Friday, August 29, 2014

Where Many Paths and Errands Meet

Long time no post. Shall I catch you up?

There has been feline chaos in our house. My Skittles and Zephyr are not getting used to my son's cat, Hunter (who is visiting while my son is on course until November).

They show their displeasure frequently.

With their bladders.

Hunter is a very sweet and loving cat with the human population. But with the other kitties in this house, he most definitely lives up to his name. He sees a moving cat as a challenge and will often ambush them on their way to or from the litter boxes. For this reason (and because cats are vindictive creatures by nature), they are frequently finding other areas to pee. I know it's a sign of their distress. They have never had a problem with inappropriate peeing before. My cats are old (fifteen) and they can not hold their own with this large, strong, young (three) male. When Hunter attacks, he really hurts my guys. He'll jump them, bite the back of the neck and kick hard with his hind claws. There is a lot of screaming (from the victim and from me!) during these sessions - which happen at least once every couple of days. A spray bottle helps break it up but there's not always one at hand. If we're lucky, it can be averted altogether if we happen to notice Hunter's tail just before an attack. It gets all bushy. Hunter is an otherwise sweet cat, and he seems genuinely perplexed when he is removed from the situation for a time out in the laundry room. He is always isolated at night which bothers me more than him. But my guys need some peace. Come morning, he's full of purrs, piss and vinegar.

We've gone to considerable expense trying to eliminate the problem and the odour. We've invested in this (far too expensive for the area we need to cover) and this which was 100% useless at $125 for the diffuser and spray. Next up we're going to try this much less expensive solution. From what I'm reading, it sounds promising.

Despite the unpleasant atmosphere, we've still had a few guests come to visit. My cousin Marcy, Frank's friend Peter and my son, Jeffrey have all spent some time here over the last few weeks. We're hoping to have more company through the months of September and October. And less cat pee.

Our family is mourning the loss of our dear Auntie Gertie, earlier this month. She was my late Dad's youngest sister, and the last one standing from his generation. She was a wonderful lady with a quick sense of humour and I will miss her dearly. Some of you might remember my post when Frank and Jeffrey demolished her sofa. And some of you might also be familiar with my cousin Phyllis who blogged over at Prompt Prose and eFoodAlert. My aunt was mom to her and her sister, Barbra. Phyllis' blogging is on hold while she is writing a book and moving house.

Our renovations are still incomplete and untouched for several weeks at a time. Someone is supposed to be coming out again next week. We'll see.

I finally bought myself a television - one that doesn't have any sports on it whatsoever! Along with it, I purchased a Roku and am now enjoying Netflix. Unfortunately, the Canadian version doesn't offer nearly as much as the U.S. network but there are still a few things of interest, and I'm already hooked on Orange is the New Black. But does it ever cut into blogging time...

And with that update, I'll move right along with a few photos.


country road
The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
~ J.R.R. Tolkien
This is the view from one of the many side roads which surround our place. The numerous hills and valleys are less fun in the winter but every bit as beautiful.





rickity
I was so naive as a kid I used to sneak behind the barn and do nothing.
~ Johnny Carson
One of the many rickety barns which charmingly dot the countryside.





hay you 2
There is no reason to fear the wind if your stack of hay is well tied.
~ Irish Saying
Of course, if there are country roads and barns, there's going to be hay. This truck was spotted rounding a corner and the photo was snapped from my seat inside a Bancroft, Ontario restaurant.





station street bancroft
The nice part about living in a small town is that when you don't know what you're doing, someone else does.
~ Immanuel Kant
If you're at all curious about Bancroft, here's a small look at one of its side streets. It could just as easily be Mayberry, with that bench outside of Floyd's Tony's Barber Shop.





memorial
Unable are the loved to die. For love is immortality.
~ Emily Dickinson
This sad memorial stands by the highway a few kilometres from our house. I tried Googling the name, location, dates.. etc but came up empty. He died heartbreakingly young at 19.






a fishing spot
Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after.
~ Henry David Thoreau
As the quote indicates, we were out fishing not too far from this pretty little point. We didn't catch anything that day but...





lobster
If you work on a lobster boat, sneaking up behind someone and pinching him is probably a joke that gets old real fast.
~ Jack Handey
... we were able to catch some lobster at the local grocery store. Dipped in garlic butter... yum!





awakening ferns
What a joy it is to feel the soft, springy earth under my feet once more, to follow grassy roads that lead to ferny brooks.
~ Helen Keller
Also yummy with garlic and butter are fiddleheads. I don't think these are the right ferns for fiddleheads, and if they are, they've already passed the stage at which they're prime for picking, but if you ever get the chance to eat some, don't pass it up. They're delicious.





pink and iris2
It is at the edge of a petal that love waits.
~ William Carlos Williams
Growing amid the ferns are the fruits of the previous owner's labours. She planted lovely flower gardens in both the front and the back, and we're enjoying it all immensely. Thanks, Josie.



chickie
We learned to be patient observers like the owl. We learned cleverness from the crow, and courage from the jay, who will attack an owl ten times its size to drive it off its territory. But above all of them ranked the chickadee because of its indomitable spirit.
~ Tom Brown, Jr.
The chickadees are also enjoying our space, along with the seeds and occasional fruit left out for their dining pleasure. Don't you just love their ever-watchful little black button eyes?

That's it for this post. More photos coming up next time.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Peterborough

At the very start of summer, I spent a couple of days visiting my dear friend Carol Anne and her significant other, Michael at his place in Peterborough, Ontario. It was less than a two hour drive but I was welcomed to stay for a couple of nights and so I did.

Part of the reason for the trip was to look for some furniture. Pickings are slim up in our neck of the woods and if I was going to be able to find a desk that I liked, among other things, I was going to have to look at more extensive offerings. Peterborough is a good place for that. I was able to find a desk and a file cabinet in one place, and a headboard and a nice cabinet for a television elsewhere. I'm still awaiting delivery for the last two pieces but I'm typing from my new desk which my son, Jeffrey so helpfully set up for me.

The other part of my reason was of course to spend some time with Carol Anne. She and I used to get together at least twice a month when we were both city dwellers but geographical distance and various commitments have made that a lot more difficult. Rumour has it that she will eventually be moving to Peterborough which is an hour closer than her current home, so that might improve our visit ratio once again.

So back to my weekend in that wonderful city. My camera came along, of course and below are just a few of the images I snapped while wandering around with good friends.

porch kitty
We walked a lot. This cutie caught my eye on one of those walks. She posed nicely for me.





boarding in peterborough2
The day was sunny and warm - just perfect for these paddle boarders to enjoy an outing on the water.





peterborough marina
Here's a glimpse of the marina at dusk.



 

late day sun on little lake
The houses on the opposite shore of Little Lake were basking in the setting sun.





having fun
There was some music happening in the park. Unfortunately the event was poorly attended - at least when we stopped by late in the day. The group was pretty decent but the most entertaining part was watching these two special needs gentlemen joyfully grooving to the tunes. The man in the green cap danced all over the park, and engaged several onlookers in conversation. His happy spirit was rather contagious.





selfie
This cute couple was sitting a short distance away from us. I can't say that I've ever photographed a selfie-in-the-making before. Now I have.





marina6
Heading back after the show, we passed that same spot at the marina - all lit up for nightfall.





marina
Same place - different view.





marina7
The river boat would make a fun party spot, don't you think?




Michael and Carol Ann bridge
Heading back across the bridge - the same one from which we saw those paddle boarders in the water below.

Time to wrap this up. Thank you for the lovely visit, Carol Anne and Michael. You two are great hosts!

More photos coming up before too much longer.