ACTUAL CONVERSATION this morning, before the first pot of coffee. The bride alleges that I am “clomping around” in my boots during sleeping hours. And using a circular saw. And a power driver.
Why am I so loud? Because I have defeated a cat. I have defeated a creature with a brain the size of a walnut. First thing in the morning, too. All days are good days, this one’s shaping up even better.
My brainstorm for preventing D3’s troublesome and aggressive cat from leaping the child-safety gate: a scrap of birch plywood screwed to the top of the gate. Somebody alert Architectural Digest.
We’d like to keep Wally upstairs, given that he’s so eager to get downstairs to assert roaming rights and mix it up with Big Bully Boy Felix. In which case they’ll both be getting patched up at the vet’s.
With the plywood in place, Wally would have to jump 6 feet straight up to get over the gate!
Well, he immediately does. Jumps 6 feet straight up and I don’t know how many feet down. Depends on which step he landed on. I didn’t see the jump, just heard it from my office. So anyway, I go cut another foot of plywood, screw it to the first piece, now the opening’s blocked altogether.
Wally’s here at the humble manse because Daughter #3 is between apartments. Her new place isn’t available until May. She brought her two cats with her, Wally and Rue, and we have two ourselves, Big Bully Boy Felix and Zuzu.
Girl cats Zuzu and Rue don’t bother anybody—a little hissing, running, hiding. But the alpha males are programmed to venture afield and figure out who’s redder in tooth and claw. History of the world, in a nutshell (so to speak).
Three days ago it was 60F, warm enough to spray latex. These are the gates I built for the stairway, top and bottom; 16 mortise & tenon joints in the 6-baluster gate, 20 in the 8-baluster. The idea is to avoid tumbles by little D1D1 when she visits.
Here she is on a recent visit to the Providence Children’s Museum, hall of mirrors. The bride and I will see the little sweetie next week, in Jersey City.
This snowy weekend finds the piglet and the iron piggy snoozing under a tarp. Meanwhile, from sunny Houston comes word that the motor on CCjon’s South America 650 has started making noise, one that defies diagnosis. Maybe when it gets louder, if & when it gets louder. We’re taking this as yet another sign we made the right call when we put off our winter journey to the bottom of the world. We’d have been in Tierra del Fuego by now, or broken down along the way.
CCjon’s going to run the bike as-is and see what happens, but his machinist says pull the motor, tear it down, rebuild it, mystery solved.
Painting outdoors one day, shoveling the next.
I close with an actual conversation, via text. On the ride to Providence Friday, the bride tells me to keep my phone handy, I might be fetching her home early because of the snow rolling in. The bank often closes early on such days. Around 3, her prediction comes true.
Incoming: “Pick me up at 4:00.”
Outgoing: “Can’t today, my wife gets out at 5.”
Tony DePaul, February 7, 2016, Cranston, Rhode Island, USA