October rain

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, Chess the purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, and here to bring you the latest damp and gloomy news from our garden. You may remember me from such damp and gloomy posts as “Gray And Gloomy”, and “A Gloomy Evening”, and “Gloomy Weather”, among so many, many other posts.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.14100909I’ve been under the weather again, not feeling much like eating, and I have some pills for my tummy, which is what my doctor thinks the trouble is. My walks have been longer than usual, and everything else is pretty excellent, but I haven’t much felt like eating all the gross food that the guy I live with has tried to talk me into eating. I did eat some bologna and a few other things.

My inspired title for this post came from the fact that it’s raining. Sometimes it does that here. I’ve shown movies of almost all the times it’s rained here, but today, just a picture.14100908My afternoon walk was cut short because it was just misting and drizzling when we started, but then it rained more seriously, so we had to turn around.

I got wet.14100906Before it started to rain, the guy I live with took some crocus pictures. The flowers weren’t open, but he took the pictures anyway.

Crocus cartwrightianus 'Michel'

Crocus cartwrightianus ‘Michel’

Crocus cancellatus spp. lycius, aka C. lycius

Crocus cancellatus spp. lycius, aka C. lycius

I think he finally got a halfway decent shot of Salvia reptans, too. The beautiful blue color of the small flowers is difficult to capture, or so he says.  I can see the color blue, if you didn’t know. Blue and yellow. Like I can see the flag of Sweden. 14100903And, of course, cyclamen. This is Cyclamen mirabile ‘Tile Barn Nicholas’. The guy I live with spends a lot of time crawling along the path in the rock garden looking at cyclamen. He says he pronounces the name with a long Y like in cycling, unless the plants don’t look very good, then it’s a short Y. I guess I get it….14100904One thing he was talking about the other day was the “serious lack of French flower pots”, or seau à fleurs. So there was a considerable amount of time spent online looking up “French flower pots”, which yielded a number of results, all analogous to looking up “French fries” or “French toast”, so he typed in “real French flower pots” and still got the same thing, French-style flower pots, so then he typed in “French flower pots made in France”, and got the same thing again, so finally he typed in (duh) seau à fleurs, and found the website of the company that manufactures them, and then wondered what to do next.

It’s not like he cuts flowers, or does arranging, or anything like that. My mommy used to, a lot (it was her birthday yesterday; maybe that’s why this came up), but he doesn’t, so I don’t know why he got all agitated about them. After all, we do have one, and here it is, sitting all alone on the bench.14100907I guess that’s it. I think we’ll have one lonely French (real French, made in France) flower pot, just sitting there, in the rain, like a character in Hemingway. The guy I live with said no, it was like a character from a play by Beckett, maybe called “The Bucket”. Oh, whatever. 14100910a

Until next time, then.

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14 Responses to October rain

  1. petabunn says:

    Hi Chess, remember me, Molly, the cross Border Collie. I’m sorry to hear you’re not feeling well again, a bit like my mummy, not a very good year for her either. I have managed to read all your posts when my internet has been working but have not posted any comments because of this. It’s nice that it’s raining for you instead of that terrible thunder. I think you look good after your rain shower. the garden has been looking good too, you must tell your guy. Hope your tummy settles ( mummy also has that problem, doesn’t know what to eat that won’t upset her, gets a bit scary doesn’t it Chess). Until next time…

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; well, we’d wondered where you had gone. It’s been kind of an icky year for me, though one of our neighbors remarked on how springy my step was, less falling down and wobbling. On the other hand, I’m not very hungry. He has a friend with tummy troubles, too; they’re no fun. I guess that’s why people take to gardening. To quote Allen Ginsberg, “to ease the pain of living”. Being obsessed with crocuses and cyclamen, and the 600 cactus seedlings which are now upstairs for the winter. ….

  2. Oh, Chess, you look so *enlivened* wet from the rain, how exciting for you. When Petey and Shredder get wet it’s because it is dry when we start on our walk, then at the farthest point from the house the heavens open up and just pour and we have to slosh our way back in the rain. Nobody’s enlivened. However, there’re towels enough for everyone, as I suspect there are for you. The photos are especially good today, gorgeous color and wonderful close-ups. I don’t believe I’ve ever viewed a cyclamen before from such a near angle. And the Salvia reptans! The Pacific Horticulture issue which came today contained an article on blue plants, but none of the plant photos possessed the fierce blue in the guy you live with’s photo. Keep eating the bologna, Chess, and take your pills, and I hope you find a delicacy which suits your tummy and which you put away in ferocious amounts..

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; I felt enlivened, if not completely soaked. The guy I live with puts towels on the chair just to dry me off. He washes them afterwards, so I always have a set of clean towels. The Salvia reptans never grew well for us until the guy I live with looked up its habitat which said “rocky soils”, and so it’s growing in just such conditions, and is very happy. Reptans means the thing creeps, but I don’t think in the sense of creeping me out, which I wouldn’t like. Nursery catalogs call it the “West Texas form”, which is totally weird, since it only grows in west Texas. (So like if you were to order one, you’d get the same plant.)

