned out, it was definitely not a night to be out: a tornado struck the campus of the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC), the local "ag station" branch of Ohio State University. Damage was heavy, including the destruction of some of the greenhouses, so I fear this will create a huge loss for many of the researchers there (some of whom I've had the privilege to meet and work with through Local Roots). Luckily, there were minimal injuries as the tornado touched down after the work day was finished for most, and the physical damage can be cleaned up.

Today looks to be a much calmer sort of day, beginning yet again with some baking and a delicious breakfast of two wheat artisan rolls topped with local chèvre, pear slices leftover from the pear-hazelnut torte I made for market, walnuts, and local honey. There's a slight chill in the air and a hush to the morning that belies the chaos of last evening, and later in the morning I'll head out to drop off baked goods at the market and visit My Wonderful Parents.

So autumn approaches, and so life begins to settle into a more comforting pace. Changes abound -- some devastating, some neutral, some pleasant, and some delightful.

And on we go.

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