Web Producer/Farm Wife

I woke up late and under-motivated today. Instead of charging through my work day resistance (I picture myself as football player, jumping through a paper banner and out onto the field) and leaping into the shower, I found myself wandering from room to room, taking in all the household tasks that needed to be done and wishing for a morning where I could actually attend to them.

In a useless bid to delay leaving home for a few extra moments, I did a sinkful of dishes and pointedly ignoring the cantaloupe on the counter. It is desperate for attention and is beginning to develop tender, sinking spots where it once had a firm, taut rind. Chances are good that it will sit there until totally boggy and fermented, at which point I will finally be able to throw it away. I can’t bear to toss it while it has some promise.

I imagine life as a farm wife, living out on the prairie, each day filled with a rotating assortment of cooking, chores and sleep. I see her standing in the doorway, contemplating her only view, where the land and the sky merge and vanish beyond the point where the eye can see. I envy the home-centered nature of her life, all the while knowing that she must have been deathly weary of that unbroken vista. I am attracted by the peaceful sameness of her days, but only as a relief from the busy-ness of mine.

I am roused from my dream as the radio flips from Morning Edition to BBC Newshour. Inescapably late now, I head for the shower and begin the day.

5 thoughts on “Web Producer/Farm Wife

  1. JoAnna

    As a former city dweller now living in the country and experiencing a very home-centered life, I find your post interesting. I have yet to experience peaceful sameness nor a relief from busy-ness. And I am certainly not weary of the *ever changing* vista from my doorway. I find it newly energizing every day. Well…nearly every day – the current string of cloudy mornings is getting a bit dull.

    Please don’t waste your cantaloupe or all the resources that went into growing it and transporting it to you.

    Cantaloupe Butter – from the 1944 Ball Blue Book

    Cut melon into small pieces. Add just enough water to prevent sticking. Boil until soft, then press through a sieve. Add from 1 to 1.5 cups sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon or other spices to each quart pulp. Boil until thick. Pour while hot into hot jars. Process 10 minutes in hot water bath.

    Reply
    1. Marisa

      JoAnna, please don’t think I was somehow criticizing or degrading your lifestyle. In my imagining, I was conjuring a woman living on the Prairie in another era, without modern conveniences or access to much community.

      More than anything, it was an escapist fantasy, pondering a life drastically different from my own while trying to also keep in mind that any situation, no matter how idyllic, becomes mundane to the person living it.

      Reply
  2. JoAnna

    Hi Marisa,

    I enjoy your blog and in no way did I feel criticized or degraded. I was just fascinated by your ideal of the drastically different life.

    When I was living in a tiny apartment in DC, I would image what it was like to live in a big, old farmhouse. Now that I do, I am amused by how far off my preconceptions were. I thought living in a house with “character” would be a bit more ethereal, and a lot less inconvenient. I thought I could tend to our animals and garden in flowy sundresses with a glass of tea garnished with fresh mint. But, as you allude to, the day dreams typically leave out the hard parts.

    Fortunately, this life hasn’t become mundane to me yet. I remember the exact moment that seeing the Washington Monument no longer gave me goosebumps, but I am still utterly and completely thrilled every time I see a garden plant sprout, or spy a new bird in the field.

    PS – the cantaloupe butter is really very good.

    Reply

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