All At Once
"How do you like to be cheered for?" I asked Will Thornton after lunch.
"It depends what I'm doing," he answered. "If I'm washing dishes, I want it as weird as possible. Make me laugh. If I'm running a long race, words of affirmation. If I'm playing the last point in a big game, just scream!"
Then we embarked on the last winter squash pick up for the crew, people and tractors and wagons. Big wooden bins on the wagons. A crew seven strong - one driver and three pairs of people - three to throw the squash up from the field and three to catch them and fill the bins. In the squash, the people riding the wagon, catching the squash and placing them in the bins, have the biggest picture view. The people catching can see the field, from above, and help direct the throwers to any overlooked squash. The people catching can see how full the bins are and when it's time to move on to the next wagon. Most importantly, the people catching can see the "throwers "and the squash that they are throwing. And so an important job of the people catching is to cheer for the throwers. What you want for cheering when you're throwing squash is for the person catching to keep talking so you can know where they are, where their hands are to catch the squash. (The people catching, after all, are on the wagon which is being pulled behind a tractor - moving targets). All kinds of noises work. From a simple "yeah" to a song about cheese pumpkins, the people catching keep the noises coming, a sound beacon for squash trajectory when there's a lot going on at once.
And there's a lot going on at once, in and out of the squash field. Days and nights are equal lengths. Both at once. This warm spell means the late summer is still with us, even as fall has also arrived. Both at once. Tomatoes and cauliflower and winter squash. Here's what the squash harvest has to say to us in this big "all at once" time - keep talking. We can light each other's way. We hope you enjoy the harvest.
(for Dan, Karen, Abbe, Rebecca, Sunny and Ellen)