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Upstate Autumn

It is definitely time to rename and redirect this blog (The Yale Chapter is so over), but for now I'll keep typing here, as I miss recording my little thoughts.  Our time at Fort Drum has so far been ideal - the autumn leaves are creating enormous walls of the brightest colors, and deer, rabbits, huge porcupines, Canadian geese, and flocks of big wild turkeys scurry around on the forest floor.  The weather has stayed at a constant 68-73 degrees for the past month.  People love to complain about being stationed here, but I honestly don't think there is a lovelier place in the country at this particular time of year.

The move from Yale to an Army base has been an enormous change.  When I look out the window when I sit at my desk, I now see a field full of MRAPs - mine-resistant ambush protected vehicles - and a line of trees beyond.  I am surrounded by men in uniform everywhere I go, which I found to be quite intimidating for the first week or two.  The only time I've seen images of men in head-to-toe camouflage have been photos from warzones, so I have subconsciously always associated the picture with violence.  It seems like there should be some kind of protocol for me to follow, but as a civilian spouse there aren't any rules for me (except don't kiss your spouse when you're out and about and he's in uniform).  It took quite some time to shuffle through all the paperwork needed to enroll me as Greer's official "dependent," but now I have my very own ID card so I can shop at the pX and the commissary, I can use the gyms, and I can go on and off post without any questions.  It makes me feel pretty cool.

Greer's job is so interesting as he prepares for the deployment, and I love hearing his stories in the evenings. Our days are organized around bugle calls - reveille in the morning, a jaunty little end-of-work call at 5:00 PM, and taps at ten.  I actually really like it.  Greer has PT at 7:00 every morning, comes home around 8:30, and then we have an hour for a leisurely breakfast together before he starts work at 9:30.  He's home at noon for lunch every day, and then back for dinner at five on the dot - the lovely thing about working for the government.

As for me, I've been exploring the local area quite a bit, especially all the trails through the forests on post.  There is a lovely area around a big pond that I've gotten to know quite well.  I venture into Watertown a few times a week, but I am quite content to stay home, conduct experiments in the kitchen, read a lot, and savor writing all the thank-you notes for our wedding gifts.

Lately I am learning how to make bread, which is so much fun and quite satisfying.  My one friend here, a lovely new mother named Eva, had me over yesterday to give me a tutorial.  I've become a cookie pro, and I'm pretty proud of all the good meals I've been able to pull together for Greer and me.  I love to spend time in the kitchen, and I get to indulge that hobby to my heart's content due to the fact that Greer is ravenously hungry at least three times every day.

I had no idea what it would be like for me to adjust to such a slow pace, but I could not be happier here.  It's a wonderful little newlywed chapter, and I know we'll cherish these memories forever.


  1. Love the update, Catherine! Have a wonderful time in the kitchen; these are my favorites lately: & I've heard that this book is a dream for budding bakers, but have not delved into it myself: Flour Water Salt Yeast (
    Happy fall, friend!

  2. You have taken me right there beside you to the windows of your little apartment with autumn light, the smell of baking, and the smell of books.


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