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Monday, April 16, 2012

Raw

I know. Where have I been? No bloggy since November. Seems to be a pattern. Winter is not for writing-- for me. Or sharing my writing more specifically. I go inward and actually work on my 'novella' of sorts, the secret-ish sexual life of a mid 40s woman on a farm living on her own terms, novella. The doing and the writing it down. I can't decide if I write because the stories keep coming or if the stories keep coming because I need to write them down. Either way, it forces me to be Raw. Open. Attentive.

Winter is when I set out for the new houseboy/bed warmer for the season. This year brought a hearty crop of new applicants as I had a roof installed. Ten Latino guys on a construction job and some icy weather made for a complicated, but racy few months. Brothers scooping each other, back door flower deliveries, some of the longest Spanish love sonnet texts ever and a lot of competitive testosterone fueled enthusiasm and eventual fizzle out. A reintroduction of Calixto back from deportation and freshly crazy with the sort of post traumatic stress that I would imagine comes with an illegal border crossing. Paranoia and the fear that you'll get caught and sent back before you make the $5000 you "borrowed" to get here to these United States made him jumpy and more feral than ever. It would take 10 years to make back that money in Guatemala and the Coyote (name for smugglers) isn't afraid to threaten you and your family with beheading. So, the paranoia and fear? I get it. But couldn't live with it. I sent him back to Florida. He was too Raw.

The roofing job went on for 6 weeks and I think a day more would have broken me. The fever pitch of constant texting and jockeying for audience with me at The Hacienda was exhausting. Knowing that it was all a temporary flirtation with The Nuevo, I could keep it together, but I learned a few things. I needed to shore up my boundaries, stop answering texts after 9pm (aka Wine Time) and that I definitely get more out of the workers I don't sleep with. They're all dismissed now in high Spring and it's back to Mowgli, (aka Juanito and who I've written about for years) whose ebb and flow of predictable unpredictability is somewhat comforting after four years. It's about as monogamous as I'm comfortable with. And that may be Raw, but that's the truth.

Twenty three years old now, he's taking on more responsibility as The Man Around the House. Jealousy, threatening wanna be suitors with fist fights and locking all the doors at night. He cleans the house, does the laundry, takes care of the yard and gardens, cleans the coop, cuts trees down with a machete and basically doesn't bother me at all. He's quiet like a barn mouse and I'll admit that I kind of like a caretaker who slips into my bedroom at night. He doesn't snore and he goes away for the weekend to I don't know where. I suspect there is beer. Whereas I used to keep tabs on him, he is now keeping them on me. Of course being 23 means he can disappear for a couple days without explanation, but he thinks I should have a Lo-Jack installed for refusing to answer the phone for an evening. JUST LET ME KNOW WHERE YOU ARE, he begs. But being 44 means I don't make too much of it. If I'm watching HGTV (likely) or drinking wine with Pedro in the tub (less likely but probable) I'm not answering the phone. Take it or leave it, I say. I answer to no one... but me.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't think it was sweet that he's puffing up about his Lady, and of course I adore him (most of the time) but I'm pretty honest with myself about the realities of a 21 year age spread, cultural divides, language separation and the fickle nature of, well, ME.  Knowing thyself is the greatest gift of maturation. Even though every day sort of feels like I'm starting all over again.

I'm settling into the cycles of life like never before-- living close to nature and respecting the seasons gives my life a rhythm. We don't eat eggs when the hens aren't laying. And that's that. Paying attention to Mother Nature, respecting unpredictable weather and learning from and tending to farm animals allows you to release a lot of expectation. There is a flow but I'm not driving the boat. I'm kind of floating on an inner tube in the river making sure I don't fall off or hit a rock. I find that the less I do to everything, the easier and better it seems to work out. We are all so used to grinding the gear shaft and we could really just put it in neutral and coast. Leaving things in their natural state...from my lawn, my memoir, my mayo--are better Raw.

MAYO
A whole raw egg, one egg yolk (from a farm raised chicken)
1 teaspoon dijon
juice of 1 lemon
pinch of sea salt
pulse in food processor
pour in 3/4 cup of oil in a drizzle while processor is on whip until creamy. You'll never touch store mayo again. Great as a topping for fish, as a hollandaise...

*I use Olive Oil but I like a strong olive taste. you can use macadamia nut oil if you like a lighter taste. Do NOT use soybean oil, corn, safflower, canola or any of these other junk oils, and get rid of all of these right now. Read more about it here... from my favorite food myth debunker Mark Sisson.