Burn, Baby Burn
I am dogsitting for my parents who live, as the crow flies, just across the river. In a car, however, it takes ten minutes to drive a mile and half down the gravel to the paved highway, then a mile and a half downriver to the bridge, then another mile and a half back from the direction you came on a gravel road – this time on the opposite side of the river.
My parents live in the last house at the very top of the cove, bordering national forest lands. This is the house that they parent five teenagers in during the school year as a part of their work for the boarding school. The day is beautifully sunny but doesn’t break eighty; a perfect mountain mixture of summer. I have promised myself a hike but the reality is that I have 150 pages to read (having only read seven yesterday) and a story to revise. I work outside as a compromise, enamored with the walls of dense, fluffy green that careens down the cove on all sides.
I soak up the sun in the meadow, lounging topless on a towel and reading Tobias Wolff for hours on end. Foolishly, I don’t mind the time or the sun or the sunscreen, and by mid-afternoon my reading is done but I am almost sick from sunlight, my back a brilliant, shamefully glowing, pink.
A message on the phone back home indicates that barter plans for tomorrow have been cancelled and I feel like a glutton as another writing day has fallen into my lap. Discipline in the face of such glorious weather is difficult so I decide in advance that a “TO DO” list will be necessary in order to get enough done tomorrow.