Posted tagged ‘panting dog’

“The mercury sank in the mouth of the dying day.”

November 10, 2017

Last night was a strange one. Around 3, Gracie woke me with her loud panting. Because she doesn’t use the dog door anymore, panting is her way of communicating. I understand Gracie’s panting and knew I had a few options. I mentioned food, no response. I mentioned out and she perked so out we went. It was cold and windy. She was quick. I was glad.

A pelting sound against the window jolted me awake. I’m not sure if it was before or after Gracie. I just remember it was loud. I knew it had to be rain, heavy rain, though I did venture and quickly discard the notion that hundreds of BB’s were being throw at the window at the exact same time. I figure we can chalk that absurd idea up to my drowsiness and the sound of the rain and the window.

Today is chilly, in the high 40’s, and windy but sunny. There is a freeze warning starting tonight at seven through 8 am tomorrow. Already, the heat keeps cranking. This is our first freeze.

I have laundry to do. Of all the household chores, this is the one I dislike the most. I think it has to do with the two sets of stairs and carrying the clean laundry up both of them. I keep putting it off and the pile just is getting bigger and compounding the problem.

My mail box is overflowing with catalogues, tis’ the season. I actually look through most of them and have had some great finds, some odd finds and some perfect Christmas presents. Yesterday, I finished my gift shopping for two people on my list.

Right now I’m watching a scientist freeze to death in the movie Gog. The woman scientist  found him, and guess what, she raised her hands in front of her mouth and screamed. The door to the freeze chamber just mysteriously closed and locked with her in it. She’s next. Who will scream for her?

A note: I got notified that two of my posts, one from 2012 and the other from 2013, violate copywrite laws, both are Procol Harum. The links no longer worked, but that didn’t seem to matter. I wrote an answer to WordPress explaining that the songs in question could be heard only, but I think that too may be a violation. I further explained that any posted videos came from youTube. I don’t know what might happen. In case I am shut down, you can find me at a familiar place, Blogger. I have taken possession of the old blog destroyed by Blogger. The URL is different than it was. Here it is in case: http://keepthecoffeecoming.blogspot.com 

Today is dump day!

“I’ve just been bitten on the neck by a vampire… mosquito. Does that mean that when the night comes I will rise and be annoying?”

November 5, 2017

Outside is dark, damp and cloudy. A wind blows every now and then and adds to the misery of the day. My heat went on during the night. It must have been really cold as the thermostat is set at 65˚. Before I had pets, I used to keep it set at 62˚ at night, but that’s too cold for Gracie and Maddie. I found that out when I patted them. Their ears and their body fur were cold. That’s why the heat is higher.

Last night, Gracie was panting so much I kept waking up. I did the food, treat, water thing, and she still was panting and moving around. I finally fell asleep around four. When I woke up, Gracie was in the middle of the couch lying right beside me, and my legs were bent to accommodate her. It was another bad back this morning. She, of course, is now sleeping soundly. I am tempted to keep waking her up, but that’s a human response she wouldn’t understand. Besides, she’d just go to her crate and sleep, probably snore too just to drive me crazy.

Even though all the stores are now opened on Sunday just like every other day, I still have a bit of solemnity for the day probably leftover from when I was a kid. I don’t big time shop on Sundays, and I tend to stay close to home. I watch a little TV, usually football, and I often nap. I honor Sunday as a day of rest.

I was browsing through youtube the other night looking for something to watch. I noticed the film choice of Thousand Plane Raid. Seeing that zoomed me right back to Africa but to Niamey, Niger this time, not Ghana. It was Christmas vacation, and I was traveling with a couple of friends. The trip didn’t go as planned, but trips seldom do in Africa. The bus broke down twice. Each time, we had to wait for the driver’s assistant to hitch back to Ougadougou for parts. That put us way behind time so we had to stop for the night at a post office for which the bus carried mail. The night was freezing. It was harmattan time and we were closer to the desert than in Ghana. I had only a piece of cloth to keep me warm, and it didn’t. Anyway, by the time we got to Niamey, I had defrosted. We stayed at the Peace Corps hostel. In those days U.S. embassies showed movies on Saturday nights. We found out where and went to the screening. Yup, it was Thousand Plane Raid. You don’t need to know any more about the movie. The title is the whole plot. That night was the worst. The movie was shown in an open room of sorts with 4 low concrete walls and no screens.  I was eaten alive by mosquitos bigger than my hand. They mimicked the movie and dive bombed in groups to attack me. I think I left before the end of the movie, but I was so woozy from loss of blood my memories just blurred. I only remember the name of the move and the hordes of mosquitos.

