On One Particularly Beautiful Day

A beautiful day in the neighborhood. A good day to do just about anything.

Beginning with a long walk along the bay, watching fish jump for entertainment. Or, whatever fish jumped for–catching prey, impressing fish of the opposite sex–who knew?

Breaking for witty banter with some of the neighbors. Wasn’t traffic near the newly-opened amusement park beginning to snarl?

The pooches had a friendly get-together. There were no canine disagreements. What kind of dog was a Feist? Nobody
knew exactly.

“It was a small hunting dog.” “It was the same as a rat terrier?” “A Jack Russell?” “Must have been from Germany–the name sounded Germanic.”

Business was closed without any new business. The consensus was to wait-and-see on the Feist dog. One of the neighbors was acquiring a new pup.

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Wasn’t Ready For “IT”

Humidity was stifling. “IT” had rained nearly every day or night.  Was this the way aging crept up on us?  The same conditions year-after-year, our ability to cope decreased proportionately.

Why was the word ‘IT’ given so much importance?  Weren’t there other, two-letter words of equal value?  “Well, ‘IT’ happened.” “That was the way ‘IT’ came and went.” Sometimes I wished “IT” would go away.

My front porch, purple New Guinea impatiens, succumbed from lack of water during my absence.  Three plastic jugs of water left–no more than two feet away.

Watering instructions left with a neighbor, were all for naught.  Don’t know why “IT” happened.  My rebellious nature suggested bright orange and yellow, dollar store replacements.  The irony of “IT” would likely be wasted.  “IT” was, what “IT” was.  Just stop “IT!”

A Day Off

I took today off to regroup–gather my thoughts.  No, there’s nothing wrong.  Life is good in general.

Sometimes I worry about repeating myself.  There’s the quality/quantity issue.  After almost five years of this, there have been a lot of posts.

The Shakespearian adage, “There’s nothing new under the sun,” applies.  That’s why, of late, I’ve done some updates on old posts.

In the local area, the new amusement park is shaping up.  Many of the new rides are visible.  What will this do for local traffic?  …The local economy?  The jury is still out.

“Wahlburgers” was announced today in a press conference, as the first tenant.  The first and only “Wahlburgers” franchise in the state.  More announcements are forthcoming.

The Easter Egg House

In the spirit of the season, a retake on “The Easter Egg House” from three years ago.  This was a cautionary tale, on the perils of not consulting one’s spouse, when it came to home decorating ideas.

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The shutters were faded.  Formerly Wedgewood blue–they looked more gray than blue.  “Honey, if I painted the shutters they would really make the front of the house pop,” I suggested.  “Just don’t spend too much money.  Keep it as close to the original color as possible.”

My helpful paint store friend showed me color chips–and more color chips.  There was “On the Town” blue, “At the Opera” blue, “Philadelphia Independence” blue, “Katmandu” blue, and what the heck was “Etruscan” blue?  In the hundreds, perhaps thousands of chips, there was no Wedgewood blue.  I was all alone–lost in the color forest.

It was dumb on my part–I didn’t bring a color swatch with me.  A picture–anything, would have been helpful.  On to “Plan B”–select what I imagined, was closest to Wedgewood blue.  My good intentions jumped the track at that point.  I selected “Regatta Blue.”  It was a pleasant color–who didn’t like ships, sailing, and the sea?

My color choice became the talk of the neighborhood.  At home my “Regatta Blue” morphed into a garish, happy, Caribbean steel-drum band blue.  It should have been, “Weekend at Bernie’s,” blue–I was gonna’ be so dead.  There was no easy way out of this dilemma.

“The house looks like an Easter egg,” She said.  “You’ve got to repaint.  I can’t bear looking at this every day.”  This time we went together to a different paint store.  I wasn’t going to risk going back to the same store and explaining.

A darker, more tranquil shade of blue was selected.  I hated do-overs.  For the colors to match, all shutters had to, first, be painted the lighter, brighter blue–then top-coated with darker blue.

Then, the gossip started.  the phone rang off the hook.  “Do you know what your husband is doing?”  “That color is hideous.”  “Where did you get that color?” “Why is he painting your shutters two different colors?”  “When is he going to do something about it?”

