Posted tagged ‘dark and damp’

“And in this moment, like a swift intake of breath, the rain came.”

May 25, 2017

The weather is back to dark and damp and really chilly, down to the low 50’s. It is raining now and the rain isn’t going anywhere. It will stay rainy and raw through tomorrow and there may even be thunder. I really need a sweatshirt even in the house.

With all this rain, the grass seed on my lawn is sprouting. The green shoots of flowers have appeared in the front garden. Some have even bloomed into purple and white delicate flowers. I don’t know their names. I never do.

Next week I will purchase the herbs and flowers for my various gardens, pots and window boxes. I have a list of some flowers to buy, all perennials. I know which herbs as I buy the same ones each year, herbs I use in cooking. I love being able to go to the herb garden and snip what I need for dinner. Doing that always makes me feel like the consummate cook and gardener.

I just had my first sign of summer despite the cold and the rain. My guy came and turned on the irrigation and the outdoor shower. I figure it will be a long while before I’ll use the shower outside given the cold and especially because the shower area is a spawn of Satan hangout. It has a huge pile of stripped pine cones. They cover the floor and the bench. This is on my factotum’s to-do list.

Critter Control came yesterday. My cellar is inundated with mice, a few of which have made their way to this floor as well as to upstairs. One lives in a kitchen cabinet. The critter guy left food traps where the mice munch, eat their fill, leave the traps and shortly thereafter depart from this world. The cabinet mouse’s poop in the utensil drawer was the straw.

I did errands yesterday then rewarded myself with Chinese food for dinner. I got jumbo shrimp for a dual purpose. I ate some and shared pieces of the cooked batter with Gracie and some of the shrimp with the cat. I sneaked her pills into Gracie’s portion. She didn’t figure it out, and it was an easy way to give Gracie the pills. We’re having leftover Chinese for lunch today and I’ll trick Gracie again.

It was after midnight when I took Gracie out for the last time before bed. Every house was dark except mine. The house across the street had disappeared. Clouds hid the moon and the stars. I could barely see my driveway, but luckily my star and the white lights off the deck and fence still shined and lit the way to the backyard.

It’s time to finish. I’m getting hungry.

“If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.”

August 24, 2015

We have yet to shake the dark and damp of the last few days. It almost feels as if we are living in a weather limbo. It doesn’t rain and the sun doesn’t shine. Today though feels a bit cooler than yesterday. The weather in the paper says maybe showers tonight and maybe showers tomorrow.

Last night’s movie was What’s Up Doc. My friends hadn’t seen it in years, and they laughed all the way through. It was a perfect choice for our weather moods, for the dark days we have been suffering through. The deck was still damp as we had no sun to dry it yesterday, but the table and chairs had been under the umbrella and were dry. There was no breeze and the air was heavy. We had bugs, a rarity on my deck, so we lit punks to keep away the bugs. We all had memories of those punk sticks from our childhoods when we’d spin one in the air and pretend it was a sparkler. I love the smell of punks. There is nothing else like it so my nose easily triggers punk memories from way back. We could even buy them at the white store. They were kept in a large glass jar. Last night we put a few sticks in the deck boxes, and they worked: no bugs.

Some volunteers used mosquito coils in Ghana to keep away bugs. The coils were spiral-shaped and were mounted on a small piece of thin metal so they were suspended in the air. Most of them were green. They too had a distinctive smell to repel mosquitos, and I know I’d recognize that smell if my nose ever got even the tiniest whiff. The coils burned for a long time so you had to be careful where you put them as they could cause fires. Some volunteers without screens used them inside. None of us gave any thought as to whether or not they were harmful. Come to find out the burning of one mosquito coil releases the same amount of particulate matter as burning 75-137 cigarettes. At least we didn’t get bitten!

“I can’t tell you how many hot dogs I’ve eaten in my life.”

May 19, 2015

The day is dark, chilly and damp. Rain is expected. I’m guessing just as Gracie and I leave for the dump the skies will open and the rain will fall in sheets. I noticed the red spawn has been at the potted flowers again and there is soil all over the deck railing. This morning the spawn ran from the feeder as soon as I picked up the hose. It is wary now from too many showers. I’m thinking a slingshot.

When I was a kid, I seemed to be busy all of the time. I’d have school until 2 then rush home to play for the rest of the afternoon. My mother would call us inside close to supper time. I’d do my homework, have supper, watch some TV then get ready for bed. The day was spent in a flash. The whole week passed by almost before I’d noticed. Each Saturday and Sunday had a bit of a routine but those two days never seemed long enough.

During the summers when I was in high school, I sometimes whined and complained about having nothing to do. That drove my mother crazy. We didn’t have summer jobs back then so there was little to do all day long. What had delighted the kid me didn’t seem interesting any more. I didn’t ride my bike or walk to the pool or go to the playground. I just sighed a lot.

The summer after high school was when I got my first job: forty hours a week at Woolworth’s. It was the easiest job, and I jumped around doing all sorts of stuff to keep from getting bored. The only place I didn’t work was the food counter. I loved Woolworth’s food counter. It was straight and long with red vinyl stools moved in a circle for east seating. The women were all old, at least to me, and wore uniforms. Most had huge handkerchiefs as decorations atop their pockets. They kept pencils behind their ears. The wall had all the menu items listed including the flavors of ice cream. The dessert dishes had fluted tops. They were used for sundaes like my favorite of all, hot fudge. Real dishes were used for the sandwiches. They were whitish with a red ring around the inside rim. The hot dogs were wonderful cooked on the grill. The French fries were crisp and hot. Sometimes I’d have a grilled cheese sandwich, perfectly brown and gooey.

My mother and sister used to go to their Woolworth’s for a patty melt. The counter there was huge but divided almost into little islands each with its older lady taking orders. I went with them a few times, but it was sometimes a hot dog for me and other times a club sandwich. Colored toothpicks were in each section of the club sandwich to hold it together. The toothpicks were wooden. The sandwich was always delicious. I miss Woolworth counters.

“Coins always make sound but currency notes are always silent, so when ever your value increases keep yourself calm and silent.”

January 16, 2014

Yesterday was lovely with sun and unseasonable warmth. Gracie and I had some errands, but first I wanted a bit of fun shopping. The store, though, was closed as was the candy store beside it where I could have salved my disappointment with a bit of chocolate, my panacea for any ills or low spirits. Sadly I was left with utilitarian shopping for dog food, cat litter, bread and eggs. I did buy a cupcake, a chocolate cupcake, which raised my spirits.

Today is dark and damp, the air perfectly still. It is not the sort of weather which tempts me to go out or even to get dressed. I will make my bed and pay my bills and consider it a day well-spent, yup, well-spent.

I remember learning about money. The worksheet had drawings of pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters. I guess the 50 cent piece wasn’t important or the nuns thought we could figure it out by elimination and, if that didn’t work, by reading the coin. The worksheet was filled with math problems using money. What coins would you use to add up to 12 cents, 28 cents or 30 cents? I, who never liked math, enjoyed the coin problems. They were more like a puzzle. What coins would you give back if the person gave you a quarter for a purchase of 17 cents? Even though that was real math, subtraction, you still had the puzzle of which coins. For a long time after that I always counted out my coins one at a time from one hand to the other. I’d say ten cents for the dime then eleven cents, twelve cents and on and on when I added pennies. When I was older, I got an allowance of 50 cents a week, always a single coin.

Most birthdays I got a dollar in my cards from my aunt and my grandmother. That opened up a whole new can of worms. Counting money got just a bit more complicated