The weather continues to be gorgeous- not too hot. The rain last week has finally convinced the back to green up. I should go out and see what survived the scalping. Not that I didn’t want a lot of it gone, but I did have some plantings I liked. In the front the morning glories are gorgeous in the morning, but fade in the afternoon, the nasturtium continue (I want to put more in next year), and the phlox or stock (whichever they are) are what’s going on right now. Very fragrant. They remind me of my grandmother’s garden- which is what scent memories do. There’s a lone bee balm. I hope next year there are more.
My little vegetable garden burgeons- far too many radishes, but I had some of the chard yesterday, and am hopeful for the melons despite my late start, because it’s been SO warm. My 12 corn stalks continue to grow- they’re fun even if they do shade the broccoli, and I didn’t get to planting beans to grow up them. One reads about it, but I’ve never made it work.
I picked a bunch of wildflowers (goldenrod, queen anne’s lace, & purple loosestrife) and they are looking beautiful! I wish I had bee balm in with them. When we got back from the war I got a bunch of flowers at the farmstand- mostly zinnias and snapdragons. I was amazed at how long they lasted! Some of the snapdragons are still looking good.
This week has been uneventful- and isn’t that a good thing? Well, more like I keep forgetting to go to the events that do happen. I spaced the SCA demo over at the Toadstool Bookshop on Saturday, and only remembered the Lyndeboro Community Day when we drove past on the way back from the dump. I saw a barbecue and we were pretty exhausted, so we changed into more presentable clothing and went over for supper. Yesterday I’d planned to go over to the Dowsers Potluck in Keene but spaced it, and Lyrion’s Woman’s Full Moon Gathering. How can I be so busy and still not “do anything”?
You may remember that last week our modem died, and we had to go out and get another so I could do my podcast show. Because we needed one THAT DAY, we got one at Staples, then when on Friday the replacement arrived, we returned it. I felt a bit badly about that, but it was suggested by the TDS customer service guy.
The girls were getting ready for going up to Maine with their friends this week. This was complicated by plans for Jay’s internment. Not surprising, there will be a lot of people needing to stay at the lake that weekend. We don’t mind dealing, but all the back-and-forth as people come up with new ideas for coping as new information comes in gets stressful. I’m still not sure what’s going to happen. There are three camps up there- Ours, Charley’s and Grandmother’s, and since she died (in 1964) guests have been using that one, traditionally Charley’s side gets it in August and ours in July, but Charley offered it for the over-flow, meanwhile the girls have been investigating going to some museums in Portland. As I said, I am still not sure what will happen, but my only decision is whether to go up myself for the internment. Funerals and internments are such odd events- best when there’s nothing but a communal feeling of grief. I really don’t think our society does well at handling Rites of Passage, although the military part of Dad’s burial was moving. Well, the military have had lots of practice at ceremony.
They left Sunday, pretty early because they had to pick up their friends. There was some talk about getting a roof pod for Willow’s car. Thursday we went up to Manchester because there was a flyer about a really impressive car sale and we were investigating the possibility of getting a car with better milage for our normal errands- when we don’t need lots of space for what we’re selling. We saw a REALLY nice one, just what we wanted, but it was younger than we were shopping for, and I refuse to be bullied or seduced by car salesmen into exceeding my budget. It’s very annoying to have them asking you what color you like, and whether you love the car. Come on! Miles per gallon, storage capacity, reliability, safety, all these things are important. How it looks? Not so much. They set my teeth on edge. I did some figuring, and think that a smaller car would be like the Sodastream. Once you add in all the expenses- buying and maintaining a third car, etc. I’m not sure we’d be saving money, but we would be saving gas. Would this reduce our environmental footprint? That’s a good question, and I don’t know.
Saturday was busy- They’d finished the new walls on Friday, and gave us the go-ahead to paint, so we painted the ceiling, then the walls, and trim and doors. I let Willow pick the color- a lovely Robin’s egg blue that should set the woodwork that has been stained “Royal Oak” (I think) off beautifully. I know that once it’s in, I’ll see the food that’s stored there, not the shelves. Wally was hoping we’d get that floor sanded too, but it’s a workroom and I don’t want to leave the stuff that’s filling the living room one day longer than I must.
What with the guys coming and going through the back hall, Smokey decided to go out. He’s spent many years as an indoor cat, so we were a bit nervous. He’s done it a couple of times but came back in. Thursday night he didn’t come in, Friday, John heard him (very spooky in the dark) up in a tree nearby. Saturday he was still Meowing, and the kids spotted him- about thirty feet up. I told them that when he got hungry enough he’d come down, but Willow said that if he’d been able to, he’d have done it by now.
So they put the extension ladder up against the tree, and went up after him. He went higher. Kat coaxed him a bit closer, but he wouldn’t cooperate. Willow went up and basically scruffed him- DRAGGED his claws from the branch to which he’d attached himself, and managed to get him down without major damage to either of them. I looked on and took pictures. I don’t know if you can zoom on this, but if you do you may be able to detect Smokey up by the trunk. He was NOT cooperative, nor did he seem grateful.
So on Saturday, Willow painted a room, saved a cat, did a bunch of errands, packed for a week long trip, went to a town festival, and also broke a tooth. (It’s got to be on a weekend doesn’t it?)
Willow got a picture of me at Community Day with her phone. Sadly she got it just as I was trying the cookies we’d got at the girlscout booth. They were made with margarine and I’m so spoiled I couldn’t even finish one. So in case you wondered about the sour expression. Mostly I was rocking out- the band was REALLY good.
