I Have Returned

And so, it was that on the seventh day, she did rest.

Or something to that effect.

If you consider carrying a new chest of drawers up three flights of stairs relaxing, I suppose you could say that I rested today.

At any rate, I am back. Sans photographs, but with Internet access, and that is a good thing. I also have the camera, but I am not so certain as to the location of the little picture card reading thingie that helps me get the pictures from the camera into the computer onto the blog, so we will have to do without illustrations for the time being.

How are we?

Well, we are here, present and accounted for, in our new home, all cats and dogs intact. (Here is Athens, Ohio, by the way.) My daughter helped us move over her Spring Break, which was terribly generous; she insisted upon being here for the big exciting time, which she discovered was a lot of work interspersed with long periods of intense boredom and ennui. We ended up moving not on the 28th as planned but the 29th–we awoke to torrential rain on the 28th and a long driveway filled with mud and water. We knew that even if they got the truck up the drive, it would never get out again once it was fully loaded. So, we postponed until the next day, which turned out to be uncharacteristically sunny and warm.

The move went fairly smoothly–all moves are fraught with peril and danger, of course, but no one was killed, maimed or lost upon the highway, though it was tempting to toss the cat who had to empty his bowels upon himself out the window. However, both my daughter and I fought off the temptation to fling him, and he is here, sunning himself on the deck as I write.

The main kitchen is still not finished, as is the main bathroom. I am unpacking as I can; Zak is busy putting together his desk and computer.

In all of this bustle, I have been itching to cook, and have been thwarted at every turn. We have been eating out mostly, but tonight, I am breaking that cycle and now that I have a stove and sufficient equipment unpacked in the upstairs kitchen, I am cooking.

We have been here only for about five days, all of them very busy with unpacking, cleaning, moving, hauling and other sundry domestic excitements, but already I have met up with some of the folks involved in making a sustainable food system for Athens county. We went to the farmer’s market on Saturday and I met with a woman who is doing a CSA for the first time this year; I am calling tomorrow to sign up for it. My next post will be about CSA’s, how they work and what they are about, and as I go through the process, I will write about it. I also met a man who raises free-range Duroc hogs;I bought a nice pork loin chop from him that I will be cooking tonight. I will let you know how it turns out, of course.

Today, we went out to a flea-market about thirty miles from here, and met another farmer. Not only does she raise Duroc hogs, and hickory smoke cures her own hams (and let me tell you, they are fantastic) she raises Piedmontese cattle–the fabled white cows of Tuscany. Needless to say, I picked up some ham, a bit of round and a bit of chuck from this lady, and will report upon how they cook and taste in a future post.

I intend to interview all of these folks, and write in depth articles on subjects relating to sustainable agriculture, rare breeds of farm animals, heirloom vegetables and local food economies, as I settle into the rhythym of living in Athens again.

So, that is it–I will be posting again soon–I just wanted to let folks know that I am still here, still eating, and will be back into cooking starting tonight.


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  1. Welcome home!

    Comment by etherbish — April 3, 2005 #

  2. Hi Barbara,
    Good to hear that you’ve settled in. Can’t wait to hear your stories and especially your new venture. Pardon my ignorance, what is CSA? Shirley

    Comment by Anonymous — April 3, 2005 #

  3. Yay! Moving – both exciting and excructiating.

    I am making a pork roast tonight (what pig part? No clue! I’m thinking shoulder). The recipe is from “How to Cook Everything” – the meat is rubbed with a mixture of sugar, salt, pepper, cayenne, rosemary and garlic, then basted with 1/4 cup of stock or dry white wine (I add a few large splashes of white wine vinegar to stock) every 15 minutes until done (that’s it, roughly). It’s the first thing I every cooked that shocked me at it’s tastiness. We’re having it with some leeks and baby ‘bellas I cooked in a little stock, with salt and pepper.

    *tappity tappity tappity*

    OK, so dinner will be a bit late tonight.


    Comment by Amy — April 3, 2005 #

  4. Let the new home itself,
    Welcome in Barbara & Zak!
    Send them a kind house-elf,
    To help them unpack.
    GoodWishes fill a whole shelf,
    In the peppery spice rack.

    They hover ’round you in the air,
    Only look and see them there!

    ;-), Judith

    Comment by wwjudith — April 3, 2005 #

  5. Good luck with your new home, Barbara!

    Comment by Dagmar — April 4, 2005 #

  6. Heya Barbara…I’m also glad to hear you’ve settled in. Hope it starts to feel like home very soon, as I know it can take a moment for four for that to happen at a new place.

    Be well!

    Comment by Kate — April 4, 2005 #

  7. Thank you all for the welcomes home!

    Shirley–CSA stands for “Community Supported Agriculture.” It is a direct marketing deal between the farmer and consumer where the consumer buys “shares” of a farm’s produce up front, thus helping the farmer deal with seed and fertilizer costs. Then, throughout the growing season, the consumer gets a certain amount of produce (usually each share is enough for two adults–you can buy multiple shares) as it is harvested each week.

    I will post more in depth about CSA’s and their history and what it is like to take part in one in the future.

    Amy–that sounds awesome! I like that cookbook, btw, and gave it to my Dad for Christmas last year. He likes it, too.

    Thanks, Judith–House Elves are de rigeur here in Athens. I am sure that one will show up eventually, unless the cats chase it off. 😉

    Comment by Barbara Fisher — April 4, 2005 #

  8. Glad the move went well! Can’t wait to read the articles. 🙂

    Comment by Christina — April 14, 2005 #

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