Friday, September 28, 2007

This is Ande. It isn't a great picture, but it is hard to get him to hold still. Our vet appointment is Monday. He seems healthy, although I'm not sure whether feline leukemia and AIDS have obvious symptoms. At this point, he spends days in the bedroom, and nights on the porch. In the evening, after dinner, I bring him into the living room with us. The dogs are OK with him. They sniff him like crazy, but that's it. He has no relationship with Edna - since she is a kitchen cat his contact with her is minimal. That's OK with me, until we know his health status.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Hooray! Good news for horses.

Chicago was awesome! Better than the Proctor's show last year, and I'm sure better than seeing it on Broadway. The theatre was tiny, the acoustics were amazing, and afterwards for $10 we got dessert and a cabaret show, with some of the actors singing favorite songs from other shows.

Hot again today! More than 80 degrees.

Friday, September 21, 2007

I haven't had the time, nor the inclination to write very much here. This week started out with Rudy's birthday; he would have been 12 if he was still here. (sniff) The next day, the 18th, was mine. Tuesday is a teaching day, and after my night class we had an extravagant meal at Marche. Bob got me tickets to see Chicago at the Cohoes Music Hall for tomorrow. It is hot today, more than 80 degrees! The garden is thriving. The computer remains a problem in Samsonville. I have some things fixed, and some things still pending. I am tired of the hassle. Little Ande (spelling it that way, it is Edna backwards) is doing well, though still isolated from the other animals at this point.

Friday, September 14, 2007

As the kickoff to my birthday week celebration, we ate at one of our favorite restaurants, Villa Valenti last night, great meal but something unexpected happened. There was a little stray kitten hanging around in the parking lot, very friendly, maybe 2 months old more or less. It was still there when we came out after dinner and the restaurant owners wound up convincing us to take it. I guess some people at a house nearby have unspayed and unneutered semi wild cats that constantly have batches of kittens and the owners of Villa Valenti are always convincing patrons to adopt the nicer ones or taking them themselves. There must have been four or five kittens there of the same age but this was the only tame one. I am not sure if it is male or female but it is extremely cute, grey and white. I need another cat like a hole in the head and I joked to Bob that maybe I will take it to Samsonville and let it out at my mother's barn and act like I have no clue where it came from!!

Anyway it is on the porch right now. It ravenously ate the cat food I gave it last night and then it curled up and slept on a blanket. Right now s/he is hiding behind some stuff on the porch. I think the dogs barking at the mailman etc. is pretty scary. This morning after my dentist appointment (I was getting my temporary cap - luckily the novocaine didn't impact me the same as last time with the root canal!). I went to Petsmart (which I hate, but the small privately owned pet store was closed) and bought the necessary supplies.

I wasn't planning to introduce it into the house until I had taken it to the vet, but after reading a bunch of stuff on the Internet about kitten care that left me feeling anxious, I called our vet and she made me feel a lot better. She said that the kitten does need to be tested for Feline Leukemia and AIDS and until then shouldn't really have major contact with Edna. But she said Edna can't get Leukemia at her age, and she is only at risk for AIDS if the cats bite each other. So keeping the kitten in a crate inside the house or traveling with it in a carrier in the same car will not put Edna at risk. She said that it would actually be good to let them sniff each other and they can be in the same room. She wasn't concerned about the dogs at all. She is sending me a wormer, she said that is something to do right away but she doesn't feel we need to bring the kitten to see her for about a month because it is too young to have shots and the Leukemia/AIDS tests are more accurate on a bit older kitten than this one seems to be. She also said food is not a big deal at all, it can eat raw, cooked homemade or high quality canned.

Anway, if it is too traumatic for Edna or too much of a hassle with Sam (I doubt Sophie will be an issue) I will try to find it a home even if I have to pay for the neutering. I thought since yesterday was Mimmie's birthday maybe that was some kind of sign; she was a major cat person (at one time she may have had 40...yes, animal eccentricity is deep in my genes). If we wind up keeping it, and it is a female I will call it Annie after her, if male it will be Andy. I have never raised a kitten before, hope it is easier than a puppy!

