A Day In The Life

6:40 a.m.

Dawn is slowly creeping over the landscape. Another morning begins. Attila has left for work, the roads are clear and dry for now, so his journey will be relatively safe.

The Christmas tree branches have relaxed and settled into a comfortable position, the tree occupies a third of the available floor space in the living room. Although it is crowded, it is cozy in this small space we call home. I have no plans for the day, aside from getting out for my daily walk.

7:10 a.m.

While sipping my morning coffee, and enjoying the Christmas lights on the tree and in the window, I have been thinking about our purging project. We passed along our 1961 Electrolux vacuum cleaner and accessories to our niece and her fiancé. I have two binders of genealogical records that I will be gifting to another family history researcher, but the the arrangements to drop them off have yet to be made. There are two bank boxes full of vintage Mac software that will be donated to a collector, which Terra will pick up tomorrow, to take to Luna’s house when they get together for Christmas, from where the collector will pick them up. There is a box of clothing and dishes to be donated to the Salvation Army Store, and our old broken VCR to be dropped off at the electronic recycling bin. And then there is the box of home video VHS tapes, which has dwindled and will hopefully be completely converted to mp4 files before Christmas arrives. All of these items, with the exception of the binders, take up precious floor space.

My mind wanders to imagining what items in the house can go next.

We are making progress. A year ago we were still maneuvering our way through tunnels of boxes and belongings. Two years ago I was living alone here at Mist Cottage, with Diesel the cat for company, missing Attila horribly and hoping a move would work out. Three years ago we were struggling through a brutally cold and snowy winter at the country house, and I was waging a losing battle with cabin fever. We are making progress.

8:00 a.m.

Every time the forced air heating system kicks in, the air moves past the Christmas tree and fills the house with a delicious scent of pine. Another reason to love a furnace and a thermostat, not that I needed one.

11:20 a.m.

The sun was shining so I grabbed the opportunity to get out for my walk. There was quite a brisk wind, and temperature was around -5C, so it was nippier out there than we have been used to. I could only go part of the my usual route though, the sidewalk became increasingly difficult to navigate, with mounds of ice where people had dropped shovelfuls of snow. By the time I neared home the sky was overcast and it looked like we could get some snowfall.

The next few hours found me organizing my keys, they were quite chaotic. We have keys to two doors to the house, the trailer, the shed, our two vehicles, the mailbox, and a various other locks. I always destroy a fingernail when organizing keys, so now I have one very hacked up, sore fingernail to contend with until it grows out and can be trimmed evenly. But my keys are very well organized now, I must say.

While I was working on the keys, I became involved in cleaning out my backpack. I carry it as a purse, and haven’t tackled organizing it for quite some time. Another big job. One of the bonuses was that I found my Medic Alter bracelet. I wear a Medic Alert necklace, but many medical professionals fail to notice it. I want to wear the bracelet every time I visit a medical person, so I am glad I found it. It is too annoying to wear day-to-day.

Finally I sat down to take a little break and check my email. I receive email notices of free or cost reduced ebooks. Most of what is on offer I am not interested in, but this morning I found a book I am interested in reading. It is called “Letters From The Trenches”, by Jacqueline Wadsworth. It was 99 cents, well within my budget. I like first hand accounts of historical times, and this is what she offers in this book. Not for me are descriptions, numbers, and facts about the grand doings of the powerful, although that is what is mostly considered “history”. No, I like to hear from the people who lived the experiences.

“I have made no mention of military decorations, though some men in the book did receive them. My view is that there must have been an enormous number who deserved recognition but went unnoticed, and thought it fairest to present everyone as equals.”
Page 17, Letters from the Trenches, Jacqueline Wadsworth, 2014

This is my kind of book!

1:00 p.m.

The keys and backpack are cleaned and organized, I’ve only a small batch of keys for which I know not the locks. The weather is worsening, the sky is completely grey, and the gusts of wind very strong, with occasional driving snow. I am warm and cozy in Mist Cottage, and enjoying the book I just purchased.

9:30 p.m.

