Sitting on the deck, lately, from time to time, I catch wafts of some far away death, some decomposing dead thing. It is not immediate but something in the near distance. Yesterday, the vultures were circling overhead. They are gone now. The thing must have been devoured.
Feeling better yesterday morning, I decided to begin my spring chores. It is winter still, if you can believe the calendar, but the heat has already arrived. It is not humid yet which is the saving grace. But there are things that must be done before it gets too brutally hot to work outside. I mean, if you have a choice. I have a choice.
Shovels, hoes, rakes. . . tools I don't know what to call. I tore out the old, ruined garden. Two hurricanes did it in. That is where the wooden fence collapsed and fell completely covering my little patch of sunlit land. My yard is shaded by giant oak and camphor trees. There is not enough sunlight in most of it to grow flowers. My garden is for butterflies and hummingbirds and lies in that one sunny spot. Semi-sunny. Enough, at least. I dug up big, tough rooted plants that spread over from my neighbor's yard. I used a small hoe to pull up most of the weedy garden then used the flat, triangular thing for which I haven't a name to dig beneath the soil and sever roots, then took the claw rake to disturb the soil more. I could feel the work in my shoulders and ribs, both the broken and unbroken ones, and it felt invigorating. For awhile. Then it was tiring. But by then, the work was done. I sat in a deck chair for a moment then and thought. There were pots filled with weeds or pots that were empty sitting 'round the deck. I picked them all up, emptied them, and put them in neat rows on the deck's edge. Then I sat again to think about what plants I would buy to fill them. I did not do so great a job. My mind kept wandering back to the vultures overhead.
It was mid-afternoon when I finished. The phone rang. It was my mother checking on me. She wanted to know how I felt, but I knew it was to see if I was coming over to visit with my cousin who drove over from the coast. I would, of course. It is what I do.
I showered. I had not eaten since I had coffee in the morning accompanied by two slices of strawberry bread. Yes, that is correct. I'd never heard of it, either, but how could I refuse after my trip to Strawberry City a few. . . a few what? Weeks, months? How long ago?
I decided to redo last evening's meal. I chopped garlic and put it into a ramekin, poured olive oil and Balsamic vinegar over it, added some Kosher salt, tore off a chunk of bread, and poured a glass of wine.
Feeling like an Italian farmer, I was.
I went to see my mother and cousins. The cousins had been working in my mother's yard all day. They told me all about it. I think they believe my mother will cut me out of the will and leave all her money and worldly possessions to them. Maybe she will. Her attitude toward me changes when they are around. They are more her "type," hillbilly stock that never finished high school but think that they are crafty and have some innate nobility the way many hillbillies do. They talk nonstop. It is all noise. The one who drove over from the coast sits with her phone and reads out loud things people have posted on her FaceBook page. She laughs with faux vigor and shows me pictures of people's children and confronts me with, "Isn't that cute?"
It is all I can do to nod my head. Why? Why do people do such things.
Noise. They just love noise. T.V.s that are never off. Constant chatter. Shopping. Eating out at cheap restaurants. Nothing is ever quiet.
They are going to eat at a restaurant called "The Roadhouse." They want me to come, but I decline claiming my belly isn't up to it yet.
When I get home, I make a Margarita because my friend has said she wanted one to combat the tribulations of her day. A tribute.
As I slowly consumed the cocktail, I called in an order for fish tacos from the local Fish Co.
The gymroids all talk about the show "Yellowstone." It is a favorite. I've never watched it as it is on commercial t.v. Commercials, yes, but the censorship that comes with advertisers and advertising and government regulations makes it unappealing. But I was pretty sure I wouldn't like it for other reasons, too.
I rented the first two episodes from Netflix or Amazon--can't remember. Oh, man. . . I was right. The show plays on every hackneyed stereotype known to man and beast. I could hardly stand looking at Kevin Costner. The whole thing was made for "that" crowd. Cowboys. Corruption. Money. Cultures and Ideologies in collision.
I turned it off and went to bed. As much as I'd cowboyed up that afternoon, the entire day afterwards had been a big draining disappointment.
Many more disturbing dreams. Old loves. Vultures.
I had the gel injection a week ago today. I am going to test the knee a bit today. I run in my dreams. I jump. I pull myself over walls. I am pre-broken in my dreams for much of the time, then I become Quasimodo again.
"What do you make of that, Dr. Freud?"
I don't trust Freud, of course, but he was awfully creative. More so than say Maslow or that certified therapist my girlfriends all enjoyed talking to. I guess I'm a little cowboy when it comes to that. Maybe I should give "Yellowstone" a second chance.