Outside Papa Phil is giving a tour of his work shed, anticipating rice season with satisfaction and pride. He's got rules about how close we can stand to the fire and thinks everyone should have another hot dog, giving us ample opportunity to tease and test him like good daughters. And he loves it. When I get him good, he comes back with a dare to brave the river this year. Maybe next year, I concede.
Today the temperature has the sap frozen in the bags and our usual task of hauling it up the hill is cancelled. It is just cold enough to choose red wine over beer, and we pass the Tostitos with lime back and forth, useless stumps. As I cuddle with a friend to keep warm, good conversation and fresh air wash over us. What Holy Communion.
These photos were stolen maliciously from Maren's Facebook page. Thanks, Mars.