Posted tagged ‘spawn of satan’

“How strange it is to view a town you grew up in, not in wonderment through the eyes of youth, but with the eyes of a historian on the way things were.”

February 22, 2018

For two days Boston has hit 70˚. We hit a high of 55˚. The sun has deserted us. It is cloudy again and damp and chilly. Last night it rained a little. I was lying in bed reading and heard what I thought at first was a mouse gnawing. It wasn’t. It was the patter of rain falling quite slowly at first then more heavily, but it quickly stopped.

Yesterday I went to the deck and did a bit of cleanup. I also filled the bird feeders. The cover for the barbecue has disappeared. I checked the yard from the deck but didn’t go under the deck. My first thought was an army of squirrels has set up camp somewhere close and my cover, which already had a huge section chewed off, was perfect for their tents. Two bricks were on the top to prevent the cover from blowing off. I found those on the deck. Maybe a spawn of Satan will be back to get the bricks for their camp walkway.

I actually cleaned most of this room. I polished and washed all the curios on shelves. I did such a good job I need sunglasses now because everything shines. I also caught up with the laundry. I feel accomplished.

When I sleep, I look a bit like a question mark as I still make room for Gracie to sleep beside me.

When I was a kid, my town was my world. I never thought it was small. Uptown had wonderful stores, and the library and the post office anchored the beginning and the end of the square. Some days the square smelled like fresh bread from Hank’s Bakery or popcorn from the candy makers behind the square. O’Grady’s Diner was across the street from the library. Once in a while, my father took me to breakfast there. We sat at a booth with red vinyl seating. I used to beg for dimes or a quarter to play the juke box. Every booth had a small box, and I’d turn the pages in our booth to find a favorite song. On Saturday mornings seats at the counter were mostly filled with all men. Saturday was their errand day with stops at the Chinamen, the barber and maybe the drug store or the Redmen then finally the diner. I loved my little uptown

“It is the life of the crystal, the architect of the flake, the fire of the frost, the soul of the sunbeam. This crisp winter air is full of it.”

December 15, 2017

Yesterday I hunted down and found the missing ornaments and decorations. Most have since been placed or hung so I am just about finished with the house. My errands were done in about an hour. I even found parking places right by the stores, a bit of Christmas magic.

I don’t know how it happened, but yesterday I forgot to tell you about the snow and the spawn of Satan. Snow first: starting early Thursday morning and ending in the afternoon, we got about 2 1/2 inches of snow. The amount must have seemed insignificant as there were no plows. The main roads were cleared by the traffic. My road remains snowy in places and a bit slippery. I didn’t shovel. I used my foot to push the snow away. I couldn’t find my car window brush so I used my sleeves on the side windows to clear them. The defroster in the back and the windshield wipers in the front cleared those windows. It was freezing yesterday as the night before had been in the teens, the coldest night so far, so it took a while for the day to get a bit warmer, all the way to the 30’s.

Now moving on to the spawn story.  I went out on the deck to check one of the back light timers. All of a sudden I stopped short out of amazement. As I had walked by the barbecue, I noticed the cover, a good thick cover, with a fleecy sort of inside. A huge, and I mean huge, part of the cover was gone. A perfect square had been chewed off and taken away as no part of it was on the deck or in the yard below the deck. I figured the spawn was either renovating or building a new nest and wanted it cozy inside and waterproof outside. I could do nothing so I just shook my head, turned around and came back inside.

Today I have been a sloth. I took my shower and that’s it for my accomplishments. I’m watching another Christmas Carol, my fifth so far. This is the Disney one. I’ve never seen it before. The faces of the characters are a bit strange, especially their eyes, but that’s its only drawback. The dialogue is true, as true as any.

I have a few cards to write and a new Christmas cooking magazine to read. That sounds like the start of a great day to me.

“It was one of those humid days when the atmosphere gets confused. Sitting on the porch, you could feel it: the air wishing it was water.”

