Friday, July 03, 2020

PS from yesterday

After trashing my garden in yesterday's post, I noticed this rose among the weeds along my front walk.  I planted five rose bushes in memory of my grandfather, who had a walk like mine to his front door.  Last year I thought they were all dead, but this morning  as I limped out to the sidewalk with my trash, I noticed two little roses peaking out from under the weeds..  I was delighted.  When I started to pull the weeds out around them, this blossom came with them, much to my chagrin. So I brought it in and gave it a special environment all its own.

Thursday, July 02, 2020

My Garden 2020 and a visit from the Police

Well, since I haven't been able to work outside, this is the sorry state of my front flower garden.  Everything tried to be beautiful, but it's pretty hard to compete with the weeds.  All the plants came up and did their thing, but the competition certainly ruined the overall effect.  I don't know if I will be able to do anything before Fall to rectify the situation.  I may have to just call it a failure for this year.  By next Spring, I hope I will be able to bring it all back to its former glory.

Yesterday I had a visit from the town manager (with police backup in case I needed to be subdued, I guess).  The reason was to tell me, as if I didn't know, that there are rats living in the abandoned garage behind my house.  Of course I was aware of them since they join the chickens for every meal.  It's true that they aren't particularly welcome additions to my menagerie, but I really didn't know how to handle the situation.  I would never kill any animal, not even a rat, but my live and let live attitude seems to have offended my neighbors.  I know that even those who love animals usually don't include rodents in their acceptance of nature sharing their property.

I rent this house from an extremely absentee and neglectful landlady.  This has always suited me perfectly since she requires nothing from me but a very small rent payment.  Neither does she take much interest in maintaining the property.  Until the roof had to be replaced last year I hadn't seen her for years.  The arrangement suits me perfectly.  She has no rules or regulations and I treat the place as if it were my own. Now, though, the police are holding her responsible for ridding the neighborhood of rodents.  I have no realistic objection to this, but apparently my neighbors and the long arm of the law expected  an argument from me.  Once they realized that I was fully cooperative and good-humored about the situation, a fairly good time was had by all.  I would have appreciated my neighbors confronting my landlord directly, or at least asking me to do it, but amazingly people seem to always expect trouble when they complain.  Since I was cheerful and cooperative, the situation was handled as cooperatively as could be expected.  I called the landlady (in California) and exterminators will be here shortly (so she says).  I apologized to the rats this morning, and warned them, but I'm afraid they are doomed.  It will certainly save me money on chicken feed.

Thursday, June 04, 2020

Chicken Woes

So, I have had my chickens in the shed off my kitchen all winter.  Since I have to use a walker now, the idea of fighting my way through snow to feed and water them was daunting.  Having them right on the other side of the kitchen door was very handy, but it was only a temporary measure.  I knew they would have to relocate as soon as the weather warmed up.  Now that it's June, and the snow has finally disappeared, I had to face reality.  I am already bored with the story of how I rebuilt the pen, complete with a roof of garden netting, so I will be brief.  I had help from an acquaintance who does gardening for summer people around town..........I could never have done it alone.  Right away I was short-tempered and unappreciative.  It's a wonder she didn't walk away in a huff. I am quite unpleasant when working with others.  Most of the time I left her alone, which I'm sure she appreciated.

When the pen was done we carried the girls one by one out to the back of the house.  In no time they figured out how to escape, so for several days I spent a lot of time limping after them at a snail's pace, not knowing how I would convince them to come home even if I caught up with them, which I did not.  It has been some time (I lost track of how much time) that chaos best describes my nightly routine.  One of the chickens has disappeared completely, having been some predator's dinner, I'm sure.  She was especially good at getting out, and I couldn't find a way to confine her.

Finally I seem to have the escape routes blocked, or so I think.  I have to ask myself why I have these birds, especially now that I can barely walk, even with a walker.  I have fallen flat on my face several times. I only know that I really love having them (and I don't even like eggs).  I love the purity of them, their unquestioning lives, their honesty.  They are just who they are.

I got a call from my surgeon's office that he is gong to resume some elective surgery and I will finally be able to get my hip replacement in the foreseeable future.  Although I worry a little about the covid virus, I am mostly happy that I may finally be able to walk again.  It's been almost a year since I was first scheduled to have it done.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Willy, now Winston

I can't remember how much I wrote about Willy and what happened when I got Elliot.  To get to the point, I ended up having to find a new home for him before he killed Elliot.  He went to live with a young man who was working on the roof of my house.  I went through the "tortures of the damned" for weeks after he left, worrying, imagining all kinds of horrible scenarios.  After a few months I adjusted, but never really relaxed about the situation despite many emails to and from his new owner.  Off and on my imagination went wild with terrible scenarios involving his being mistreated, neglected, unloved. 

In the year that has gone by, I have never really felt comfortable about giving him away, but I had to do it.  Lately I began to worry again.  All sorts of awful possibilities rolled through my head.  I thought about emailing his new owner, but was neurotically fearful that the news would be bad.  Then finally I did it.  At first I got no response from Kyle, the young man who took Willy.  My anxiety rose with every day to the point that I was convinced something terrible had happened.  I thought of nothing else.

Finally I got an email with this picture and two others showing Willy in his new environment.  This picture shows him with one of his adoptive big brothers.  There are no words to describe my joy and I still am thrilled every time I look at this and the other photos I got.  He has a life so much better than he ever had with me............dear Willy, whose name is now Winston, has the life every dog should have.