Friday, September 30, 2022

Take A Breath

With everything that's been going on here recently, I haven't even mentioned the weather which has shifted into pure glory. The highs have been in the low to mid 80's, the lows at night are in the low 60's and even high 50's. If it meant never having to experience another hurricane or hurricane scare again in my life I would skip fall altogether but since that's not possible, I will graciously take the lower temperatures, the blue skies, the vibrant light of fall. There's a difference to the light these days. It's like the sun is not trying to kill us unlike what it does all summer. When I say (too frequently, I am sure) that the heat on a walk did not kill me, it's not much of a joke. It always seems like a possibility. 

However, one day last week, and I don't remember which one it was, it got noticeably cooler as evening came on and when I checked the weather and saw that it was going to get down into the sixties, I opened the windows and doors and as always, I could feel the house breathe it's great sigh of relief as the air washed the walls and floors again. They've been open ever since and the silence which has replaced the sound of the air conditioner's constant chugging is so pleasant, so...peaceful, so full of bird song. Another indicator of fall. 

I have not gotten out the duck yet. It is not cold, of course, although I will say that both Mr. Moon and I have been chilly enough to pull on garments with sleeves. But instead of the duck, I got out the mostly-down-and-a-tiny-bit-of-feathers-lighter-weight comforter which I got at Wag the Dog a few months ago and had washed and dried and stored away and it has been such a luxury to sleep under it. A perfect weight for these nights. Jack appreciates it too, sleeping next to me as he does. Last night I went to sleep scratching his chin. Every time I tried to pull my hand away he would tap-tap it, and I would resume the scratching but it got fainter and slower as I drifted into sleep and by then I think he was asleep too. 

I have not been exactly slothful today but I have taken it very easy. I washed the sheets and hung them on the line with the rest of the laundry. 

Maurice came to join me. She rolled on the sunny ground, eyes shut in bliss, and then scratched her back on the clothesline's wooden support beam. 
I watered plants and played musical pots with a few of them, transplanting one here, and then putting another in the now-empty pot. I sometimes remind myself of hermit crab swap meets where the crabs meet in large groups to trade shells that fit them better. 
I got out the garden cart and picked up a few branches that had fallen in the few meager wind gusts we had the last few days. My god, we were lucky! 
And then I moved the ironing board to the Glen Den and leisurely ironed a few things while watching Call the Midwife and there are few things I enjoy more than that, especially with the windows open, a breeze coming through the room. 

Mr. Moon has texted me that he made it to Tennessee where he is staying with his cousin and her husband. I am so glad to know that he is safe. He called me earlier in the day when he was on the road and I told him to be safe and take care of himself and know that I love him. He said he planned on doing all of those things. 

And I've just now been tagged on a Facebook post about the place in Roseland where we stay which I love so much. Here's a picture from the article which you can find HERE. 

That's my river, y'all! The dock we sit on to watch that glorious sunset is in the bottom right hand portion of the shot. The main gist of the article is about the island you can see there which is a bird sanctuary which I did not know. I do know that I have spent so many evenings, watching the birds fly to the island to roost, the herons, the egrets, their graceful wings against the changing colors of the sky as the sun dips beneath the water. Fish break the surface of the river and the water slaps against the posts of the dock. 
It is one of my most sacred and happy places. 
I learned a lot from the article about the people who built the original house on the property as well as the pool house where we stay and there is a picture of the two men who bought the place twenty years ago and have done such an amazing job of restoration while at the same time keeping the funky Florida charm of it all, honoring the environment, the natural eco-system, the history of Roseland. 

Sigh. I miss that place so much. I know- I need to go visit again. I have been struggling so with anxiety but it's time for me to get over it, to just go. To sit on that dock at sunset, to swim in that beautiful, deep pool with the four lions spitting water. For those of you are new here, if you do a search of the blog for "Roseland" you can see what I'm talking about. 

It has been a very peaceful day and I am most grateful for it. 

Happy Friday, y'all. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Thursday, September 29, 2022

And We Have Had The September Birthday Extravaganza

The birthday celebration got changed to tonight at Jessie's due to scheduling problems and so today I was a whirling dervish of shopping and baking. 

Lily, Owen, Vergil, and August were all celebrated with a bonfire, hot dogs, chili, chips and dips, salad, and two cakes. 

Also presents, cards, and hugs. 

