But before we begin, I picked my first tomato!!
But anyway, back to business.
My Uncle was down in the breakfast room at eight. Rosalind had opened the curtains and set the table. I walked in just as my Uncle sat down. Some of the mist was still clung to me.
My Uncle was the one who had gotten me into Space exploration. And even though we had communicated regularly, I hadn’t seen him in years.
There he was, sitting in his blue robe, pouring himself a cup of coffee, and scratching his chin covered with a scruffy grey beard.
“You’re up early,” he greeted me, looking up. He took a sip of his coffee, and I pulled out one of the Victorian chairs at the table.
“I like a morning walk,” I said. I took the coffee pot. “This isn’t decaf, is it?”
My Uncle shook his head. He put down his cup. He had a certain charm and pride in his face. I put the coffee pot down.
“I had a cup this morning and felt quite a zing.”
He had, and still was, working with the government for the space program.
“When did you come in last night?” he asked. I shrugged my shoulders.
“Two,” I answered. “I think.”
My Uncle gave a slightly surprised raise of his eyebrows.
“There was traffic everywhere and the roads were bad,” I explained. He buttered himself a piece of bread. “Thanks for getting me a flight by the way.”
He pursed his lips and shook his head.
“No need to thank me,” he said. “It’s the only thing I get out of working with those idiotic airplanes. We’re going to have a war between the airplanes and shuttles,” he explained with the butter knife.
“Well, I’ll hear about it months later when the news finally gets to the moon,” I said.
“That’s not true,” he contradicted. “You got direct radio contact up there. Sometimes it’s better than what we get down here.”
I gave a soft laugh.
“Not when you have my job,” I returned. “Down in the craters they give us minimalist equipment. And we get down under the rock the magnetic core throws off all our communication. We do get static though. That can be quite interesting sometimes.”
Both of us snickered, and then Rosalind came in and put down a mug of coffee in front me. I looked up at her.
“Decaf,” she said.
“Even the walls have ears,” I smiled. She raised her eyebrow and retired to the kitchen again.
There was a moment of silence between us when the door closed. I looked down as my coffee and put in some sugar. I might as well. I heard Uncle’s plate clinking. I looked up at the window.
I couldn’t see the moor from there.
“Rosalind told me you took a walk this morning,” Uncle said, quite suddenly.
“Ah…..yes,” I answered.
“My gardens have been rather untended of late,” he said. As I had noticed. “I wouldn’t go too deep in them. I don’t know what kind of plants have tried to infiltrate them.”
“Don’t worry, if anything seems like it wants to bite me I’ll stay away,” I answered, taking a sip of coffee. Uncle smiled, but it was a forced one.
“But I do really mean it,” he returned. “Those woods are thick, and we ‘ve got a lot of crows hanging around too.”
I nodded. I thought of mentioning the one I saw last night. But I decided not to. And he changed the subject anyway.
“I’m having a dinner tonight,” he said. He sat back, finished with his breakfast. “Your cousin Myra is coming, and I invited some friends from corporate. They’ll be interested in hearing about the New Settlement.”
“And I came here so I could get away for a little while,” I returned.