the lair of the dark queen

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here this evening to bring you a rather creepy post indeed. You may remember me from such creepy posts as “The Missing Grass” and, of course, “Creeped Out”, among at least a few others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.

It’s hard to say what the weirdest thing is, lately, because the list of weird stuff is pretty long.

It rained. That was weird. We got maybe a third of an inch, and on top of the watering that was done a few days ago, the soil in some parts of the garden is pretty damp.

There are colchicums in flower now. This is ‘Disraeli’.

And you can see how much it rained on like the parking lot by where we walk.

The guy I live with said, “Look, a duck”, but I didn’t see it.

It’s actually kind of a nice parking lot and reminds the guy I live with of the kind of places where he used to work.There’s a place where a bunch of cottonowood roots have come to the surface, like huge earthworms, because I guess the grass is watered a lot.

Well, across from this is like an old sluice, which maybe I’ve showed before. Probably. On the concrete there is a very large, and I mean really extra fairly gigantically large you know what. The guy I live with said that if you get too close to her she goes into this defense mode, because there are babies close by, and I really didn’t want to see this defense mode, thank you very much anyway, and we are certainly not going to show a picture of the creature the guy I live with calls the dark queen, because, well I’ve already been plenty creeped out lately.

He did say that there’s been one there before, maybe not the same one, though it would be weird to think that two you know whats have raised babies there by the sluice.
I almost put my nose right on her. The guy I live with started making loud “nose somewhere else” noises.

Well, so, it rained, and today she wasn’t there. The babies were gone, too. The guy I live with said they were probably moved. Hopefully not any closer to me. 

A couple of the times that it rained we were under a severe thunderstorm watch, or warning, for most of the day. This is what it looked like the last time we were under a watch. You can see the big clouds right at the bottom of the picture. 

With the rain, the garden perked up a bit.

I guess that’s really all there is, today. We’ve mostly just been sitting here, not doing much. The guy I live with’s head might explode trying to work with this new editor. It’s not very easy to use at all. 

I think I’ll leave you with a nice sunset picture of me which the guy I live with posted on Facebook, and which he likes a lot. Of course, because it has me in it.



Until next time, then. 



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in the furnace

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular but totally roasting host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today to tell you all about how incredibly super ultra unbelievably roasting hot I am. You may remember me from such roasting hot posts as “Beyond Super Roasting”, “Still Roasting”, “Into The Garden, Endlessly Roasting”, “Ultra Roasting”, “Super Totally Extra Roasting Hot”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.

Really, this is the only time I’ve been even remotely comfortable, except for the times when I get to get totally soaked with the hose.
It’s been so hot neither of us have been able to do much of anything, except at night. Right now, on Monday afternoon, it’s 96F (36C) and eight percent humidity. Record high temperatures for September, here, with no end in sight. The guy I live with said it was like a furnace, but I think he exaggerated a little, the way he does.
You can see some of the dead branches in the honey locust in the picture, there. The guy I live with says he might have the tree cut down, and something else, like an apple tree, planted there instead.

A lot of plants in the garden have died this year. The guy I live with walks around the garden sometimes, in the evening, and says goodbye to old, familiar plants which have been burned to a crisp. He has been watering some, too.

It’s been so hot here that we mostly do things when the sun goes down. We have a new thing in the upstairs bedroom.
The guy I live with got it when his knee was hurting and he had to lie in bed for a long time. It’s not a very big TV, and you can see, and he’s been watching something called “Monty Python’s Flying Circus” late at night. He said he watched that years ago when it first came out.
This is me looking at the TV when it was first turned on.
The TV feet are duct-taped to the top of my upstairs fort so the TV won’t fall off.
He said this was a valuable addition to our modern lifestyle, though it was not very expensive at all. I guess it’s emotionally valuable.

So yesterday, even though it was roasting, roasting hot out, the guy I live with went over to Kelly Grummons’ garden because there were plants on sale, and he could hardly resist. If you Google “cold hardy cactus” the website will come up with all sorts of things on it.

There was an agave, finished flowering and forming seeds. The stalk needed a little help.

This is an opuntia he got. Not very friendly-looking. It’s going to live in a pot, out in the front yard.The guy I live with said he hadn’t visited this garden since he and his wife came over to take pictures for “the book”, and that a lot had changed, the way lots do, and that this might quickly become one of his favorite gardens.
It isn’t very far away, either.
He did almost pass out from the heat, but that’s another story.

In other news, it’s time to start seeing katydids. And so we have been.

I of course wanted to try it, since I’ve never had katydid, but the guy I live with said not to, the way he always does, and anyway the katydid flew away right as I was about to close my terrifically fierce, vise-like jaws on it.
He said it’s hard not to think of katydids without a tear or two coming to his eyes. He and his wife would walk along the sidewalk where we saw this one, at night, trying to find katydids with a flashlight after they heard one. They aren’t always easy to see, that way.
There are books like this, downstairs.

But anyway we’ve been seeing katydids. Sometimes we hear them.

We’ve also been hearing a lot of cicadas. The guy I live with really likes them, though the incredible heat lately has putting a damper on a lot of things he might like. It doesn’t seem like September at all.

The hummingbirds are still stopping at the flowers and feeders. Maybe you can see one, here.

I guess that’s all I have. It’s so hot the days aren’t much fun. I know that the guy I live with is watching me to make sure I don’t get overheated.
I’ll leave you with this picture of me guarding the front door. You can see that what’s called the “marble-topped table” has almost lost its marble, because of how I run around the table to be all fierce like you see here, but the guy I live with always pushes the marble back, so it won’t get broken. It’s Italian green marble, if you wanted to know. An heirloom.

Until next time, then.









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