The guy from the store Bob took the computer to called. It's the motherboard. That is very hard to fix, and expensive when it can be fixed. Even going with used, it would be $150, he said. So, we worked out a deal. He isn't going to charge me any labor at all. Instead he is going to charge me $150 for a similar machine and put in everything from mine (CD Rom, graphics card, hard drive, plus the most memory he can do using mine and that one together, the modem if it will fit, plus the NIC card). He''ll check all the parts to be sure they work (I am not sure, and neither is he, if anything else was burnt out from the surge until they are in a working machine). But he feels, as I do, that probably only the motherboard, and maybe the NIC card were fried. In which case he'll put in a new NIC card. He'll call when it is ready. I suppose I could have done it all myself with a the new box he is selling me or my mother's old one or a yard sale machine but it wouldn't have come in much cheaper or even if it would have with my mother's old one as I mentioned before I am burnt on repairs.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Comfort Food

Okay . . . picture this (really) worst-case scenario: It’s cold and raining, your boyfriend/girlfriend has just dumped you, you’ve just been fired, the pile of unpaid bills is sky-high, your beloved pet has recently died, and you think you’re coming down with a cold. All you want to do (other than hiding under the covers) is to curl up with a good book, something warm and comforting that will make you feel better.

What do you read?

(Any bets on how quickly somebody says the Bible or some other religious text? A good choice, to be sure, but to be honest, I was thinking more along the lines of fiction…. Unless I laid it on a little strong in the string of catastrophes? Maybe I should have just stuck to catching a cold on a rainy day….)

Well, to be honest after all those bad things happening, I probably would not feel like reading, I'd feel like drinking several glasses of a cordial such as Frangelico (which works much better than most cold remedies). I'm a miserable patient and when I have a cold reading isn't all that appealing to me. When a beloved pet has recently died, I don't do much besides cry; even Frangelico isn't a salve. Stacks of unpaid bills make me too nervous to concentrate on reading. If I lost my job, I'd probably be frantically looking for another rather than reading. And I've been married a long time, so I can't remember the dumping thing enough to connect.

But in terms of what I read as a comfort book, it isn't generally fiction (although if I was reading a fiction book during a crisis, I could easily see using it as an escape mechanism). My favorite comfort book is one I have read many times: Mark Twain's Autobiography. It is funny, touching, timeless and true to life, all at the same time. (If I could have quickly thought of a substitute word for funny that would have fit with the alliteration...I would have.)

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

I have the rest of the week off because the university has a short break. Classes are going OK, I have 33 students in the Social Foundations day class, 24 in the evening section, 20 in the online section, and 28 in Toleration. Landed smart rooms all around so that makes things easier. So far, I'm very happy with the changes I made this semester. I got a raise! That makes sending back the recent canvass letter I got for a job (a better one, if the criteria is salary; a worse one on all other criteria) a cinch.

Over the weekend while I was at Olive Day for a few hours, there was some sort of brown out or surge that fried my computer and router in Samsonville again! I was especially pissed because I have been unplugging everything since the last lightening episode, but since I was only gone for a few hours and didn't think there would be a storm, I didn't bother. The electricity was on, and the clocks weren't even blinking, so I'm thinking the cable is the culprit.

So, I bought some higher quality surge protectors that can also take cable wires, I am getting a replacement router since it is (still!) on warranty, and Bob took the machine to a repair place. He managed to turn a deaf ear to the technician's suggestion that he buy a new machine instead of bothering to see if the fried one can be fixed again. Well, not exactly a new machine - another crappy machine that is only the equivalent of the crappy broken machine. The tech insisted I can just swap out all the upgraded components into a new crappy box. Yes, Bob agreed, I probably could. But I am as fried on doing that as the machine is. I just want someone else to fix it at this point. And if I have to resort to a crappy replacement, I'm not going to pay the computer store for that type of machine when I can get one at a yard sale. Or use my mother's spare computer instead.

Just because I can do something, doesn't mean I enjoy doing it. At my old job, I was often stuck with tinkering with the computers just because I was good at it. I didn't like that job duty at all and that hasn't changed. I already spend way too much time on those sort of tasks.

Anyway, it was a nice weekend for swimming. We'll probably close the pool this weekend.

Friday, September 07, 2007

I'm making this post just so that in the future when I check back...I will remember that it was 88 degrees and humid today! The garden is thriving. The new mums I put in are starting to bloom. Looks like it will be another swimming weekend.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

What with being back on campus and the hectic weekend, I haven't had a lot of time for posting. On Friday night, we saw the Music Man at the Mac-Haydn theatre in Chatham. It was awesome!! Before the show, we ate dinner at Lippera's Chatham House, and after the show, we had a nightcap at Peint o Gwrw Tafarn, which had live music. On Saturday we went to Samsonville. There was another humid 90 degree day the Thursday before, so the pool has stayed warm. (Two more humid days of near 90 are predicated for Friday and Saturday, so although Bob's plan has been to close the pool on Sunday, if this weather keeps up, he'll wait another week and play it by ear.) We came back on Sunday, and went to a wedding at Birch Hill. The food was great, it is a very nice place for an event. Finally, on Monday I replaced my window box petunias - which had been glorious all summer but were getting pretty ragged - with mums. It looks great!