Friday, January 12, 2018

Notes From The Canyon

Last week, the mornings were lovely with mist wrapped around the rocky hillsides on the other side of the canyon. 

As temperatures approached 70F, bees gathered every day around my water faucet. Lots more than these, because the ones on top of the pile got worried as I approached and were buzzing around me. 

Then on Monday, the first really good rain since last spring arrived. It was a gentle rain, nothing like they had up the coast with such tragic results. It's difficult to even imagine such destruction.

And this morning, the landscape disappeard into a thick fog. I had planned to go to the store, but decided to stay home and take it easy instead. Joyce and I went to Bakersfield yesterday. She drove, but I'm still so tired. I want to say, "ever so tired," as one would in England. Or the UK, I guess I should say. 

But I digress, I'm ever so tired, putting clean sheets on my bed, first one, well both actually, then sitting down to write a little here, then the pillow cases. It will get done. One good thing about retirement is time, one usually doesn't have to rush, one can take one's time. A little gets done here, a little there. Believe me, I don't always have such a good attitude. Not much patience here.....

But enough about me and the weather. We are doing OK here. We have started to walk again, just a little to build up my strength after the really bad cold I had for over a month. Everything seems to be so extreme these days, from the weather, to colds, certainly the very dangerous flu, and, of course, politics. I have a lot to say about the latter, we'll see how much longer I can keep my mouth shut, or my writing here in check without yet another outburst!!! It's been a while though, I've been pretty good, I think.

Samson's health seems to be the same. But now one set of his eyedrops can't be found anywhere. Last fall, no one had the NeoPolyDex, now it's the other kind. I understand our vet is trying to figure something out and I still have enough for another week or so. Maybe it will all work out, but I just don't understand how these thing can happen. 

The roof over the patio is working well for the dogs. Faith, the lab mix, does NOT like water. When I tell her she has webbed feet to swim with, like a duck, she responds: Hah, I thought that stuff was there so I could dig bigger and better holes! You know, like little spades! 

I must get her DNA done. I know there must be a terrier in there somewhere. Either Jack Russell or pitbull. Our vet sees a pitbull, but then he hasn't seen her jump. Straight up, like a bouncing ball, or, well, a Jack Russell terrier.

Have a nice weekend.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Celebrating Friendships Across The World

I met Jean from All Points of the Compass  through Majsan, a Swedish blogger friend, who told me about this wonderful video on youtube, called Wild Sweden, that Jean had posted. Majsan has since stopped blogging, but Jean and I have become friends. 

Rachael with Orion, the Great Horned owl, some years ago.

I sometimes write posts about my friend Rachael and the good things she does for animals. She has volunteered at many, if not most, of the animal rescues in the Los Angeles area, working with lions, tigers, and other big cats; birds of prey, and many other animals. I met her when we both worked at the donkey rescue, some eleven years ago now.  

Since I have have known Rachael, she has done so many kind things for animals. And when I know about it, I usually write about it. One time, in the dark, she searched a large shopping mall parking area for an injured hawk, not giving up until she found it. A couple of years ago, Rachael and another woman rescued several horses from a wildfire; and last spring, she and her boss drove down a road, while a wildfire was burning on one side of it, to help move animals from one rescue center, threatened by the fire, to a safe place at another rescue. Writing this makes me smile, because there was this squirrel she rescued, I just remembered, large and small makes no difference. Knowing Rachael has empowered me to remove spiders from my bathtub and put them outside instead of flushing them down the drain.

Jean, another animal lover, read about Rachael on my blog. Rachael must have touched her heart because Jean told me she wanted to make a present for her. A quilted bag. Jean makes quilts, incredibly beautiful quilts. She posts them on her blog, so please look them and Jean up here. I was so thrilled to learn this. And when Jean asked about the material choice for the bag, I told her that, in addition to the owl Jean wanted to put on the front of the bag, it would be good if she had something that included cats. This she did, and, as you can see above, Rachael was thrilled with the bag and the thoughtfulness and love it represents.

Oh, this is becoming a long post, a bit out of order. This is what happened with the gift: We had an after Christmas party at my house with Mary, Rachael, Connie, Diana, and I. After we ate, I gave a little speech and handed Rachael the gift from Jean. 

I love that it came all the way from New Zealand to California because two Swedish bloggers connected with each other, and then with a kind and talented woman in New Zealand. Truly an all points of the compass moment, I thought. 

When the package from New Zealand arrived, I put it away. Then Jean said I had to open it at Christmas. This I did, and found a bag for me as well. I couldn't believe it. It's lovely, so Swedish looking, somehow. I have no idea how Jean could pick something so perfect for me. The inside has pockets for phone, tablet, and so on. 

The love and generosity didn't end there, I too got an owl. The one above, an owl that will hang on my wall. Watching over me, Jean said.

And the owls continued: After everyone left, Rachael and I exchanged Christmas gifts. I gave her a pair of owl socks and a little owl, just to have. And she gave me this gorgeous owl!

And now I must buy a cover for the light. Birds like to sleep on top of it in winter, feeling sheltered, no doubt, but leaving a mess behind. I think the owl will put a stop that. 

Finally, these are the colors I picked for my house: Sage, with gray trim and rust red accents. The little porch stands out, looking unfinished, but Glenn will fix it come spring.


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