Emergency Day Off: My mother asked me to go to an appointment with her today. It's going to be a fairly unpleasant thing which I had hoped to avoid because I was working. But she needs the support, and I'm the one best available, as my sister doesn't get paid leave since she's a temp (even though she's been working there for two years), and my brother...is an asshole. So that leaves me to be the responsible one. As usual.
Weather: It's raining. It's supposed to rain the rest of the week. I'm so excited. Oh, wait. No, the other thing.
LJI: I chose a different topic from the one I had been mulling over all weekend, and once a first line occurred to me, the rest of it just sort of flowed. (No pun intended.) I wrote the first draft yesterday morning before my doctor appointment, and edited it last evening. I'm pretty pleased with myself, actually. *preen*
Speaking of Doctors: Louisa is still there (which I knew). I was scheduled to see the PA, but Doc saw me come into the office, asked the staff why I was there, and when they put me in the exam room after the ultrasound (almost as unpleasant as the last one), he came in to see me instead. I really like him. He is such a pleasant change from my last gynecologist who was a sanctimonious asshole. Doc wanted to talk to me about whether I wanted to just monitor Louisa or actually go poking around after her. I am all about the monitoring, so I will have another ultrasound the same day as my yearly checkup in two months.
The Rescue: It's not that they want me to take multiple dogs. It's that they want me to choose a different dog. My mother theorizes that the dog I want has been promised to a friend, even though they say they don't do that sort of thing. Anyway. I didn't call them back yesterday because it was already late afternoon when I got the message, and I wanted a chance to look at their dog roster again. I'll call them this afternoon and see what they have to say. I do not want to take a dog from them just to say that I took a dog. And I certainly do not have $600 to take two. (Though that might solve a number of problems.)
The Cattens: I did not see the cattens yesterday at all, but the food bowl was empty, so I refilled it. I should probably move it gradually closer to the house; right now, it's out under the grapevines at the edge of my property, near where I know they're getting under the fence. I put Sheila's patio water bowl out there, too, since I don't know where else they might be getting water. Not that that is going to make a difference in another month, but in another month, there will be solid water just lying about for the taking.
I don't know why I'm making such an effort for these cats. They are wild animals (truly; they were born wild, not dumped), no different from raccoons or possums or skunks, and I certainly wouldn't be feeding raccoons or possums or skunks. I'm an idiot.
Bees. So Many Bees: A quote from one of my favorite fanfic authors, and also what's going on in my house. Though, really, it's wasps. I have suspected for a while, and confirmed it yesterday afternoon, that there is a wasp's nest either in the attic over my bedroom or in the bedroom wall. There is a hole in the board that meets the chimney, and they're using it for Wasp Highway 101. My sister asked me if I wanted her to call my brother as he has had to deal with such nests in the course of his work, but because so much of my upstairs is open to the attic (or separated from it only by a sheet of insulation) that trying to smoke them out would only result in them getting into the rest of the house. I suppose I will have to call in a professional.
This is one of those times when I think it would be so much easier to just take The Perfidious Ex's route and simply walk away. MyAuntie would love it if I came to live with her. Of course, I wouldn't have a job....
Not sure if I posted this or not. Someone brought a bucket of flowers to work, so of course I had to take photos.
Olivia checked her diving equipment methodically. With a last look around her small boat, she plunged into the sea at the coordinates where her brother had gone missing -- also diving solo, the idiot.
This was madness, and she knew it, but she had to do it. Was this how Jack had felt on that last dive? She, at least, had taken what precautions she could for her own safety: an automatic tether would reel her in at a prescribed time. An email to a colleague detailed her plan. She had done what she could since no one would help her. As far as everyone else was concerned, Jack had foolishly gone diving alone and died.
His voice came back to her as the water closed over her head. His penultimate dive had gone just wrong enough that he was in the hospital for observation.
"Mermaids, Liv! There are real, live mermaids, and I saw them!" His eyes were fever bright.
She shook her head. "Jack. You were too far down; it was narcosis. You know that."
His mouth set in that stubborn line that had driven off his last three girlfriends. "Liv. I know narcosis. And I know what I saw."
