Sunday, January 13, 2008


Going up to Avalon is always a joy! And it was a gorgeous day, just cool enough for a light jacket, with a few clouds to set off the blue sky and pretty sunshine to turn the roadside grasses to bronze and gold. Jim had some limbs to drop off along the access road at places where he and Melissa are working to keep the roadway from eroding. I was feeling distinctly under the weather and the ride was just the thing to lift my spirits.

Avalon's half-mile of steep access road is very picturesque, being carved out of the side of a ravine. In wet weather such as we have had for the last week, linns – little wet-weather waterfalls - spring out from the rock facing the road, across the chasm at the bottom of which flows the feeder creek, a tributary to Locust Creek, the big creek that runs through Avalon’s bottomland and, eventually, in to the Ohio River.

We found Mel hard at work at the side of the access road and she and Mick took all the limbs and other yard debris from a half dozen of his customers and dropped it at the spot where there is the worst erosion.

She took a break to introduce me to all the animals – Raffles, our kitten, rapidly growing into a full-sized tabby mouser, Vinnie, our newly castrated steer, our rooster, Russell Crow, and our five chickens, a girl band called Dusty Rose and the Golden Comets. The chickens were glad to see Melissa, who gave them a treat. What a great chicken house we have! Kudos to Mel, who built the whole thing, plus a large run, from scratch and without help. I collected a couple of eggs from her special hinged doors and we tried to coax Vinnie to come near and say howdy, but he was wary.

The farm has a very tidy, loved feeling to it, thanks to Melissa’s constant care and affection and everything looked just grand. She had done quite a bit of limbing on the small cedars which Mick felled some time ago and is starting to accumulate poles to use in building her next three projects, a lean-to for Vinnie, who has outgrown the first one she made him, a lean-to for our equipment and a cabin for herself. Everything has a glow! She has made the place shine. The devas are definitely happy at Avalon Farm.

We looked at well sites. I encouraged Mel to have the dowser look for the best spot close to her future homestead and plan to dig there. It will be expensive, but well worth it (LOL) if we can then irrigate crops and have gray water, at least, for Melissa.

All too soon we said farewell to sweet Avalon and drove home through the first rays of sunset, as I swung my sunshade from the front window to the side window again and again. The road home curves south, then east, and so the sun plays tag with us.

Halfway home I realized I had forgotten to sing for Avalon. She always loves to be serenaded. I shall do it next time for sure!