His Time, Her Time

Every weekend I tend to get a tummy ache. My husband works two time zones away, sleeps and eats late and I try to cook when I can. We should have met in the middle and sometimes we do. Now I keep yogurt and fruit on hand so I’ve early breakfast covered, for me at least.

Sometimes he’s not ready to go to lunch until one p.m. my time and I haven’t had breakfast. It’s his time at home and he’s usually too tired from a hard week to cook. He’ll leave at dawn tomorrow and be back late at night Friday and want a certain frozen pizza. It’s anywhere from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. so I’m glad for the frozen.

I have vegetarian and maybe some fish during the week. When he comes home weekends I ask if he wants steak on the grill because I’m craving iron and he says “honey, I’ve eaten steak all week. Can you make chicken fajitas?


Now let’s have her time. I met my neighbor once when moving in and twice when moving out, today. The she in this case is a tiny baby named Paisley. I bought them great flowers when she was born a couple of weeks ago. They’re moving and building a home. I don’t think Paisley will be ready for construction duties anytime soon. Lucky her!

They were all ready in their football shirts to see the big game, including Paisley and her big sister, a gymnast.

We wish them well in their new endeavor. Cheers! Dee

Crossing the Street

I’ve always thought I’d be there to assist with Zoe’s demise. Now I am thinking about mine.

What if we’re on a walk and I collapse? Zoe is 90 in people years and doesn’t know how to dodge a car or cross a street, even on the faded crosswalk I pioneered between city and county.

Do I need to really teach her how to cross the street in traffic? No. She won’t learn on the farm and those pickups go fast out there. Forget here, state law says stop and drivers only pick up speed and honk the horn at pedestrian crossings. Get to that meeting on time, bud, no matter how many seniors, pedestrians and dogs you need to run over. Thanks for your law-breaking nastiness. I hope your vitriol fuels your work day.

My guess is that Zoe would stay on leash and by me until someone takes me to the hospital or morgue. Then, if not the morgue, I need to take care of her. I need alternatives to take care of her if I am incapacitated and more so if I’m dead.

I know she will stay by my side, on leash, until someone finds us and calls 911. Protocol? My husband is ICE. In Case of Emergency. Problem is that when I take the dog out, I never take my phone. That must change.

These years I’ve concentrated on potential Zoe incidents, not mine. What happens if something happens to me and I can’t help her if she doesn’t know how to cross the street and be a Lassie saying “Timmy’s in the well?”

It’s a troubling thought. Perhaps I should teach her how to cross the street by letting her decide, not telling her it’s OK to go. It’s always tough for a “mommy” to let go. Dee





I live in an expensive apartment building high above the crowds and with a great view.

A few weeks ago I bought a very interesting copper bracelet from an artists’ stall outside a marketplace. I showed it to a staff member. She makes jewelry. The next day I lent the bracelet to her for inspiration so she could photograph it or draw her own piece from it.

This person did not show up for work two weeks in a row. Third week I said a kind hello and asked for my bracelet. She went and got it and grumbled that I said she could keep it as long as she wanted.

Now this person is in charge of greeting residents, preventing problems, and security and looks down when Zoe and I walk through the lobby and even though I say a hearty “good morning” or “hello” said nothing, then grunted, then finally still looks down and replies.

Did I mention we spend a fortune to live here? My and our old dog’s safety depends on someone who sits behind a desk, with cameras and buttons, ready to call 911 if either of us do not return from our walk.

Today I mentioned that a maintenance request had gone unnoticed for weeks. It was minor, I just don’t have the appropriate parts or tools. Verbal reminders to this staffer were never conveyed.

So, now the resident is the problem. I was called in and asked to go through everything. They were on their staffer’s side every step of the way. In the end they offered to convene a meeting to air each others’ grievances. I said no, thanks.

They don’t get the big picture. Instead of protecting rude, lazy, unprofessional staff they should follow the money that pays their salaries. I have it on good authority that this person shirks duties and treats many residents badly yet no-one will put in a complaint, including me.