Mr. Moon is packing up to leave tomorrow morning for Tennessee. 

And I am probably not going to leave Lloyd the entire time he's gone. 

I am a tired woman. It has been a long week. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

We Are Perfectly Okay Here

As southwest Florida was just beginning to be pummeled, this is what was going on in my yard in Lloyd. My beautiful banana bloom. There are eleven bananas on the stalk and they look as healthy and fat as any bananas I've ever personally grown. 

And here are two confederate roses, high up in the tree with buds of more to come. 

We've gotten nothing more here today than a good stiff breeze now and then. Probably the slightest and most distant of wind bands from Ian. Meanwhile, the footage coming in from the coast south of Tampa looks horrifying. The water in Tampa Bay got sucked out and will return- perhaps with terrible swiftness. 

I talked with Lis this morning. They are far more in the path than we are, more in the center of the state not far from Gainesville. She said they are "buttoned up" with windows boarded and everything tied down that can be. They have food, a small generator, water and liquor. I offered for them to come stay with us but she said no, they were going to be fine and I said, "Well, if your house blows away come live with us."
Their house will be fine. 
Many will not be.
I can't tell you how scared so much of Florida is right now. Once a hurricane has hit your area, there is nothing to do but wait it out the best you can. There is no leaving in the middle of a hurricane. Rescue crews cannot get to you. Phones may not work. You are out of contact with the rest of the world. Walls may not stand, windows may be broken by pressure or debris. Doors can be torn from hinges. Yards can flood and houses can fill with water. 
This is the reality of it. People who joke about hurricane parties have never truly been in a bad hurricane. It ain't no party. It's nothing like a party. It is hang on and don't let go.

The relief guilt has been overwhelming today. And besides that, even if we are not being physically affected by the storm, there is what I can only call a disturbance in the air. Last night's eerie sunset was a perfect illustration for the feeling of there being a sort of beauty, a sort of stillness, a sort of unnatural calm and color. 
I have been anxious all day for no apparent reason. It was my Levon and August pick-up day and Mr. Moon decided to go with me to hang out with his boys. We had a good time with them and they were surprised and delighted to see their Boppy. We took Levon to lunch at Chow Time where he ate a few bites of pineapple and cantaloupe and a small bowl of three kinds of ice cream. Oh well. He'd already eaten his lunch at school. 

"We are so proud to be taking you to lunch," I told him. He was a very, very good boy. Of course. 

Cherry is growing fast now, and wants to play all the time. 

I can't believe that I am sitting here writing this as if nothing was going on and nothing IS going on here except those occasional tiny wind gusts that flutter the leaves and stir the branches. 

Boys eat peanuts while hens hope for a dropped nut. 

The men look at footage from the trail cam. 

I am about to heat up leftovers and tomorrow I will be getting ready for a little gathering here on Saturday for birthdays. Mr. Moon will be leaving on Friday for Tennessee. 
All so normal. So oddly, weirdly, unbelievably normal. 
We may not even get any rain. 

Thank all of you for your good wishes and hopes for our safety. We are fine. Absolutely, no doubt, completely fine. 
How I wish everyone was so lucky tonight. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Tuesday, September 27, 2022



Sunset tonight from across the street. 
And it is so cool that we have opened the doors and windows. 

A sort of grace. 

How Do I Even Describe A Day Like This?

And today it is this woman's birthday. I love this picture. I think Jessie took it one Mother's Day that she and Lily got a fancy hotel room for the day and night and celebrated by having a tiny bit of fun and freedom. I think she was happy. 

Here's another favorite picture of mine. 

Maggie loving her mama at Costco. 

I remember the day Lily was born so well. It was not an easy labor. None of mine are. I remember waking up in the wee hours and realizing, "This is it," and it was and it became a beautiful September day, cool and with the bluest sky. The midwife who had been with me for my labor with Hank and with May was there and she was calm and strong as things got iffy at the end. Lily had her little hand up by her head and she was a brawny child- 10 lbs, 2 oz, and there was shoulder dystocia (meaning her head was born but the shoulders did not want to follow) and when I did get her born, she needed a little bit of encouragement to start up but she did, obviously, with the help of that angel midwife, and as she turned rosy pink and began to cry, everyone in the room finally took a breath too, and there she was- my Lily. 
Glen and I had only been married for eleven months and bless his heart- he had not been prepared for how childbirth goes or can go and does go (and who really could be?) but he was my knight in shining armor, holding me through each contraction, breathing with me, encouraging me. He did NOT go get "that big knife" in the kitchen that I instructed him to get in order to kill me so that I would not be feeling any more pain but I suppose he can be forgiven for that. 
And now I have been with Lily when she had her three children, so brave, so strong and such an amazingly loving and caring and tender mother. 
I could not be more proud of her. 
I am always in my head a bit on the birthdays of my children. The memories of their births are so deeply engraved on my heart, and in my bones. I know I have forgotten much but then again, I have remembered more. 

