Sunday, June 28, 2009

Stormy weather

After two days of gales down on the beach front the wind swung around to the south and the storms finally reached my house this morning, with rain, hail and lightning, at about 5.00am. I had unplugged the computer last night but hadn't turned off the power to the modem so I got up and did that, decided that it wasn't going to be much fun down at the beach and went back to bed for an hour.

When I got up I discovered a very large, very dead rat in the passage. I don't know how Boy-cat (aged 14 years and 9 months) managed to catch and kill it - he only has one canine tooth left and is unable to do the killer bite any more - and we haven't had a rat for years. It was wet and he was dry so it may have been baited: he didn't attempt to eat it, thank goodness, but was very pleased with himself nevertheless ... So was I.

Perhaps he is starting to get over the loss of his sister.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Vale Girl-cat

OSHPOSH BAST-RA (24th September 1994 - 23rd June 2009)

Oshposh Bast-Ra (Girl-cat) was born on 24th September 1994, daughter of Cadem Earl of Ambrose and Tijuana Cher, and with her brother (Boy-cat), came to live with me when she was twelve weeks old.
She was a super-friendly cat with a very loud purr and some odd and endearing habits: She liked to sit behind the off-side back wheel of visitors' cars when they were about to back out of my driveway, and she liked to run widdishuns round the toilet pedastal when it was flushing. Like most Burmese cats, she liked to crawl into bed with me in the early hours of the morning and used to put her cold little paws against my back instead of her warm furry body; she thought that using the garden for her toileting arrangements was "not nice" and would come inside to use the litter box. She loved people and always helped any tradesmen who came to the house; she liked to garden and used to sit on the weeds which I was trying to pull up, telling me that they were hers; she liked to jump into the empty laundry basket after I had hung out the washing so that she could be carried inside; she liked to eat Boy-cat's dinner and he would politely stand aside so that she could do so - she weighed six kilos when she died.
As she and Boy-cat grew older and less active they spent most of their time curled up together, asleep, in a nest of cushions on the spare bed. He is missing her dreadfully and can't understand why she isn't there any more. Her death was sudden and unexpected and we are both having trouble coming to terms with it. She will be missed by all those who loved her ...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Girl-cat is dead ...

Girl-cat died as she was coming out of the anaesthetic ...

It never rains but it pours ...

We are having a particularly wet week and yesterday it rained steadily almost all day and I had to go out in it because I had an appointment to have a mammogram. It had stopped by the time I was finished but it was rather chilly - the max. was about 14ºC. Today is also cold and wet but we are having 'showers' instead of 'rain' so one can time one's runs.

Girl-cat is in hospital on antibiotics and a drip. She has been off-colour for a few weeks with a snuffly nose and not eating, which is most unusual for her but I figures that she had enough body fat to last her for the duration. However, yesterday she spent the whole day on the spare bed after refusing her breakfast and wouldn't even get up for her dinner so I took her to the vet (it was her second visit - I am not so heard-hearted that I would let her sweat it out for too long, after all, she is nearly 15). Anyway, her teeth are in a dire state and she was dehydrated, so she was admitted last night so that they could put her on a drip and start antibiotic treatment and today she is to have her teeth scaled and any too far gone to clean up will have to come out. Poor baby!

Boy-cat hs fretting and last night he followed me around like a shadow and every time I stopped he needed to be carried; when I tried to put him down he just climbed further up onto my shoulder. He is not so bad today but still wanting a lot of attention. Girl-cat should be home tonight and hopefully will be feeling a lot better. *sigh* I could buy another two Burmese cats for what I am going to have to pay for her teeth to be fixed but it is to be expected that old cats need more veterinary help and are therefore going to become expensive. ... and the stock market is down again.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bare midriff ! It is winter for goodness' sake ...

I saw my doctor for a general checkup today, part of the government's initiative about preventative medicine. She told me that the latest buzzword is Vitamin D and that, with the slip, slop and slap campaign, very few Australians are getting sufficient vitamin D and that, in order to prevent osteoporosis, I should bare my thighs and midriff to the sun for thirty minutes every day ... and there was me thinking that my pre-dawn walks along the seafront would give me enough sunlight. I am not sure how I am going to do the sunbathing thing; strip off in the backyard on the stroke of noon? That is fine on a day like today when it is sunny and warmish but what am I supposed to do when it rains?

