baked again

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, the hot-weather-loathing purebred border collie, here today to tell you how incredibly hot I’ve been. You may remember me from such heat-related posts as “Super Roasting”, “Beyond Super Roasting”, “Still Roasting”, “Mostly Roasting Again”, “Into The Garden, Endlessly Roasting”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose. It’s like about ninety-nine degrees (F) and nine percent humidity. It’s been so super hot that I’ve barely been able to move. I did get to go into the canal on one of my walks. (Not this part right here, because there are big rocks on the bottom to control erosion where the canal comes out of the culvert.) The water comes from the mountains.It’s been unbelievably roasting hot and I guess I’ll show some pictures. I was about to say “hot pictures” but the guy I live with said really not to say that, and when I asked why, he said really extra not to,  rather than explaining, so I guess they’re just pictures. Of the garden, in the heat.

Here’s a backwards picture of the first picture. You can’t see me in the window. He didn’t know the Yucca faxoniana and torreyi (behind it) would get so huge. I mean he thought they would die.

Still in the front yard, which by the way is never irrigated.The guy I live with likes hot dry weather. So he says. Not all the time, of course. Well, right now, he’s not liking it so much, with the hot flashes and low energy. He went to a prostate cancer support group yesterday and said he learned stuff about how long this might go on. I stayed home and baked.

(He goes next week for a blood test to see whether or not all of this hormone therapy and radiation worked. He’s pretty much indifferent to all of this since it’s out of his control.)

Quercus undulata and Juniperus monosperma.

Well, back to the heat. Since there’s nowhere else to go. It’s hot everywhere.

The desert willow certainly likes heat. Maybe you remember that we feared this plant had died, but now it’s taller than the guy I live with, and still growing. It came back. It used to be a fairly big tree here.

form from west Texas.

At this time of year the guy I live with starts thinking about warmer climates, which I find obnoxiously weird since he knows full well we purebred border collies do not like hot weather. I keep having to say that. We really hate it. It does cool off nicely at night, at least.

I know we’re not going to move to Tucson or any place like that (where it doesn’t cool off at night like it does here), but I think that’s not really what all this liking hot dry weather nonsense is all about. I think it’s because someone who was a professional horticulturist told him he was “no gardener” because he liked hot dry weather (not all the time), which was just another example of someone telling him what sort of a person he was and what he wanted to do in his life.

All the guy I live with ever wanted to do in his life was work in a nursery or a record store. Not be anything that people thought he was, or thought he wanted to be. So that comment stuck with him. I think he likes cooler weather more.

the path between the shed and the enclosure

Whatever; he ordered a headset for the Walkman and so now he can listen to CDs while he sits on the couch with me, in the evening. If you asked him what his idea of a good time was he would say that.
His wife had a Walkman (it’s downstairs now, but doesn’t have a headset); she would go out into “the enclosure” which she built just for herself, sit on the bench there, with books and the Walkman, with Chess, the purebred border collie who live here before me, at her feet, and if you asked her what her idea of a good time was she would have said that.

a peep into the “way back”, and my Private Lawn.

I know this would be more interesting if I talked about myself instead of the guy I live with, but it’s been too hot to do any gardening, so things like Walkmans become more interesting, at least to him. I like sleeping.
Anyway it’s pretty good that he decided to let all this music back into his life; he just ordered a copy of Fear of Music. He said that he played the song “Heaven” over and over again when Pooka, a purebred border collie who lived here before me, died. It’s like Radiohead again.

the “furnace garden”; it’s really hot here

It was kind of dumb for him to give away all those compact discs after his wife died, but he thought it was a good idea at the time; other people got to listen to the music, so that part was fine. And he doesn’t want to get all the CDs back anyway. It does amount to paying twice as much, or half again as much, for the CDs, but he said that’s what he gets for making a decision so soon after his wife died. It’s not that big of a deal, though; it’s making him happy, listening to the music again. Today, and last night, it was something called “Pink Floyd”.
He kept singing “Set the controls for the heart of the sun; the heart of the sun, the heart of the sun”, like it wasn’t already hot enough for me.

I guess that’s it for today. I’m kind of surprised I didn’t melt. The guy I live with said I had an appointment at a grooming place next week, and I asked him if that meant I just lay  there, in a swimming pool, and watched TV while I ate biscuits, and he said, “Well…”, so I’m not sure what this means. He said I’ll find out.