And here's someone I love dearly even though I did not give birth to him who is also having his birthday today. 

As I texted him this morning, the day Jessie met him was one of the luckiest days in this family's life. He has been the best husband for her, loving her joyous ways, her shining light, her tender heart. And he has helped to give us these two beautiful boys and is as stellar a father as I have ever known. He is patient and kind, he is loving and gentle. He takes those boys on adventures and gets up with them in the mornings. He is steadfast and true, he is what any mother would want for her daughter, her grandchildren. 
AND- he has fit into this family so sweetly, even with all of our quirks and our, well, differences. I think he recognized the love we all have for each other right away and he slipped right in and is one of us. 

So it's been Lily and Vergil Day and I am hoping that on Saturday we can mostly all get together to celebrate all of the birthdays that have happened and will happen this week. On Thursday, August will turn seven. SEVEN! How did that happen? 
Oh my Lord. 

I have spent most of the day in the kitchen. I did not mean to, although I did have the goal of mopping the floor in there.
That did not happen. 
But I started this morning by making up a pot of my favorite black bean soup which has been simmering all day long, and a loaf of sourdough which is in the oven now. And then my husband, who had to go to Monticello to get a replacement for the driver's license he lost, came home with TWENTY FIVE POUNDS OF RAW PEANUTS and a bushel of shelled field peas. 
Do you know what 25 pounds of peanuts looks like? 
It looks like this. 

That bag may be taller than Levon.
A few months ago, Jessie gave us a bunch of raw peanuts that they'd bought on their way home from North Carolina and I boiled some and then, on Mr. Moon's request, I roasted some, the way his mama used to do. He loved them so much that he's wanted more, ever since. 
That would be a hell of a lot of roasted peanuts. 
So, I did two large baking sheets of them today which is really not a very labor intensive task. 

I put them in the glass jar I got at the Bad Girls Get Saved By Jesus Thrift Store a few weeks ago and there they are- ready for your snacking pleasure. 

And THEN, I blanched, iced, drained, and bagged eight quarts of field peas for the freezer. 

Add that to the ones we grew and shelled ourselves that are already in the freezer, and we are rich in field peas. Which is a very fine type of wealth. 

It would appear that Hurricane Ian is not going to affect us much at all which is an excellent illustration of how incredibly inaccurate forecasting can be even in these days of computers and satellites and models and on and on. However, it is most definitely going to affect the lower gulf coast and the middle of the state. Here's what one of the latest maps shows. 

And so here I go again with my guilty vast relief and at the same time, profound worry about those in the storm's path. There are not only going to be huge winds but probably a great deal of flooding. Trees will fall, power will be out for weeks, roofs will be peeled away, windows will be broken by wind and branches, and lives will be affected in terrifying and horrible ways. 
Meanwhile, Mr. Moon will probably be able to go to Tennessee for his high school reunion. Ironically, my own fiftieth reunion which was also scheduled for this weekend and which I was not planning on attending, will probably be canceled due to the storm. 

Life is so weird. Hurricanes are so frightening and unpredictable. 
And I am so lucky. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Monday, September 26, 2022

I Did Survive

 What a day. 

I ended up taking one and a half of my three- year old Ativans before I got to the appointment. That's only .75 of a milligram but that's a lot for me. 

Did it help? 
Oh, who knows? 
I cried when the sweet nurse guy came in to get my vitals. Get this- he doesn't say, "Step up on the scale," he says, "Would you mind stepping on the scale?" 
Of course I didn't want to but I did. Respect, y'all. We all need it. My blood pressure was high. This is expected. They don't freak out. The nurse said, "Well, I'm sure that Dr. Z. will retake it before you leave after he does his magic. 
And he did and it had dropped considerably. 

