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Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Saturday we went down to Ellen's big old barn to help with seed potatoes. This barn has the proportions and dignity of a cathedral, striped inside with the diffuse cloudy afternoon light coming through the spaces between the timbers along the ends.

Our worktable was a flatbed trailer painted along the end with the legend "Soggy Bottom Boys"--presumbably a less-than-successful bluegrass group forced to sell. Or maybe a highly successful group moving up to fancier stuff. We--Ellen, her sister, their three little girls, Tammy, Tom, George, and I-- cut up 800 pounds of seed potatoes--Kennebecs, Pontiacs and Cobblers--and spread them out in the barn.

Each piece has at least one "eye", which will be the start of a new potato plant.

Not a bad way to spend a bit of Saturday afternoon: funny (commentary on wit, not peculiarity) people, an old white boxer (dog not shorts) and a little bulldog underfoot, good clean dirt, a red tractor--no, TWO red tractors--in a green field, kids falling in the creek, and seed potatoes ready to plant at the end of it (day not creek).

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