The Land of Plenty

Our return to Massachusetts is timed with a scheduled family vacation to Cape Cod. I haven’t been in years, and Tyndall never has. We walk the dunes on the oceanside and the trails on the bayside, convincing the family daily ice cream stops are good for them. The mercury steadily rises as the week progresses, but the breeze does its job. 

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We return home through rain squalls and stormy skies, only to find it is still dry on Chestnut Hill. The leafy green things suffer, but the tomatoes ripen regardless. A week away nets us this. 

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We harvest and process and eat and repeat.

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The tomatoes are the stars of the show, but there’s peppers and squash and cabbage and kale and a hodge podge of other things too. Grapes thrive on the egdes, where field meets forest. Tyndall is determined to make use of the small, hard pears that grow. My parents have long written them off as Too Much Work for not enough reward, but some chopping, cooking and foly food milling nets him more pear sauce than he knows what to do with. My mom advocates for composting the second bucket he picked.

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A long pent up need to DO and MAKE things is fulfilled. It feels good. 

An invite to a family lake house in New Hampshire provides an excuse to explore the way there by bike. From the house, we ride empty dirt roads, quiet paved roads and abandoned railroads, converted to shady bike paths crisscrossing the state. Tyndall’s route maximizing ice cream stops and swimming holes. 

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Photo by Tyndall Ellis.

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The grocery store is an eye popping, mind boggling experience full of too many choices; the Trump signs surreal. This IS a great country. We have so much. I want to knock on the doors of these houses and find out who lives here.

A lady tells me her barking, growling dog is wicked friendly. I give her the eyebrow and remind myself throwing rocks at dogs is frowned upon here. A man says “wicked pissah”. It’s a verbal reminder that I am in New England again. Life is wicked good. 

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Photo by Claire Russo.

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