My bloodwork results had not made it to the office yet so I could be dying anyway but everything else seems okay. He never makes me get in a paper gown, he just has this magical way of getting me up on the table and doing a quick exam of the important things that I don't even remember after he's done them. The man has a gift. 

I cried in front of him, too. He doesn't laugh at me. He knows this is a serious situation for me. But he is so kind and so caring. And unless something weird turns up on the bloodwork, I don't have to go back for another year. 

After I left I did a little pre-hurricane shopping. I was not the only one. None of us really know at this point what effect the storm is going to have on us. But for now, Ian is a category 2 storm and is definitely going to impact a lot of people. Right now it would appear that it is going to take a more easterly course as it approaches Florida, which would put in near Tampa. My trusted meteorologist posted this after the five o'clock update. 

Some very dear friends of mine AND our sister blogger, e, live in that area. It is the strangest thing, having in mind that even as we hope that a hurricane will not hit us, it will hit someone else. We feel guilty when we have thoughts of gratefulness that it may not bring destruction to our area. I guess this is a good time to try and practice a little Zen-like thinking, knowing that we cannot control these things, that none of us have special powers that can move a storm's path, endangering others. 


But you know what? Here's something very, very important. Today is Owen's thirteenth birthday. Some of you may remember these pictures. 

Thirteen. Taller than me now. He is the sweetest, finest boy. He is a loving and caring big brother to his siblings. He is smart.
He made me a grandmother. He gave me my grandmother name. 

And I will never forget the strength that his mother displayed, getting him here. And tomorrow is her birthday. 
And glory. 

Here's a little Florida meme for you. 

If you can't laugh, you're done for. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Sunday, September 25, 2022

A Fuck-It Day

It's been a day of free-form and floating anxiety here. Not a great day by any means. When Mr. Moon tried to gently talk to me about why I have such fear of going to the doctor while we were eating breakfast I cried. "It's just the way I am!" I said. And it is. But I know that somewhere in my childhood, something happened that I have blocked out. There is just no other explanation. And it had to have been early in my childhood.

I've tried to stay busy but it's been hard to pin my mind on a specific activity. I did a little of this. A little of that. Lisi's dress is finally all complete, velcro sewed on. I swept a few floors, I did a little laundry. I did two crossword puzzles. I checked the hurricane information sites which still show some disagreement on where the storm will hit Florida but not much, and also not much disagreement about what a powerful storm it will be. They keep tossing about the figure of a category 4 storm and here, let me give you the definition of that from the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. 

130-156 mph
113-136 kt
209-251 km/h
Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.

I really hope that they are wrong about the strength of Ian. 

I have a list to take to the store tomorrow after my appointment which includes things like peanut butter and self-rising flour and eggs. 
Yes. Eggs. It would appear that Gracie has shut down. I am not surprised. How odd to have to buy eggs. We do not have to worry overmuch about supplies as we should still have the ability to refrigerate our food with the generator. It's never really had a true test of its reliability yet. 
This could be that. 

I've probably been listening to the wrong book on top of everything else right now. 

I am not quite sure what to call this book. Is it a thriller? An indictment of the immigration system? Is it an example of cruel and ridiculous cultural appropriation? Is it, as one reviewer said, "Just very poorly written"? 
I will tell you one thing- it is NOT poorly written. That is simply not the truth. I cannot remember reading anything lately that has grabbed me so hard and so fast. 
Now. I have no idea if the accusations of it being non-representative of the migrant experience are true or not. Who am I to tell Latinx authors that their perception of the book is wrong?
Nobody, of course. 
But for the moment, at least, I am not going to let all of the criticism affect my own appreciation of the book. From the first chapter to the last (and I have only a few pages left to read), there have been no lags in my attention, no moment when I felt as if I could take a full breath. The characters are so believable and so well written that I feel as if I know them, would recognize them on the street. The feelings and actions of the mother/protagonist in the book ring especially true to me. 
I think the only other book I've ever read about the experience of immigrants from south of the US border was The Tortilla Curtain by T.C. Boyle and that book affected me so deeply that I've read it at least three times. 
I am ashamed that I know so little about what people go through who are so desperate to leave their own homes for as many reasons as there are people, that they put their lives in the utmost peril to do so. And I know just as little about what those lives are like if they do survive the journey and make it safely to the US. 
But I do know that as a white person who was born here, who has had every advantage known to womankind, I cannot imagine the reality nor can I ever even pretend to have a thousandth of the faith, perseverance, and strength of anyone who makes it across the border and manages to make a new life here does. 

