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30 July 2007 @ 09:37 pm
snippets of my life:

~Oh, whistle pigs. I'm not angry... just disappointed. I awoke Saturday to a misty moisty morning (*pause for Pavlovian response from the British Folk Rock contingent*). Gazing through my front windows, I spied a whistle pig, snuffling through the grass and pausing to partake of particularly toothsome fronds. As it neared the side of my house, the image of parsley, chewed to stubs, sprang to mind. "Ah, but how could this portly creature get into my reasonably well fenced and excellently deer-netted garden?" thought I, even as I thrust my abnormally tiny feet into grubby sneakers. By the time I got outside, the whistle pig had entered the low-rent Alcatraz of gardens and completely denuded two of my three (and previously flourishing) cucumber seedlings. "What goes on in your head?" I demanded, because this is how I talk to such creatures. It flailed about a bit, then ran to the back corner (the Squash and Tomato Fortress) of the garden. Even as I mourned the potential cucumbers, which had faded in a moment's time to the mere dream of cucumbers, I worried that the poor not-so-wee whistle pig would be trapped amid the dense foliage and the most solid portion of my admittedly shoddy fencing. I moved toward that corner, hoping to scare the beastie back towards the front when lo! it shot out from beneath the beefsteaks and made for the other side of the lawn.

I investigated later to find that 'something' (read: ingenious frickin' whistle pig) had jimmied one of the fence slats out of the wire that held it, allowing for a gap between slats. While I mourn the loss of my cucumbers, I sort of have to concede to whistle pig ingenuity. All this without thumbs.

As to my parsley, well... it may have fallen prey to the whistle pig as well, but I'm still holding out the Feral Sous Chef theory.

~Nature: are you dicking with me? As I'm not going to be able to attend kickboxing tomorrow or this weekend, I thought I'd go tonight. But then I realized my arms are pretty much useless after this past weekend's workout and opted to go hiking instead. There are several arms (legs? spurs? what do I call them?) of the Appalachian Trail near my home. One is a fairly short but strenuous hike up the face of a mountain (okay, I know: hill. but it's what passes for a mountain in these parts, so let us have our pathetic glory, okay? ). Even though it was hot and hazy and all-together vile out, I decided there was nothing for it but that I must hike this trail. The good news was there was no one else on the trail. The bad news was there was no one else on the trail... and so my imagination took hold. First thing I saw upon setting out was the big trail head bulletin board, the focal point of which was a flier proclaiming, "THIS IS BEAR COUNTRY". Which I know, because I live here, but still...

So I started out and there were a million locusts winging up with a papery sound, the occasional butterfly (several Monarchs, but then there was so much milkweed! and a couple of others I don't know, including a stunning pale blue and green beauty), and the smell of sun-baked grass and wildflowers and the thrum of dozens of bees, and all was idyllic and pastoral. Then I hit the woods and the shade and the damp. Gnats swarmed about my eyes and nose. Daddy long legs crawled over every single rock, apparently massing for the rebellion. Squirrels did not run off at my approach, but eyed me warily, apparently assessing their odds... and then: it happened. I stopped at a rare level patch of ground to gulp some water. As I cast my eyes about, I saw it, on the slope just below me: A BEAR! To the best of my recollection, here is what happened.

Me: *ulp!* (in silence:) ::um... bear. what do I do what do I do I really hope there's not a cub::
The Bear: ...
Me: *breathing deeply* okay, this is no big deal. at least it hasn't seen me::
The Bear: ...
Me: ummm... ::isthat a bear?::
The Bear: *says nothing because it is, in fact, not a bear but a tree stump*
Me: (aloud) Ah. Well, then. *continues hiking*

False bear sighting aside, it was a delightfully strenuous and rewarding hike. The view from the top of the mountain is gorgeous. I sat, chugging water and letting the warm breeze dry the sweat from my skin as I watched the hawks soar beneath my vantage point. I'm not sure how high up I was, but the SUVs were about half the size of my pinkie nail. As I sat on the sun-warmed rocks, a story idea popped into my brain; I had a conversation with one of the characters for the entirety of the hike back to my car.