We have had a bit of excitement here at Mist Cottage. We have mouse traps set in the garage, and so far this autumn we have caught a dozen mice. This morning Attila noticed that the traps had been sprung, but had not caught anything. Decidedly odd. When I went to get the mail this morning, I noticed some very small footprints in the snow beside the garage door, it didn’t look like mouse tracks, and I thought, oh no, rats! This evening Attila was busy in the garage when he caught sight of a small white rodent-like animal darting about, he concluded since it was not concerned about being seen, that it was a pet of some kind. He set the live trap with some lettuce, and sure enough, a few hours later a gerbil was staring out at us from behind bars. The poor little guy had been out of doors since at least very early this morning.

All the peanut butter in the mouse traps had been eaten, which is too bad, because peanut butter is not good for gerbils. We brought him inside and gave him some lettuce, and a jar lid full of water. Attila called on the neighbours across the street because they have children and might be missing a pet gerbil. No, they didn’t own such a pet, but they thought the little girl down the street had a gerbil, but her family wasn’t home. We also wonder if the two little boys next door had a gerbil, but they weren’t home either. We will be asking around the neighbourhood to see if anyone is missing a gerbil! I wonder how it escaped!

So, tonight we have an overnight guest.

Worldly Distractions

Weather

-7°C
Date: 7:00 AM EST Wednesday 14 December 2016
Condition: Mainly Clear
Pressure: 101.6 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: -6.9°C
Dew point: -13.2°C
Humidity: 61%
Wind: W 18 gust 37 km/h
Wind Chill: -14
Visibility: 24 km

Quote

“Believe nothing against another but on good authority; and never report what may hurt another, unless it be a greater hurt to some other to conceal it.”
William Penn
1644 – 1718

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5 Responses to A Day In The Life

  1. 6:05 a.m.

    The gerbil has gone home. The neighbours with the two little boys didn’t know he was gone, they have 19 gerbils they say, and hadn’t counted them recently. They also have two cats, so I think they need to be more careful!

  2. Bex Crowell says:

    Nineteen gerbils? Is that legal? Here in our town we are not even allowed to have more than 2 dogs per household. I’m sure some people have more, but if the powers-that-be found out, they’d be in deep-doo-doo. I can’t even imagine dealing with 19 gerbils! Glad the little guy/gal got back home, though… to quote my Dad, who used to say this every year about our resident cat,

    “I’ll buy a Christmas present for my darling kitty-wee, ’cause KITTIES like a Christmas, just as much as you and me.”

    He’d say that over and over whilst holding our cat, whoever she/he was at the time. We always had a cat. He loved cats. I’m sure the gerbil will be happier to be Home for the Holidays!

  3. TopsyTurvy (Teri) says:

    Morning dawned here with fresh, unexpected snow. Looks like we got another 2-3 inches, though it’s hard to tell as the gusty wind is piling the snow in spots. People on our street have already given up keeping the sidewalks clear. DH would have done his due diligence but since the snow was unexpected he wasn’t up early.

    Hmmmm… When I think about it, the snowplows didn’t clear the roads, either. Didn’t take long for all of us to fall down on the job, though it looks like we’re supposed to get another snowstorm Friday night and maybe that’s hopefully where the city will put some clean up money.

    How funny about the gerbil! The little guy is lucky you found him as winter wouldn’t be very kind. They’re such little magicians, figuring out how to escape from their cages.

  4. Bex, I don’t know if 19 gerbils are a legal number to keep at home as pets. It seems a bit excessive to me, but I long ago ceased to try to understand why other people do the things they do. The next little fella who escapes may not be so lucky, we and all our neighbours keep mouse traps active at all times.

    I understand you Dad’s love for cats. I love animals, and have real trouble when people can’t be bothered to take good care of them. That is why we don’t have a pet right now, it is a big responsibility, and one must be prepared to take that on, at least in my book one must be prepared to take that on.

  5. Teri, so interesting that snow removal isn’t being conducted by your municipality. We had a snow plow through early in the day, the day we got a lot of snow. They are having a really big storm in Parry Sound / Muskoka right now, so glad we are not there to “enjoy” it. Nor do we have any standing structures on our Ancestral camp, which is in Parry Sound, so we don’t have to worry about snow load on a roof any longer… life is sweet!

    You are right Teri, the winter would not be kind to a gerbil. If Attila hadn’t caught sight of him he probably would not have survived the night. This little fella not only got out of the cage, he navigated a house with two cats in residence, and found a way to get outside! Sometimes determination is not a good thing!