A week slips by…

In which Bud and I were the constant companions while Rich and Abby and brother Bruce came and went and Dan called from the road. He reported, will wonders never cease, that the concert tour was a big success, they had good recording time and he is prepared, already, to repay a sizable portion of the money we loaned to front the tour.

Bud and I were wonderfully happy and content with each other, pleased to have the block of time. And yet. We’re both people who enjoy our space and quiet so the last few days, after a week of yelling, "What? What did you say?" at each other, we settled into reading our books on the porch and going to watch the birds and manatee, where we could merely point and nod. Bud loved the manatee and he was rewarded with good viewing; one afternoon we saw six, including two calves nursing, right up against the seawall. He read a large book on manatee and dugongs, such was his fascination. We went grocery shopping together and I had some photos enlarged as a reminder of my mother so we went and bought frames, too. You know how I detest the mall and sure enough, we managed to lose the car in the acres surrounding Macys. Finally, I left him with the goods stacked on the hood of a stranger’s vehicle and went off in search of ours. When I returned he was laughing out loud with a woman who said, "It looks like you got stuck holding the bag" and Bud said, "No! My daughter lost the car!"

It’s hard to know when I’ll get another opportunity to spend 10 days straight with sweet, funny Bud- probably next year- so this was important time for me and I let other things slide.
JULIA CHILD catches a cold.Juliac

We had a ludicrous party which Bud enjoyed enormously, Rich thought was great fun and I survived. Since we were shuffling back and forth in our Chicago move while the bulk of the noise was happening down here during the addition, I thought it would be polite to have the neighbors over for hor d’ouvres and beverages.  One problem with this was that I don’t really know most of our neighbors here beyond waving hello during walkabouts. I went to the neighbor that I DO know and got a list of everyone else and then I went slinking up and down the street dropping invitations into mailboxes, praying I wouldn’t have to actually talk to anybody in the process. I planned a menu, went shopping, Bud washed all the windows, Rich ran errands. With Laawwry, the gay gardener’s help, I turned out key lime tarts,
gazpacho in little individual cups, bruschetta, bocconcini mozzarella
with prosciutto and homemade pesto, grilled skewers of veggies and
Annie’s maple/apple chicken sausage, etc.,etc. Then, fifteen minutes before company was due, I went from healthy to respiratory disaster in a matter of moments. I haven’t had a cold for over a decade and I’m really never sick so I suppose I was due, but still. (It’s true. I forgot to mention the second anniversary of this blog because it was also the first anniversary of my mother’s death, but you haven’t read here any complaints of illness in all that time. One mangled foot when I got hung up in the treadmill while exercising barefoot and that’s it).

Anyway, I was a disgusting public health nuisance by the time people showed up but no one seemed to notice. They also didn’t seem to mind that I didn’t know who they were. I invited 15 strangers plus a few friends from yoga and my work at the women’s shelter. 45 strangers showed up, brought "welcome to the neighborhood" wine and plants (clearly, they have been observing me) stayed the whole time, yelled animatedly, laughed, talked sports with Rich and snow with Bud, and ate and drank until an hour after it was all due to end. Go figure.

Congratulations are in orderNest1

Hannibal and the missus have young ones in the nest. I had been counting the days during their nest sitting and the hatchlings arrived none too soon. During the final week, Mrs. H. would give a soft "cak" from her perch high in the tree and then wait a few minutes. Then I would hear "CAK!" No response from Hannibal. After another five to ten minutes, the peace of the neighborhood was shattered with "CAK! CAK! CAK! CAK!" and within moments the wayward partner would show up, usually with a pigeon in tow.Mrsh1

If I thought it was raining feathers before, well, let me tell you.  It’s a jigsaw of a thousand parts around here now.  Yesterday, he nabbed a blue jay youngster and the raucous explosion of shrieks and screams from the outraged jay parents went on for a good 20 minutes. Today, mom took time out for herself and left Hannibal to sit. I can’t see any movement from the wee ones yet; keep in mind this nest is very very high up (so you can barely see him up there on top of the nest). Mrs. H. spent fully an hour preening herself on a nearby branch and when he started to cak at her to return, she turned a deaf ear to his call.Mrsh

16 responses to “A week slips by…

  1. It’s good to have you back. I forgot Bud was visiting (duh, there is a post about it right below), and I kept checking in and not finding news.

    Sounds like it was a lovely visit. You told us what Bud was reading, but not what you were reading. Any good books?

    I have been reading my usual crap and I think maybe I am starting to be in the mood for something more substantial intellectually.

    I’ll let you know if I venture back into the world of real books anytime soon.

