Around that time many things had become unpleasant - a plague of flies hatching in the apartment, neighbors with bedbugs, our own bed and belongings sprayed with toxic chemicals, unpayable bills, and a windstorm that blew bits of broken glass and dirt into our windows and across our bed and furniture (as I ran to close one creaky window against the swirl of grey gravel, a bit of glass flew into my pupil and stuck like a tiny stiletto. No flushing with water would remove the dagger - only Jared with a cotton swab could finally loosen it). What else can I say - I am not a city kid.
We had decided to try living in the Catskills - just to get away from New York. Of course, that did not work. Perhaps if we had entered the forest around the grey house, we would have seen the place in color. We may not have been discouraged by the lack of running water, the grey meadow that had not yet borne blackberries, dewberries and huckleberries.
We didn't know the gnarled grey trunks of Amelanchier and hawthorn would light up with white flowers that fade briefly and return as fiery red fruits. The lady tresses orchids had not yet unwound our tired spirits from a world too attuned to the man-touched. All we could see was the tired, grey house, sinking on its stilts.