The doings at Black Water Farm

Sorry all that I haven’t written. There hasn’t been much to say; politics continues its usual disgusting course.

We’ve been a bit in survivalist mode at BWF, with a lot of money going out.  The dishwasher, which has been dead for quite some time, began leaking water on the floor, which necessitated the dread repair call. The leak is fixed, but the dishwasher is indeed terminal. and may or may not be replaced. Then on Ash Wednesday, I dropped $1000 on the family vehicles (mostly Rusty’s).  Rusty’s computer is down, and maybe terminal, but she’s got money from elsewhere to fix it, we hope. I’d also dropped money, slightly earlier, on chore boots and a Henry Milker for her and a double keyboard stand for me.

The Henry was invented by a guy in Alaska, and it’s a wonderful piece of appropriate technology. It’s a single-teat milker made of a hypodermic syringe body, milk hose, a wide-mouth quart Mason jar, and a brake bleeder. The bleeder creates enough suction to keep the syringe stuck to the goat and to draw milk from the teat into the jar, which can then be capped with a normal lid if desired and stuck in the fridge. Precious seems happier with it than with Rusty’s hand (though still wanting to kick it away), it’s easier on Rusty’s arthritis, and the milk is cleaner…no more lost milk from her getting a hoof in the bucket. We seem to be getting more too, about 3 cups per milking. I got cross-trained in milking this morning; she’s been doing it all.

She finally had enough milk today to assay cheesemaking. She made mozzarella, a fussy recipe with a need to maintain precise temperatures for a long time. She used culture, which she had, instead of the citric acid recipe, as she didn’t have that. The mozzarella was a failure; what she ended up with was a sort of plain curd, tasty and nutritious enough. She made ricotta from the whey, which was good and much easier, though I think she oversalted it.,,,though that will be fine for lasagna. Meanwhile I did various honeydo jobs, paid bills, planted seeds for veggie starts (the bunching onions and sweet potatoes I had done earlier got to play in the greenhouse today.)Tonight while she was gone I tried oven-fried veggie chips (not a success) and canned 8 pints of zanahorias en escabeche (way too many carrots in the garden yet). I got the 2-keyboard rig up.  It’s not entirely satisfactory; they keyboards are too distant from each other (I know a way to rectify that) and the SY77 has ciphering Bb and C# around middle C. I don’t know yet whether repair will be cost-effective, or if I’m better off getting a cheap MIDI keyboard from craigslist or somewhere. But now I can play my Hauptwerk organs with both great and swell (no plans for pedals; an AGO pedalboard would take up too much real estate in this tiny office.). All in all, not bad for a day with a cold (aggravated by the jalapenos in the carrots).

So yes, we’re gearing up for productivity here. But on one level, it’s kind of pointless. If TSHTF, the same folks who have been mobbing state capitols will be after our stuff, because they “need” it. And some things just can’t be prepped for: witness the Japanese tsunami. And if those nukes blow, what will that do to the supply chain for so many things?



2 Responses to The doings at Black Water Farm

  1. John Venlet says:

    I would’ve thought the jalapenos would’ve helped with the cold, rather than aggravate it. You had a busy day, it sounds like.

  2. jeffreyquick says:

    Well, they probably did help, in an ultimate sense, but if your issue is a runny nose, vaporized capsaicin is more of the same.

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