Sunday, 4 October 2009

Indian Head Massage

The perky blonde peregrina said she´d trade a couple days of rest here for Indian Head Massages, an Ayurvedic therapy she uses in her employ as an Energy Worker.

Paddy and I answered identically, in unison. "I don´t have an Indian head."

And that is The Line of the Week.

Things are getting weird around here. The Harvest Moon beams blindingly down from the sky. Time and the light play tricks. The sun rises later and sets sooner, noticeably sooner. Out in the tall spruce tree, honest to God, a screech owl has visited every night for the past five. Flocks of strange birds fly over, southward to Africa: snow geese, strange wrens and robins. One day this week all our swallows disappeared.

When Max the Cock crows, the dogs howl.

Still it is hot and dry in the afternoons. The sky fills up with thunderheads and great winds blow all the dust off the fields, but it comes to nothing. The world is brown and dry. The fields want rain, the farmers say.

But long as it´s dry work continues hard and physical, at least for Brian, and often for me as well. The big roof job is done, and we moved on to installing a chimney in the air shaft over our bodega cave. It´s a bigger chore than we´d imagined: pick-axing, shoveling, chopping, hauling dirt and timbers out, and hauling in concrete beams, wire, broken tiles, and tons of concrete both dry and wet. All of it up and over a 35 percent grade. Brian decided this chimney is to be his Masterpiece, his Moratinos Memorial for the next 100 years. The workbench in the garage is littered with notebook paper, scribbled-over with quadratic equations and curious diagrams. (Maybe it´s a chimney. Maybe it´s an ancient formula... this region long ago was known for its alchemists. Maybe Brian just LOOKS like a Pittsburgh yinzer.)

Estebanito is now involved as well. He spent a long Saturday morning with us, mixing cement and hauling us around in his front-end loader. I don´t think he knew what he was in for. I don´t think he approves of me pitching gravel and hauling hods. (I should be home butchering lambs, perhaps?)

The fun continues tomorrow morning.

How dull this blog must be... like watching cement dry, eh? There has been much in between to keep things lively, as somehow the Pilgrim Come Hither Vibe has been in full oscillation through the week. We had a full house last night, with four fine ladies from Ireland, South Africa, the Alpujarras, and Ottawa rolling in late from a town far down the trail. The Canadian, who is also a Shaman, took us all out to the labyrinth for a Harvest Moon celebration. It was fun, but chilly.

It´s getting chilly around here at night. Enough to make an owl screech.
Enough, apparently, to make Max the Rooster feel like a real man too. This morning he made a running jump at the Irish peregrina, which made her shriek like a banshee, which scared the bejeezus out of me.

Blodwyn the chicken is unwell, and the medicine and handling she´s getting these days is bringing her back to her old pet-chicken ways. When we leave the back door open she pushes through the hanging screen and struts down the hallway to the dog-food supply, or sometimes right through the front door and into the patio. Yesterday I came into the kitchen and saw her settling into Paddy´s favorite corner of the sofa.

Blod´s sick. She´s looking for comfort in company. She asked me today to pick her up and hold her, so I did. The dogs gave me the fish-eye.

The dogs are glorying in all the pilgrim traffic -- so many scratches on the head, backpacks to sniff, scraps to gobble, and boots to hide in the barn. Una and Murph have caught many mice in the past few days. Or Murphy does, anyway. He brings them still living to Una, who deals them the coup de grace.

Paddy is in a dark humor. He watches live horse races online in the afternoon, drinks wine, and grumbles about the meaninglessness of it all. His eyes and hands and bad leg all bother him, and he does not watch us sling cement.

But the Shaman´s Indian Head Massage did make his sore shoulder better, he says. The rest of him is hopeless, he is sure of it. Still, tomorrow he is off to see David, the local masajista who helped me so much when I had tendinitis.

Ayerveda. Reiki. Chiropractic. Massage. Weird stuff, for a weird time.

It works for me.


Laura said...

I'd forgotten about Blodwyn the chicken! Hopefully she will feel better soon...hasn't she had low times before? What is the life expectancy of a chicken (if it doesn't end up on a plate?)

Sorry to hear that Paddy is low. Would never guess it from his cheerful Facebook comments. :)
Seems to be going around - Sam is tired of it all and wants to leave. I thought he meant the USA, but he means the earth!

Anonymous said...

Your blog can't be that dull, 1645 entries on google search thismorning. Or maybe in a time of crises on all the newscasts, it's just nice to hang out vicariously in Moratinos for a while! sounds damnd good to me.

Anonymous said...

what on earth is a hud?

Love your blog, and love to hear more about cement drying! Really. Your casa on the meseta is every bit as good as reading the story of Frances' renos in Under the Tuscan Sun. Love hearing about your fixing up the house (how is the hen house??), village life, and pilgrim (-age) stories. Every day I look to see if you've posted... said...

wow, lots of questions!
> Chickens live to about six years. Most of them stop laying eggs about halfway, and are not allowed to live much beyond that. They end up in your butcher´s cooler, never mind all the egg-laying hormones and antibiotics many of them are force-fed over the years...)

A "hod" is a thing you haul cement in. Here it is a small bucket made of thick rubber material.

Please have Frances Reno´s literary agent contact me.

Kiwi Nomad 2008 said...

Tell Paddy I gratefully remember the eggs he boiled for me for breakfast/ to take on the trail. I don't know if they came from Blodwyn or not, but they 'hit the spot'.

Anonymous said...

Nothing like a trip to Belgium to cure the blues!

And, we got the website working.

See you soon!


Rocknroll said...

Nice to hear news from yours Moratinos' tranquilitty life. Tomorrow it will be two months since I've coming back home from the French Camino and it seems like I've been yesterday on the way...
I'm sorry I ain't passing by to you. It was so soon in the morning, when I've arrived to Moratinos, because we've spent the night before in Terradillos de los Templarios. Maybe, next time...:)

I'm following your blog now, so, keep in touch.

All the best,

claire bangasser said...

When I was a child, we used to have a pet hen named Bécassine. She would hop up the stairs and join us for breakfast. She answered when called.

I like reiki. I learned it. Dreamed of being a healer. I have given a reiki to a few people...

Sorry to hear about Patrick's pains. I have a foot talking to me and wonder whether it will accept to walk the Camino once again... Hopefully my Chinese doctor acupuncturist will do the trick, the way your masajista will help P.

As I read about your roof, I think about ours, which also needs doing.

Once finished, your Bodega will be sensational. With your labyrinth, The Peaceable is going to make an even more incredible stop on the way.

Brett said...

Love the weaving of ideas, and how the little things take on big meaning.

Just great: "...somehow the Pilgrim Come Hither Vibe has been in full oscillation through the week."

Reading along,