So anyway, Willow and Kat left Sunday morning, and John and I have been on our own since then. I have spent what seems like an inordinate amount of time on the computer trying to get the conference organized. Why does it take so much organization? The SCA spoiled me. In the SCA there’s a bunch of officers each of whom takes care of their area- fighting, arts, whatever, and people seemingly falling over themselves to help with cooking and set up. All you have to do is call people. With this I have to advertise, and while people offer to help, so much is prep-work, and I have to do that myself. This is NOT the fun part!
The Pantry is proceeding apace- I’m taking pictures every day and posting them to facebook so the world can watch our progress. Clearly Don wants to do a really good job and appreciates the opportunity to do that and not just a “as quick and cheap as you can” job.
The plan for in front of the window is a removable section. We talked today about insetting the limestone block, but I think I’ll just put it on top- so I can move it around if I want to.
Other interesting bits and pieces- I have been looking into health insurance plans, but my being “morbidly obese” is a pre-existing condition, and while I could get a plan for “only” two thousand dollars a year if I were under 222 pounds (as if I could just do that if I chose to), I can get a guaranteed plan for six thousand dollars a year IF I can send them a “denial letter” from one of the companies that have turned me down. Denial letter? This has all been by phone. What really ticks me off is that the insurance person said they’d never heard of anyone who didn’t have one before. In this modern world of internet and phones and everyone but me works by physical mail? I think not. Why do they lie when they are so unconvincing? I wouldn’t mind so much if they didn’t insult my intelligence!
I also got a call to see if I could renegotiate my mortgage. The way they put it, even after the closing costs the lower interest will still save me $5K. I’ll give it a shot.
Since the girls have been gone John’s been watching a lot of comic hero movies that I’ve been following along- Hulk, Avengers, Captain America, Thor. I got Jack the Giant Slayer and Oz the great and Powerful from the library. They were pretty cool. I’m not sure worth buying, but worth watching. I liked the intimation that somehow the beanstalk was a way to cross between worlds, like the Norse World Tree, reaching from Midgard to Jotenheim, even though they didn’t mention that (as a matter of fact, blamed it on monks). I liked that the princess, although heroic was not a sword wielder. I have been reading several books about the Merovingians- VERY cool and crazy people. It’s like a soap opera reading about them fight among themselves. Some of them are rather old though, going back to a time where they assumed that any scholar OF COURSE could read Latin, so they don’t provide any translations! That’s very frustrating!
I just got some books on folklore by a professor emeritus at the Sorbonne: Claude Lecouteaux. He wrote The Tradition of Household Spirits, Return of the Dead: Ghosts, Ancestors, and the Transparent Veil of the Pagan Mind, Phantom Armies of the Night: The Wild Hunt and the Ghostly Processions of the Undead, & Witches, Werewolves and Fairies: Shapeshifters and Astral Doubles in the Middle Ages. I am more than moderately excited about that.
Well, the guys have left- they work 8 to 3, and I must go to the farmstand and get milk and salad stuff. Tonight I have another radio show, and I need to find the list of places where I can mail posters, and see if I can settle our schedule for this fall. I bailed on the East Coast Thing because I wanted to do something else- and forgot what. Wunjo Weekend and The Nine Worlds Festival got canceled. I have to try to get into Celebrate Samhain and DarkoverCon, and reserve for Harpers. It’s at the same site as last year, and the owner doesn’t want anyone driving on his lawn, so it’s a pain to set up to sell. Our new tent has arrived, and I’m eager to try it for the first time, but I certainly don’t want to hump all the pieces across a field- AND our goods to set it up. I have to seriously consider whether to sell or not. Since this IS our income it shouldn’t be a question, but it is. Willow is likely to be exhausted when she comes back after this week, and may take a pass on Harpers, and where would I be then?
Oh, I may have mentioned that my feet were hurting the past few letters. I almost forgot because they are feeling much better. No doubt from staying off them while being on the computer!
Ah well, I hope that this wasn’t too boring this week. I’ve been doing lots of philosophizing on facebook (far too much, probably), and used most of it up. One thing that’s really bugging me there is a page called “All Witches must die by fire” which although many have complained is still up because the fb people say that it doesn’t meet their requirements for hate speech. For goodness sake, that Texas kid, Justin Carter, has been in prison since March because when someone on the internet said that he was crazy, he responded “I’m going to go shoot up a school full of kids and eat their still beating hearts, LOL”, so he’s in frakking Prison, but a group of bozos who say all witches (a group) must die (death threat) by fire (in a specific and painful way) doesn’t come down to being “hate speech”? What the heck are their requirements? The posts on the site are example after example of ridiculous lies about witches stealing jobs and cursing people and causing diseases. If there are people out there stupid enough to post and read this, there are some when convinced by hanging with others who agree with them, to go out and hurt people full of a sense of their righteousness. This is inflammatory stuff! Yes, those two examples argue with one another. I think we should use judgement to figure out who’s dangerous and who isn’t.
OK, I’ve done a rant. I’ve done what I’m reading and watching, how the garden and the kids are doing. I’ve filled you in on the progress on the house. I guess that’s it for this week.
“I shall never be ashamed of citing a bad author if the line is good.”
Lucius Annaeus Seneca (who also said: “I don’t consider myself bald, I’m just taller than my hair.”)