I am desperately in need of a summer project.  I need something to occupy my crazy mind during months of confinement because of heat.  I live in the desert, in the middle of a huge metropolis, surrounded by concrete and all forms of heat producing structures, and I have lived here almost fifty years.  I have heat anxiety and each summer I am challenged to find a way to live with it.  I need a project.  

I look through my dining room window and see the tiny cast iron stove that has been sitting on my patio for the past six months.  I have no idea where it came from though my daughter, who was its last keeper, heard that I had bought it years ago.  I don’t remember buying this stove even though you would think I would remember purchasing several hundred pounds of cast iron.  I don’t know how much it cost.  I last remember it sitting on my daughter’s patio in the heat, the rain, the rare snowfall, and all other forms of desert weather while fulfilling its use as an ashtray holder.  The stove went into storage for several years and is now, with it’s random, unknown pieces, sitting before me and summer is here.

I will begin my project as I always do when confronted by cast iron or any other physical manifestation.  I will begin by thinking of where to start, how much work and money I am willing to invest, and how much time I have to commit to such a project.  I will start with one step at a time.  I don’t have to do it all at once.  I have learned from life experiences to take it one day at a time.  This project may take a summer or even the rest of my life and that’s ok.  I always remember- it’s about the journey not the destination and the journey begins with a single step and, in this case, a trip to my storeroom for a wire brush, dust mask, rags, and sandpaper.