Growing up mom would serve grapefruit cut in half, sprinkled with sugar, and we’d dig out the fruit with shovel shaped spoons. This breakfast course was usually met with a scrunched faces and reticence.
Grapefruit is one of those flavors that didn’t click until much later in life.
This morning we sat around the kitchen table and peeled the outer rind and pith around each segment of large grapefruits. These would be blended and poured into ice cube trays to add fun flavor to drinks throughout the week.
While those set we hiked to the creek, chased the shade and arranged ourselves to avoid marching ants.
I’d been obsessed with these brilliant Flame Skimmer dragonflies that are bright as fire when sunlight hits them. I finally snapped a photo of one resting on a branch. And though backlit, the phone’s camera compensated nicely to reveal details and a translucency I hadn’t imagined.
Five friends around the table of the cabin while three dogs rotated positions for occasional attention. There was incredible salmon that Brent brought down. More of Joe’s peanut butter cookies. And good music that flowed into the evening closing with a rousing game of cards.
That crust is made of shredded mozzarella cheese with some vinegar, egg and almond flour. It’s cooked slowly in a skillet to meld and then flattened and baked in the oven for the first crisp. Then toppings are added and back in the oven it goes for a few minutes. Super tasty.
If I were to turn this into a food blog I would put those ingredients way at the end of the post. I’m annoyed as much as anyone by this pattern, but there is reasoning behind it…
I turned on some SEO plugin to adjust page descriptions on the site here and it ran a report and essentially said I was doing everything wrong. Every post should be x number of words and needed keywords and some other hoops.
That’s one metric how the web is indexed at the moment, by quantity of words.
We celebrated Joe’s birthday this evening with a dinner party at the guesthouse to watch the sunset reflected on the ridge just beyond the trees. They call it the pink hour up here. It’s fascinating to watch the colors cycle from golden to pink and then to a cool warm gray that feels like it’d be tough to match in a Pantone book.
I’ve spent many nights sleeping in this yurt, always at the turn of the season when the rains start to begin. Weather patterns are shifting though.
Without those rains to feed the springs, the rationing is required year round. This adds a layer of austerity measures already in place on the mountain. Existence always requires a keen eye on resources — water, electricity, and the amount of megabytes squeezed through a small satellite dish.
This is my first extended trip in the summer and it is interesting to see firsthand this pendulum of variables — more sun in the summer means solar power, but it is limited. One must eye each appliance that draws a current and determine where to spend the energy. Me? I can be frugal with lights if that means I can run a fan while sleeping.
Luckily amid this heat there is respite. The creek is perfect for swimming and soaking this time of year, unlike the winter months when it’s frigid — when we’d stoke the wood stove to keep the yurt somewhat cozy at night.
Summer months also bring a variable I’ve not yet had to face — the threat of wildfires… So it’s an educated gamble, always.
Yet apart from these extremes, this way of being inspires a deep appreciation — of the land, the seasons, one’s needs, and how it all fits together.
We keep honing how we introduce folks to the card game we’ve been dreaming up. The real test will be when we hand off printed rules and a few pre-production decks to unknowing folks. Tonight we introduced Charlie to the fold and had our first round with 5 players, taking notes of how long rounds last and questions he had along the way.
Closed out the evening with dessert and a fine summer breeze flowing through the windows.
A few extra characters showed up at the creek today. Brent popped down and for the first time I met his dog Bandit — a charming pup who loves gathering thrown sticks (the return mechanics of fetching are of no interest to him.)
Conversation turned quickly when he spotted a bear ambling down the ridge. It popped down to the creek up a few clicks to cool off. Everyone said this was the closest sighting yet, but we were pretty safe — once Erik’s dog Bodhi caught scent he immediately established a perimeter of barking.
The bear left after a few minutes and that was that.
Below, a few more random photos from earlier in the day.