This past week has been wonderfully spring-like, until yesterday when it the temperature dropped and then today it’s only gotten up to the 40’s. Not that I’m complaining – I’ll take chilly toes in my flip flops as I do laundry over the snow they had up in PA!
The early flowers are blooming here. As you can see, the daffodils are going to town. The crepe myrtle is in full bloom, and evidently one of the plants I keep hacking back is a forsythia. Oops.
The longer days are very welcome. I’ve been able to get out and start cleaning up the flower beds, including hacking back the very overgrown holly bushes. I wanted to get them cut back before the birds took up residence and succeeded. They seem to be nesting in the smaller bushes in front while the bare branches of the holly are useful lookout spots, much to the enjoyment of the cat.
And yes, I said cat. There as been further news on the pet side of things that I haven’t shared. Right before Christmas Mack developed some health issues that I didn’t catch until a mass in his abdomen ruptured. So the Sunday before Christmas he had to be put down. Very sudden, very unexpected.
I honestly couldn’t face getting another dog. And logistically, dogs are difficult. After two months of coming home to an empty house, I broke down and got a cat. Another shelter rescue, as usual (all my pets have been rescues).
This is Kilele, a four year old, well, cat. :) She came with the name Claire, which just doesn’t seem like a cat name to me, so her full name is now Claire Kilele Kidogo, which is what she gets called when she’s in trouble. In Swahili kilele means “noise” and kidogo means “little”. Which is very fitting – she’s a tiny but very noisy cat. The vet, upon hearing her, mentioned that many black cats are part Siamese (which I did not know!). So we have very many fine conversations.
Extra toeses, in need of a trim
She also has hemingway toes, which offers the additional challenge of keeping her extra claws trimmed. On each “thumb” on her front paws she has two normal cat claws and one large claw that looks more like a dog claw. The scratching post doesn’t help with these claws (her thumbs don’t actually work like thumbs HALLELUJAH) so they don’t stay short. She’s clicking around the house now – I tried trimming them this morning but I think I need at least two more hands. Since this morning’s effort resulted in me digging out the Neosporin and band-aids, I’m going to be giving the vet a call on Monday.
While laying in bed this morning trying (unsuccessfully) to sleep in, I realized the difference between cats and dogs. Dogs may be high maintenance but they aren’t demanding. Cats may be low maintenance, but gosh they’re demanding. It was 6:45 (breakfast time) and I was being poked by a paw. Regularly.
She also likes to assist with all the yarny things that happen here at Nyumbani ya Linnakat.
Herd of celli, tucked in a safe corner between rehearsal and concert.
In other news, I’m playing cello again! I’m playing with the Oak Ridge Community Orchestra and enjoying it very much. My first concert (in December) was very much being thrown in the deep end – we played Prokofiev Cinderella Suite No. 1 and that was very challenging. I didn’t master the music for this month’s concert, but I got a whole lot more of it, and it was also much easier to see how to play it. In other words, I could play it well at slow speeds – it all fit in the hand nicely, I just needed to work on getting everything fast enough. The Prokofiev? Oy. Hard to figure out and hard to hear what was right. This month’s concert was the 2nd and 4th movement of the Dvorak 9th, Borodin’s Polovetsian Dances, and an aria (with soloist) from Rossini’s Barber of Seville. We’re doing almost the same program at the Knoxville Dogwood Festival next month, but I’ll miss the May concert due to some upcoming travel. I miss playing but I’m enjoying having my Saturday mornings at home!