four excellent years

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today to celebrate an anniversary. You may remember me from such occasion-related posts as “A Short, Sentimental Post”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.

I guess you can probably see that it snowed again. “It snowed again” has been a recurrent phrase for a long time now.

Well, today is kind of a big day. Today marks four years since I came to this house, to live with the guy I live with, and I must say they have been four excellent years indeed. There have been some sad moments, and some agitated ones, but mostly things here have been pretty calm and really great.

So today I thought instead of just showing stuff that interests the guy I live with, I would show some different pictures, and well as a couple of usual ones, just so weirdness doesn’t creep in. Neither of us likes weirdness.

I’ll show one picture of the garden, today, with the frames open, since it was pretty warm out, even though it doesn’t look like it, much.

The rest of the pictures are things on my walks, from the last couple of days; in particular, a very brisk walk we took yesterday. Some of the pictures have me in them. Those are the best, of course. And not all of them are in color, in case you began to worry.

A dead elm tree. There are a lot of them around here.

Ice patterns in the creek.

Snow patterns on a windy day.

Patterns left by melting snow falling from trees.

More patterns and wind-sculpted shapes.

Me at the sluice. The guy I live with said there was an iron wheel handle, but it disappeared some years ago. The sluice was for an old farm house which has been gone even longer than the handle.


That’s really all I have for today. Just pictures, and four years of excellence, living here.

Until next time, then.

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below seasonal normals

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here today to talk about some stuff. You may remember me from such stuff-related posts as “The New Thing”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.

Yes, I know the things on the pantry door could have used a bit of straightening, which they have gotten now, and which kind of ties in with other things I have to say, but notice how cozy I am lying on the bed upstairs on a very cold day.

The guy I live with snuck up the stairs and took a picture of me, like he did in the last post. I got into a cute pose, which is not all that difficult for me.

My life here is very rough, as you can tell. That’s my personal pillow, too.

But let’s go back to that first picture, if you can tear yourself away from pictures of me. I know that’s difficult.

I’m not sure if this picture has been shown before, but next to the wall calendar is a picture of Chess and Slipper sitting on a kitchen chair. (As well as a collection of tags. And a quotation from Jack Kerouac which has been on that little chalk board for ages. He lived not too far away from here in the late 1940s; the house is still there.)

I thought you might want to see this, if you haven’t before. They were first cousins and loved each other a lot.

When Slipper died, on the back patio here, with the guy I live with holding him, Chess stood at attention, guarding his first cousin, and then did the same, in the car, when Slipper was taken to the vet. It’s sometimes hard for the guy I live with to stand and look at this picture.

I live in an interesting house, don’t you think?

It’s been cold here. The guy I live with says it will be cold here until it’s not, which I don’t find very reassuring, but on the other hand I like cold weather, like purebred border collies tend to do. I do wonder if the guy I live with might lose his mind, since almost no gardening has been done since the middle of November, which is not very usual for here. Temperatures are “below seasonal normals”; in other words, cold, cold, and more cold. And then cold again. Followed by–you guessed it–more cold.

For some reason I’ve never shown any pictures of the plants upstairs. It could be that they’re not all that hugely fascinating. Some of them are just waiting for the end of winter, which the guy I live with says might be some time in the next three thousand years, and others stay up here all the time. But at least there are plants here.

The plumeria had a rough time a year or so ago but it recovered. The guy I live with said that it’s about fifteen years old and it might be time for it to think about flowering.

The view from this upstairs bedroom is a bit gloomy. 

It started to snow again today, and the guy I live with stuck his head out the door and yelled “Stop snowing!” But it didn’t. It’s supposed to snow again day after tomorrow and the day after that. “And until the end of time”, the guy I live with said.

On to something a bit more interesting, now. Well, maybe not that interesting. Sort of interesting.

The guy I live with took some pictures of himself to post on Facebook. He’s not like an egomaniac or anything and doesn’t really like looking at pictures of himself, but since he starts radiation tomorrow he thought it might be nice to show a picture.

So he started taking pictures. Pictures, pictures, pictures. Finally he found one that didn’t make him look like “a complete doofus”.

He said this was pretty good, and I agreed, but then, when he was looking at it a little more closely, he said that it looked like his left eye was lower than his right eye. “My left eye is not lower than my right eye”, he said, and went to the mirror to check. It wasn’t.

He thought about this for quite a long time, checking the mirror again and even doing some measuring. I mean, seriously, he’s not vain at all but this looked really weird to him.

An awful lot of thinking went on for a few days after that.

It turns out that his head was slightly tilted to the left. He wondered about that for a little while, but of course he does tend to tilt his head that way after so many years of talking on the phone. And he certainly has been talking on the phone a lot, lately.

You may think that all of this is completely ridiculous, and I wouldn’t necessarily disagree. He took over three hundred pictures to try to get his head level. Eventually he had a hard time keeping a straight face when looking into the camera. “Level head”, he kept saying. That’s pretty much of a stretch, if you ask me.

So that’s what’s been going on. Seriously. Stuff like this. Worrying if one eye is lower than another. And complaining about the constant cold. Which I like. (The cold, not the complaining.)

Until next time, then.

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