But are there bats in the belfry?
Thursday May 06th 2021, 10:49 pm
Filed under: Life

I’ve often thought I should ask you all, although, no, we’re not moving, so it’s a moot point anyway: the houses with rooms and racks and coolers for wine–if you don’t drink, what do you do with those? Leave them as is for future buyers? Rip them out? Store your balsamic vinegar sideways and hope it doesn’t leak? Try to freak your Mormon friends out with Martinelli’s in there? (Not to worry, we’re on to it.)

What other appliance fits in the space of a wine cooler in the kitchen? (Am I even calling it the right thing.) Can you take it out and put in, say, a second dishwasher? For parties? Since they’re both about parties (once you get past the first dishwasher any extras are definitely for parties and usually found only in bigger houses than we’d ever buy.) Right?

But this is taking it to a whole new level. My cousin found a house with a door that opens to a cave in the hillside, (note the fake window in picture 32) and her friend instantly said it would be great for her husband’s winemaking.

I’ve been in California too long–I looked at those pictures and thought, but egads, what would you do in an earthquake? Major heebie jeebies.

That’s a beautiful Tudor, even if it has an upskirt staircase, but really: isn’t that more Frodo’s natural hobbitat?

Best workaround ever
Wednesday May 05th 2021, 9:45 pm
Filed under: Life

As one who sometimes blanks on the word I’m trying to say, it made my day reading someone’s mention of their Chinese student trying to find chicken at the grocery store but unable to think of what they were called in English.

So the kid grabbed an egg and went for a clerk and asked: Where is its mother?

Old friends
Tuesday May 04th 2021, 10:47 pm
Filed under: Friends,Lupus

Constance’s work brought her back in town. Twice in two months after not seeing each other for probably ten years!

The plan was to sit in the shed again, but walking a few steps from the front entryway out of the air conditioning and into the blast of heat, we turned around in unison, going, just, no. She was fully vaccinated; I will be Thursday. Less risk to it overall if we go inside than of me being out even in filtered sunlight, right?

We sat in the living room distanced with me masked and her not so I could hear and spent a couple of hours swapping stories and catching up.

Man did it feel good.

She worried just a little about her Anya apricot seedling being babytreesat by her house sitter for a few days.

I figured if anything happens to it then I’ll know where the next one of mine should go.

The Maine idea
Monday May 03rd 2021, 11:15 pm
Filed under: Garden

The things you stumble across on the internet.

A guy in New England who bought this stuff by the truckload for his farm raved about it and said it had become popular enough that it’s now sold by the bag to everybody.

Lobster compost? I thought hey why not. If nothing else I’ll have the swankiest dirt in town. And so for the sheer novelty of it all I bought a bag.

I confess my back’s been antsy and after I managed to get the box over the front step when it arrived–I thought it was coconut water, oops, wrong return address–I haven’t yet hefted it over to the back yard. And I’m not about to open it in the house. My nose wants to know what it smells like in there, but only out there.

I just hope the raccoons don’t tear the heck out of my trees trying to get to the seafood.

Sunday May 02nd 2021, 11:09 pm
Filed under: History

Our friend who is a virology researcher at Stanford mentioned today a meeting he’d had with the chief technical officer at Moderna. Who told him that when the covid-19 virus was discovered and sequenced and it became clear what this was quickly becoming, (she, I think he said) vowed that the lights would never go off at night till they had this beat. And they did not. Round the clock, they were on it and they stayed on it.

“And they are not a big company,” he told us.

But they knew they could do something about it and that every day fewer that it took to test and then get those vaccines out there could be thousands upon thousands of lives saved around the world.

And then there was Dolly Parton, who jump-started the effort with a million dollars in seed money while they waited for the Federal grants to come through.

Peace, Lily
Saturday May 01st 2021, 8:47 pm
Filed under: Family,Friends,Garden

The Peace Lily Afton sent me when my father died just opened up some new flowers. When the old ones start to fade it has sent up more, again and again.

It is a very patient plant. I’ve underwatered it, and it perked right up again when rescued. I’ve overwatered it, and it held on till I realized my mistake, poured the unseen water in the outer pot out, and then it was fine.

I’ve had it in an east-facing window this past year and a half, not knowing that’s exactly what it would most want.

And it has been a comfort these long months every time I see it, offering a sense of the nearness of friends, Afton, her Tall One, everybody, no matter how far away we all may be in our quarantines.

(Just now noticing, I really ought to take that brown stick out–the florist’s card is long gone.)

As for the human Lillian, she was upset that her brother got to do something she didn’t and he was getting all the attention for it, too, while she got told no when she tried to grab away what was clearly now a toy. If someone’s going to use that it was going to be her!


As blog is our witness, someday we get to tell her that yes, she did, she cried because she didn’t get to scrub the toilet.