Friday, November 21, 2014


You can try for a smooth sail, for a clean day, a lovely day, a move-forward-with-your-projects day, but in the end, you have to be prepared to step back into the demands of regular old life, which always gives you plenty of mixups and puzzlers and annoying little rigamaroles and whosiewhatsies to deal with.


First thing to note -- bring out the whistles and confetti! We caught another (no.11) mouse! This one is as tubby as they come, leading me to ask if it is maybe a rat. (It's not.) Hurrah! We had had a lull in our captures and I worried that they were all outsmarting us now. Not so. We're still in business.

Then, on the amusing rather than annoying side of things, there was the sudden need to give Ed a haircut. I'd been offering, he'd been declining and I've been secretly happy, as I like the wild long hair that never behaves and that he allowes me sometimes to untangle with my hairbrush. But today, before he left for his techie meetings, he finally asked for a trim and so here he is, trimmed and buffed, at breakfast:


A hurried breakfast, after a hurried trim (you can tell it was very lawn-mowerish in the execution). Hurry, hurry. You can imagine how much I like THAT approach to any day!

Ed then goes off to his day long meeting of the mechanically inclined and I begin my activities with a visit to the cheeper hangout. It's gorgeously sunny and not too cold --  a decent 20F/-7C maybe -- and so they are out of the barn, tentatively surveying the landscape. Not too far from shelter, in case, just in case the heavens come down.

Worrying that perhaps any laid eggs would freeze with a whole series of single digit F lows, Ed came up with the clever idea of weaving a pipe warmer under the wood shavings in the coop. It doesn't emit that much heat and has no dangers associated with it. Indeed, it did raise the temps a few degrees inside. Very clever.

But as I chatted to the cheepers...


...and cleaned their coop, I saw to my great horror that one of the eggs in the roost was destroyed (another was fine). Crashed into smithereens. And truly, I am not imagining it -- Scotch, the layer of said egg (hers are the only brown ones) was to the side of the barn, wailing. I mean, really wailing.

Now, Scotch is our vocal girl. She jabbers and makes sounds and we love this about her! Always has something clever (if indecipherable) to say! But a wail?!

So I pull out the warming band that Ed had installed, fearing that maybe someone (an intruder? or worse -- one of the brood?) mistook this egg for something you should eat, it being nice and warm and special, or maybe they were trying to nuzzle the warm chord and accidentally crunched the egg -- whatever the explanation, my impulse was to take out what had just been put in.

And then I left to do ten days' worth of grocery shopping, which was tremendously expensive and tiresome because I never make a grocery list and I can only think in terms of seven days in advance and we're talking about ten here.

I was very glad to return to the farmette.


Though I can't say that it was smooth sailing thereafter. I went back to my big manuscript to think deeply about the first ten pages. You know the prevailing wisdom: you need to write the perfect first ten to crack and enter the refined world of published authors. So I studied. And considered further repairs.  I changed a comma or two. I have reworked these initial sentences so much over the years that I cannot see beyond the shadows the letters make on the screen before me.

Evening comes. (It always does, doesn't it?) The mouse trap is set again, the cheepers are tucked  in the coop. Supper dishes are put away, a glass of wine still lingers on my computer table. Time to write an Ocean post.