Just got back from mailing your WCVE donations and it is July hot! It was 82 in the house and cooler outside but the forecast is continued hot and humid with possible afternoon showers to make it even muggier. Summer in the city and I’ll just take cold showers and keep changing t-shirts.
My fashion trend has dropped to the easy and comfortable. I don’t have to get ‘dressed up’ for anything or anyone so it is t-shirts and sweat shorts in the summer and sweats and jeans in the winter. Comfortable will not get me on the cover of GQ.
I started spring-cleaning early. Last fall, as the temperatures allowed, I started thinning out the stuff I’d been storing but not using. I had a dozen sheets of wallboard in the studio taking up space and I’ll never use them. I offered some people free construction supplies but no takers. So one by one I dragged a sheet out, propped it up on the fence and busted it up. I needed to get sizes that would fit in the Supercans. There is something very therapeutic about destroying an inanimate object with a hammer.
Then I noticed that a bunch of wood that I’d kept behind the little house was rotting. After the sheetrock was gone, the cut up remains started keeping the city busy dumping. I’m also getting better about recycling.
I had cut some branches down and was working on the crape myrtles on the side of the house when I noticed the bamboo had been doing a job on the windowsills.
The saber saw and 20’ stalks of bamboo became my next project. I cut down everything but a small plot in front of the window because I still like to watch them wave in the wind. After I trim them down and fill up the trashcans I’d pile the rest for next week. I even burnt out a circular saw and had to get a new one.
That started me pulling up ivy that had gone wild for the past few years. Pulling off the trees and out of the boxwoods. Boxwood had to be cut down due to the branches being so bent and a few died during the winter. Don’t know what happened? They just turned white and dropped all their leaves.
The cherry tree finally bit the bullet and had to be removed. Sorry to see her go for she served many with her fruit. Also the trees along the east fence were cut down along with the pear tree that Woody had peppered with holes. Half of the peach tree is gone and the plum tree is dead but I haven’t cut it down yet.
All this defoliation has opened up the yard to sunlight. There is still plenty of shade and dappled shadows but big difference in what I can see out the windows.
Speaking of which I had 5 windows replaced. The side windows are opaque so you cannot see anything and the back windows is single pane without the rotten wood panels giving a magnificent view of the yard. I’ve got a few café curtains up but am enjoying the light (even in the heat). Maybe I’ll replace the big three front windows next year.
Had to get some repair work down to Mansland, preparing for a painting job that hasn’t happened yet. I also decided to screen in the front porch using the same guy. I like sitting on the porch but I felt I was sitting on the sidewalk. The screen gives me a since of privacy so I guess it was worth the price.
I’m trying to get rid of things that frustrate me and also need to be removed. The wooden walkways had all rotted so I pulled them up, cut them up and replaced with a path of pine tags. The back fence gate was bothering me because it wouldn’t latch right and was falling apart but so was the rest of the fence so I got it replaced. The guys did a really nice job with cemented post, re-enforced thick panels and easy latches. It is now private in the back of the yard. All the neighbors think it is swell. Not so much that I don’t want to see them, but they don’t want to see me?
The neighborhood is always changing. John’s house up on the corner got foreclosed and they had to move out. From what I hear a young couple have bought the place and are basically refurbished inside and out for the past year. Down the block another house is being gutted and rebuilt. Several others are adding an addition or a second floor. Lots of construction noise is the norm of the day.
Jeanette still makes me a coffee cake every Christmas and leaves it by the front gate. I did fess up to her that I don’t eat that much sugar and appreciated the offering but I pass it on. Last year I went to the fire station that came to you on this date. A fireman opened the door and asked if I needed assistance. I offered him and the rest of the station the gift and went merrily on my way. It is always good to play Santa on Christmas.
Edna’s evangelical couple moved out and some girl moved in. I’ve never talked to her. She just gets out of her car and goes inside talking on the phone. The other side had the girl and her sugar daddy moving out and some guy moving in. I talked to him once when he was getting a branch over our yard cut down but have never talked again. He has a big black (loud) truck and a motorcycle (loud). Still they stay inside mostly so I’ve got the yard to myself.
Well not exactly alone in the yard. The bunnies enjoy the new wide area to hop and chase each other. The twins and their mom frolic in the morning then scatter to their hiding places. When I spread out the blueberry buffet they come hopping. I’ve found a seed that seems to be a hit and doesn’t leave a mess. The sunflower seeds left the shells and so did the peanuts. For some reason this year the Beau-Beau’s must have been cleaning out their storehouses and there were peanut shells all over the place, so I stopped putting them out. There was even one Petie who realized the bag was in the little house and just would walk in the door to help him to the stash. I’d chase him out and he’d turn around and just waddle on back in. I call him ‘Scoundrel’ because when he doesn’t get his way he just walks off and takes a piss. The Petie’s range in the dozens and the Beau-Beau’s are too numerous to keep track of. All the featured friends abound and wake me every morning at 4am with their welcome to the day.
Sleeping, even with new pillows, is still a struggle. Sleeping consist of tossing and turning and grinding my teeth waking in the sweats. The few hours I can are filled with dreams of the fantastic in multi-color and plots no director could come up with. I wake at dawn and go to bed around sunset but have been known to sleep on the porch until all hours.
For entertainment I listen to NPR for news and classical music with a few sessions of old CDs and a now and then capture from YouTube. I just have lost interest in television so the screen remains blank. I went to a couple of shows by myself and enjoyed somewhat but going out is about having someone to share the moment with.
Food also has lost any interest. Mostly frozen pizza but not so much any more. I tend more to breakfast food now. Egg sandwiches, granola with whole milk, and the occasional omelet with an egg in a box you can pour into the skillet. Instant coffee in the morning, a power bar or smoothie, and a bite of something around 4pm and I’m done. Of course there is constant hydration (thus the stretch comfy pants).
I still force myself outside everyday to ride to the store or post office or hardware so I do get some exercise but other than pulling ivy, cutting down trees, and hauling heavy boards I’m a slug.
I write this stuff because it clears my head and I do get some interesting responses for my madness. Other than that are a few emails but little other correspondence with another human being.
The presidential election helped clear the air with many people. It was not pretty or even civil so I cleaned up my ‘friends’ list the first of the year. This president has turned from unbelievable to laughable to perhaps certifiable to possibly dangerous and yet every day is a more bizarre plot that everyone soaks up and opinionated and degrades yet this is the President of the United States of America.
And someone has finally decided that the Class of 1967 should have a reunion. You remember (maybe you don’t because you got pretty smashed) the last one? This one might be an adventure to see who is left? We are that old now. Grand kids, aches and pains and retirement will be the subject of conversation but I’m having fun digging through the yearbook for photos.
Well it is about time to put out the July 4th watermelon treat for those furry and feathered neighbors and pick up some branches. Hoping for a rain tonight to keep down the fireworks but have hooked up the hose just in case. Seems everyone has taken a weekend away so it may continue to be quiet.
Until next year, the Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.