It’s been 119 days since my last weekly note post and boy are my arms tired.
Surprise, I’m a dad now.
Probably more on parenthood in another post? Short version: he’s great, we’re happy, newborns are exhausting, but in a pleasant, wouldn’t trade it for the world kind of way.
The year’s first junco arrived last week. Michelle pointed it out on Thursday, which had some nice winter preview weather—a cloudy high in the upper 40s. We technically had a bit of snowfall last Tuesday that was melting before it really hit the ground. I’m not sure if that counts towards the unofficial “days between junco sighting and snow” meter. Now that we’ve reached the second half of October, we’re ready for 10 days of clouds and rain.
Last year I noted the first junco in the October 4 note, so we may be about 10 days later this year?
Unfortunately for the juncos, our bird feeder situation has changed, so there’s not much of a reason to stick around on the deck. It was pretty funny to look out and see it scanning the deck, pondering where his internal map may have gone wrong. Hopefully they enjoy the yard anyway.
The black walnut held on to most of its leaves until last week’s low of 27. The tree then went immediately bare and the back yard became an ugly walnut and leaf soup that reminded us of A’s diapers, the thing we are seeing the most of these days.
One maple is almost completely red, the other still very green. The red is starting to litter the front yard, though it has nowhere near the effect of the walnut. Last year’s note provides some comparison.
Uhh, in the time since I wrote that, the one maple is definitely completely red, the other is very yellow, and there are definitely leaves all over the ground.
We noticed two different people stop and take pictures of it the other day. It really does look that good.
Note to self, you still want to plant a Rowan tree.
It’s much easier to write one of these when you haven’t written one in a while and have been relatively disconnected from the world.
And when you have tree observations to log.
Speaking of trees?
Rebecca Solnit makes an interesting connection with trees and saeculum, which she loosely defines as the “expanse of time during which something is in living memory.” She’s made an attempt to track down some trees planted by Orwell 70 years ago and finds his roses instead.
To us, trees seemed to offer another kind of saeculum, a longer timescale and deeper continuity, giving shelter from our ephemerality the way that a tree might offer literal shelter under its boughs.
Walking Dead character, Glenn, makes a—this may be a stretch—similar point to Enid in season 6, episode 9:
People you love… they made you who you are. They’re still part of you. If you stop being you, that last bit of them that’s still around inside, who you are… it’s gone.
What’s funny is that we’ve been binging Walking Dead as part of the feeding schedule over the last several weeks and we watched this episode only a day after I read Solnit’s piece.
The last two weeks have been pretty big overall. I was able to start doing crosswords again—or, at least the easy Monday, Tuesday, some of Wednesday group. I read a couple chapters in a book. And here I am writing, though most of this post was written 7 days ago before I finally, finally sat down to press publish.
This is in comparison to weeks of walking around in a stupor shoving food into my mouth at random times throughout day and night, unsure of which direction was up. I actually fell asleep standing up a couple times, which was exciting until I read about narcolepsy and decided I shouldn’t find myself doing that anymore.
All of that is much better now. There’s more of a schedule. A’s past “peak fussiness” at night (apparently). And we’re looking forward to the next 6 weeks!
Okay, better hit go before another week goes by! 🍻