August 22, 2017

My neighbor came by with eclipse glasses so I got to see the partial eclipse we had here. It was so very cool to watch the moon move across the sun and darken the day just a bit.  Two things jumped into my head from my memory drawers. I was reminded of when I was young, and we used negatives to look through at the eclipse. I have no idea if they were all that safe but figure they must have been as I didn’t go blind. I don’t even remember if there were warnings. Now, of course, there are no negatives. The second memory was of reading A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. Our Yankee is sentenced to be burned at the stake but is saved by magic, or at least what King Arthur thinks is magic but is really an eclipse. He, the Yankee, said he’d blot out the sun, and it happened as he’d predicted because our hero had remembered the eclipse. I would have been burned at the stake.

Today is supposed to be hot and humid. When I went to get the papers and take Gracie to the backyard, I could feel the humidity, and it was still early, usually a cooler time. Right now it’s cloudy and breezy, but that humidity is hanging in there.

When I was waiting for my coffee to brew, I saw a feeder moving back and forth and knew it was a spawn of Satan. I could see its tail and knew it was the worst off them all, a red spawn. It was inside the keep the spawn away wire and was dining on seed. I sneaked over to the feeder. The spawn saw me and jumped to the rail, but I was there so it fell to the ground, two floors away. The spawn’s fall scared the doves feeding from the ground, and they flew into the air. The birds at the feeders were spooked so they too took off. The whole thing was a comedy of errors with birds flying everywhere.

I have to go out in a bit, and the sun just made a quick in and out entrance. Right now it’s among the missing. I’m glad. I figure the humidity is enough to make for a dismal day without adding more heat.

“A flower blossoms for its own joy.”

June 10, 2017

Summer has arrived. Today is already a lovely day with lots of sun giving lots of heat. It will be in the low 70’s here. This room is still dark and cool as the sun hasn’t yet worked its way around the house. I went out earlier and needed to turn on the car’s AC as Gracie was with me. I left it on when I stopped. She threw up all of yesterday’s food so I was hoping to find something to entice her. I bought a frozen dog treat but she didn’t want it. I gave it to the dog in the next car, and he licked every bit of it. I know she is hungry as she keeps checking her dish,  but I can’t find anything she wants. The lady whose dog ate the frozen treat suggested tuna dog treats. I came home and checked the recipe on-line. I just have to go and buy the tuna. I’ll try anything.

It is a noisy Saturday. I can hear lawn mowers from all over the neighborhood, no kids though. I wonder where they are. I’m guessing baseball and t-ball.

A warm, summer Saturday is about the best of all days. It invites us outside to enjoy the weather. It is a day meant for sitting on the deck to enjoy the warmth tempered by a slight breeze. Inside the house can stay dusty, and the laundry can wait a day or two or even more. I know that from experience.

My deck is still closed. The furniture covers got soaked the other night so yesterday I emptied the water caught in the folds. The deck floor is covered with leaves and debris from that last storm. My factotum, Skip, is coming Monday. I have a long list for him to do. He has to clean out the shower as it is filled with the gnawed pieces of pinecones. I still see the spawn of Satan around that shower. He is in for a rude awakening.

The exterminator came back yesterday to plug the mouse holes around the foundation. He figured by now the mice would have moved to a more exalted place, and the cellar does have a peculiar odor. I’m thinking dead mice or decomp as they call it on TV.

I still have flowers to buy before Skip comes, at least the deck flowers. I always think flower shopping is about the best of all shopping sprees. I just can’t help myself and always load the cart. Flowers are intoxicating.

“May: the lilacs are in bloom. Forget yourself.”

May 19, 2016

Yesterday my irrigation guy came to turn on the lawn water and the outdoor shower. He told me I wouldn’t be taking a shower for a while. I was curious. He told me there was a giant nest in the shower and tons of pine cone pieces. A spawn of Satan daring to build a nest to reproduce was my first thought. I went this morning to check. It is a giant pile, but I didn’t see an opening indicating it might be a nest but I forgot to check the backside in case the spawn chewed through to make a door. I’ll do that later. If it is empty-the pile will be a memory. If there are spawn babies, I’ll wait.