Until next time, then.


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two nurseries

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here again for another fascinating post. You may remember me from such posts as “Beyond Super Roasting”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose. The carpet is strewn with pieces of pine cone. I like to chew on pine cones, but you knew that already.It’s raining right now, and I mean really raining, but today was so hot even the guy I live with complained some.Earlier it looked like this. Hot.

The guy I live with got some cactus in the mail yesterday. Mostly chollas, he said. There were some he wanted. These will be grown well away from yours truly, I hasten to add.
This one looked scary even before he opened the bag.It was a form of Cylindropuntia davisii. Like, ultra scary.After it’s rooted it will live in a pot in the front yard. It takes a few weeks for the joints to root, once the ends have callused. The ends were already callused when they came in the mail.The other day, the guy I live with left me at home to go see his friend. They went to lunch, and to a couple of small nurseries near where she lives. They’re both very nice nurseries; they had a good time, despite the fact that it was hot and he was having hot flashes.

This is Southwest Gardens:

The guy I live with is just as happy going to nurseries with his friend as he was with his wife. And just as comfortable sitting in her living room as he is here (though there’s a cat at her house, ick) Like other people, he’s had a lot of shocks in his life, but this was one of the biggest.
Obviously they don’t live together, and that’s probably the secret of success. The big deal, and I think this is a super big deal, is that they can share “life events” together. The guy I live with has had kind of a lot of those life events lately, and she was there for him on the occasions when he was told he couldn’t drive to the urology center. This is Young’s nursery:

That’s a ‘Forest Pansy’ redbud, with the purple leaves. The guy I live with told his friend they should get it for her garden, so maybe they will, later. Her garden is way different from his and he wants to plant stuff like rhododendrons in her garden. There were some here at one time but he gave them away, because visitors spent most of the time looking at them instead of the rest of the garden.

I know I still haven’t told the story of how the guy I live with and his friend met, but I will, pretty soon.

The guy I live with is happy he got the cactus, and the plants at the nurseries, because he said he wasn’t going to buy any plants this year, and after a while he began to feel all weird about that decision. It wasn’t like buying snowdrops, money-wise, for sure. (I’m not supposed to talk about that, I think.)

One kind of sad thing: he said his mind keeps starting this thought that his mom might give him some money on his birthday, because she always did. Instead of sweaters that were too small. She didn’t last year, but she was going downhill and the guy I live with understood.  He also keeps thinking he should call her, and misses hearing her voice on the phone, even though sometimes the conversations were peculiar. He was already used to someone constantly in his life suddenly not being there, but that didn’t make it any better. His birthday is this Monday; he’ll be sixty-eight. I’m not sure how old that is in dog years.

So, back to today. It was hot. The guy I live with worked out in the garden even though he was perspiring and there were times when I thought he might pass out, but he was also drinking a lot of water and all sticky from sunscreen. It was a good thing we didn’t have a dust storm; he would have been covered.

Then he started looking for something in the garage, which he never found. He told me that was a metaphor. I’m not so into them as he is. Metaphors, I mean.
But he did come across this:This is called an album, and it has a record in it.Some people call it an LP, because when they were first introduced, in the late forties, they played longer than 78s, which were the records before that, and which rotated at 78 r.p.m, on something called a “turntable”, so people called them “long-playing records”. or LPs. They rotated at 33 1/3 r.p.m. Slower, so a longer playing time. And they didn’t break if you dropped them.
The guy I live with looked at it, and then said something I can’t repeat. This record is over fifty years old and the guy I live with just realized the title was a pun: rubber sole. Like what’s on the bottom of his shoes. (Though not really, these days.)

Well, that was agonizing.

After all the hot gardening, a lot of which never actually got done because he spent so much time in the kitchen just sitting here, he watched an online tutorial about cameras and decided to try to take some pictures using aperture priority. These pictures, then, were taken with the DSLR. They are way more in focus than they appear here, for some reason.

And all of a sudden we had a visitor. Of course the camera was set up wrong.

But this one wasn’t bad, for a set-up-wrong camera:Well that really is it for today. It was super hot, then it rained and got all cool, but also thundery. I guess you have to take the bad with the good. I learn a lot of platitudes from you-know-who.

Until next time, then.











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