We live in a peaceful neighborhood with lots of space and trees around. The streets don’t go through and there’s nothing much to see except houses, so there’s not much traffic. When the windows are open you can hear the occasional dog or lawn mower, sometimes distant traffic, but it’s quiet. That all changes in the early morning when the local golf club grooms its course. And the bit closest to our house, the putting green, is groomed by four leaf blowers (yes four!) every summer morning from 5:45 – 6:00 am. Monday through Sunday. And it wakes me up every morning.
Staffer Sara Lewis getting her headstand on
For the first few days I lay in bed trying to imagine what kind of machine could possibly make so much noise. Then one morning I raced down the hill in my pajamas to find out. The guys were amazingly affable but unmovable. Their schedule was set in stone, apparently. I was not happy and not especially gracious, I’m embarrassed to say.
After a couple of weeks lying awake during the beautiful early summer mornings I realized that my favorite yoga studio offers classes weekday mornings at 6 am. If I were to drag myself off to those classes I would never even hear the dreaded leaf blowers. Well, except for Saturday and Sunday. But maybe I’d be calmer about it after all that yoga and being used to rising early.
So off I went. I set my alarm for 5:30, tumbled out of bed, pulled on my yoga clothes, brushed my teeth, splashed my face with water, and was settled on my mat by 5:50 am.
At first it was hard. This was no evening relaxation class. This was the type-A ‘we get up at 5:30 to do yoga’ slightly competitive class. In fact I might have stopped going except that I knew that if I were still in bed at 5:45 I’d be fuming at innocent (but obnoxious) leaf blowers. So I kept with it. And I got stronger. And also calmer. All the wonderful gifts of a good yoga class were changing my days in the best possible way.
One day recently, on my way home in the morning, I had a fleeting moment of gratitude for the leaf blowers. My whole being had changed as a result of their morning schedule. Still, I’d be happy if they could knock it off on Saturday and Sunday.
Image via Pinterest
You’ll need a gallon of organic apple juice and a good sized knob of ginger (I use one about half the size of my hand). Scrub the ginger, slice it into chunks, and put it into a large non-reactive (stainless steel or enameled cast iron rather than aluminum) pot. Bring it to a low simmer and let it cook for an hour or so until it’s well flavored and somewhat reduced. Strain out the ginger (it can get too spicy if the ginger remains), pour the juice into glass jars, and refrigerate. The apple ginger concentrate will keep for 3 days or so in the refrigerator. Reheat cup by cup as needed, or mix with bubbly water for a refreshing cold drink. Cinnamon is also a lovely addition.
What do you crave when the weather turns?