~Men: srsly? After my UV appointment this morning, I drove to Paramus to check my work schedule and to run errands. It was hot and humid outside. I pay very little attention to my appearance and rarely use the AC in my car. So when I tell you I was hot and sticky and frizzy-haired and shiny as I drove up to the gas pump, you have no choice but to believe me. The attendant came over (YAY! NJ and it's mandatory full-service and lowest prices around!!!); I handed him my debit card with a smile and said, "Could you please fill it with Plus?"

He took my card, made two steps toward the pump and then came back to my window. Surprisingly non-creepily, he said, "I'm sorry, but I just wanted to say that you're very beautiful."

I know he couldn't possibly have meant that; I KNOW what I looked like at that moment. Even so, I managed a, "Why, thank you so much!" and tried not to be so embarrassed I forgot to let him actually fill the tank before I drove off.

Later, I took my car in for inspection (go, me! the sticker doesn't expire until August 1st and I took it in today, two whole days in advance!) and, while I was at it, an oil change. I pulled into my usual place. They're terribly chivalrous there; if a woman pulls up, there is an attendant to open her door (and no, I do not take offense at this. I sort of love these gestures). Anyway, opening my door was an absolutely adorable kid in his twenties. Who, apparently, recognized me from something/somewhere. "Hello, how are... oh! How are you doing?" so as to express that he knew me. And he seemed vaguely familiar, so I grinned and blathered something about what I needed done.

Anyway, my car passed inspection (*another pause for angelic music and a beam of light from the bright havens above*). As I was leaving, I saw adorable-twenties-kid and he said something sort of cute along the lines of, "Hey, you made it through!" and I giggled rather weakly and said, "Marfle snik day!" 'cause I am pathetic and still have trouble speaking to boys.

~where I don't completely fail at gardening: Tonight's dinner salad featured grape tomatoes.... from my garden. And they were v. tasty.
I feel: hyperhyper
I hear: cricket song
Christian: Heart You So Bigsirchristian on July 31st, 2007 03:48 am (UTC)
btw, looking forward to seeing you on a regular basis. =)
Kel: better with twoladyjoust on July 31st, 2007 03:54 am (UTC)
Don't know yet just how regular I'll be, but... yep. Right back atcha!

Andrewquueer on July 31st, 2007 05:34 am (UTC)

Outside proof you're pretty.

*I can't heeear youuuuu*
Ratesjul: Emma Aloneratesjul on July 31st, 2007 06:31 am (UTC)
Your bear sketch reminds me of "Little House in the Big Woods" (okay, now you know just how much of a nerd I am) cos I'm sure there's a story in there along those lines.

And you ARE pretty, dearling. Stop trying to hide.
Kerry: Scrubs So Funnyscreamingdolai on July 31st, 2007 01:18 pm (UTC)
I thought the same thing!
"The Story of LadyJoust and the Bear"

Did you run shouting at it with a club? ;-P
moileaflette on July 31st, 2007 08:58 am (UTC)
1. Hello. Long time no talk. :)

2. I'm not sure how to explain this properly. You are lovely, because you are beautiful in a way that people don't see very often. You don't look like the stereotypical ideal of beauty, and that's why you are so striking, and I'm sure why the man felt compelled to say something and not just note that you were pretty and move on. I hope that made sense?

3. Do you have ANY idea how jealous I am of your garden? James and I constantly talk about how much we wish we could grow our own veggies and herbs. We do have two pet basil plants, and if he were staying in the same flat longer (moving out in 2 months) I would have bought a pepper plant last weekend. Sadly, for a few years at least, both of us are going to be moving around a lot, so no veggie garden.... yet. But someday... someday!!
(no subject) - punkishfaery on July 31st, 2007 01:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Jgrigoricennui on July 31st, 2007 04:46 pm (UTC)
I've always referred to a stretch of trail as a "leg". Considering how one uses it, it seems right to me, but it may just be colloquial.

Among the 25+ deffinitions of "Spur"
I found this:

A ridge or line of elevation projecting from or subordinate to the main body of a mountain or mountain range.

but no mention of it relating to a trail.


...and your writing is beautiful, too. "low-rent Alcatraz" LOL.