Posted tagged ‘stairs’

“One swallow maketh not summer; nor one woodcock a winter.​”

February 2, 2018

We had a dusting of snow this morning. It was just enough to cover the walk and the car. I walked gingerly down the steps to the road to my paper. Luckily, I made it back to the house none the worse for wear. Yesterday I went across the street to get my mail and noticed big paw prints in the snow. I’m thinking coyote.

The swelling is almost gone from my wrist. It hurts when I bend it so I’m careful. My leg still doesn’t like going down stairs. I out-loud ouched my way on each step.

The other night I heard a loud noise on my deck. I went and got my flashlight and shined it at the window and saw me reflected in the glass. How silly that was. I gave going out to check a thought, but then I remembered all those B movies I’ve seen. The ones who went to check were always killed in gruesome ways with lots of blood. I waited until morning. I found nothing.

The weather in the Cape Cod Times took me aback. Today the high is listed as 74˚ with a low of 64˚. The whole week has similar prediction. I wish it were so. I went on line and found the actual temperature will be 35˚ with a low tonight of 13˚. I actually saw the sun for about 5 minutes a little while ago, but the clouds came back. Outside looks cold, almost brutal. From my window I can see the grey bark of the pine trees their limbs still coated with snow. The sky in contrast with the trees is a lighter grey. Even now and then a top branch moves but only a little. I am glad to be inside and warm.

It is B-movie day or even further down to M-movie day as the films I’ve watched are just awful. First I saw the giant crabs and now The Creeper. I recognized only one actor in either movie, the professor from Gilligan’s Island. Both movies have screaming women, scientists in lab coats, weird noises and characters hearing voices; of course, they do.

Today is Groundhog Day, and it was no surprise that Punxsutawney Phil predicted six more weeks of winter. This tradition is 132 years old and is held every year at Gobbler’s Knob and is conducted by top hat-donning members of the Inner Circle of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club. (I wonder if there is a secret handshake.) Anyway, the tradition is German in origin, but they used a badger; however, when German colonists arrive, there were no badgers in the East, so they drafted the groundhog aka the woodchuck to do the prognosticating.

“I haven’t been falling all this time. I’ve been flying”

February 1, 2018

We had about 4 inches of snow. My factotum Skip, came on Tuesday afternoon, and shoveled the walk and got the car free. Yesterday morning I went to get the papers. I put my foot on the mat outside the door and my foot slid out from under me. I used my right hand to break my fall. I landed hard on the first step and just sat there a while trying to get my wits about me. My wrist and my foot hurt. My butt was getting wet from the mat I was sitting on. My door was still open. Finally I gingerly got up and limped to the road and got my papers. Today my right wrist is swollen and sore and has a big lump. My left foot is swollen and my knee is painful but only if I move it ( a little humor here). I limp. I’m the walking wounded.

When I was a kid, my first fall resulted in a broken wrist. I was around 4 or 5 and considered that cast a badge of honor. My next memorable fall was down the stairs. I ended up with a huge gash on my chin. I was about 10. I don’t remember any more falls until I moved into my house. Four times I have fallen down stairs: 2 inside, 2 outside. I broke a cheekbone and some teeth during the most memorable fall inside. The other falls only resulted in black and blues. I fell off a ladder outside and broke my shoulder bone. I was lucky with that one as my head just missed the top of a concrete wall. Another fall was down the outside backstairs and over the side. I knocked myself out but that was it.

I know I have mentioned that falling is part of my DNA, a gift from my father. Given my druthers, I would have preferred eye color.

We have a little sun today. I have to squint in the brightness. It is warm at 44˚. Tonight will be below freezing. Tomorrow night will be 13˚. I have no plans to go out for the rest of the week. I have plenty of food from Peapod yesterday and lots of books from the library.

I still have that damn laundry to do. I threw it down the cellar stairs yesterday.  Now, though, I actually have a real excuse for not doing it, and it has nothing to do with laziness or being a sloth. I can’t walk down any stairs because my knee, leg and foot hurt enough for me to complain out-loud, and how can I fold with one hand? I got a lot more out of this slide than I ever expected.

