Thursday, July 30, 2009

No Sweat

Actually a lot of sweat. Chief Joseph invited me to the Sweat yesterday. I went early to help him prepare, cutting the metre long pine in half and setting up the fire. When we started to light the fire it was 5 p.m and 28℃. I would have thought that a Sweat would be just to hot on a day like today. Actually it makes no difference +28 or -28, it can only get so hot inside the Sweat. Even tho it was blistering outside, when the flap opened between rounds, it felt like someone had turned on the air conditioning. Wonderfully cool. That's the thing with a Sweat. It goes from gentle heat to ferocious and then to cool in a cycle. A spiritually soothing experience.

One of the spiritual exercises he charged us with was paying attention to the cool breeze that rushes in the door when the flap is lifted. To have it remind us that one day we will take a last breath, to enjoy the breath we have now to the fullest.

I've been spending some time the last couple of days staining the front porch. I will put some porch and floor enamel on the top of the steps, complete with some sand for traction, and sheet in the roof. I will move the light over the door, which currently is shrouded by an old ice cream bucket, to the centre of the ceiling and perhaps install a photo cell switch. I also will paint the grating that covers the floor. The grating makes boot cleaning easier. It's so hot the stain is drying very quickly -- and I am taking pains to ensure I am only painting in the shade. I am using an oil based stain, my preference for covering old barn wood. Acrylic latex paint, my first choice, needs to have temperatures of at least 12℃ overnight. Until recently, a rare event around here.

Hard to believe that little bit of staining—two coats, ate up two gallons of stain. Or the metric equivalent.

What looks like old ski poles and hiking sticks hanging on the wall beside the porch is in reality cow flap movers and shifters. The hot weather making that daily exercise a lot easier.

This morning Sandhill Cranes are in the East Pasture heralding the new day with their song.

The link has a sound slider so you can hear their cooing. I suppose it's an acquired taste but we look forward to it. Early in the Spring they come overhead in vast wings of hundreds and hundreds. Two of them seem to stay around our pastures all spring and summer, leaving in the fall. These are big birds, over a metre tall. Xena and Cleo seem to be getting used to their presence.

Hope you enjoy your breath today.

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