Today I took Kenya for a walk around the lake and up through the woods and then drove into the village to pick up something at the pharmacy. I was listening to The Vinyl Cafe. I'd received an email that Stuart MacLean was going to be reading a story sent in by the nephew of an old friend so I stretched out the drive in order to listen to the whole show.
As we drove past a farmhouse the paper covering the original darkened boards flapping in the October breeze, MacLean's voice mellowing the day, I thought of all the drives I'd taken with Kenya over the past two years or so. We'd head off to one or another "neighbourhood" in the vicinity and walk for an hour. Sometimes I took photos. Other times we just absorbed the newness. Me the sights. Kenya the smells.
Today was one of those times. I hadn't brought the camera. This particular route was a favourite because it took us up into hills pasts rolling fields of hay and cattle. Driving back down from the highest part I was startled by the sight of an enormous hog ambling around the corner of an outbuilding and toward the road. At the fence line it stopped, sniffed the air and lay down by the wire to watch the world go by. We were likely the most interesting thing that had passed this peaceful Sunday.
Around a corner and far below us were half a dozen horses clustered around the strange small white bales of hay I had been noticing. They looked like packages of mouldy rotting hay that had been destroyed by the rains, but I think they were likely just white plastic covered packages of food for the animals to scavenge from until winter sent them all indoors to the steaminess of winter barns ... a kind of snack time between the lush greenness of summer pasture and the dry sameness of months of winter hay and grain.
We passed a field of pumpkins and I was tempted to stop and ask if I could buy one. Maybe later this week. I have a kit for pumpkin carving that I bought a couple of years ago. Still unused. Where I live no child ventures on Hallowe'en, so there doesn't seem to be much point. Still it might be fun.
Stuart MacLean told the story swap tale. It wasn't Tyler's, but it didn't matter. I'd enjoyed my Sunday noon hour drive listening to the programme and feeling good about where I live and the freedom that is so much a part of my life.