Snug …

I have mentioned before that we are keeping Lucy in a crate at night and also when we’re not at home. We and she are fortunate that she actually likes it. She spends most of every evening in it, unless she’s cruising for cat food in the kitchen, or pestering us for human food.


When she lived with my mother, every night at bedtime she raced into my mother’s bedroom and jumped up onto my mother’s bed. Then she burrowed under the covers.

lucy in mother's bed

This was when my mother was staying at an assisted living facility. We bought some fleece-lined steps so Lucy could get onto my mother’s bed without jumping.

When we brought Lucy to our house, we got her a bed that let her get into it like a sleeping bag.

lucy in her bag

Unfortunately, it doesn’t fit into her crate. We have to use fleece blankets and towels for her bedding. But Lucy is persistent. She has managed to find a way to burrow under the covers.

Going ...

Going …

Going ...

Going …



That’s her ear sticking up towards the back of the crate.

We have since found a large mattress cover that gives her lots of possibilities for burrowing.

Friday Felines

Poor Rusty and Dusty.

Every morning when they can, Dusty and Rusty like to find a nice, sunny spot to warm up.

sunning cats

I feel so sorry for Dusty and Rusty. They were dumped here with their mother when they were young. We have fed them and given them a home ever since. They have lived their entire lives right around the front of the garage. They love to be petted, and Rusty purrs all the time. But they’re still skittish, and Smokey and Sylvester constantly torment them. They act like they want to come in, but they’re afraid. Dusty came in the front door once, went down the stairs, checked out the basement, then came upstairs and went right back out. He’s never been back inside. Rusty sits at the front and stares through the storm door, but she has never come in. It’s too bad they aren’t more like Chloe. She gets to sleep on our bed in the winter and she gets to come and go as she pleases.


Cool peppers

Our neighbor across the street gave us a jalapeño plant back in the summer. It was a nice, little plant with a couple of little chiles. They grew up, and we (mostly I) ate them. They were  essentially entirely without heat, but quite tasty. We brought it in when the weather turned, and it has been growing new peppers ever since.

jalapeno plant

It’s heavy with fruit now. The leaves are looking kind of ragged but it is still managing to ripen some peppers. I would have eaten a red one and a green on Sunday evening, but I was so tired* I didn’t feel like cooking anything that took longer than 90 seconds. There are a few tiny, little baby jalapeños on the plant, but I doubt that they will get the chance to ripen. Still, there are plenty left to eat.


* Leah and I spent a sleepless Saturday night at the ER. She had another episode with her chronic bowel obstruction. She came home Sunday morning, although her doctor would have preferred her to stay. She’ll probably make an appointment to see him later in the week. In the meantime, she’s feeling OK but now on a liquid diet. No jalapeños for her.

An intersection to be avoided

A wide cross section of Rome’s population shops at Walmart. There are white people, black people, Hispanic people and oriental people. There are people who are probably on the lower economic rungs, and there are those on the upper rungs. There are newborn babies, taken care of by their parents, of course, and some so aged that they should be taken care of by their children, or maybe even their grandchildren. I’m afraid that our steady exposure to all these different segments of society has turned me into a racist.

I’m afraid of old, white men.

I shouldn’t be afraid of old, white men. It’s wrong to judge every one of them just because of the actions of a few. After all, I am an old, white man. It’s just that some old, white men make me uncomfortable, uneasy, almost afraid. It’s the ones who are wearing pistols on their hips. We have seen at least four men carrying pistols in Walmart in the last couple of months, and three were old, white men. Now I notice old, white men in the store. I check them out. I look them up and down. I look for that gun riding up on their high-waisted pants. If I see one in the frozen foods aisle, I feel an urge to back away slowly and carefully and then dive into the ethnic food aisle. Leah wants to confront them, to ask them just why they’re carrying. But I don’t think it’s a good idea. Even a little lady like Leah might seem menacing to a scared, old, white man carrying a loaded pistol; who knows?

I don’t have anything against guns. I have been around them all my life and still have some. I like things that make loud noises, and I like knocking tin cans off rocks at 50 paces. (“Tin cans” – I told you I’m old.) And I have nothing against old, white men. Usually the greatest danger they pose is that they will bore you with stories of their glory days, just like I do. But these particular old, white men are different, and I’m afraid the set of old, white men who carry pistols is going to intersect at Walmart with another set of people.

Most Walmart customers, like most people in general, are friendly and polite. They say “Sorry” when they cut you off with their buggies, and they thank you if you hand them a can from a high shelf. But one night we saw the other kind. He was a large, white man who was very angry that someone had cut in front of him in line. He was loud, belligerent and profane, and he kept it up long after any normal person would have stopped in embarrassment. It got so bad that the manager told the man to take it outside. I’m just afraid that one day, the scared, old, white man with a gun is going to meet the aggressively loud, spoiling-for-a-fight, angry man at the checkout, and someone is going to pay for Georgia’s carry-anywhere law.

I don’t want to be there, and I especially don’t want Leah to be there.

I just wonder why I have to worry about that in a supposedly civilized country.