None of my neighbors called my bright blue shutters ugly to my face–only behind my back.  I knew what they were thinking.  Nobody had to spare my feelings.  The shutters looked good, with what turned out to be six coats of paint.  I’ll carry this, along with the approximately 2,917, plus another 32, blunders made in my life–thus far.

I got in digs with one particularly pesky neighbor.  “Would you like me to paint your shutters and trim when I’m finished?  I’ve got extra paint left over.  Could I paint your birdhouses?  They’re looking a bit shabby.”  There was no response–only silence.

The Neighborhood

Thankful it’s not colder than it is this morning.  Houses in the Deep South don’t take kindly to temperatures below the twenties.  There are no basements.  Water pipes run through attics and crawl spaces.

The Retired Old Farts Neighborhood Dog Walker’s Club, of which I am a member, is normally a peaceful group.  Trouble, when it happens, is usually caused by non-dog owners.

There weren’t any other dog walkers out this morning.  Of course, my spouse chimed in with, “There wasn’t anybody else crazy enough to walk in this cold weather.”  Before I retired, I worked outside in weather much colder than this.

Jack, real name not used, is a notorious, mercurial, neighborhood non-dog owner.  Rocky, however, is a real cocker spaniel.  It was a pleasant January day, when Jack, accompanied by his son, rolled up on his golf cart.

Without so much as a friendly hello–Jack went straight for the jugular.  “Why don’t you people walk your dogs through your own neighborhood?” Jack shouted.  “We’re tired of all the dog crap.”

Sam, blindsided–looked up from bagging Rocky’s droppings.  Rocky, his black cocker spaniel, was gentle, wouldn’t hurt a fly.  “This is a public street,” Sam answered–waited to see where the conversation led.

It was an unfair attack, from the same man that previously attempted to run down an unleashed nuisance dog, from a nearby trailer park, with his car.

Gizmo, the dog in question, was no longer around.  Problems arose when “free-range” owners let their dogs run loose.  Presently, there is a white pit bull, that roams freely after numerous complaints to the sheriff’s office.

Jack attempted to goad Sam into an argument.  Sam, wisely didn’t fall for it.  Jack’s flare-up blew away, just like the previous ones.

 

Someone Named Bob

Talk to “Old Bob” when he first got to work, and a folding chair could be tossed in your direction.  “Old Bob” talked, when his hangover-fogged mind was good and ready.  “Old Bob” was a hard core construction worker and one of my trainers.

Another Bob lives across the street, in my daughter’s new neighborhood.  Whether that’s the crabby neighbor’s name, is not important.  He fits the “Bob” profile.  For clarity, he will be referred to, as “New Bob.”

New Bob has a nice RV, kept cleaned and polished.  New Bob Jr. has a shiny Mustang–he loves the sound of its powerful engine.  New Bob introduced himself by complaining about barking dogs.

Every neighborhood has Bobs.  Bobs make your business their business.    They’re neighborhood crabapples–the get off my lawn people.

Too many Bobs lead to bored pets and pet owners.  Bobs expect to be indulged after late night partying.  No courtesies are ever reciprocated.

New residents find out who their Bobs are in due course–faster, if they have children and pets.  Potential residents would be well-advised to ask the question, “Who are the neighborhood Bobs?” “Are they manageable?”

Old Bobs, New Bobs, Bob “wannabees”–This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful to have all my Bobs in a row.

 

 

The Chase Was On

I only had one hand free, this morning, when the mayhem began.  The other hand, held a plastic bag full of doggy doo-doo.

When myself, and the two mutts walked around the brick parapet at the entrance of the subdivision, all heck broke loose.

One of the neighborhood “crazy cat lady’s” cats walked, stalked, or whatever cats do, in front of my dogs–who were leashed together.

The leash was out of my hand in an instant, and the chase was on.  Through the first neighbor’s yard, around their boat, parked in the driveway, into the second neighbor’s yard.

Max was baying like a hunting dog, until heard him yelp.  Oh well, they’ve caught up to the cat, I thought.  None of the three seemed any worse off from the experience.  Like is usually the case, no neighbors heard the ruckus.