His sun-streaked hair, which -- as usual -- needed to be cut, flopped into his eyes as he shook his head. He pushed it back irritably. "Not just women. And not really fishy. More...sealy. Hard to describe."
"That's because they weren't there, Jack. You imagined them."
He grabbed her hand. "Livi." He hadn't called her that for years. "I need you to believe me. I would not have survived this dive if they hadn't brought me back to the surface."
The admission made her chest ache. "Jack...."
She sighed. "All right. Fine, Jack. Mermaids." He was still gripping her hand tightly; she put her other hand on his. "We'll talk about it later. You need to rest now."
He nodded, and released her hand. He closed his eyes, then, and pretended to sleep. She stayed until she was certain he really had fallen asleep.
It was the last time she saw him. As soon as he was discharged from the hospital, he had returned, and dived alone. And now here she was, doing the same damned thing.
Taking care not to get fouled in her tether, she descended, checking her depth gauge often. When she reached the depth where Jack claimed to have seen his mermaids, she stopped. She didn't know what she hoped to find. Certainly not a body...not that she'd find one even if there were one to find. If Jack had died down here, he was long gone. The water was yet deeper, so his gear could be lying on the bottom. But....
She swam back and forth, as far as her tether would allow. It was dark down here, and cold. She was more alone than she had ever been in her life. She wanted to cry, but didn't dare indulge in such a luxury, not here. Save it for the boat. Speaking of which...it was nearly time for the tether to reel her in like a vacationer's marlin. She had a brief image of herself stuffed and hung as a trophy on some fat executive's office wall.
She recognized the symptoms of narcosis. Time to go.
And that was when the shimmering started. Far beneath her, a cold light bloomed. She stopped her ascent, staring. The light rose swiftly around her, and with the light, they came.
They were not, she saw, mermaids, at least not in the way that anyone had ever imagined them. Olivia had envisioned Disney's Ariel at best, and the sharp-finned, sharp-toothed mercreatures from the Harry Potter movies at worst. These beings were altogether different. They had faces, yes, and nearly human faces, at that. But the rest looked more like a seal. But not like a seal at all. Jack was right. Hard to describe.
They encircled her, the water swirling with their passage. She would almost think they were dancing. Certainly they seemed excited. Her eyes crinkled with a smile that her mouth, filled with her regulator, could not shape. Through the circling, undulating bands of creatures, three more rose, two on either side of one who seemed to be moving much less surely and gracefully. As the upturned face came into view, Olivia saw that it was Jack.
The sudden jerk at her back matched the hollow that opened in her chest. She began to rise and realized, suddenly, that the automatic tether had kicked on. Her fingers scrabbled at her chest, searching for the tether's release as the mechanism pulled her away from her brother. He watched her go through sad eyes, but made no attempt to follow.
One of the creatures with him, though, arrowed through the water toward her. It hovered before her, matching the rate of her ascent. An appendage came forward and stilled her fingers.
Your brother is safe. The voice, low and smooth, sounded in her head. He was injured. We saved him. He cannot leave the depths at this time, but when he can, he will be returned to you. You must go, now. Your safety measures were wise. Do not let them fail you.
She could see light above her now, and the creature fell away, back into the deep, but it watched as she allowed the tether to pull her to the surface.
Olivia hauled herself into her boat, and sprawled against the side, too exhausted to do more than pull out her regulator and remove her mask so that she could breathe. She looked up at the sky. The sun was bright and warm. She thought of her sun-loving brother in the deep with those creatures. He will be returned.
"He had better be," she said. "He had better be."
Well, this is interesting. I was approved to adopt, but not the dog I was interested in. They say that she's bonded to the other dogs out there and needs to go to a home with at least one other dog. Is there another dog I'd be interested in?
Well...no, not really.
