A View From the Field








July 2013

July 31

This is late, because I was reading again.


Well, now I'm 72. I sure don't feel like it, except when I get up to walk around or try to negotiate a flight of stairs. I'm not sure how it happened that I got so old.


I was late last night, too, and I didn't get up until around 11:00 this morning. I have now done half of the edging on the brown shawl. Eventually, I'll finish it, and I'm still trying to decide what to do next. I have the materials and patterns for several more shawls, and I have an idea for an original scarf, so we'll see.


I was so late that I didn't do much of anything but my surfing. I did have a conversation with Randy, and tomorrow I will be calling the company that makes the septic system and try to at least determine if there is something wrong with mine. I'd also like to see if they can replace the missing manual. I am happy to report that the alarm has finally quit. It was acting funny all night, and for a while I thought I was either going nuts or my hearing was completely gone, because I would get up out of bed and hear nothing, and when I came back to bed, the alarm would be going off again. It did it again while I was washing my face, and that was the last time it's gone off. Ah, relief!


This afternoon, Debbie called and we had a nice conversation that I had to cut short because I took myself to Harbor Haus - my birthday present to me. I made a reservation on Monday, and I was glad I did, because the place was crazy tonight. I was glad to see that. I had a lovely dinner and I brought home a piece of chocolate amoretto torte, which I will save for tomorrow.


I know, it's tomorrow already, but I haven't slept yet.


When I got home, Pastor Fundum had called, so I called him back and we had a nice conversation. He was concerned that I hadn't been in church for a couple of weeks, which I thought was very nice of him. 


The weather was lovely. It was cloudy this morning, but it cleared up in the afternoon and was very clear. There were a few clouds before sunset, but it cleared up again later. The high temperature was 73 and there was a moderate wind out of the north. I have had so many birthdays with lousy weather that it was a real delight to have a nice day.


The guys were sleepy all day, so there was nothing to report there.


This year isn't a milestone year, like the 0 and 5 years, but somehow it appeals to me. Besides, my mother died 20 years ago on May 24 and my father died 30 years ago on August 19, so I am passing certain milestones. It's hard for me to realize my mother died 20 years ago already. The years since then seem to have gotten compressed and of course, as I get older, they pass by quicker. Time goes so fast these days that I hardly ever have time to do all the things I'd like to and all the things I should. 


In spite of my plumbing problems (both internal and external) and my heating system problems, which I always have, I think this last year has been a pretty good one. My health has been pretty good, and now I have a little hope that maybe I can get my elimination problem under control. I can't see, can't hear and can't walk, but I perk along anyway, and one of these days, maybe some of those problems will get taken care of, too. So I start a new year on a hopeful note. At least I'm living where I want to be and pretty much doing what I want to do.


Now It's much too late and I will trundle up to the north end and sleep for a long time.


July 30

I read again last night, and it was around midnight that I got to bed, I think. I didn't turn off the alarm before I went to bed, and I was surprised that it seemed to be off when I was awake during the night. I didn't get up until after 10:00 (maybe close to 11?) and it was on again. I let it run for most of the day, but I went down before dinner and turned it off again. What a pain. While I was there, I looked through a couple of boxes for some things I wanted, but at the time, I couldn't find anything to put them in, so they're still downstairs. Actually, there were some bags there, but I didn't see them until I was ready to go back upstairs. Oh, well, it wasn't anything I needed right away.


The only other thing I did was to put away the cat food I bought a couple of weeks ago and fill the dry food dishes. Otherwise, I was too late to do much.


The weather turned cloudy and humid, but the temperature was OK and it didn't rain, or it hasn't yet. The temperature got up to 68, but for most of the afternoon, it was around 64, plus or minus a couple of degrees. There wasn't much wind. Only it was cloudy and dreary with just a peek of sunshine around 3:30.


The guys were their sleepy selves for most of the day. Not much to report there. They don't like that alarm, but they're not spooked by it like Buster was. They did like being able to go out onto the porch.


So this is a short one. It's a dull, cloudy night in the field, but it's not cold.


July 29

I read for too long last night, as usual, and then I had to take a bath, so it was late when I got to bed. I slept well, with a couple of wakeups. I was planning to sleep until at least 9:00, but at 8:30, Randy the drain man called me, so I got up. Ugh. 


He wanted me to go downstairs and see if I could find anything about the system from the inside of the control panel, so after I ate breakfast, I packed up a screwdriver, a pad and a pen and went downstairs - and had an accident. Sigh. Getting the panel door open was easier than I anticipated, and I was very interested to see a small LCD screen inside. Gee, and this was 2001 vintage! However. On the inside of the door was a nice little sticker with a spot for the model number of both pumps, the float basket and something else I don't remember - all blank. Grr. Double grr. 