I am announcing it is spring. I know it’s chilly during the day, but the nights only get as low as the 40’s. I even had my window opened all night.

Lately I have had a feeling of anticipation, a sense of something coming. I haven’t ordered anything, am not expecting visitors and no parade is being organized for my street. I’m at a loss so I’ll just have to be patient, not a strong point of mine.

The May procession was around this time. It was on a Sunday, and the whole school took part. The second graders wore their white first communion outfits. The rest of the boys had to wear white shirts and a tie. The colors of their pants didn’t matter. The girls had to wear dresses. The route was a square, not a circle. We started at the school and ended up at the grotto beside the church. The outside of the grotto was stone. A statue of Mary was in a high niche in the front. All the students stood circling the grotto and sang the songs we’d been practicing for weeks. “Mary, we greet thee with flowers today, Queen of the angels, Queen of the May.”I was in eight May processions so I still remember snatches of all the songs. Parents lined the streets to see the procession. Many of them had cameras, Brownie cameras. The pictures were in black and white. Somewhere in the house I have a few of the photos my parents took the year I crowned Mary. I had to walk up a ladder holding the crown of flowers and then placed the crown on the head of the statue. It was quite an honor. The only things I remember are stopping for photos on the route and having Father Smith help me up the ladder because I was wearing an old wedding gown which came to my ankles, and he was afraid I’d trip. That was the highlight of my elementary school years.

The sun is shining. There isn’t a breeze. It is a good day.

 

“Poor, dear, silly Spring, preparing her annual surprise!”

April 3, 2016

“In the lane snow is glistening…” We got a dusting of snow last night. It is wet and heavy. I know this because I went out and made a snowball to throw at the spawn of Satan eating from the suet feeder. The snowball was the perfect heft for an accurate throw, and I hit the spawn dead on. It sort of jumped in surprise then took off on the deck rail down into the yard.

The sun has just appeared backed by a cloudy blue sky. The wind is dying down. The day is beginning to have possibilities. We didn’t go to the dump yesterday as it rained all day, but it looks as if today might just be the perfect dump day. Strange, I never imagined myself talking about the perfect dump day or any dump day for that matter. It seems I’ve turned into such an odd conversationalist.

The snow is dripping off the roof mimicking the sound of a rain storm. I can see small clumps of snow falling from the branches. I filled the bird feeders the other day so the birds are many and varied. My usual gold finches, chickadees, titmice and nut hatches are here as are house finches, woodpeckers and a sparrow of sorts I don’t know by name. I’m sure the doves are here as I did throw seed on the ground for them.

Getting ready for spring takes more time than getting ready for winter. The outside furniture has to be uncovered and cleaned. All the decorative items like the fountain, the painted tables and the tree candles have to be brought from the cellar. The three bins filled with summer I keep stored under the deck have to be emptied then filled with the furniture coverings. The pictures have to be hung on the house wall facing the deck. The gnome and the flamingo are last on the deck. They formally announce the beginning of summer.

In the front and on the side, the gardens need to be cleaned and the dirt overturned. Two branches too close to the house on the front pine tree have to come down. The lawn needs tending. When the weather is warm enough, flowers need to bought and planted to fill any empty spots. The annuals in the herb garden need replacing. The window boxes for the deck need to be repainted this year then filled with flowers and herbs. The small vegetable garden will only have tomatoes as they seem to grow best there.

In winter the furniture gets covered and all the gardens turn brown. The front yard gets its last cleaning. The dead flowers are cut. The deck is bare and abandoned. Only the feeders are left. It never takes long to ready the house and yard for winter. I always think it’s the saddest day, the day I have to admit fall has finished its course, the day the gnome and the flamingo come inside.

It is so easy to love spring.

“I call this season fake weather. The sun is shining but it cold like the north pole outside.”

