August 18, 2010
We are watching as our yard becomes home to over twenty chip monks, jack rabbits, (too fast to count), cotton tail bunnies, (can't count them either) and Quail, mom's, pop's, teenagers and babies 8-18 hatch at a time. I think they are attracted to the wild flowers, finch bird seed and plain ole good energy. We had two chip monks last year and I counted one bunny. Never seen Jack rabbits like we have now. We have lots of grass to eat for the rabbits and worms in the grass for the birds. I think we have an over population problem. YIKES!! The teenage Quail are "doing it" because all of a sudden we have a lot more young looking parents walking around with 8-15 new babies. They are SO darn cute!! I think they have discovered the Promised Land and we are happy to oblige. However, I'm wondering if this could turn into a problem....but a friend told me that the eagles and bigger birds and other predators thin out the crowd, so not to worry. Our neighborhood cat, CeCe loves to come over and hunt through the wild flowers. Unfortunately, Susan says that he brings back a gift of a chip monk to her at times. Glad I don't witness that!
We visit Jim's mom, who is 95 1/2 years old, every 3-4 months in Hope Valley, Rhode Island. It was very humid there this time, so we frequented the Lickity Splits ice cream stop almost every day. We love to people watch and were very delighted to see two people come up on their motorcycles. The man had his own and his wife, Connie, had a sidecar where Bonnie sat. She is a mix of Golden Retriever and Chow. She waited patiently in the car while her master bought her a small cup of vanilla ice cream. She lapped it right up. Bonnie is 14 years old and a very lucky doggie. I think her owners believe they are the lucky ones!
August 2, 2010
I have never had to be evacuated from my home. Today it almost happened. I saw the smoke from the Rooster Rock fire this afternoon around 2:00. My neighbor called with the news and I looked out the window to find billows of smoke filling the sky. It looked very close to our neighborhood. My husband said that we would not have to be evacuated...we would be fine and started watering the lawn. The Sheriff drove up into the driveway around 7:15. I was just cleaning up the dinner dishes. There was a frantic knock at the door. I answered and I didn't feel like it was me answering....it was like I was watching the whole scene. He told me that it was not mandatory that we left, but that the fire was out of control and he was recommending it. I called Jim and he took over the conversation. He came into the house and said that he wasn't going anywhere. I was not going to sit back and wait until the fire showed up in our yard. I felt like I was in a Laurel and Hardy skit and was running around in circles, not knowing what to pack. It was surreal. I didn't think about taking pictures off the walls or loading up all of our suitcases. A friend offered to come with his truck and help us pack things, but I wasn't sure he would be able to get to our neighborhood. I got insurance papers, went through the files for other important papers and cleaned out the safe for birth certificates, passports and other documents. I grabbed our medical folder as well as my banking folder, my journals, two boxes of old photographs, checkbooks, jewelry box, two Trader Joe bags of bathroom drawer things, two pairs of shoes for each of us and a couple of armful's of clothes and one small suitcase of other clothing. The kitty girls were wondering what was going on and followed me everywhere. I had a bag of cat food, one litter box and four kitty carriers standing by. I went around taking pictures of every room and inside the drawers. My husband did the same upstairs. I took pictures of the insides of the closets and cupboards. He made an inventory list of everything in each room that was valuable. We stood by at the upstairs windows watching the smoke from the fire head south. We could see the orange light coming up from behind the trees in the forest over behind our development. We heard Mr. Cowen on the news, who lives at the opposite end of our development, say that he could see the flames. YIKES! All of a sudden, I stopped sweating and looked up at the sky and just said, "Okay, whatever happens I don't have any control over. It's just another adventure. We will get out, along with our pets and if we have to start over with the material things, we will. The most important thing is that we are safe." And I let go. So now, it's 11:20 and I am here at the computer, not really wanting to go to bed. I suppose the Sheriff would come back to make sure everyone was gone from the neighborhood if the wind kicks up and the fire starts heading our way. I keep checking the front to see if I can still see the orange sky. Jim is eating ice cream upstairs....guess he is not worried. I'm sleeping in my clothes tonight.