Posted tagged ‘gnome’

“Clutter is my natural habitat.”

July 21, 2017

Today is hot. It is 83˚. I’m in the cool air of the house looking at the world through my den window. The most I can see is the blue sky and the still leaves of the oak tree. Later, in the cool of the afternoon, I have some deck stuff to finish: replace the burned out lights on the rail and get the fountain working. I also need to bring the flamingo and the gnome to the deck where they’ll reside all summer. A few of the flowers in the smallest pots have died so I’m hoping to get replacements at Agway today. I’ll be braving the heat.

When I was young, I knew what old was. No question it was those blue-haired ladies in their dresses and clunky heeled shoes with wrinkled faces and hands who dragged wire baskets on wheels behind them when they shopped at the grocery store. They never wore pants. Their shoes were sensible. Their dresses had flowers. I never stopped to  think how old they were. They just fit my vision of old so age didn’t seem to matter.

Despite my current wardrobe, if my young self knew I was soon to turn 70, I suspect I’d think myself old, but I’m not. The definition of old changes as we age. I’m now thinking 90+ might be old, but I’m not sure anymore. I admit, though, I’m thinking of buying one of those wire baskets so I can haul stuff from the car to the house.

I hate clutter yet my den is cluttered, but I’ve come to ignore it as the alternative is to go crazy. I had to move the dog’s dishes here as she slid on the kitchen floor. Her toys are in a wooden box and usually a couple are on the floor. Gracie tends to paw her toys to the floor until she finds just the right one. My cloth from Ghana is stored in a pile here but not out of sight. Most of my cookbooks are on shelves which cover one whole wall. My hat collection hangs from the shelves. My table is a huge metal one with three overflowing baskets underneath. I do have sorting through them on my whenever I get to them list of things to do. I sleep on the couch so my pillow and sheets are on the desk chair. This is the room where I spend the most time so everything is here except snacks and drinks. They’re down the hall, and the bathroom is between them. My inside world is small, but I’m content.

“May is a pious fraud of the almanac.”

May 22, 2014

Today has me smiling. No, it is not from the weather as it is cloudy and chilly. Nope, today feels like spring has a hold and summer is pushing. My irrigation guy came today and turned on the lawn irrigation system and the outside shower. Yesterday the front garden was mulched and looks beautiful. All the lilacs have bloomed and some white and purple flowers have also bloomed. I don’t know what they are but they are delicate flowers which seem to bow their heads to the sun. The lilies of the valley have flowered and have spread along the rough side of my driveway and into my backyard. They originally came from my mother’s house so every spring I am thankful for their arrival. I need to buy flower pots, my herbs and veggies, but I’ll wait until next week, until after the hubbub of the long weekend. Lots to do every spring.

Yesterday was a busy day. I bought food for man and beast: for one woman, two cats, a dog and birds. I also bought a new spawn buster feeder. My big spawn buster is missing a critical part, the round, green closer which also acts as a perch. I have checked the entire yard and didn’t find it. I suspect the red spawn stole it and has hidden it. I called the company this morning, and they are sending one right along, no charge. Later today I’ll fill the remaining feeders and put out the new one. I miss my birds.

The flamingo and gnome are still here in their winter quarters. They will be brought out when the deck is summer ready. I’ll play some music and we’ll have a small parade befitting the occasion. I’ll deck the flamingo in her Hawaiian outfit. It will be perfect. The gnome is wearing blue.

We always got out of school for the summer early in June, earlier than the public schools. I think the nuns were ready to get rid of us. The last day was always a half day. The days before it were for final tests and cleaning. We were a free workforce, and I remember we emptied our desks and washed them inside and out. The blackboard got washed. Bulletin boards were stripped and left empty. By the last day, nothing much was left to do. We got our report cards, and we were all promoted to the next grade. When that final bell went off, chaos ensued. There were no more lines of students walking two by two. The nuns stayed put in the rooms. No way were they going to take their chances with the screaming hoard of students running out the door and down the streets.

” It takes a long time to grow an old friend.”

June 1, 2012

After the heat and humidity of yesterday in particular, today feels a might chilly. The sun is shining but there is a breeze, and the temperature is only 64°.

I love weekday mornings as they are always so quiet. The only sounds are the birds and an occasional car driving by. My get ready for summer activities are almost complete. All the deck window boxes are filled with herbs and the clay pots have flowers. The vegetable garden is full; a few squashes took the empty spaces. The deck has been swept for about the fourth time, and the only cleaning left is the table and a few spots on the chairs. I need to get tubing for my fountain then I can start it running. Once that is done the pageantry can begin. The final pieces will be taken to the deck to assume their rightful spots. First will come the plastic flamingo dressed for summer in its hula skirt and lei. Then the very last piece will be brought from his winter quarters. With flags and triumphant music accompanying this move, out will come the gnome, the Travelocity gnome, who will sit prominently on the deck by the fountain looking like a complete Ozymandias without the sneer. Then and only then can the deck season begin!

Tomorrow my friends Michelle and John will arrive. They live in Ohio and are driving here touring as they come. Michelle and I were in the Peace Corps together. I sometimes stayed with her in Kumasi, Ghana’s second largest city, on my way north. I always felt like Country Mouse visiting City Mouse. I remember taking a shower in her apartment and finding two faucets: one was for hot water. I was amazed. She had hot water all the time with the turn of a faucet. My hot shower lasted until the flow of water in the pipes warmed by the sun was gone. I always tried to wash my hair under the warmed water as the first blast of cold water on my head was always a shock even though I knew what to expect. Michelle came to Bolga once, and her memory is of being wet from her shower and lying on the bed under the ceiling fan hoping to feel even the tiniest bit of a cool breeze. I always took my shower just before bed, never toweled off and went to bed still soaked from the shower. It was easier that way to fall asleep in the heat.

When I went back to Ghana last summer, I understood Michelle and the heat, but air conditioning had come to Bolga; however, I still didn’t have hot water. That came in a bucket.