Monday, March 26, 2007

Musings on a Sunday night

So we’re already headed back to the city after a lovely but all too brief weekend in Milanville. I’ll admit that as we arrived on a grey Friday afternoon and saw snow still on the ground, my heart sank a little – I’m so over winter at this point that I couldn’t bear another wintry weekend – but I needn’t have worried. Apart from a blip yesterday afternoon, the weather was gorgeous. This afternoon we had the doors and windows open and when I went for my walk, streams and creeks gushed around me, swollen by the fast-melting snow. The best bit was when I spotted several vigorous clumps of snowdrops peeking through the snow in the back garden. I took Dot over to investigate; she cheerfully shoved a handful in her mouth.

As I had to take the compost out to the compost bin this afternoon, I decided to check on its worm-readiness. To my delight, after months of happening on the same rock-solid pile of broccoli stalks, carrot peelings and lemon rinds with a bunch of nappies on top of them, the contents of the bin were now quite unrecognizable and from the smell of things were all composting nicely. As this is my first ever compost heap I became far more excited than a pile of mouldy vegetable scraps and soggy nappies probably warranted but was also a bit taken aback by the whiffiness of it all. I mean, it smelled like putrifying vegetables. I’m sure when I read the instructions it said this wouldn’t be the case. And it isn’t even remotely hot yet. I think I better do some further research pronto. I was having trouble picturing myself handling the worms as it was, but handling them and a load of really smelly mushy stuff? I hope I’m man enough for the task, as the hubby made it quite clear from the outset that the compost heap, especially the nappies bit, was my affair. I’m sure I’ll figure it out; feel free to post advice.

Speaking of smells, and inspired by a) No Impact Man (who if you live in NYC has been hard to avoid of late, which I view as a good thing) and b) accidentally leaving our deodorant in Brooklyn, I decided to give the home remedy baking-soda-as-deodorant a go today. I haven’t got my kit off yet for a proper inspection, but I don’t think I smell particularly worse than usual and the friends who came for Sunday lunch didn’t seem to notice anything untoward (either that or they’re very polite). Maybe I’ll continue the experiment this week and see how it goes. However, this is all very well in March, but I cannot imagine myself surviving a sticky Manhattan summer without my Lady Mitchum. We’ll see.

So, back to Brooklyn we go (we’re carpooling at least to minimize the gas guzzling). It has been lovely to be back upstate, if a bit weird being an outsider somewhere you’re used to being an insider, and being part-time in a house you got used to being in full-time (the desk looked sad and empty without the hubby's office paraphernalia all over it). But equally, it wasn't awful to leave. No sunday-night blues as yet.

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At 2:14 PM , Blogger damian said...

does this help?

At 8:39 AM , Anonymous Jay said...

It sounds like your compost pile needs more carbon, or has too much nitrogen, or possibly is too wet, all of which can be helped by stirring in dried leaves.

Good Luck!

Below are a few good links on troubleshooting your compost pile:


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