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Friday, 22 July 2011



There was some respite from the heat today. When I got up at a quarter to six it  was down to 62, and there was a fair breeze. Later it got up to the low 90s again, but in the early evening the sky darkened, the thunder rumbled and we had a sprinkling of rain, barely enough to settle the dust. But just that brief hour of fresher air gave me the energy I’d been lacking all afternoon.



I’ve been trying yet again to breathe life into the long piece I am writing. It’s not easy. I think the problem is that I’m trying to write from my journal or blog – and that can be fatal to spontaneity. It’s like having a ball and chain attached to your ankle. So, rather than rely on the written record of what I’ve done so far, I’m going for broke – just writing off the top of my head, trusting myself to remember the important things. Later on I can refer to the journals for details, if I need to.

I don’t think most people realise just how tiring creative effort can be. I experience something akin to actual physical pain after I’ve written for any length of time, especially if it has an emotional content, or if it’s very important to me - or indeed if it’s going well. So this afternoon, as I took a break in the reclining chair, I nodded off for over an hour. Now, of course, eleven at night, I’m wide awake, listening to the  insects pinging off the lights, or smacking into the screens. Earlier I sat outside and lit a fire, drank a cold beer and listened as the coyotes started up their yipping and yowling. But it was all a bit half-hearted: I got the impression they were struggling to get a quorum.

I plucked up my courage this evening and ventured into my vegetable garden. I didn’t really want to be in there, seeing the wasteland that the grasshoppers have created this week, but there were a few green beans - my first and, I dare say, last – which I ate, cold, sliced tomato. Very tasty, and all the more poignant for that.

This needs to be short. I have to be up early. The NRCS guy is coming at nine to survey the northern half of the ranch, and I’ll be joining him once more.

When this evening’s shower passed away to the east there was a beautiful double rainbow. I must have taken a dozen pictures, but none of them got anywhere near representing it. This is the closest.