So i went back upstairs, changed my bottoms, and called Randy back to tell him. He growled, too. He was off to see the Health Department this afternoon. I hope he learned something.


I was off to see Johanna, and my back feels much better. She is doing well, but she's beginning to bulge. It's not surprising, because she's so thin, but she's only 18 weeks, she thinks. There are five other women in town or associated with town who are also pregnant, so we'll have a new crop of babies next year. Oh, yes, and it's a boy, the first baby boy associated with town to be born in 22 years.


I stopped by the post office on my way home, where there was a whole lot of mail, including a lot of pills. When I got home, the alarm was going off, so I had to go downstairs again and turn it off. Ugh.


While I was there, Louie came down, sat down beside one of the trays and started to pee. Geez, Louie! I don't know what to do about that. I can't watch him all the time, and I'd have a hard time picking him up to put him in a tray anyway.


This evening, i met a couple of friends of the site for dinner. They are very nice people, and we had a lovely dinner. I was surprised to see how crowded Harbor Haus was, after how few people there were the last time I was there. That's good, but some of them were loud, including a kid sitting behind me who I swear was as loud as the septic alarm and who kept screeching. It seems clear that one of these days, I'm going to have to break down and get those hearing aids.


The weather was so much nicer than yesterday! It was clear when the sun rose. I was up around 6:00 and there was one of the brightest Girdles of Venus I've seen in quite a while. it was a beautiful, clear morning, and in fact, the clouds didn't start to move in until around 4:00. It got cloudy for a while, but it has mostly cleared up again now. The high temperature was 64 and there was a moderate north wind for most of the day. It was quite humid all day, but not like yesterday. It's amazing how warm it felt.


I didn't see much of the guys today. I guess they were asleep someplace. Before I left for dinner, I opened the porch window, and they both went out right away. It was nice out, but it wasn't that warm, but of course, they have fur coats. They were both waiting when I came home, of course.


Now it's getting late and I may have to go downstairs again. It's a mostly clear, cool night in the field.


July 28

I made it into bed by 10:30 last night, and I slept so hard that I had two potty dreams. I was up a number of times, but I drank a lot of water yesterday, so it wasn't surprising. I was awake around 7:45, and it was pouring rain, so I was glad I decided not to go to church. I wonder what they did about the picnic. I got up around 10:15, I think, and I knitted three repeats of the shawl edging before I got dressed. I didn't do much else. I'm still tired.


The weather was really nasty. So far, we've had 1.18" of rain and it's raining again. The temperature for most of the day was steady at 48, and the wind was from the north at 15-30 mph. The humidity was over 90% all day again. The lake is singing and there were even breakers on my beach earlier today. It was not a nice day at all.


The guys did what all good cats do on days like this: they slept. Louie slept on my lap twice until I had to move him, and even Grayson went to sleep on me for a while. Grayson is back in his spot on the desk now, dead to the world. I know how they feel.


My back and my knees were bad all day, although I did have to go down to the basement this morning to turn off the alarm. While I was there, I discovered that the manual that used to be there is missing. I have no idea where it might have gone, but that's the trouble with leaving stuff like that around where there are workmen: somebody will decide it might be a handy thing to have and just walk off with it. I am not pleased. I will try to look in my file box to see if by some strange chance, I put it there, but I don't think I did. Randy called this evening to see how things are, and he didn't take it. He is hoping to get some information from the Health Department and a guy in Wisconsin tomorrow, and I guess he'll be back Wednesday or so. I've already warned him I may have to pay him off in installments.


So that was a nothing day, and I don't think I'll be out of bed too long tonight. It's a cold, damp, windy evening in the field, and it feels more like October than July.


July 27

Well, BettyAnn stayed over again last night and left this morning. Much as I like her and I appreciate what she's done for me, it's nice to be alone again, and it seems like the guys feel the same way.


I got to bed by 10:30 last night. I was tired and I had a horrible sinus headache all day yesterday, and I had to go to bed relatively early. I didn't sleep all that well, for some reason. I had a lot of aches and pains and I had had enough water that I was up a lot. I did sleep quite well after about 5:00, and I got up around 8:30, I think. I did one repeat on the shawl before I got dressed.


The alarm went off around 6:30, BettyAnn said. She heard it and went down to turn it off. I was so deeply asleep I never heard either it or her. Someone suggested to me that the beeping I heard the other night might be an indication that the pump is clogged. The next time I have to go downstairs, I will take a look at the instructions, which should be right with the electrical panel, and see if there is a code like that. I'm not sure that's the problem, because the beeps didn't sound like they were coming from the same spot as the alarm, but we'll see. And when I go back to the kitchen, I may find that the alarm is sounding again. What a pain.