I never put in a formal complaint yet I’m asked to sit down with this person and “work things out.” This is a gnat near the fruit on my granola. What is this world coming to? I cook for Staff, bring them chili , homemade pizza, fruit and other things. I stock the doggie treat jar. Ok, Zoe does, so she can do a trick and have one when she arrives with her entourage (me and a leash, big audience).

What happened to doing one’s job? I’m retired now but went through sexual harassment before it was banned, and brutal bosses and politics everywhere (it was politics and policy) and never had anyone treat me like dirt for asking, several weeks after lending, for a $40 piece of jewelry back that is mine. Cheers, Dee




I have always admired them for sticking their necks out for light. As a youth I saw them in few gardens but many pastures. They were weeds. I once brought a bouquet of Queen Anne’s Lace to my mother as a gift. She tossed it in the trash and said it was a weed.

John Denver. Sunshine on my shoulders. Sunflowers make one happy. And after they’re gone there are always the seeds that are healthy to eat, not the salty ones.

I bought a small plant, end of season on sale, small pot. Probably root bound and it looked happy outside for a week. Last week I relinquished Miss Sunflower to an adoptive home with a yard and more sun than we can provide. I was not neglectful or abusive, just didn’t understand the plant. It has always made me so happy, to see community gardeners sharing seeds and growing tips.

When I drive by I don’t know if they’re growing zucchini or tomatoes, but at this time of year there are 6-7″ Sunflowers for all to see. It is always a welcome sight before a cold winter. Cheers! Dee

It’s Snowing! Indoors…

I’ll admit to having some assistance in this fall cleaning sweep. We got a new grill (same model 10 years newer) and are giving the old one to a friend, with some cleaner and brushes and we’ll deliver it.

My husband flew in last night and I thought everything was OK until I found out he pulled a “Shawshank” on me and tried to tunnel through the bottom sheet, inadvertently of course. Luckily he didn’t get anywhere. I tossed the fitted sheet, washed the other and luckily have another set with a slightly different die lot so put humpty dumpty back together again.

While we’ve a regular size w/d I cannot do two king sheets at a time so mix things up between clothes and pillow cases. I pulled out his king-pillowcase to wash and the pillow exploded! When the pillowcase came out of the dryer, well, there was more snow.

Snow all over the place! I tried to contain it but it was three loads of laundry and four vacuumings, first from the pillow, then every load of laundry, then carefully placing the pillow into a trash bag and tying it off.

The entire seam just burst. I think it’s time to go pillow shopping. The funny thing is that I’ve never had a pillow fight in my life. This pillow just erupted and took over several hours of my life. I like to have our home in order when my husband returns from a business trip.

From now on, let’s get new pillows and leave the snow outside. Cheers! Dee

Family, Caring and Rescue

We have been planning our first vacation in 14 years. It is a very special one as it is for my father’s 85th birthday. For two months I have been unlucky in finding my dog a place to stay.

She has been vetted at a local cage-free location but has never stayed overnight. Yes, she’s been vetted in Austin, Houston, everywhere. I like her to be at home. She’s my companion, a herder who may be sleeping but will go back to sleep in minutes, at my feet in another room once I move.

I’ve been sick for two days so haven’t checked my email. Two days ago, after sending in a request for a second doggie daycare visit and overnight. That was today. I got her there, she pulled like a donkey not to go in. I should have listened to her. Then I went home and checked my email. Two days ago this company said there were cages. Yesterday, over two phone calls I was told emphatically there were no cages.

I called a lawyer’s referral service for an opinion. This has nothing to do with dogs (except mine), and knew I had to use every means available to rescue my dog.

Complaining about the lying was covered up as “we should have explained it better.” I think their customers are dropping like flies because they want to cut down customer service while keeping up rates and keep numbers of dogs in the dark all night from 7:30 p.m. to 5:30 a.m. without going to the bathroom. Who knows? When I checked Zoe out (the charge was a pittance against getting our old dog back from the liars) the water bowl behind the admittance desk was empty. Home, Zoe went right for her water and drank two cups. Yes. I immediately took her out.

