Tragic Garlic Harvest

Feeding Biko chopped romaine is a new thing. I used to give him whole leaves, and I’d toss one to Wren to keep her busy. She wouldn’t come close enough to steal from him. But now, with a scatter of chopped, she sneaks in to steal a crunchy piece from the edge and runs off with it. And she loves it so much she’s getting bolder.

After her strenuous thievery in the morning she must nap hard.

My tragic garlic harvest proves that despite a promising start, planting in the spring doesn’t work. I was happy to get a few decent heads, mostly small ones, and those whose greens died back earliest and completely turned out to be nice fat single bulbs–though I will have to cut into each one and smell it to be sure it’s actually garlic. Don’t know what else it could be given where I dug them up, but don’t want to eat a lily bulb or something by mistake. I’m grateful for the harvest anyway: despite its paucity, it’s still more garlic than the sixteen individual cloves I planted in March, and I learned some things about what works and what doesn’t.

I’m grateful for Amy-inspired lemon ricotta pancakes which I finally made tonight to use up leftover ricotta from our gnocchi zoom. After burning the first few as usual, I got the hang of it. They were delicious. I used a NYT recipe but there are dozens available online that all look delicious. Since my frozen blueberries are buried under frozen apricots, I just broke up a few of the last fresh apricots and then doused the pancakes in real maple syrup. I cooked the whole batch, and froze leftovers in bags of two. Amy said they reheat well. I can imagine popping them in the toaster.

I live each hour, each conversation, each delicious meal, each page I read, physically aware of the climate chaos that rages all around. In this moment, in this place, all is well. In Canada and the Pacific Northwest wildfires rage out of control emptying whole cities; in Hawaii an entire city demolished by fire and thousands of lives lost, human and otherwise. California desert towns are flooding overnight, and maybe some larger cities as well. Another aggressive heat dome locks the central US in record high temperatures. Newscasters naively refer to some of these as “a once-in-a-lifetime event,” which enrages me.

In this moment, in this place, all is well, for the moment. At any moment wildfire could rip through the precious woods where I live. If it does, may I be ready to flee. May I have time to gather my animals and a few treasures, and escape alive. May my neighbors also be so fortunate. May all in the path of climate chaos be saved, I want to pray, knowing it simply is not possible. This keenly felt awareness both paralyzes me, and fills me with gratitude for every living moment of every day.

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