Sleep is gathered hard in my eyes and hangs there. It’s early still, but maybe not early enough if I’m going to do this right. Last night I should have gathered the last of the paperwork to file our taxes or spent time working on our budget. I’m of the opinion that a trustworthy budget is one of the keys to freeing ourselves from the constraints and instabilities of a waning society. But I was outside instead—the sun stayed above Mount Tabor until close to 7:30—building a chicken run. The thing about getting this place started (organizing the garage with clean, efficient tools; having seeds started under a warm light by late winter; covering the garden beds with poultry wire so the neighbor cats don’t shit in the radish rows; turning the cover crop under early on so that it can properly decompose beneath the surface; getting a sturdy chicken run established before we take on the raising of a few pullets) is that it seems there’s always something else to finish off first, unlimited chores that need doing before we can actually begin doing what it is we want to be doing. Lingering, frustrating tasks—the type of work you must force yourself to slog through with optimism that a day will soon dawn in which you have what you need in its rightful place, ready for you to use with earnest, honest labor. You know as well as I, though, that that day is merely a wavy and illusory ghost on the road in front of you. And that day is not today. This day is real. It is hard and true beneath you.