Archive | February, 2017

Unsafe at Any Speed

24 Feb

On Wednesday, The Squire and I worked out at the “Y”, and I came home without my keys. I not only don’t like to wear a coat (although Heaven knows I haven’t needed one this year!), but I don’t like to carry a purse, especially if I’m with my husband. So I carried my keys with the pass card for the gym, and put them on the shelf so I could exercise without knocking somebody out with them.

We got an email that evening saying they’d been found and turned in, so the dear man had to go up on Thursday morning and retrieve them.

Took a shower that night and after I’d rinsed the shampoo out of my hair I poured some conditioner into my palm and industriously rubbed it into – my face!

This morning the dog began barking at some unseen object outside, so I stepped onto the patio to see what had caught his attention.  I heard a noise that sounded for all the world as if a baby was crying.

“Oh great. It’s bad enough they bring us cats and dogs. Now they’ve left us a kid!

The worst of it was that I never skipped a beat. It was just the way things go around here. It turned out to  be an irate squirrel, sitting in back of the cat, who paid him no mind whatsoever, pitching a fit because he was hungry. I called Eddie into the house and tossed a handful of peanuts across the concrete.

The Trip to Pomona

15 Feb

A blog I follow, A Joyful Chaos, had a discussion about visiting California, and I mentioned the trip The Squire and I had made in 1983 to visit his brother. This is what happened.

Richard lived in San Diego, and I had some old friends and a cousin who lived in San Bernardino, so The Squire and I hopped a Greyhound and had Lawrence meet us at the station. When we arrived – nonstop trip on a bus, for Pete’s sake – my luggage had gone missing, so we had to wait while it was located.

Now, I don’t know what is about me that people tend to gravitate in my direction, but when we arrived at the bus depot a little Oriental gentleman threaded his way through a crowd of people to reach my side. “When is the next bus for Pomona?”

Well, he and I had arrived on the same Greyhound from San Diego, so I honestly had no more idea than he did, but “We aim to please, and all that stuff”.

“Look on the sign over there,” I said with a sweep on my arm. “It says that bus leaves at eleven.”

That wasn’t sufficient, so I told him to listen for the announcement. “The lady at the desk will call it out, and you’ll have plenty of time. They won’t leave without you.”

By this time, the crew had found my luggage, and the gentleman was getting more and more frantic. And so, the quiet, shy, introverted, little preacher’s kid kicked off her shoes, jumped on a bench, and hollered. “Is anybody here going to Pomona?”

A fellow came over to my perch and admitted he was. “Fine,” I said, hopping down. “Will you please see to it that Papa-San gets on the bus?”



13 Feb

Back in 2015 Blazer decided he had enough seniority around here to sleep in the living room recliner.  The Squire did not share that view, unfortunately.

Local Granddaughter brought down a big pet bed she had purchased for her two cats. They didn’t like it, but Blazer thought it was grand.

But – when the weather got nippy, he thought it would be nice to sleep in the recliner again, just to be up out of the drafts, y’understand. The Squire put a box on the chair. Blazer pouted.

Last night, The Squire settled into the recliner to read a book, and Blazer spent about an hour rubbing, jostling, and bumping the recliner, doing his level best to bother Poppa out of that chair.

Winter. I Almost Missed it…

10 Feb

… because I overslept.

Tuesday and Wednesday were warm enough, even overnight, that we were able to move the papyrus plant outside and leave it.  We really have to baby it all winter, because it must be kept above 55-F, but the past few weeks we’ve been putting it in the sunroom during the day, until this week when we were able to sit it out in the sun.

Wednesday night the temperature hurled itself downward, and it was barely 30º when we went to bed. I got up around 4AM and it was raining hard.  When I finally crawled out from under the covers for the day it was snowing and blowing. We got a monumental quarter inch of snow, which melted  almost before it hit the ground. By 10AM is was all gone. We had some ferocious winds – gusts up to 45 miles per hour. Anything not nailed down could be found in the next county.

Today it only reached 34° and was still breezy, but tomorrow and Sunday promise to be pushing 60 again.