  3. Vivian says:

    Darling Chess, I can’t bear the thought of you skipping meals. Here’s a recipe for broccoli that my own sweet dog, Boogie Girl, used to love (in fact, when she had no interest in any other food she would still get excited about her broccoli casserole): Saute garlic in olive oil. Right before it gets too browned, add a quantity of seasoned bread crumbs. Stir until well mixed, then remove from heat. In a casserole dish, arrange broccoli florets (cut up in exactly bite-sized chunks), top with the garlic infused bread crumbs. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 mins, or until the broccoli has achieved the level of chewiness that you prefer (I like my broccoli kind of mushy, and so did Boogie Girl). My husbands garnishes his brocs with parmesan cheese and crushed walnuts, but it’s also very tasty served plain. If I lived within a day’s drive of Denver I would deliver this to you myself, but as I’m way out here on the north shore of Long Island I can only wish you bon appetit.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks for the recipe. The guy I live with would add a great deal of butter and parmegiano-reggiano, or, in the Indian style, lots of garlic and a pinch of turmeric. But it turns out things aren’t what he thought they were. (His record for things turning out how he imagined they would is a solid zero percent.) He called my doctor, explained everything (I will eat the smelly Rimadyl tablets), and she asked if there was a chance I had tasted the pain med when he gave it to me, even when it was wrapped in mozzarella. More than a chance. I kept trying to tell him, in a purebred border collie way, that the pills were ICKY and BITTER, but he was all la-de-da, you know, and now he’s wrecked my appetite for a few days. A literal bitter pill, not a metaphorical one.

  4. Knicky Twigs says:

    Oh darling doggie, nobody likes the taste of a bitter pill, but that can certainly be remedied (no pun intended). To the cheese for your master, and I don’t mean mozzarella! Big quantities of soft, yummy, smelly cheese! While delicious, mozzarella is too mild to mask the yuck. BTW: isn’t it funny how humans obsess on things like seau a fleurs that they don’t even need or really want? Best to you…

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; the guy I live with got me some ultra-stinky blue cheese, but I don’t want that, either. He says we can’t get Stinking Bishop here, and there wasn’t any Morbier to be found, so, I lose weight. I hear this is a common mishap. But other than that I feel pretty good, and even today our neighbor (one of the nice ones) remarked on how chipper I looked, walking. The French (real French, made in France) flower pot pictured on the blog is 12” (30cm) high and cost about $80 twenty years ago. The ones offered on Google cost $15, and that says everything. The pot was a gift, and it’s probably obvious why there aren’t a dozen of them sitting around here.

      • Vivian says:

        Garlic. Baked broccoli with garlic flavored breadcrumbs would mask the ick. The $80 flower pots are probably made of tin from the mansard roofs of Paris, the $15 ones are made in China. I think obsessing about French flower pots is a fine way to spend the day of Chess’ mommy’s birthday.

      • paridevita says:

        Oh, the guy I live with really likes baked garlic. Spread on a baguette. (I’m not getting the bitter pills for about a week, to see if I start eating again.) There’s nothing really wrong, per se, with things made in China; at least one manufacturer of very high quality cookware has some of its stuff made in China, but he says that when you’re looking for French flower pots, or in this case just daydreaming about them, you expect French flower pots, not “French” flower pots.

  5. Susan Hunter says:

    I used braunschweiger to give meds to my old dog, Dixie (she was part collie, part shepherd, part coyote). Down in one quick gulp. It got so that the cats had to have some too, just to share in the “moment”. I hope you are having a lovely fall Saturday with plenty of earthy, leafy smells.

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks; the day is okay except for the fact that the guy I live with wants me to eat something, and I don’t want to. Nothing at all. This is my diet, I guess. (My doctor said give it a few days, and then maybe I’ll forget the awful taste of the pills I was taking…the pain pills, not the others.)

  6. Deborah S. Farrell says:

    I love the bluey blueness of the salvia reptans. And now I want one of those metal pots — thanks.

    I am loathe to tell you how I give Daisy, one of the dogs I live with, her big blue pill (milk thistle). I pop it out of the blister pack. The sound that makes sends her running . . . away. I go to her & pet her & let her smell the pill. We exchange a series of looks. Hers says, “Really? You now I don’t like this!” And my looks says, “I know, girly-girl, but we have to do this.” I pet her a couple more times, then I pry her mouth open and push the pill all the way down her throat. She licks me and rubs against me after it’s done, which I choose to interpret as her understanding that I’m trying to help her. My fingers are always blue afterwards. Blue is wonderful in flowers, but it seems unnecessary in pills.

    • paridevita says:

      That’s the way the guy I live with gives me my zonisamide, the anti-seizure med. I don’t care for the practice, much, and I know he tried to explain cause and effect to me (not eating, and needing pills), but I don’t get it. The guy I live with assumes no responsibility for the awakening of desire to own a real French flower pot. They’re relatively heavy, they hold water, and they’re not cheap. They definitely are classy. And actually, you know, Salvia reptans is even bluer than the picture shows. Dark blue. Like a lot of penstemons. (My mommy would lecture the guy I live with on colors every time he said something was a color, and she would say no, this is what is looks like, pointing to a color chart. But dark blue is right.)

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