“A great wind is blowing, and that gives you either imagination or a headache.”

October 30, 2017

Last night was amazing and scary. When the wind blew, I could hear furniture on the deck being tossed about. I could hear the rustling of the leaves on the trees and the creak of branches as the wind swept through them. The gusts got as high as 55 MPH. The rain came heavily at times and smashed against the windows. The deck and the front lawn are covered in pine needles blown from the scrub pines. Small branches and one bigger branch litter the backyard. Today is still windy with gusts strong enough to sway the tallest and strongest branches on the trees in the yard. More rain is predicted.

Gracie was heavily panting last night usually a sign she needs out or is hungry. I fed her a small can, and she ate all of it. I changed the water three or four times, and she drank each time slobbering drops of water on the tile floor. I opened the front door so she could see the rain. She backed away. Gracie wanted on the couch and off the couch. I helped her up and down as she has bad back legs. I was getting testy. By this time it was 3:30, and I had been trying to go to sleep since 1:30, but I was attuned to Gracie and her panting and couldn’t fall asleep. Finally I figured she might be frightened by the wind. I moved beside her and started patting her head and ears and talking gently to her. Gradually her breathing slowed down. She settled and went to sleep knowing I was beside her. That meant I was squashed on half a couch with my legs bent at the knees and was beside a dog with wind problems of her own, unpleasant wind problems, but I was so tired I fell asleep anyway around four.

Gracie woke me up at 7. She was moving around, and I heard her. I keep an eye and an ear on Gracie’s movements on the couch we share as it is too soft for her back legs to establish a hold. I pleaded with her to go back to sleep, and she did. I moved and got comfortable as Gracie didn’t need my reassurances any more. Outside was quiet in comparison to last night. We both woke up at 10. I turned on the coffee, got dressed quickly and drove to Agway. I was out of dog food, an emergency in this house. When we got home, I fed Gracie before getting my coffee and toast. She is now happy and sleeping soundly. I’m exhausted.

Today I have a dentist appointment but only a cleaning.

“Sunday, the day for the language of leisure.”

July 31, 2016

It is a still morning. Not a leaf blows on the trees overhanging the deck. Not even a bird disturbs the silence. The day is cloudy and feels close. The humidity is higher than the last few days but still tolerable. My house is 74˚, not time for AC yet. Gracie likes the doors open so she can survey the neighborhood. The cats just sleep. That’s what cats do.

Last night I was awoken two times. The first was Fern meowing and looking for attention. She has figured out that waking me up means she gets her pats. I scratch her by the tail, pat her a few times then fall back to sleep. She is content and sleeps the rest of the night beside me. The second time was when my bed was shaking. I knew Gracie was panting. That meant she was uncomfortable and needed to go out. We went down stairs, and when I opened the door, she was out like a shot. She was back about 5 minutes later, and we both went back to bed. She fell asleep right away. It took me a whole lot longer.

My to do list is short today. I just have to water plants inside and out, but if truth be told, I don’t even feel like making that small effort. Sunday is a quiet day for me, a throwback from my childhood. When I worked, it was dump and laundry day. Now, I can’t imagine doing both of those in one day. The effort seems monumental. I went to the dump late yesterday afternoon with two weeks worth of trash. I have laundry I could do, but there is still laundry in the dryer from last week. I have embraced a lazy lifestyle.

“The Harvard Law states: Under controlled conditions of light, temperature, humidity, and nutrition, the organism will do as it damn well pleases.”

July 22, 2016

Last night I went to bed early, around 10:30, but couldn’t fall asleep so I decided to check out Netflix as my iPad is beside my bed. That was a huge mistake. I started watching Stranger Things and was hooked. It was close to 4 o’clock before I put down my iPad and went to sleep. Episodes remain, and I’m thinking I’ll watch them this afternoon. I won’t do that late night binging again. Okay, I admit I probably will.

As of late yesterday afternoon, the house was closed again, and the air conditioner became a necessity. All of a sudden it was very humid, and the breeze did nothing to cool the day. Poor Gracie was panting, a sure sign the house was too warm. Today is also hot and somewhat humid. Boston is officially in the middle of a heat wave. We are not though heat wave or no heat wave it is still a really hot day.