Talk to you tomorrow. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Saturday, September 24, 2022

No Peace Here Today

Yesterday's major decrease in anxiety was a temporary thing, I discovered this morning upon awakening. I am now in the hanging-on-by-my-fingernails, white-knuckling-it phase of it being two days before my doctor's appointment. 
Not to be too crude but I am fucking quaking here although I am trying to act "normal" which I am pretty darn good at because I am obviously an Oscar-winning-level performer. See how jokey all this sounds? 
I know I've said this before but despite me trying desperately for most of my life to get to the root of this doctor anxiety, I simply can't. I know I've had it forever. I can distinctly remember feeling what can only be called terror when I had to accompany my mother to the doctor's office for an appointment of hers. It may simply be a matter of shots. I do know that I got hysterical when I got my first flu shot and the second one too. It took my mother and a nurse and the doctor to hold me down. But I have no problem getting injections now. It may have started that way though. And when I was a kid, you got a damn penicillin shot every time you went to the doctor, no matter what your problem was. In the butt. 
That could be a clue.

So. La-di-dah. It'll all be over Monday by noon, most likely, although another thing not helping with my anxiety is the fact that we very well may be getting hit by a category 4 hurricane next Thursday or Friday. Things are just not looking good for us. Or Cuba.

The temperatures in Gulf waters now are at a record high (huh- go figure) and although at this moment, Ian is only a tropical storm, there seems to be no disagreement on the fact that it will become a hurricane, fueled by the hot seawater as it passes over. And as you can see from the spaghetti model, there's not much disagreement on the general area it's going to effect, either. 
Aw, shit, y'all. I hate this. This waiting to see and then trying to prepare and the dread and the worry...
It's not my favorite part of living in Florida. 
We are in a good position here in that this house has been standing for 163 years and is strong and is sturdy. Also- we have the Cadillac of generators and if the power goes out (and if we get a fairly direct hit, it surely will) we will not suffer from no electricity. Also, we are on "city" water so we'll have running water. 
We are so lucky! 
But if you've ever, EVER spent a night listening to winds over a hundred miles an hour blowing outside with rain pouring down in amounts you did not know possible and the sound of trees crashing all about you, you know that no matter how good you have it, it's still a terrifying experience. 

Ooh boy. This is not helping my anxiety. 

I tried to deal with things today by getting in the garden and weeding. I did that and while I was out there, I pulled more sweet potatoes that had already sent up more shoots and leaves. Most of them were just little ol' skinny things, not worth keeping, but I do have this one rooting in a glass vessel that came in Linda Sue's last box. 

"Is that a sweet potato?" asked Mr. Moon. 
"Yes," I said. "I am going to root it." 
"That shouldn't be too hard," he said. We will never, ever be rid of all of the sweet potato vines in the garden and that's just the truth. They are voracious growers!
The arugula will need thinning this week if I get around to it and I will be throwing those tiny sproutlings into a salad where they will spice it up, despite their tiny size. That is something good to look forward to. 

And oh! Lucky crowed today. So there is no more doubt in the world that he is a rooster, as if there any doubt about it before. 

So that's been our day. I've felt like it was Sunday all day long with my feelings of dread and existential angst. How I love a weekend with TWO Sundays. 

I went to the FGDDG a little while ago to buy milk and half and half. I am going to make some comfort food in the form of snapper flakes au gratin, hopefully like they used to make at the much loved and much mourned Angelo's restaurant downtown. The guy who checked me out at the Dollar General was a fine-looking young man with tiny braids. I asked him how he liked working there and he said he likes it very much. I'm glad of that. I told him that it was weird but nice to be able to buy things like milk and half and half in Lloyd. And it is. Both. While I was there I saw one man buying one cigar and one woman buying a few food items and a large container of laundry detergent. 

All right. Off to make a lovely sauce and a nice salad. I really do make good salads and soon I will be making even better ones from the garden. 
If a hurricane doesn't rip my baby greens out of the soil in which they live, causing lettuce infanticide. 

I may pour myself a large glass of vodka too. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Friday, September 23, 2022

Lloyd Is Just Exploding With Retail Shopping Possibilities!

Another completely blue sky day and not quite as hot. I took another walk and it felt easier and less heat stroke-producing than yesterday's. I hung out the laundry including the sheets which are now dry and back on the bed, smooth as a white linen tablecloth in a fine restaurant. 
I love our bed so much but clean sheet day is the day I love it the most. 

