In the midst of this—the cold, the paid and unpaid work, the endless effort of raising two children—I found myself daydreaming about composting. A strange thing to daydream about, I concede. I recall as a child watching my father composting in our backyard, the steam rising from the black beds of soon-to-be-soil; he could stay out there for hours with the wheelbarrow and spade, processing his compost from one "station" to another. I remember walking back from high school, nearing home, and knowing absolutely that my Dad was out back, turning the decomposing matter. You could smell it a block away. We burned everything that could be burned in the wood stoves; took the plastic, metal and glass to the dump oursleves; and composted everything else.
And now here I am in Manhattan, daydreaming of taking the leftovers of our meals and making them into soil. With maybe a few chickens pecking around. And what's this, tears welling in my eyes? Oy Vey!