Posted by: facetothewind | July 22, 2012

Back home on the ranch

Back in Ukiah now at Grandview Ranch (the name I’ve given to Charlie & Lark’s place). I made the 3 hour drive from the coast over the mountains on a very beautiful but tedious road where you can hardly ever exceed 30 mph because of the curves. If only I were a crow, it would be a half hour trip. It was so nice to be back in the oak woodlands where the hills are fuzzy golden brown, the sun is searing. At the peak of the mountain I had to take off 3 layers of wool and change into shorts and a tank top. Digging deep into my luggage for my shorts, it was is if it had been placed in the freezer. Back in Ukiah brought a smile to my face and warmed my body. As soon as I closed the gate at C&L’s place I plunged into the pool, then the hot tub, still trying to thaw out from a week in the fog. I’m not sure how or why people live on the coast, constantly hammered with wind and hardly ever seeing the sun. Guess I’m more of a lizard than a banana slug…a cactus instead of a Brussels sprout.

After dinner I sat on the edge of the hill beneath an ancient oak tree watching the moon set behind the coastal range that keeps that fog at a comfortable distance. The air was still and the crickets began to sing as the cool of the evening overtook the heat of the day. I’m in heaven.

Another reason it’s heaven: the figs and plums are just falling off the trees. We rescue them before the birds get them. Charlie is making a fresh plum reduction sauce for future use and I’m making baked figs with goat cheese. Truly delicious and complex flavors. Just goat cheese and figs and a little salt and a half hour in the SunOven. Mmm mmm mmm…

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