Eight Nine Ten
Monday August 09th 2010, 11:22 pm
Filed under: Amaryllis,Life,Wildlife

Ya gotta love a date like that. The lazy days of summer… An amaryllis opening up four months early or eight months late, whatever, just because today seemed a good day for it.  A twined-twinned-stemmed avocado plant,  two  for the price of sprouting one.

My arthritis has been flaring for the first time in a long time–too much sun, I guess, and some heavy lifting I shouldn’t have done–and I knit one row today and stopped for fear of doing damage.  Ice and (I hope) tomorrow for that.  But I got day-t0-day stuff done that needed doing, watched the squirrel watching the day, and all the while you could almost see that flower opening up; it looked like the bud above it, this morning.

And I went off to buy birdseed to take good care of my flock.

Where I encountered someone I’ve seen just a few times who, when I said, with no previous conversation, that I’d like the patio mix and the sunflowers, expecting her to ring those up too, tried to tell me, rather tersely, that those three and a half inch square suet cakes I had at the counter were not my 20 pound bags of birdseed.

Wait, come again?

Yeah, that confused me as much as it does you.  What on earth?! I smiled sweetly and said, Yes, I have a suet holder. I feed lots of birds. (I didn’t add, a suet holder plus three kinds of birdfeeders and a giant sugar pine cone the chickadees love to dance on and I have nuttall’s woodpeckers–a male today at last, so there’s a pair now!  And juncos and titmice and house finches and goldfinches and Bewick’s wrens and pine siskins and bluejays and  chestnut-backed chickadees despite being at the edge of their range and drab California towhees that let you in on the secret by seeing they really do have a lot going on when they’re up close and a brightly-colored Eastern towhee going neener neener at its cousins and mourning doves and the occasional brown-headed cowbird that had taken over the bedroom and the fridge at some other bird family’s nest and a yellow warbler and what am I forgetting here, bright erratic hummingbirds, the Cooper’s hawk and a red-tailed hawk, the brief lamented budgie, the Golden Eagle next door–and then a mockingbird, the day after our trip last week, finally showing up on the porch for the first time after all this time to stand there staring me down from right there at the other side of the glass to demand, So where are MY favorites?  And so I’d read the packages and had picked out two suet cakes this time, one, my usual, and one that had dried mealworms in it. Mockingbird? You’re welcome.)

If I can’t be outside, bring the outside to me.

If only I understood why on earth she seemed put out, still, that I was buying that suet.  Huh.  Here, hon, I wanted to tell her, maybe you need to learn to knit. Maybe some feathery lacy patterns would be just the thing.

Or to take some time watching a black squirrel happily birdwatching on a perfect 72 degree Bay Area day.  Eight, nine, ten… And that’s just the ones on the feeders.

(I really needed some knitting time afterwards to bring things back to normal, a book wasn’t enough. I may just push my hands into it tomorrow anyway and maybe it’ll even help them recover.)

10 Comments so far
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Maybe she was irritated that she’s so busy selling seed, she doesn’t have time to watch the birds? 🙂 Glad you had such a nice vacation – and thank you for sharing it – I had a nice stay-va-cation enjoying your stories. 🙂 But, it’s good to have you back and…as much as you want it, I wouldn’t rush the knitting if it hurts. Waiting longer on this end will make for more knitting time later on. 🙂 Trust me…I’m experienced with this. 🙂 Can you download a knitting video online?….knitting enjoyment vicariously? It does help soothe the knitting want-tos – strangely enough. 🙂
Best wishes,

Comment by Abby Baker 08.10.10 @ 4:44 am

She obviously has had no training in customer service. That’s when I like those customer comment cards and one of the reasons I always shop Costco because I always get fantastic service. Please tell me you were not at Costco.

Comment by Joansie 08.10.10 @ 5:19 am

well, my guess is she was having a bad day — and it’s nice that you didn’t feel the need to return it in kind! (which would seem totally out of character for you anyway)

I hope your hands are feeling better pronto!!

(and thank you so much for your kind words on my blog!!)

Comment by Bev 08.10.10 @ 9:06 am

I am always amazed when cashiers, or other service people get rude with the customers, cut us off in mid sentence when asking a question or just not caring about how they serve us. Makes me wonder why they are working in the service area with the public. I know that dealing with the public is not always fun, there are those rude customers (I have worked in public service areas for many years) who can certainly make a day not fun, but I would certainly like to tell them if you can not learn to not take things personally, are not a people person or can’t deal with people who aren’t nice and then take it out on the other customers, find another job that doesn’t require dealing with the public, PLEASE!!!!

Comment by LDSVenus 08.10.10 @ 9:44 am

Really weird. Makes you wonder what was going on in her day, and inside her head. I’m glad you got to come home and reset; it’s sometimes hard to walk away from things like that without it ruining your day, too!

Comment by Jocelyn 08.10.10 @ 10:41 am

Well, since it doesn’t seem that she did it, thank you for your business. The birds appreciate it!

Comment by Channon 08.10.10 @ 12:32 pm

My niece was hoping her baby would be born yesterday so she could always remember its birthdate. But we haven’t heard yet, and I’m not quite willing to bug her to ask, “Haven’t you had that baby yet?” So we’ll hear within the next few days if it worked.

Comment by LauraN 08.10.10 @ 1:18 pm

I’m smiling a cheerful smile and offering to carry that seed out to your car from here in Minnesota to try and make up for that clerk’s misfire. I hope she feels better tomorrow.

Comment by twinsetellen 08.10.10 @ 4:22 pm

I hope your hands are feeling better!!!

I agree with you: maybe this lady needs to learn to knit. Or crochet. Or do embroidery. Something creative… 😉

Comment by Suzanne in Montreal 08.11.10 @ 6:11 am

Hi Alison, your photo above reminded me that I’ve been wanting to ask you (the only amyrilis expert I know of) about our plant’s behavior. It bloomed on schedule last winter and after dying back was put in the garage (since we in the NW can’t keep them outside). About a month or so ago we noticed green leaves trying to find their way out of shelf space and we brought it in and watered, etc. It now has 3 huge leaves (about 3.5 ft long) but no flower stalk. Normal? Will it bloom again later? Thanks for any insight.

Comment by Joan 08.11.10 @ 8:22 am

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