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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Twenty-four hours can hold an awful lot

This time yesterday, I was deep in my writing. I had to get some synopses done for my editor and was determined to do just that.
But we’d planned some fun activities for later. Being Canada Day, we were going to take in the fireworks in the nearest town, but at supper, I finally had some down time and watched the news.
A whale had died and been washed in with the tide, down in Slacks Cove, near Rockport, New Brunswick. Since this wasn’t far from us, we decided to check it out.
So did half the town, too. It was big, but by far, the smell was more intimidating. I touched it, and found it smooth, rubbery, and very cold. It had been a bit battered after it had died, and I tried to identify it. A small fin whale or a sei whale, maybe. I’m not up on my whales, I’m afraid. But there didn’t appear to be anything I could see that may have killed it. Perhaps, we can hope, it was just old age.
It’s amazing to see how the tide had washed it in. At 12 metres long, it would take some doing, a testament to the power of the sea. Which was now returning. Time to leave.
Then of course, came the fireworks we’d looked forward to seeing all day. My hubby had packed some snacks for us, and when we got there, we stayed in our car until dark. And until we discovered my son, being the one in the far back seat and closest to the cooler, had eaten the huge chocolate bar his dad had slipped into the cooler for later. So all we had was water and popcorn. Good for the diet I had put us both on, I suppose. The fireworks were wonderful and we even got out of the parking lot without delay.
Then we came home to find we’d left the garage door open, and four stray kittens had decided to make it home for the night. I didn’t want them in there, so my daughter and I had to chase them out. Not an easy task. Corralling kittens in a messy garage is much like trying to hold a child who wants to be put down. Simply impossible and not unlike the fireworks we’d just seen. We did our best and thinking the kittens were gone, closed it up and went inside.

I did, however, peek out to see the kittens chasing one of those huge lunar moths. Unfortunately for the moth, the mum caught it and dashed off. She returned a few minutes later licking her lips. I'd seen enough, so I went to bed.
This morning, after my husband and my daughter had left for work, I saw two of the kittens curled up in the middle of the driveway. Feeling compassion, I mixed up a slurry of warm cat food, kibble, and homemade unsalted chicken broth, and took it out to them.
And the regular gang of adult cats came running to help these little darlings eat the food. Feeling a bit piqued, I glanced around.
And saw a gopher. Not a big one, but one curious enough to waddle out from under the trailer. It wasn’t until I heard the neighbor start up his lawn tractor that I realized that it was the one from under his shed, and he’d been temporarily evicted. I guess it wasn’t my delicious concoction of mixed cat foods that lured him out.
My morning of housework wasn’t happening, and wasn’t soon to happen, as I walked past the garage, and heard a faint meowing.
I opened the door and discovered yet another kitten inside. One I was sure I’d chased out last night. And as one would expect, he wasn’t ready to escape out the door yet. Under the pile of junk in the corner was much safer. I refuse to feed it. I don’t want it to become comfortable in my garage. I put garbage out there, and don’t want to clean that up every morning. I’d have to wait for my son to rise in order to get even attempt to get this one out.
But look what had happened to us in the last day. A trip to see, and smell, a whale up close, fireworks, in town and in our garage, and one curious, not to mention miffed gopher. We’d seen it all.
What on earth could today bring?

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5 Comments:

  • At July 2, 2008 at 3:04 PM, Blogger Anita Mae said…

    Barbara - a very interesting post. I read it to my family and the comments were:

    - hubby and I can relate to the chocolate - if he's not sneaking mine, the kids are sneaking his.

    - as I read about the whale, hubby perked up and said he was up last night w/heartburn and caught the story at 0100 on CTV NewsNetwork. (We're in Sask)

    - the boys got a kick out of the kittens in the garage - especially the part where the adult cats 'helped'.

    - you only have one gopher? Want some more? :-)

    Your post shows how you can write such detailed stories, eh?

     
  • At July 2, 2008 at 6:50 PM, Blogger Ausjenny said…

    I agree with anita Mae interesting post.
    i haven't seen a beached whale but we had one in South Australia that made headlines a few years back.

    Oh the poor kittens I so want a cat.

    and a gopher never seen one live how cute. (we get the aussie wildlife here occasionally)

    wondering what today brought.

     
  • At July 2, 2008 at 8:26 PM, Blogger Barbara Phinney said…

    Anita Mae, Jenny,
    Thanks for dropping by! My son wants a kitten so badly, but we have very good friends who are allergic to them, so we don't want them to flare up. As for the choccie bar, I told my son this morning that he owes us a big one.
    Anita Mae, one gopher is plenty, thank you. We also have muskrats and pheasants who love our garden.
    Oh, I hope your hubby feels better!
    Jenny, that whale is still causing a stir around town, and now they're saying they are going to bury it. The beach only has about a foot of sand over shale, and the road is a one lane dirt road to it. Plus there's a twenty foot cliff! I think it's a make work project!
    Here are some interesting sites you can check out
    http://timestranscript.canadaeast.com/front/article/342572
    or here's an article on a blue whale that died in 1987, only to be buried on the beach, and is now being exhumed. Could we be looking at that again?
    http://www.cbc.ca/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2008/05/16/whale-exhumed.html

     
  • At July 3, 2008 at 5:51 PM, Blogger PamelaTracy said…

    Barbara,
    What a great topic. When I think of the last 24 hours, I'm not surprised to find that I didn't get much writing in either. Sure wish I could have stood on a beach watching the wonders of the ocean world. The highlight of my day was finding out my three year old had advanced from level one to level two in swim class. Oh, and I got pretty excited about the reasonable cost of steaks at my local Safeway. You might as well feed the kitten. Anyone in your family allergic?

     
  • At July 4, 2008 at 4:39 PM, Blogger Barbara Phinney said…

    Pam,
    I'm a bit allergic to cats, but it wouldn't stop me petting one or cuddlng one. And believe me, my days are usually filled with not much, either. I'm so boring, I get excited about food sales, too!
    In our area, pork tenderloin is on sale this week, btw.
    I can remember my son taking swimming lessons. My daughter was like a fish, but didn't get his shorts wet for the first three years! We kept putting him in and he would stand at the edge of the pool and shake his head.
    On the story of the whale, I just learned my semi invalid mother in law was determined to see that whale that she practicaly crawled down the cliff and went up right up and touched it. She said she's never going to be that close to one again, and she wanted to see it. Good for her!
    Well, supper's over and must clean up. Oh, but I want to put my feet up.

     

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