Don’t like the weather? Stick around.

It’s Not What You Do…

8 Feb

…it’s when you do it.

Today has been one long dance of frustration. The Squire had to leave his car in the shop on Sunday night, which means he has to drive my Nissan.  He had called the shop before I woke up and was told his car will be ready tomorrow, and the catalytic converter will set us back about $1,500.

Yeah. That’s pretty much what he said when they told him. No, they are not made of gold; they are made of platinum.

Blazer managed to scrape about six inches of vinyl off his lead, exposing the wires inside to moisture and other damage. My husband had wrapped the bare part with duct tape and managed to cut himself pretty badly in the process. Not a happy camper.

He has our taxes ready to file, but we have not gotten the info we need from one of the IRA accounts. The first time The Squire called, they insisted we deal with them over Skype, which we don’t have. No idea what that was all about. He finally got through on the web page, and they won’t have the figures ready until February 24th – almost a month past the due date. Not a happy camper.

My car only had a quarter tank of gas, but, hey, I get  30 mpg, so what’s the big deal? After searching all over the house for my purse so he could use the gasoline discount card (look, twenty cents per gallon is worth taking, right?), he finally came into the bedroom to ask me where on earth I’d put my pocketbook.  He’d looked in the car – both seats and the trunk – and on the kitchen chair, with no luck. I thought maybe I’d dropped it in the bag with my knitting, but no joy there, either.

And then I remembered where it was – and it wasn’t good news.  In addition to not liking to wear a coat, I don’t like to carry my purse with me. I had gone to Costco yesterday with a friend, and put my VISA and my club card in my pants pocket and stuck the purse under some shopping bags in the back of her car.

And it was still there.

Things are really, really bad when The Squire calls me by name.




Running on Fumes

5 Feb

Living in the woods as we do, our leaf removal problem can be a beast. Years past we would hire a gang of likely teenaged boys from church, and they would spend most of a day here, driving around the property on the lawn tractor, piling leaves into the cart, dumping them, and repeat as necessary. Fuel them up on pizza, and we were all happy. (Nothing pleases an underage fellow more than being able to drive a tractor. It may not be a souped-up car, but it’ll do j-u-u-s-t fine.)

Unfortunately, all those young men are married or moved and The Squire is left to haul his own leaves. A few days ago he posted on FreeCycle that he was in need of a snowplow for the tractor, not to remove snow, but to push leaves.

Last night he got a response from a man not too far away who had one to give, so he hopped into the van and headed off. He called me from there to say the “check engine” light had come on and he was going to swing into the dealership for them to take a look, and then probably take it back on Monday. About ten minutes later he called again, sounding shaky, to say he couldn’t drive the car in “this condition” and please come get him.

The catalytic converter had gone flooey and was spewing unburned gasoline fumes into the passenger compartment. He had opened all the windows, but he was getting dizzy and had to get out once and walk around before he finished the drive. He considered himself lucky to have gotten to the shop alive.

Folding him up and shoe-horning him into the Nissan was a challenge!  He is not that much taller than I am, but he has longer legs and a shorter torso, so his knees were under his chin when he got into my car, and the seat was so low that to hear him tell it he was almost on the floor. He shoved to seat back as far as it would go, and when I got into the passenger side this morning I felt as if I was sitting in the trunk.

I have the feeling this trip to the dealer is going to take a large bite out of our tax refund.



1 Feb

“Cursed is the one who withholds justice from the alien, the fatherless or the widow.” Then all the people shall say, “Amen!” (Deuteronomy 27:19

Moving from one country to another involves a process which can take from five to ten years. Even for an American to move to Canada can take up to eight years!

Many of the people waiting in the wings, so to speak, are the translators and their families who risked their lives to aid our service personnel. In return for their aid and assistance they were promised safe passage to America. One of our soldiers remarked that these people had been checked and checked again, “You don’t let somebody ride in your Humvee if you aren’t sure who they are.” How much more “vetting” does Trump think we need?

Donald Trump could not possibly give ISIS a better gift than to break a promise which had been sealed in blood.

And let the people say, “Amen!”