“I told my dentist my teeth are going yellow. He told me to wear a brown tie.”

April 9, 2017

My skepticism is draining away. Perhaps spring really is here as today is another sunny, warm day, a lovely day. It is already 57˚, today’s high. Gracie and I slept on the couch last night. She had such a difficult time with the stairs yesterday morning I didn’t want to put her through that again. The rest of the stair treads should be here tomorrow so we can move back upstairs. She went outside with me helping her down the stairs. I waited, but she disappeared from view. All of a sudden she reappeared from the other side of the deck. She came up the easy stairs. That’s one smart dog.

Tonight is game night. We’re having pizza and playing Phase 10 and Sorry. We’ll watch The Amazing Race recorded the other night. That’s been a long time tradition.

When I was going through catalogs the other day, I saw jelly nougats for sale and a memory jumped into my head. When I was nearly 8, I started wearing braces. Back then, braces were not all that common. I remember closing my mouth for my school picture so you couldn’t see the braces. I was a bit self-conscious. There were only a few orthodontists. The office I went to was in Boston on Commonwealth Ave. My mother had to get a babysitter for my two sisters then she and I would walk uptown to get the bus to Sullivan Square then the subway close to the office. The office was on the first floor of a beautiful old house. It was a living room with comfy sofas. The nurse’s desk was there, and the doctor’s office was behind a door in the front of the room. His name was Dr. Nice.

After my appointment, we’d backtrack to Sullivan Square. We had to walk upstairs to the bus station. Right in the middle of that station was a news kiosk. It sold papers, magazines, and candy. My mother often let me choose a bar of candy. I remember picking the jelly nougat. I liked the colors of the jellies, and the way they looked in the nougat. With tightened braces, the nougat was a bit tricky to eat, but I managed. We’d get to Stoneham, and sometimes we’d stop to buy my lunch to take to school. I remember the bread was toasted. My mother would then walk me to school a few blocks away from the squar

I always liked the before and after of those appointments. I got to be alone with my mother, ride the subway, be late to school and eat a lunch bought from a restaurant. The day would have been perfect if we took away the orthodontist.

“It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.”

March 20, 2017

Happy Spring!

Good reasons are responsible for the lateness of my musings today. First off is Miss Gracie. I grabbed her as she started to fall going up the stairs. I was filling Maddie’s dish on the stairs so Gracie tried to go by me but lost her footing. We went up the stairs, got to my room, and she was hesitant to jump to the bed. I helped. She tried to settle down but just couldn’t. Finally, I grabbed my pillow and a blanket, took Gracie downstairs, and we both slept on the couch. She snored so I knew she felt better. On the first day of spring every year, my friends and I go the beach to welcome the sun. We sing Here Comes the Sun and Rockin’ Robin. We recite a poem by Frost, Two Tramps in Mudtime.

The sunrise was at 6:28. It was a cold, windy early morning. We sat in the car facing the east and waited. When we realized clouds were hiding the sun, we stayed in the car to sing our welcome. We watched seagull after seagull carrying breakfast then dropping it on the parking lot. We figured they were opening small crabs. We saw geese along the shoreline and ducks in the marshes. It was an amazingly high tide. The water in the marsh was all the way to the edge of the road. We didn’t get the sun, but the clouds were jaw-droppingly colorful. Red and orange spread across the sky in all directions strikingly set against the white of the puffy clouds. My friend Clare braved the wind and cold to get our shells, a first day of spring tradition. We stayed a while then went to breakfast, another tradition.

When I got home, I took Gracie out then settled on the couch and slept over two hours. When I woke up, I put on MSNBC to watch the hearing questioning James Comey and Admiral Mike Rogers. That is still holding my attention., makes me hopeful

Today will have a high of 44˚. I’m thinking that’s hardly spring, but I am hopeful. Spring does that to me. It makes me hopeful.

