Harvest as a word sounds like a superlative – finest, fullest, harvest. This year it has been fine and full indeed, as this season’s dry sunny days have pulled the brussels sprouts, beets, broccoli and beans out of the rich soil of Julia’s old garden. It’s our first year for limas and brussies, these latter grow so oddly, like bubonic tumours filling the armpits of the cabbagy fronds.

Annie has worked hard to make the small plot maximally productive, and September’s full moon is a time of reward. If you don’t have zucchinis (courgettes) lying around your counter these days, that is almost definitive of not having any friends.

Yesterday it was time to get the carrots out before they get woody. Annie has a new long spatular tool that avoids them breaking off, and we ended up with a mounded basket of very long carrots. We lugged it to the sink, dumped them in, and swirled them like a washing machine. The water turned opaque brown with the soil, but up from it came each orange carrot, some with strange mandrake shapes, ready for the vegetable brush treatment and into the freezer bags.

With Misty over at the table doing her college homework, and the music alternating between Jack Johnson’s jazzy lilt, Jerry Douglas’s dobro behind Alison, and some style brisée lute, one could almost imagine a calm domestic scene, so I let myself bathe in that feeling for the hour or so it takes to turn every carrot clean, shiny, and in the bag. Nothing like your own grown food.

But peace is short-lived these days. Because one of those bags, plus some apples, will come with me to see my guts through Boston for a harvest of another sort. After 30 years in the making, we (I guess I mean the heirs of Ida Rolf) are having the first Fascial Research Conference down in Boston this week, and I am totally nervous about it. Though I started this project with Marilyn Beech of IASI, it was soon out of our hands and now I am a small potato in a very large field that includes too many PhD’s to count, as well as osteopaths and docs galore. I have been retained on one panel, and I am well out of my depth.

My book is full of 5-syllable words, but really I am just a poet of the scientific metaphor, and the actual rigors, by-laws, and vocabulary of science are quite beyond me. I will be expected to be up to date on the research and the people doing it, but what with various domestic crises in the business and in the family, I am winging it once again. I speak so often in front of people, few can credit that I get stage fright almost to the point of being sick most times beforehand, but this one is worse than usual.

But the harvest of the ideas has me very excited – seeds planted so long ago by Ida, so long in the growing through drought and wind, and now so full and ripe in the fruition.  With Vleeming, Lee, Huijing, Khalsa, Ingber, Langevin, Gracovetsky, Grinnell. Willard, Hinz, and Gabbiani, it is a worldwide fusion cuisine of fascial research, so we’ll see what further seeds it plants (or manure it makes, just as likely).


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