One of the great difficulties of life is trying to see beyond a bubble of self-regard and self-interest, though that may be an overly broad statement born of the (self-centered) assumption that most other people share my foibles. I spent the entire time I was cooking lunch composing the post I was going to write about the continuing warmth and the minor flooding that resulted last weekend. It was only when I actually sat down at my computer that I thought a second update about the weather in as many weeks might not be so interesting to my readership.
But I'm always thinking about it. Immediately, the weather plays a role in determining how happy or miserable I am when out doing chores. But that's only the start - a warm spring means the animals get back on pasture sooner, but it might also make the apples blossom too early, and if they're frosted off it can wipe out the whole crop. The new farrowing hoop might need end walls if this unseasonable February gives way to a nasty March. There's a laundry list of things to do once it warms up, but I can't decide which project to start when it might get frozen up in a few days. I'm jazzed about the weather, and even though it is probably the most stereotypical boring conversation topic, the final resort of people who must talk but can find nothing more compelling to discuss than the ambient temperature, such is my ego that I still secretly think if I could pop into the conversation long enough to make a brilliant comment about how the ground really didn't freeze too deep this year I might restore it to the primacy I imagine it had when basically everyone still had a farm or at least had grown up on one.
But I'll defer to my better judgement (or could it be a buried foundation of self-doubt that actually undergirds all of my self-satisfaction?) and refrain from ripping off a couple thousand words about how this really is a weird winter and how, if you really think about it, we had two of the coldest winters on record, immediately followed by two that were really mild, and how the warm weather is nice, but the mud is almost as bad as heavy snow, at least for the tractor. The problem is that if I don't go into any of that stuff I am left with nothing. Writing is absurd in that way - unless it is purely a matter of self-examination, like a diary that will be burned, it is necessarily a product of hubris. Even as I work on this I have two lengthy posts in the pipeline, one about how much I hate the term Alpha Male and another concerning labeling chicanery on small farms. Is there any reason to think people will find these more engaging than a report on how much rain fell on Sunday? Anyways, here's a video of what our stream looked like when it was all topped up with snowmelt.