So now I have to have a blood test, a bone scan and a mammogram and hopefully all will be well until the next time ...

Thursday, June 11, 2009

More mentor muddles

Yet again I was given the wrong information regarding the number of clients booked into the computer lounge ... I think! I arrived at 10.45am ready to see my first client at 11.00am only to have one of my clients meet me at the door, on her way out. I am not sure if she was booked in and nobody told me about it or if she came in on spec because she needed some help. Anyway, The Administrator did whatever was necessary and, despite the horrible weather, everyone else turned up on schedule.

But I spent the day opening online email accounts and unaccountably had problems with Yahoo which refused to open the new mailboxes. With one of the mail boxes we opened it and activated it and then signed out to give some practise in putting in user name and password ... and it said that the user name was still available and did we want to open an account. *sigh*

With the last client, at the receptionist's suggestion, we went to hotmail and had no problem at all except that it has morphed again and I had problems finding the links. The "sign out" link is in the smallest print possible, for some reason; perhaps they want people to stay with them and take up their offers of chat, instant messaging, meeting new friends etc. I hate microsoft!!!

Himself phoned me from Canberra to say that he had replied to an email I had forwarded to him from Bosslady and, five hours later it hasn't arrived so yahoo has probably eaten it.

The email was from someone governmental who wanted us to promote their 'First Click' program and said that she supposed that "the vollies" probably knew something about computers but that we might benefit from playing around with the program in our spare time. The Doctor was really annoyed at being described as a vollie and I was really annoyed at the assumption that we didn't know everything there was to know about computers. Incidentally, I am a qualified First Click teacher and I refused to continue with the program past the training because I was horrified at the cost and the limitations and didn't want any part of it.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

That portrait ...

Today I saw the portrait which I commissioned from William Boissevain of Boy-cat. Second-wife brought it and the framer around to compare it with the portrait of Girl-cat. It is matching but not the same and it looks just like him; I am thrilled with it. The frame won't be quite the same because Girl-cat's framing is no longer available but I am not fussed about that as long as they are either very different or in the same sort of style. Hopefully I will have it soon and will have to decide where to put it and if I want it next to the picture of Girl-cat. If I decide to do that she will have to be moved along the wall a bit, I think ... It is only temporary anyway, if I am going to be moving in a couple of years.

The stock market is up so I am not feeling quite as fragile about the new apartment; with luck I'll get my price for the house in 2011.

According to Boss-lady, I have a full day tomorrow and maybe she has got it right this week and I will actually have four clients. The Doctor only has two ...

Monday, June 1, 2009

Winter time

Yesterday was the first day of winter. Hard to believe - I was running around in a tanktop and the temperature reached over 26ºC [that is about 80ºF] and the rain and thunderstorms which were predicted were nowhere in sight. It did rain a bit last night but it was gentle and silent.

Luckily, the rain held off for the six hours needed for the poison spray to, hopefully, work on Mr Downhill Nextdoor's ivy. He didn't plant it and it is not his fault that it has pulled the fence over almost to the point of no return. And he chopped it off at the base but it takes more than that to get rid of the stuff. We have both agreed that the fence needs to be replaced but it is going to make a mess of his garden and there is no way that a new fence can go in while the ivy is clinging to the old one. In fact, if we can get rid of the ivy it might be possible to simply replace the fenceposts.

I have cut back most of the creepers on the back fence and mulched the results. The top and the honeysuckle which has grown through the fence into the back lane can be dealt with using my hedge cutter but the growth in my backyard needs to be done by hand. It is a horrible job and one which I put off as long as I can but if it isn't done annually it become a horrific task with the honeysuckle becoming dead and woody underneath, whereas, if it is done every autumn then it looks both tidy and fresh.

There are other jobs which need doing but they are beyond my capacity and I will have to get professional help to deal with them. And it is coming into weed time ...