December 12, 2014

Piles of Christmas bags filled with wrapped presents sits on the couch ready to be boxed and mailed. My marathon wrapping session of Colorado gifts has ended. When I finish here, it is over the river and through the woods to UPS where they will box and sent. I will pay and breathe a sigh of relief.

I don’t have my tree yet. That will have to be on Sunday as tomorrow is booked with the annual play then out to dinner with my sister. The play this year is Meet Me in St. Louis. The dinner will be Italian. It always is.

I need to get in gear. My house isn’t the magical Christmas scene it usually is by now. My back is to blame. It hurts when I carry things and hurts when I don’t. The only time I get relief is sitting with pillows behind me. I’m thinking that sounds like a bon-bon day. I’ll wear frills and call for the maid to indulge my every whim.

A spawn of Satan came in the mail. im6 sent it to me. The spawn is grasping a bag of acorns, ammo I suspect. It is in this room with me. I swear its eyes follow me, and I think I heard the acorns rattling. The spawn is cute which is its weapon. You get drawn in and then whack. The spawn has you. Gracie thought it was hers. She does have several stuffed toys so it was a natural mistake, but I saved the spawn from Gracie clutches. I don’t know why. I’ll regret it. I’ve seen all the movies. Chucky comes to mind.

Today is sunny and the sky is blue. I almost didn’t recognize either one as it has been so long since their last appearance. They are welcomed, but neither is enough to keep the cold at bay. It’s in the mid 30’s and will stay that way all day. It’s a bundle day.

“As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect.”

April 29, 2014

Today is a stay at home and be comfortable sort of day. It’s cold and, surprise, surprise, it’s cloudy. The errands got finished yesterday and the bird feeders were filled. I added cayenne pepper to the seeds in the big one, the one the red spawn loves. This morning he was at a smaller feeder, the one with a cage around it. I ran out and he was stuck for just a bit in the cage. He panicked and was gone in a heartbeat. Maybe that cage will keep him away.

Speaking of rodents, there have been no more mice in the trap. I’m still at two in the trap and one in the washing machine.

I don’t remember seeing critters when I was a kid. I remember bugs the most. My favorites were the grasshoppers. In the field, every step I took disturbed a grasshopper who leapt into the air then landed back down into the tall grass. Sometimes I’d run through the field just to watch the grasshoppers leap one after the other almost like a choreographed show. At the swamp we watched the tadpoles morph into frogs. We’d lie at the edge of the swamp on our stomachs and watch the tadpoles dart through the water. Their dark bodies were easy to see and follow. Sometimes I’d poke a finger into the water just to watch all of the tadpoles scatter. Mostly I remember their tails and how those tails disappeared over time through the spring into the summer. My favorite part of the cycle was when they still had tails but looked like frogs in their upper bodies. They could have been from a black and white 50’s science fiction movie when giant bugs and oversized creatures destroyed cities and ate people. My favorite bug of all was the praying mantis. It was neat looking with those forelegs which always reminded me of a fighter ready to box. I watched one for a long time once from the front steps to the garden. It hid in the plants and caught and ate a moth. I was delighted.

Once in a while, while we were riding in the car, we’d see a deer in a field near the side of the road. The first one to see it would always yell deer and point so we wouldn’t miss it. We had Weiss Dairy Farm in our town, and I loved going by it to see the cows in the field or in the corrals. I don’t remember ever seeing a skunk or a possum amble through the yard. I never even noticed they were missing.

Around here I have seen wild turkeys, coyotes, deer, foxes, possums and raccoons. The pond at the end of the street has spring peepers. I can already hear their calls. I wonder if there are tadpoles yet.

“It was Sunday morning, and old people passed me like sad grey waves on their way to church.”