I don’t remember when the weather started to bother me enough I complained. When I was a kid, the weather never mattered. Summer was for being outside as long as I could be. I always dreaded my mother yelling out the back door for us to come inside the house. Snow was always fun. It was for sledding, making snowmen and building forts. Sometimes snow even gave us a free day from school. Where I lived in Ghana was the hottest part of the country. It was savannah grassland with few trees. I could look across the fields to the horizon. Nothing stood in the way. I was hot in the 100 plus degree heat, but I found ways to be cool. At night I’d take my cold shower and not dry off. The air cooled and dried me and I easily fell asleep. After every snow storm, I used to shovel my walk and driveway. Now I pay someone and wait patiently inside until he comes. My house has central air conditioning. I used to have a fan I carted from den to bedroom at night, and I was cooled enough to sleep. Maybe this intolerance is because I am getting older or maybe it is because I no longer want to abide too hot or too cold. I aim for comfortable.

Tomorrow is our first deck movie night. I have several from which my friends can choose including Charade, The original Thomas Crown Affair, Cabaret,  the Equalizer, Three Days of the Condor and Beginning of the End, our awful science fiction B movie for the summer, a movie where giant grasshoppers wreak devastation wherever they go. I’m serving grilled sausages and sauteed peppers and onions and fresh bread for sandwiches. I’m making a couple of appetizers and a new drink, a blue drink. I have my shopping list ready.

Gracie is sleeping and is snoring. I envy her the nap, not the snoring.

“Walking is a virtue, tourism is a deadly sin.”

July 19, 2016

The windows and doors were opened for about a half an hour. Gracie was restless and started panting. I decided it was time to turn on the air conditioner. Tonight is supposed to be cool so I’ll try to open the house then.

The laundry pile was getting higher and higher so I decide it was time to bring it down the cellar and throw it in the washing machine. The machine didn’t have a setting for mountainous so I went with heavy load.

My friend said she was divebombed by moths when she left the house. There are more flitting around than there were yesterday. My backyard has so many I dare not go on the deck. That B movie plot about Attack of the Gypsy Moths still sticks in my head.

When I was an English teacher, I bought all the guides to the books my kids were reading in class. When I assigned essays about theme or character, I found some students had copied directly from the guide books. I’d give those students an F and cite the page from which they lifted the material. I’d write plagiarized as the reason for the F. Enough said!

There is a nuisance of tourists. I haven’t seen so many in a long while. The license plates from all over are indicators that the economy is doing well. A long while back, when gas was rationed, the cape was almost clear of tourists. Now, trying to find  a parking space takes patience, circling around and following people headed to their cars.

The rain missed us last night. There was a torrential rain and hail storm north of Boston. Trees fell and knocked down poles and electrical lines. Roads were closed. The wind took off roofs. I do not want such a dangerous storm, but I do want rain.

Fern goes for a follow-up at the vets today. I hate putting that poor kitty in the carry crate. She gets terrified. I’ll just have to talk to her and soothe her the whole trip. I do think the vet will be pleased with her progress.

Mac and cheese is on the menu for lunch. It is one of my all time favorite comfort foods, right behind meatloaf. Last night I had a crab and clam cake for dinner. I bought it at the fish market. I also bought some crab cakes for tonight.  I’m loving my menus!

“Home is a name, a word, it is a strong one; stronger than magician ever spoke, or spirit ever answered to, in the strongest conjuration.”

August 2, 2015

I know it is late for me, so late that I almost thought of taking a mini-vacation, but here I am. Earlier I was out on the deck sitting in the shade of the umbrella. The day is another hot one. Gracie, despite lying in the shade, was panting. She wanted in so we both came inside to the AC. She is now comfy and asleep in her crate.

We’re going to the dump later. That’s the only entry on my dance card.

There is something so strongly compelling about going home. When I go back to my old home town, as I still call it after all these years, I take familiar routes, the ones I used to walk. From St. Pat’s to the project there are many changes. Some of the older houses are gone. The railroad tracks too are gone but there is a wide path where they once were. I am sometimes tempted to park my car and follow the path to see if it looks the same. There was a stream where we stopped for water. I wonder if it is still there. The playground where I spent so many summer days disappeared. Where it was is all overgrown now. My house and street look exactly the same except the bushes on the side of my old house are really tall. I don’t know if there is a limit as to how tall they will get. The tops look a bit spindly to me. I always have the urge to get out of the car and walk into the backyard just to peek to see if the in-ground garbage pail is still there, but I figure it would look a bit odd to the current occupants. I wonder what color the walls are now. In my day the living room was green. I suspect the house will look quite small inside to me now. I know the kitchen seemed small even then. Kid’s voices still fill the air on a nice day.

In Bolga, on my trip back after forty years, the first place I went was to my old school grounds to find my house. It was quite easy to find. It needed paint and the back courtyard could not be seen because the current occupants had added to the fence tops to block the view. I wondered about the four doors around the courtyard. I wondered what color they are. Coincidentally they were green when I lived there.

Home is a fluid place. It is both where you live now and all the places you’ve lived before.