Although we're dry as a desert lately, it seems as though most of my recent horseback rides were happening when the sky was cloudy. Any ride is great, and there's something to be said for the cooling effect of clouds. But somehow, rides are just more pleasant on sunny days.
Yesterday morning when I left at 6 A.M., there were no clouds. I got to see the sun coming up, a huge, bright-red orb on the horizon. As I rode along the Missouri River, birds chirped their wakeup noises and I felt all was right with the world. My knees didn't even hurt much, as they usually do when I ride.
I canned those four quarts of tomatoes and froze the corn. One of the nifty things about doing those old-timey things is that it puts me in touch with my roots, with Mother and Grandma. My mom is the one who first gave me my instructions for canning and freezing, back in the early years of my marriage. Later on I bought the Ball Blue Book and other manuals. Mother was truly disappointed when I started pressure-canning my green beans, because she had always cold-packed them for three or four hours. Hey, that's supposed to be unsafe! Never mind that my mom lived more than ninety years, and none of Grandma's family died of botulism. To be honest, I still wouldn't be scared to cold-pack green beans. It just takes so long!
So anyhow, I had a nice time hearing my mom's voice in my head while I did the tomatoes and the corn, telling me how to do it. Cliff and I had a nice salad for lunch, I fixed his lunch for work and washed dishes, and Sadie and I went to the cabin at 2:30 as he left for work. I took the guitar, which requires a separate trip, but sometimes it's worth it.
So I was leafing through my song-lyrics, singing whatever suited me, and I found the perfect cabin-song... or horse-back riding song, if only I could learn the words; can you picture me riding Blue and holding up lyrics for a song I'm singing?
I had such a great time with this song that I repeated it three or four times!
Down in my dreams somehow it seems that I'm back where I belong,
Just an old country hick way back in the sticks back where I was born;
Cause the city lights and the city ways are drivin' me insane.
I wanna be alone I wanna be back home out on the Texas plains
I wanna drink my java from an old tin can while the moon comes shinin' high.
I wanna hear the call of a whippoorwill I wanna hear a coyote whine.
I wanna feel my saddle horse between my legs just riding him out on the range
Just to kick him in the sides let him show his step and pride out on the Texas plains.
I wanna hear the thunder as it goes and rolls I wanna feel the rain in my face,
Just a thousand miles from the city lights living the cowboy ways.
I wanna sleep at night beneath the stars above with that whole moon shinin' down.
I wanna cook my grabbel with catfish skulls fifty miles from town.
Sometime soon I'm goin' back back where the skies are blue
In a little house just built for two back where my dreams come true.
Well I'm tired of subways and the forty-story shacks
I'll trade 'em for the wide open range.
I wanna go back please take me back out on the Texas plains
Now I confess, there's a yodeling part to this song that I have to skip. I did it once, since nobody was within hearing distance, and was quickly reminded why I don't attempt to yodel. By the way, what's grabbel? Maybe I should re-write that line, since I'm not too crazy about the idea of eating catfish heads.
Sadie and I played a little Frisbee, had ourselves a nice campfire, and went to bed for a good night's sleep.
Yes, it was a darned-near perfect day!