March 16, 2014

This morning I filled the four sunflower feeders, and the spawn came back, the red one which jumps from the rail to the feeder over and over again. I chased it away, but it will be back. It always is. I thought about ways to encourage the spawn to pack its little bags and move elsewhere. I came up with a slingshot flinging paperclips, a pea shooter, a wire covering the food slots, electrifying the rail from where it jumps and a wee guillotine though I did reject that last one but only after giving it some consideration. I’m thinking the wire might be the best choice only because my aim with the slingshot and pea shooter mightn’t be up to the task.

The day is a pretty one. I found some more croci in the garden. Three of them are open and basking in the sun. I also saw a snowdrop, a lovely and delicate flower, by the stairs. The hyacinths are getting taller, and I can see their buds. It may only be 34˚ but it feels like spring to me. Flowers carry hope about them.

The mornings are noisier now. The birds have started greeting the day. Their songs are most welcome sounds.

In the church I attended in my hometown, there was a tiny pew in the back. It was the last one in the church and held only two people. I used to wonder why it was there and eventually decided they ran out of space but wanted balance at the end of the rows instead of a weird bare spot. I loved that pew and thought of it as the pew of the impious. I always sat, stood or knelt when everyone else did, but I never paid attention. Sometimes I sneaked in a book and read the latest adventures of Trixie Beldon. I tried to look saintly and reverent with my head bowed, and because all the people were in front of me and couldn’t see what I was reading, I think I pulled it off. When the ushers came by with their baskets, the book was hidden. I dropped my dime in the basket, waited for the usher to move along and then went back to my book. Mass went quickly when I was otherwise preoccupied so it was often a surprise when the priest said, “The Mass is ended go with God.” I took him at his word and scooted out the door and down the stairs. I was probably close to halfway home before the church had even emptied. I never minded going to mass when I had a good book to keep me company.

“The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine.”

November 5, 2013

The sun is among the missing. It’s been gone a while. Today is dark and bleak. Very little color is left in my yard except for one small tree next to the drive-way. Its has red leaves, brilliant red leaves against the backdrop of empty branches.

 I filled the feeders yesterday, and I got really cold. My fingers were the coldest of all. I filled three feeders with sunflower seeds and two with thistle. I also filled one suet feeder, cleaned out the bird bath and added water to it. When I looked later, the birds had descended in full force. When I looked after that, a red spawn was inside one of the feeders. I ran out and scared it so much the panicked spawn had trouble getting out from behind the wires on the feeder. I kept running at it, and the spawn was close enough to touch before it jumped to a branch. It is the same spawn who got hosed all summer. I’m thinking a squirt gun as the hose is put away for the winter. 

When I was young, we’d go into Boston, to the Public Garden, and ride the swan boats. The boat pond was always filled with ducks and the garden itself had a million squirrels and pigeons. People would sit on benches and feed the birds and the squirrels pieces of bread and peanuts from vendors who sold them from red carts along the walkways. I always wanted to feed the squirrels. I thought they were cute. What did I know? I was little. 

Life is filled with routine. It starts when we go to school. We get up every weekday, eat breakfast, get dressed and walk to school. The subjects come in the same order every day except on music and art day. We eat lunch at the same time every day. We go out for recess unless it’s raining. High school doesn’t change the routine much. For me the only difference was I took a bus every day, every day at the same time with the same people. The subjects still came in order. Lunch was at the same time every day . We didn’t have recess but we did go out for air in the small fenced in yard behind the school.

College is when the routine starts to change, and we begin to taste the freedom of choice. Pick your own classes mindful of the schedule. Eat when you have time. Sit around and play cards in the canteen. Skip a class now and then. 

After college, the routine reasserts itself at work. Be there at a certain time, eat lunch at the same time as yesterday and the day before and the day before that, teach the same classes in the same order every day. Go home around the same time every day. That, however, was the first routine I barely noticed and never minded. I didn’t like the getting up part, but I loved the work part. I loved my first two years in Ghana and I loved the next thirty-three here on the cape. I think loving what you do makes the day joyful though not every day because we couldn’t be that lucky, but it does for most days. 

 I have no routine now, and I’m glad. I get to choose whatever my day will be. It doesn’t get much better than that.