A Slower Morning

  December 2008 »
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Mark was up first. He scrounged around quietly for the leftover bread from the night before. He also went after a piece of cheese from the cellar, if the hole in the floor could be called that. It was more like a shallow well that didn't go all the way down to the water table. Because only a single rope through a pulley on the ceiling was used to raise and lower the platform with the food on it, Mark had to shift a couple items to keep it somewhat balanced before returning it to the inky darkness below. Thankfully both moons were up and they provided enough light to see what he was doing.

The quiet figure slipped out the door so that he could gaze at the stars while he ate his breakfast. A moderate breeze met him at the door and a few insects made their chirps in the distance. The stars in the sky were still strange and he was not yet ready to call them friends, as he did to the ones back home. He suspected that would come in time. Their steady existence was a comfort.

Mark's mind thought back to what his dad had said about wind fronts. Somebody from the Netherlands* had come to the realization that if you put your back to the wind, the low pressure area was going to be on your left. Of course, that was assuming that they were in the "northern hemisphere" of this world. Whether it was or not, he knew the area well enough after a couple weeks to know that the morning's wind wasn't being caused by the lake. The hills that were in the area were too short to cause the wind also. That probably meant rain would be coming later, and several patches of stars were already becoming obscured by clouds.

He wished that he could consult his dad about a few of the things going on. Instead of dwelling on that, Mark ran through his mental checklist several times to ensure that they had packed the items they needed into the wagon the night before. The only possible addition was a tarp to keep the wood and coal dry. Or would it be better to have the wood wet when the hot iron was applied to it?

Mark mused for a few moments before David joined him. The other hadn't slept too much longer than he had. Mark had grabbed enough food to share, but saw that David held a couple items from the fruit basket.

"I had grabbed enough bread and cheese for you. Did you want any?"

"Not yet, can we save them for a couple hours?"

"Let's finish off the cheese now."

"Alright."

While David finished eating, Mark went to hook up the wagon. The animal they were using was one that they were both unfamiliar with and Mark wondered if it was an ox. He had never been around such a creature before coming to this area.

Soon they were ready to leave. They would probably be in town before the blacksmith was ready to begin his day, but that was alright. It was nice to have a leisurely morning.

The walk into town passed uneventfully and Mark was happy to have the road almost entirely to himself as he led the animal from the front. David took the opportunity to sit on the bench across the front of the wagon and let his mind wander. A lot had happened in just a few days. For that matter, even more had happened in the preceding month. It was nice to give his head a chance to sort itself out while he was awake.

* The Dutch person who discovered that in the northern hemisphere, the low pressure area is on your left when your back is to the wind was Buys-Ballot.

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