Grocery shopping

To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee
One clover, and a bee,
And revery.
The revery alone will do,
If the bees are few.

Emily Dickinson

IMG_3414The official start of autumn for me is the day that I must pour hot water into the teacup prior to pouring the water for the tea itself; otherwise, the tea cools too quickly and doesn’t brew as well. This morning marked the beginning of the season.  The casita has been cooler in the mornings, the skies have been more overcast, the sun is much lower and less sunlight clears the neighbor’s house.  I’ve changed my getting-into-bed routine, so I now pull covers in close cocoon-like until my body heat warms the sheets.

Yet one can work up a sweat walking to town in the strong mid-day sun.

I was in the supermarket recently and a woman asked if I knew where to find honey, miel, and I couldn’t remember.  I hardly ever use it, so hardly ever buy it; I think I’ve bought it twice in the three years I’ve been here.  I do buy broccoli fairly often, whether from the supermarket or the verdurias, the green grocers, in the neighborhood and it’s almost always not what you’d see in the U.S.  Its stalks far too thick or the heads far too large or far too small for the stalks.  The same is true of carrots, whose shapes resemble my crooked toes, or whose taper is oddly strange to my U.S. trained supermarket eyes.  If perfectly proportioned produce is grown in this area, then it must be shipped elsewhere.  If what I see in the markets is the best-looking produce from this area, then I feel somewhat better as my thoughts turn away from industrial agriculture and to small local farms where I see men in fields still using horses or mules to plow and till.

Do the Honey Bee

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