According to my plant identification app, this is camphor weed and I took that picture when I stopped to pee in a field that is sheltered from view of the road. The flowers did not mind my indelicacy, they simply beamed at me with their yellow faces, showing no judgement whatsoever. 

As I walked past my next door neighbor's house, I noticed a pink petal on the sidewalk and looking up I saw that the sasanguas are already blooming. I guess it is time. They are a variety of camellia and always flower first. Soon the tall bushes will be full of them and then the sidewalk will be as colorful as a pink baby blanket when all the petals drop. 

I discovered something today. Some of you may remember that a long while ago the little cement block building in front of the post office was rented by a man and his family who turned it into a sort of general goods/deli place. It was called Papa Jay's. I had great hopes for Papa Jay but for some reason, the store never made it. I used to take Owen and Gibson down there to buy candy sometimes for a treat and it WAS a treat. Papa Jay's mother would sit outside on nice days and crochet hats which he sold in the store. I do not think many people bought those hats. 
So Papa Jay packed it all in and that was that for him but I've noticed in the last six months or so that someone was working on the building. I've seen a golf cart and a truck there, people going in and out. A ramp was built up to the entrance. Flowers were planted by the mailbox. 

No matter what anyone does to that building, it's still a funky place. Anyway, I had heard that a woman was making it into a shop of some sort. So today, since no one was there, I decided to peek into the windows. There are small succulents in various funky containers on the windowsills and although there is not a whole lot to see yet, I did spy items which make me think that this is going to be a sort of hippie/Indian import shop. I saw a paper star lamp and a rack with a few kimono-like jackets on it, what might have been a Guatamalian bag hanging, and a table with what I am almost certain was a full display of artfully arranged small bottles of essential oils. 
To think that I can buy my essential oils a block from where I live is simply astonishing! Because- you know- I buy so many essential oils. 
This is cracking me up. Who the hell is going to come to Lloyd to buy paper star lamps and essential oils? The FGD Dollar General has stuff people need and they have so little business that I'm not sure of their survival. But who knows? Perhaps they're about to build a giant planned community over there on the other side of the interstate and all of those people are going to need a reputable place to purchase the little things that make life so delicious. Perhaps it will be such a cool place that folks will exit the interstate just to shop there. 
Who knows? 
Not me. 
I think it may be a vanity project for the woman I've seen going in and out. I told Glen that I would say she was an "older woman" but in fact, I doubt she's as old as I am. 
I texted my kids about this today and May wrote back, "Maybe the woman is really a witch and the place is just a front for spells and potions."
Now that is something I could truly get behind. Leave it to May to find the silver lining. The magical silver lining. She is so good at that and has been since she was a tiny child. 

So that's the big news from Lloyd today. 

Here, for your viewing pleasure, are two pictures of the mantelpiece  altar in the library. Sort of altar. Place with meaningful and random objects is more like it. 

I sort of forget it's there. 

Happy Friday, y'all. 

Love...Ms. Moon


Thursday, September 22, 2022

The Joy Of Being Retired

I got up early today for no known reason but still waited until it got hot to take my walk. I'm so perverse. I think it got up to about 97 here today. Happy first day of Fall, y'all! 

The wild flowers beside the sidewalk are going crazy right now. I can actually smell a sweet scent from the Bidens Alba, there are so many blooms. I had never smelled them before. 

I took a picture of the house that the line of hurricane lilies is marching up to. 

A few years ago it looked like someone was working on it but whatever plan had been in mind appears to now be abandoned. The fence and gate were put in and some work was done on some steps on the side but that was it. 
Here's another abandoned house that I pass when I walk. 

Can you see it back there? The blooms of the cardinal vine are taking up all the glory, I believe. I adore those flowers. They are so very scarlet, so very perfect in their shape and design. 

Even their foliage delights me. They are part of the morning glory family. 

The sky was faded-Levis blue today. I do not believe there has been one cloud all day long. We are dry. I am having to water my garden which is coming along. I already need to weed and I definitely need to mulch. I am telling myself I will wait for a few days for the weather to get a little more temperate. And speaking of weather- there is a "tropical wave" that even my favorite and definitely non-alarmist meterologist is watching that looks to be entering the Caribbean and then possibly the Gulf in the next few days. Early spaghetti models show it heading directly towards the Florida panhandle but of course, it may not even develop into a hurricane at all. Still. Mr. Moon is making plans to go to a high school reunion in Nashville week after next and I keep reminding him that there is no way in hell he's leaving if there's a storm headed this way. 
He knows that but of course I feel the need to reinforce that information. 