Once again, I did not get much accomplished yesterday. Since it was a sunny day -- and the only one we're supposed to have this week -- I determined that I would have to go out and mulch the leaves/mow the lawn. So I noodled around in the morning, almost determinedly not writing my LJI entry for this week (actually, I was letting it simmer. I think it's just about ready. (It had better be.)), washing dishes and picking things up in the library. Oh, and I did the laundry, but that hardly counts since I can do other things while the machines are doing their thing. The entire afternoon was devoted to mowing. I noticed that my neighbor was out on her porch (and she must be a warmer soul than I because she was just sitting out there without a coat), so when the mower ran out of gas in the middle of the North Forty, I leaned on the fence and talked to her for about a half hour. The neighbor on the other side of her came over at one point to retrieve his dog -- who, I learned, came from the same rescue organization to which I have applied, so they don't reject everyone. I finished the backyard and started toward the front, and as I was mowing under the rose bush, the ignition cord got pulled on pretty hard, and suddenly the mower's engine started running at only half the speed it should. I have no idea what to do with this. It's not an air filter or spark plug problem, so.... If I can catch Helpful Neighbor across the street, I might ask him if he'd take a look at it. And then I'll have to bake cookies....
When I was in junior high, I was scheduled to take wood shop. (All the girls were required to take wood shop and all the boys were required to take home ec. Basics only. Any student could then go on and take metal shop or a second home ec course. In practice, only girls took the second home ec course and only boys took metal shop.) A friend of mine and I were lost in the hall during orientation, so we went up to an adult who was standing there watching new students mill about to ask for directions. Turned out he was the guidance counselor (there was only one because there were only two grades at the junior high), and he told us that the wood shop class was full, and we were going to take metal shop. Ugh. We were the only girls in the class, of course. A huge part of the class was lawnmower maintenance. I couldn't tell you now exactly what we did learn. I don't remember getting particularly dirty, so I'm sure we didn't do oil changes or anything like that. I don't even remember blade-sharpening. Heck, maybe we didn't actually learn anything at all. I did well with it, though, because there was memorization involved.
Not that that helps me with my lawnmower curse....
Sunday: Yes. Yes, it is. I have tomorrow off because I have multiple doctor appointments -- not by design, though. Just coincidence. One of them is a follow-up ultrasound to check on Louisa. She has been noisy this last week, so I guess she's still around.
LJI: Back in the main competition as I said. There are multiple topics to choose from this time, and I can't come up with anything. Entry is due tomorrow evening. Arg. Arg, I say.
House stuff: I got very little work done around the house yesterday. I went out into the garage and basically turned circles trying to figure out what to do first. The oil spill out there is spreading, so I really need to deal with that, but am not certain how. (One of the things my darling ex left behind was a milk jug full of used motor oil. One of the things he was supposed to deal with, in addition to the thrice-damned loader, was the chemicals in the garage. He did not. The oil has now eaten through the botom of the milk jug and is slowly spreading across the garage floor. I have tossed sawdusty stuff into it to try to keep it confined, but it keeps spreading. I'm not quite sure how to deal with it.)
I did manage to get some of the garage sale stuff -- which, frankly, should probably just be thrown away -- packed into boxes and the boxes stacked out of the way. If I can get the tables cleared off, I can collapse them, then I can bring the garbage and recycling bins back in. Sooner or later, one of my neighbors is going to inform me that if I keep them outside, I'm going to attract bears, even though I don't actually put anything in them until garbage day. There are bears nearby, so my bins are clearly going to attract them.
I have decided that I am just going to pick a room and clean it. Then I will pick another room and clean it. And that room is all that I will work on that day. We'll see how it goes.
Dog Stuff: I decided to go ahead and submit an application for the dog I'm interested in adopting. I expect to be rejected out-of-hand, and that's fine, but if I didn't at least try to get her, I'd've been annoyed with myself, and myself doesn't need that. Really. She's got enough to put up with at the moment.
Stuff I'm Not Talking About: Is intensifying this week. Is going to suck.
Weather: It was unpleasant yesterday. Cold and wet...except for when the sun managed to come out. Today's forecast is for clouds this morning and sun this afternoon. I suppose that means I should get out there this afternoon and mulch leaves. About a third of the oak's leaves are down. The crabapple is nearly bare. The maple has barely gotten started. In the front yard, the maple is also barely started. I'd rather go somewhere and take pictures of leaves than try to mulch them, but if I leave it too long, the mower won't be able to cope.
I hate fall almost as much as I hate winter.
Doctor Who: Well. Last night's episode seems to confirm ( Read more...Collapse )