Then, after my complaint, the lady at the desk with the nose ring said “You’re lucky, you showed up just in time to pay the half-day fee of $18.75. I paid it, got my dog and they are the ones who will not be lucky.

They lie outright to their clients, switch stories. What kind of business is this? One an attorney and the Better Business Bureau would enjoy looking into. Fido, no friends. Overcharging for services not provided, not properly knowing or supervising dogs. I will never place Zoe there again, even to just get her nails trimmed. Yes, I’m always in the room with her as a “tech” and no other dog is present. Yet I still cannot give them any business.

Today, I got there asap and just said “I want my dog.” If they lie to me, they’re lying to her. If they changed the rules they certainly never told any of their customers.

The thing is this company must have turned to cages for a reason, liability. Perhaps a dog was attacked without provocation and with no supervision, let’s check it out. Zoe is once again two feet from my desk chair and calm, sleeping. She’s hydrated once again, relieved, sleeping and calm. Cheers to animal welfare and the end of fraud by any means. Dee




Sometimes I find things. After age 40 a husband found me. He still tells me and others that I picked him up in a bar! Not true. We shook hands in the parking lot and he said since we both loved movies we might see one sometime as friends. He called the next night, and picked me up (I still have the map with my address in it), map is in my car. He took my hand and for nearly 15 years has never let go.

I was at a consignment shop years ago in Texas and looking at a dresser that could be a place to store dining linens and plates. I opened the top drawer to see if it had dovetail joints and there were two Tuscan scenes, lithos numbered and signed. I grabbed them and checked out. $4 for both. Of course it cost $150 to frame. They’re gorgeous and help our “Tuscan Retreat.”

Another find, the dog. A year after we married we adopted THW, yes, The Hip-less Wonder. I lifted her up onto the bed and she is sound asleep but will be at my feet at any moment. She can jump down because of a strong core and front end. She is a herder and guards against me leaving her for any reason, even to buy her food.

Lately, not of my desire, elevators have taken to me. I was stuck on one for over an hour a few weeks ago, and on a floor eight floors down with old dog Zoe for two minutes tonight for “last chance.” I had the gumption to choose the other elevator, the one I was stuck in, to get home. I called it in and and am home safe.

Findings. I found peace and friendship at a country home with a great view and 25 acres. We played at the creek, in the sand, in the pool and dogs came to visit me. I was ten when we moved away to a big city/suburb.

Leadership was gained in high school championing our gymnastics team. We came in second, but made it to State. Courage was found when I gave our star gymnast an ultimatum at the State Championship. Stay and cheer for your team, or you’re off the team as of now and you forfeit your medal. She stayed.

I have found knowledge, languages I did not know I could learn or speak (only the basics, please, thank you, good morning/evening/night, and where is the nearest bathroom) but I can do it in Greek. Kalimera, kalispera, kalinichta. Espharito (please) and Parakalo (thank you or di nada.)

There is beauty out there. My husband always lived in a man cave, such as on the first floor with blinds closed behind the mail boxes. As a kid, we always had a view or at least a pool. Now, we always have a view. Once my father had a tennis court. That’s a long story.

Not for when I’m stuck in the elevator or because the Navy won’t send their pilots to an air show (The Blue Angels) so the entire show was cancelled this year. What a view we have of that show, practice is the best time to see it from my desk.

Finding my self. I’m getting older and want to take care of my family. I am a cook and always have a front burner. That’s the hot one, the one that screams help me! That’s Dad right now. I’m trying to work down my list but he’s #1.

Yes, lists help me and it would be good to put pencil and paper on my bed table so if I awaken at three in the morning I can put down good ideas. Thank you for that. I think I’ve unburdened enough and the dog is not here with me. She is getting old, 90 in people years. I’m getting old as well. May as well share another thing I found, wisdom. Dee