“Winter dressing is all about having chic outerwear.”

March 16, 2017

Last night I was freezing though I was only outside for about 5 minutes. It was Gracie’s last trip before bed. She sniffed the air, checked out a couple of sounds and walked around outside the fence. She didn’t seem at all inclined to do her duty. I begged. She ignored me. I begged again. She sniffed the ground, but that was it, no squatting. It was the end for me. I brought her inside. We went to bed. She slept the whole night, but I got up once.

When I was a kid, my room was upstairs on the left. The bathroom was also on the left. The stairs were a quick right turn from my room. In the small hallway outside my door was the dirty clothes hamper and the linen closet recessed in the wall. When I was 10, I walked out of my room and turned right. I fell down the stairs. You’d think the sound of me falling would wake someone up. It didn’t. Either I fell quietly or my family slept like the dead. That is an important memory for me, a milestone of sorts. It was my first fall down stairs, the first of many.

Yesterday we didn’t go to the dump. It was because of the weather. The dump is generally cold, and if it is a windy day, like yesterday, the dump is as cold as Siberian steppes. The wind whips and freezes you to the bone. This morning I brought the trash to the car. I decided to bite the bullet and go despite the cold, 33˚ which will be the high today.

My front yard is still covered in branches from the huge pine tree branch which fell on the lawn. The small stones from my front parking space are on the street and in the garden. They were moved around by the plow. My back yard has several different size branches lying where they fell during this winter. One skinny pine tree breathed its last. Another leans and its future is doubtful. Winter is harsh.

“You spend the first part of your life collecting things … and the second half getting rid of them.

February 21, 2017

Today is lovely, sunny but cool at 42˚. The breeze is ever so slight. It’s morning nap time for the dog and cat. Maddie is 18 now. Gracie is 12. Lately, Gracie has had trouble maneuvering the stairs. Her back legs slide when she is coming downstairs so I am always in front of her just in case. When she was young, Gracie jumped the six-foot fence in the backyard, but now she and I share the infirmities of growing old and the dangerousness of steps.

I could never play a dead body. Yesterday I watched a few CSI New York episodes. In just about every one of those, one scene is in the morgue. The actor is lying on the slab while trace evidence is removed or explained. I’d be giggling.

I’m a slug. I have laundry to do, but the bag sits by the door. I have no ambition. When I was working, I was always busy on the weekends. I actually got more done in two days than I now finish in a week. Time is the reason. I always figure I have lots of time to do stuff so I procrastinate and stuff doesn’t get done. I used to feel guilty about that. I am now guilt free. The nuns would be horrified.

I collect cookbooks with literature inspired recipes. One whole shelf in my kitchen bookcase is filled with them. My first was a Shakespearean cookbook. When I did a medieval meal a long way back, I used many of the recipes from that book. Little House on the Prairie, Hemingway, Nancy Drew, Sherlock Holmes, The Boxcar Children, Jane Austen and Louisa May Alcott are just a few of my cookbooks. I love sitting and reading the recipes and planning a menu in my head. I think about colors and melding herbs. I mix and match vegetables. Mostly I have one grand meat dish but sometimes I need two. The table decorations are part of the planning. One meal, inspired by Dickens, had laminated pages of old books for place mats. In the middle of the table were different piles of books. They held the hot dishes. For music, I played an album of authors singing. It was just horrible. I don’t even remember how I found it, I don’t remember its name and I have no idea what happened to it. Maybe it was burned at the stake by my guests.

When I was a kid, I collected stamps and belonged to a stamp club. We met after school and some Saturdays at John Hickey’s house. I filled an album then lost interest in stamps. Besides, it was actually John Hickey more than stamps which held my interest. Strangely enough, my aunt and uncle now live in what was John Hickey’s house. I have no idea where he is. We went to different high schools.

I haven’t collected anything in a while. I’d hard pressed to find room, but if something strikes my fancy, a new collection might just be born.