My anxiety ramped down a bit today as if my mind and body know that I can only take so much. I am grateful for that. Mr. Moon, however, has a thousand niggling things fighting for his attention and he is the one who needs a little special attention, I think. So after my walk I suggested that we go down to the river this afternoon for a cool-off and a slow-down. 
He immediately agreed that this is what was needed. 

When we got there, there were four women and a toddler and they appeared to be a family to me. Possibly sisters, and they were all bikini'ed, all beautiful, and the mother of the child had a lovely round belly that foretold a sibling for that little girl soon. 
But besides them, the whole place was almost empty and it was peaceful and quiet. When they packed up and left, it was just us, a fisherman, and a couple at the far end of the beach who did not have swimming on their minds. 

So much shade, and all for us! 

No children squabbling, no teen-agers being teen-agers, no beer-drinking guys telling fishing stories, no one jumping from the rope swing. Just...peace.

This is what the water looks like when it is undisturbed by the little feet of children and their mamas and daddies and grandmamas. So clear. 

We cooled off in the cold water and rested under the cypress tree simply sitting in the quiet, the breeze, the sweetness of almost-solitude. The couple I mentioned (you can see them, maybe, leaning on a picnic table to the right of that aluminum stairway at the far back of the picture) were, I am certain, clandestine lovers. I did not stare at them. They were there for privacy, but I could hear the sweet, low voice of the woman as he held her. 
I so wonder what their story might be. 

And now we are home, our bodies cooled, our souls less restless. We do not have to be clandestine lovers, this man and I. We are long-timers in the game and as such, appreciate with all of our hearts being at a place in our lives where we can say, "Let's go to the river!" and do just that, and then come home to where we live and where we love. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

A Trip To A Bookstore, Getting My Ass Whipped At Cards

Today I had August and Levon Grandmother duty and I picked up Levon at his school and before we went to his house and I took that picture of the ever-more darling Cherry, we went to the Goodwill bookstore. 

He did his own hair this morning and I think it looked very fine. 
He immediately glommed on to a Power Rangers book and I warned him that I would not be reading it to him. "That's okay," he said. "I'll read it myself." 
He is quite advanced, I think, for a four-year old but he is not quite up to reading a Power Rangers book. But, pretend reading is good too. I tried to get him interested in a book about dinosaurs. 
"I hate dinosaurs," he said. "They died."
Well. You can't argue with that. Of course he does not hate dinosaurs, he just wanted the book he wanted. 
And I caved, as he knew I would. We also got two decks of cards from the casino at the Las Vegas Tropicana per his request, and a game of dominoes with Sponge Bob Squarepants images on them. And I bought August a giant Smithsonian book on all things in nature from algae to the limbs of mammals. Of course he would have rather had a Power Rangers book too and in fact, after I'd picked him up from after-school and showed him the book he said, "Why did you get this for me?"
"Well, I figured you could keep it around in case you have any questions about nature." 
He was not truly impressed. 

The dominoes immediately got laid out for knocking over because isn't that the best thing to do with dominoes? 

Cherry, although still tiny, is full-on playing these days. She loves to sit on shoulders and I told Vergil they should have named her "Parrot." She is going to be adopted but for now is the baby of this family. 

The boys and I broke out the cards and played first a game of Go Fish in which they beat me badly and then a game of three-way Battle in which they also beat me quite handily. 
Unlucky in cards, lucky in love, I suppose. 

And because I am running so late on my schedule which no one but me gives a damn about, I need to go make our supper. I really am ridiculous but we all do what we need to do to hold our world together and this self-made and self-enforced schedule is one of my methods. I am neither happy about nor proud of this ridiculous bit of illogic but right now, five days before my doctor's appointment, I need every bit of control and normalcy I can muster in order to keep the snakes of anxiety in a relatively calm state, writhing and slowly rattling, sliding over and under each other, blinking their cold serpent eyes, flicking their chemosensory forked tongues where they lay in the flimsy basket in which I hold them. 

Yes. I am a bit dramatic. 

Love...Ms. Moon