"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Release

This morning seemed like a good time to release my dear little deer mouse, who lived with the dogs and me at the cottage for 6 days, 5 nights.

I carried the aquarium over to a wooded spot not very near but not too far from our property.

As soon as I removed the lid, he scented the fresh forest air.

Seconds later he was climbing out with no assistance needed from me.

He headed for the nearest tree--an extremely tall one with a wide trunk--and began scaling it.

He paused at a broken branch very high up and gazed down at me--posing for photos. We bade one another a fond farewell and I returned to the cottage to dismantle his habitat (such a cute little burrow he made) and clean the aquarium.

I miss his presence, he was a very undemanding guest. I hope he has a safe and happy life.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Pink Clouds

Cotton candy in the sky at the end of a lovely day.

No more heat wave, after several days of agony today was divine. The Chap spent 25 hours here, each one an improvement. I'm luxuriating in an evening that is still, cool, and calm.

We had guests yesterday, our Friends From the North Country and their dog Oliver, wee Ruth's handsome poodle boyfriend. Walks, swimming, a cookout, conversation on the porch, reminiscing about the wedding that took place here 1 year minus 1 week ago.

My dear little deer mouse is still living in its glass-walled habitat. It has burrowed a hole and seems comfortable. Still sleeps away the day and a bit more active at night. Plans for release back into the wild--at a distance from the cottage but a place as safe from predators as possible--have been formed, rejected, revised.

Here it is, sleeping sweetly tonight, on the surface and not in its hole. It likes being in the hole during the daytime.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Living with Nature

Although in fact, it's more a case of nature living with me. Temporarily.

This deer mouse is co-habiting with me at the lake cottage.

He's nocturnal, so after the activity pictured here, he curled up in a little ball and is sleeping soundly.

The heat wave that made so much of the rest of the country miserable has found its way to us. I had the option of being at the Lodge, well-insualted and multi-level thus cooller. Or coming to the cottage as planned, where a cool-ish lake is right outside. Its temperature was 80 degrees when I went in yesterday, soon after my arrival. Doesn't get much warmer than that.

So far, today isn't as dire as predicted. The air is moving, quite a strong breeze at the moment, which helps. It's "only" 83 degrees outside, though the prediction was for 10 degrees beyond that, and threats of 100 degrees in the southernmost part of the state.

State officials advise us to avoid exertion and keep well hydrated. After our morning walk, the girls were panting heavily and drank lots of water. Now, like the dear little deer mouse, they are sleeping the day away!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

C D B!

See de bee?

On rosa rugosa alba

on Celsiana

Busy times, no matter where I might be. Lots of activity in Concord last week, various meetings and such. A quick trip to Portsmouth yesterday for dinner with our friend Tess Gerritsen and her husband at a fantastic new seafood (mostly) restaurant with glorious view of the harbour. Can't wait to go back! We had a lovely time catching up on family & travel & career news--and eating awesome seafood. Beautiful day.

Having finished inside renovations/updates (kitchen, 2 baths) in the past few years, we're having the outside of the Lodge painted. Power-washing took place on Thursday, and the Chap and I spent a couple of days mulling over paint colour options. The one called Lodge Brown was quiet naturally irresistible. However, we did resist and rather than going quite so dark chose Pine Cone for the clapboards and Hunt Club (a dark green) for the trim. The main colour is a change from what we've got now (Filbert) but the trim isn't. The painters begin on Monday.

Here's my friend the chipmunk, eating the core of my breakfast pear this morning.

I'm at the lake cottage, preparing for our church cookout/picnic tomorrow afternoon. The weather will not only be bright, but also quite hot, so all have been advised to come prepared for swimming as well as eating. The house is full of flowers, I brought bucket of them to do arrangements.

Ruth & Jewel weren't invited to the party. We'll make it up to them.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

We had a fun July 4th at the lake cottage. Met friends for lunch in Wolfeboro at our go-to Mexican restaurant there. They then came to the cottage for an afternoon of conversation, swimming, and dogs.

Ruth was reunited with her boyfriend, Oliver, whom she hadn't seen for nearly a year when his people married at the cottage. She likes to kiss him.

They had a really nice walk together, and she tried to teach him to swim. Because Jewel doesn't mingle well with other dogs, she stayed in the house while we were down at the dock. But she got plenty of attention, and kept one of our guests company for a while. After all the excitement, they slept well that night--even though fireworks were going up all round the Bay, sometimes quite loudly. And they slept later than usual the next morning.

The girls and I returned to the Lodge on Tuesday. I had meetings in Concord that afternoon. After an overnight at the Lodge and mandolin lesson yesterday, we returned to the lake. The Chap is on his summer work schedule, so he'll have Mondays off and plans to spend long weekends here.

I have photos of a few "mystery" roses...rather, I have records and a site map and can look up what they are, I just haven't bothered to do so yet.

This one is from breeder David Austin, but I can't recall its name.


This is New Dawn.

Maiden's Blush, a 15th century alba.

Banshee, which mimics Maiden's Blush.

Another David Austin. This is Cottage Rose. This flower is heart-shaped!

This morning after walking the dogs, I drove over to New Durham Ridge to pick berries. (And as a result, breakfasted on berries!) The Reveille raspberries are newly ripe...the Killarneys will be ready for picking next week.

Friday, July 01, 2011

His Rose

The gallica rose Charles de Mills always reaches its peak of bloom on the Chap's birthday. Even though most of my roses are a trifle tardy this year, this stunner was spot on time and waiting for us with a marvellous display when we returned yesterday from our trip.

It's my spouse's natal day and Canada Day. Had we stayed in Montreal, he'd have fireworks on his birthday. Instead of that, he chose to spend a few days at the lake cottage with his brother and sister, visiting from their respective states (MN & PA). They haven't all been together for their big brother's birthday since--oh, longer than I can calculate.

I'm heading up there later with a massive birthday rose bouquet, to join them for a festive cookout. In the meantime, I'm enjoying the company of Ruth & Jewel, overjoyed to be back at the Lodge after their stay at the kennel.

I didn't think the branches of my John Davis rose could hold any more blossoms than it had when we departed. He keeps surprising me with ever more blooms!