Thoughts . . . by Mark Rich

. . . scribbled . . . scrawled . . . trimmed . . . typewritten . . . grubbed up . . . squeezed from circumstance . . .

Monday, March 15, 2010

Sunday Gambol

Sunday, with the day looking so fine, we dedicated largely to non-productivity. We headed into Minnesota to check out an auction, where we saw almost nothing of interest to us, then visited the towns of Hoka, Minnesota, and Lansing, Iowa, where in both cases the antique or old-junk shops were closed. Lorna had chances to romp in some new places, at least. Martha and I were also thinking that our gallivanting served to keep us out of the garden while the breeze and sun were doing some de-muckifying.

Later in the afternoon, then, we poked around yard and garden. The work I had put in last fall, creating a few more footpaths here and there, paid off, since we were able to wander around without sinking in. With the snow gone, I pulled the two mulched vines from their leaf-and-straw coverings -- the Concord, and the Canadice. In my mind I go back and forth: should I continue training the vines for future winter-mulching, or should I now risk them as uprights?

I may have written here before that I was a little foolish in wanting a Concord. Yet the idea of having that basic American grape exerted too strong a pull. We are slightly out of the Concord's proper zone. All the same, we know Concords have grown and flourished to the north of here. Last summer I also spoke with someone who has Concords growing vigorously on their property not far to the west of here -- yet I believe they are located a bit lower in elevation, so that they may be benefiting from the slight climate-altering effects of the Mississippi river and valley.

From my brother Kenneth I learned last year or the year before, by the way, that Canadice, the Finger Lake, is pronounced there not to rhyme with Canada geese, which is how I had been saying it. It rhymes instead with can-of-dice.

It is a gambling vine, then. So maybe I should prop it up vertically and see how it weathers next winter.

Cheers ...

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