Nothing Like

There’s nothing like the feeling of your skin after a long day of farming in the hot sun. Hours later, getting ready for bed, the radiant warmth glows through the cracks in the accumulated outer layer of dust and grime. It’s a slow burn; different altogether from that of a day on the beach, or a boat. It’s nice, and it only costs you a long day of farming in the hot sun.

There’s nothing like working with another guy who knows what the fuck he’s doing, and with whom you’re in sync. Ideas flow; rhythms of movement synchronize, and the hours melt as the remaining task becomes effortless. It’s like making music, or conversing, only in three dimensions with many instruments.

There’s nothing like seeing your baby from a distance. A tiny ball of unfettered joy among the big people — breaking away from the pack at the surprising rate of tiny legs plus boundless enthusiasm. The farm becomes so big in the light of one so small, and though you can’t see her face, you know that she sees you too. You just know.

There’s nothing like a campfire. The glory of a grilled meal of bratwurst, hot dog, and ribs. Leaning back in your lawn chair, basking in the glow of a hard day and an easy evening; grateful for the crazy bastard who cooked your brat. Looking at your work compatriots — leaning back tiredly and contentedly in their respective lawn chairs — seeing yourself and knowing that, at this moment at least, you’re not alone.

There’s nothing like the moment when you finish broadforking and tarping a plot. You gather your tools and put them away, grateful for the efforts of the guy you’ve spent the last three hours working beside and grateful that, no matter what happens from now on, that plot is good to go. That job is done.

There’s nothing like the way the sun sets upon the land you call your own. It’s nothing less than spiritual, if you give it the time. And if you give it the time – even just a little – you’ve no choice but be taken by your absolute powerlessness over the land and the sun. Knowing it could never really be yours, you love it all the more, simply for letting you be around.

There’s nothing like a hand-rolled smoke. Just because. Because you’re out in the woods, working on a fence. Because it feels right, and it’s just great to blow smoke. Because Logan Brice rolled it. Because I’m a man, goddammit. But mostly just because.

There’s nothing like rocking your baby to sleep. The moment of surrender when her eyelids flutter and eyes begin to roll back. It’s been a long day of playing in the dirt, fires, and puppy dogs, and the only thing in the world more tired than her is you. But it’s only a moment, and she snaps back to ornery consciousness – throwing her head back and fighting the veil of sleep with every bit of might in her tiny body. Frustrated through you may be, you can’t help but empathize. This is, after all, the world of playing in the soil, fires, and puppy dogs. And neither of us knows what the other world will be.