  2. Sounds like a pretty successful party, except for the cold, dang it. Those hors d’ouvres sound yummy! And Vitamin C fortified wine…now there’s a health drink!

  3. That’s neat that you had such a good turnout for your open house. Those neighbors probably didn’t know each other either. I usually have that too when I do an open house. People come and stay the whole time. I guess it’s something that we need to do more often.

    It’s good to see you in print again!!

  4. Even with a cold you seem to be having a jolly good time!

  5. CAK! You’re back!

    You are very good to all of the men in your life and I find that most edifying, indeed.

    Your dinner sounds heavenly! I wish to copy it to the letter.

    Yoga friends!!

    I’m grooming myself for our anniversary dinner tonight, but I shan’t emulate Hannibal’s missus and play hard-to-get. That’s all right after 31 years, oui?


  6. It sounds like..LIFE. People, parties, books, colds, children and husbands. I would have loved to crash your party since the food sounded spectacular. But I wouldn’t want your cold!

  7. You are quite the hostess there. I always read that if you invited a certain number of people, you could count on only half showing up. Looks like more people showed up than you invited… did you take an add? You will now be known as the ice breaker, the party guru, the fun chick… you go girl… you’re popular!!!!

    Glad to hear that Sophie will be on the ark..perhaps I can keep Rhett from obsessing. I have to feed Scarlett extra wet food in an attempt to get her to gain weight. Rhett has become the garbage man… eating anything and everything she leaves. Now he has gained about three pounds and is getting quite the gut. Even the bird watching and lunging at the window hasn’t helped. I think he’s depressed and like many of us, eats.

    Baby manatee…. calves, right?

    Enjoy Bud. Get well.

  8. Grooming is something cats and bunnies do. Fierce predators preen.


    It sounds like you’re having a wonderful time. Glad Bud is making friends too. Who can resist an older gentleman shopping and socializing with his daughter?

    Thanks for making me laugh today. Any news on the chrysalis?

  9. Vicki, I wish I could have come to your party too! It sounds wonderful, as did your doings with Bud, and the mall car mystery. I hope you feel better soon, and I am thinking that wine with vit. C ought to do the trick! Say congrats to the musician on the successful tour; I am trying to find his CD around here, but it seems I’ll have to order it.

  10. All’s right with the world, now that you’re back. I don’t know, perhaps I’m just Odd and Needy and Terribly Insecure. . . but the Universe just righted itself. Or, maybe that’s the two margaritas I had for dinner talking… hmm??

    Happy happy first day of Spring. I’m so glad you had a lovely party and an amazing time with Bud and that all offspring are reporting good news. And I’m glad you’re back. Very, very glad you are back.

    Here’s to daffodils in May.

  11. Nice to hear from you again. Glad you’ve been busy and happy! Sorry about the cold — blech! We threw a party like that a few years ago on New Year’s Day — it was so much fun! Just an open house, come on in and meet your neighbors gathering. We should do it again!

    Great shots of Mr & Mrs Hannibal!

  12. From your description of Hannibal and Mrs.Hannibal, I can see that birds of prey have some of the same issues that humans do regarding chores and childcare.

    The party sounds delightful.

    Bud is a dear.

    I must go visit Babette now. I shan’t delay another minute.

  13. Seriously considering moving to Florida to be your neighbor, if you’ll feed me like that! Mmmm. Hope you’re feeling better soon.

  14. I’m impressed at your party-giving skills. I tend to hope during most social occasions to not have to talk to anybody. Still, I think I’d like this party. Your gardener is a lucky find, one that cooks too! What a wonderful menu. I have a recipe for a fire & ice gazpacho you might like, with jalapeno and ice cold. Yum.

    What an experience having your hawks so observable! I’ve never been that close to their daily activities though I see several kinds of hawks swoop through most every day. On our daily walks we find the evidence, some days blue feathers, others black ones. Sometimes a puff of rabbit tail.

  15. Nice to see you back, Vicki. Glad your visit with Bud went well, and everything is sweet on the homefront.

    Great photos of Hannibal and the missus. I put up a few pics on the blog today of what appears to be the remnants of a gull after a raptor had eaten most of it. It’s not as awful as it sounds (or maybe it is!). Quite a sight though.

    I sent you an email yesterday about Good Planets hosting.

  16. It doesn’t surprise me one bit that your party full of strangers was a hit! You are probably one of the best hostesses around. Glad to hear you spent fun and quiet times with Bud. That’s so important.

    Congratulations on the new family high up in that tree! I love your photos and commentary. Please keep them coming. I’d die to have the Mr. and Mrs. up there to view every day, but I would be a nervous nellie watching my bewds, too :o)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s