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08 August 2019 @ 12:54 am
On The Road...  
We're up in Oregon visiting family, so I'm only online here and there. Things were ridiculously busy leading up to this trip. I was up until almost 2 a.m. the night before we left, getting work things settled for the next week and a half. :O

The trip up here... oh, boy. When we drove up a year ago, it was so smoky that we couldn't see much of anything from about Willows to Weed, and there was a lot of smoke going farther north as well. We had no idea the burn damage was so extensive. Much of the forest near I-5 from Redding northward is gone. There is a pocket near Castle Crags that was untouched, but so much of the area is just destroyed. It'll be 20 years or longer before it even begins to resemble forest again. So sad. :(

There were no other interesting sights along the way, unlike the scattered plastic chairs across I-5 we almost crashed into a couple of years ago.

I HAVE had a couple of wildlife sightings on some recent bike rides. One was a group of quail crossing the bike path up in front of me, where the chicks were so new they still had fuzz instead of feathers. They were running after the lead quail, flapping their little arms. Armlets? Winglets? Wingalings? So cute.

The other event was this Monday. There was a snowy egret in a tree, sitting upright and looking so out of place. I have never seen an egret in a tree before.

With all these years of riding, I have also never seen a turtle crossing the bike path (or anywhere near it), and yet HalfshellHusband has seen that twice in the last couple of years. They must like him better!

Our new kitty is doing well, getting comfortable in his new home. He loves the stairs-- they feature very prominently in his play sessions, where he rockets up and down them, and pauses along the way to look for scary things waiting to get him through the bannisters. SO much energy.

He's found out where The Boy's room is, and spends a lot of time monitoring The Boy's location--much like his predecessor. HSH went upstairs the other morning to shut windows, and found the cat lying in front of the closed door to The Boy's room, chin on his paws and looking as flat and dejected as any cat can.

That was slightly more pathetic than those times when the cat drags his mouse toy out of the jar in the living room and plays with it all by himself... And he does NOT lack for attention.

Except for now, while we're on vacation and The Boy is working long days at his summer job. :O

adoptedwriteradoptedwriter on August 8th, 2019 11:28 am (UTC)
Get home this afternoon from a week in Florida with the Mothership. I miss my kitties, especially Sushi, my 17 yr old “baby girl”. My neighbor is great with helping out.
Muriellemurielle on August 8th, 2019 09:23 pm (UTC)
You're on vacation too! And with kitties! Have a wonderful time!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 9th, 2019 12:34 am (UTC)
I hope you got your mom settled, and had some time to relax at the beach as well.

What a great picture of Honey-Bee!
Muriellemurielle on August 8th, 2019 09:22 pm (UTC)
Every time I hear or read the word "egret" I think of your husband's story from my first season. Some things never leave us.

You have a new kitty! And I missed it! He sounds wonderful. The Boy is maybe not ready for your last kitty to be replaced, but it sounds like new kitty has taken this on as a birthright. So sweet.

I love your description of his stair activity.

Have a wonderful vacation!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 9th, 2019 12:37 am (UTC)
I think of you and that story too, when I think of egrets. :)

Yes, the new kitty is really, really sweet. He very much likes being with people.

We still miss our previous kitty-- The Boy especially so-- but it sure helps to have another furry little friend around. :)
cindy: soup of the daytsuki_no_bara on August 9th, 2019 06:00 am (UTC)
i am somehow unsurprised that you saw quail. i bet the chicks are ADORABLE.

the kitty also sounds ADORABLE, i mean, the stairs! sounds like he's ready to be the boy's kitty, even if the boy isn't ready for him yet.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 9th, 2019 06:56 am (UTC)
Those little flappy baby quail were so cute. So clueless, yet so earnest-- kind of like their parents. ;)

The kitty is hilarious-- he is so eager to make even your slightest movement into an opportunity to run off like he's being chased by wolves. I remember when our kids used to do that. They'd say, "Monster me!" And then we would chase after them growling and roaring and waving our arms around like some kind of inept Wild Things creation. ;)

How do the kitties know that The Boy is the Cat Whisperer? They sure seem to, and they're not wrong. :O
passing_through: owls!passing_through on August 11th, 2019 06:04 pm (UTC)
A family whose daughter played soccer with Alicia for many years built their retirement home in Oregon, in a town that starts with an "S", if I remember correctly. It's one of those mansion/hunting lodge places and it clocked in around 15,000 sq feet. The kitchen and breakfast nook area alone was almost as big as my entire downstairs! The mom would constantly post pics on Instagram as it was being built and once it was completed. Most retirees scale down but they scaled up. Although the house they're currently living in (they haven't retired yet, they have a few years to go) is pretty impressive on its own. Right now they go to Oregon multiple times a year for vacation. They have family there (the parents are from there) and all of their kids have graduated from college so they're free to travel whenever they want. The life of the rich :D

That is sad about the burn damage. We have that in the town of Bastrop that burned so extensively about five years ago. It's mostly pine trees and when you drive through there all you see are tall dead trees. There is some growth coming back but you're right, it's going to take years.

Wingalings, LOL! I think you made up a new word :D

I'm so glad your kitty has settled in so well. Our cat used to zoom up and down that stairs as well. It sounded like a small army. Sometimes she would do it late at night and scare me to death. I thought someone had broken into the house and was running up the stairs, lol.

Have fun with your family!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 12th, 2019 06:14 pm (UTC)
I can't imagine being that rich-- having vacation homeS, for crying out loud. Even one would be a luxury.

And what the heck would you do with 15000 square feet? The upkeep alone would be horrific. You'd have to have live-in servants, which is my idea of a nightmare already.

"Wingalings" is a word I came across in a Homestar Runner episode about Trogdor, a kind of mutant dragon. Look it up on youtube! It's hilarious. :D

The rocketing up and down the stairs is surprisingly loud. It sounds like a herd of elephants compared to the size of the actual cat. The Whale used to run downstairs sometimes, and he was so big (and tall) that he could go one front leg per stair, instead of 'bounding' up and down like most cats. I'd hear this "thud-thud-thud-thud-thud!" sound and think that our son had gotten out of bed, but no. I mean, that cat was also about 21 pounds, so he was nearly the size of a toddler in terms of weight. Hard to tell the difference late at night!