The weather was nasty, but not quite as nasty as yesterday. The temperature was almost steady at around 50, plus or minus a couple of degrees. There wasn't a lot of wind, and it swung from north to east and back to north during the day. It was cloudy all day, but not as dark as yesterday, and late in the afternoon, there were a few rays of sunshine. The humidity was over 90% all day. Not nice.


The guys were sleepy and glad that we were alone, although Grayson did sit on BettyAnn's lap for a while this morning, just to let her know he thinks she's all right. Both guys sat on my lap, too, to tell me they were glad it was just us again. 


I didn't do anything but my surfing and some reading. I still have sort of a headache, although it isn't as bad as it was yesterday, so I think I will go to bed early. Since I'm not going to church tomorrow, I can sleep in, and since I'll be going out Monday,  I think I will take my bath tomorrow, so I can crash tonight. 


Now it's a cold, cloudy, humid night in the field and a good one to cuddle under the covers.


July 26

Oh, I was late again last night. I read for quite a while, and then I had to take a bath, so it was midnight when I got to bed. I slept well, but I didn't get nearly enough sleep. I got up about 9:00 and knitted a repeat on the shawl before I got dressed. 


BettyAnn had heard the alarm go and turned it off around 7:00. I heard it about 3:00 AM, but I wasn't going downstairs in the middle of the night. It went again around 3:00 this afternoon, so we're not over that yet. The thing that confuses me is that while the alarm was going off, I kept hearing something else. About every two minutes while I was up at 3:00 I could hear something that sounded like "beep-beep-beep" at a lower pitch than the septic alarm. when I was up later, it had stopped, and I have no idea what it was. Weird.


This morning, BettyAnn swept the upstairs and down the stairs, and this afternoon, she cleaned up the great room as much as possible. She moved all the dead plants out and I am now down to one container with a few haworthias and one crown of thorns. I took the live parts of the apricot Thanksgiving cactus and put them in water. That's all that's left. Oh, sigh.


It was a cloudy, moist and foggy day, and there was rain. The high temperature, 60 was in the middle of the night and it fell off after that. For most of the afternoon, it was around 47, plus or minus a degree. Yes, that's a "4." Brr. Nasty. Really nasty. There was a mostly northeast wind in the 15-30 mph range. It was a good day to be inside.


The kitties have really enjoyed having more than one person around. They both like BettyAnn, and with her here, they get a lot more attention. Louie spent the morning under the pale blue ottoman, with just his hind feet and tail hanging out. Grayson spent a lot of time in his spot under the south windows. They were more awake this afternoon, and they both enjoyed being petted. I think now they've gone off to sleep. Grayson was very interested in what BettyAnn was doing, so he was the supervisor. Louie came along later and looked over everything - the inspector. They are funny little critters.


So now I'm really tired and I hope I won't be up so late tonight. It's a nasty, cloudy, cold night in the field.


July 25

Well, I didn't do what I said I would, as usual, and after I got the dishwasher ready and got myself ready, it was 12:30. I slept well and for a long time, which tells me that I'm still somewhat dehydrated, I finally got up around 9:00 and I did a couple of repeats on the shawl before I got dressed.


BettyAnn got here around 11:00. When I was awake at 7:00, I could hear that the septic alarm had gone off, so the first thing we did was to take all the kitty litter down into the basement, turn off the alarm and change cat pans. I was embarrassed. The poor guys had gone all over the floor because the trays were so bad, and it was a real mess. We got it cleaned up, though, with BettyAnn doing the sweeping and me doing the washing. 


The alarm kept going off while we were down there, which hasn't ever happened before. And besides, when I was through washing out the trays, I looked behind me and there was water coming out of the drain in the floor. Oh, no. When I got back to where the trays go, there was water on top of the sump pump. Oh, no.


Well, we went back upstairs, and she took all the bags out to the garage while I got the stuff out of the bathroom so she could clean. When that was done, I called Randy to tell him about the sump pump. He called back a while later, and he is researching the septic system. He thinks the problem is the pump, which it probably is, and he needs to know what kind of pump it is. He will be around sometime next week, I think, with the pump and some switches and maybe, just maybe, we can get my problems solved. I can see the dollar signs.


I got the trash out of the kitchen and BettyAnn worked on the bathroom. It looks great, for the first time in a long time. It's nice to have a clean floor, not to mention all the other clean stuff. I moved the stuff back in, because I had left it on the bed, and I'm going to need that bed.


We went to dinner at Mariner, which was quite busy, and it was good. Tonight I splurged and had dinner, but I have enough for tomorrow, too.


Now she has gone upstairs to bed and I think I will be early tonight, too. Or I hope so. Trine is so long that I keep forgetting the details of all the stories, and I get engrossed. Just one more page...


The weather was not the best. It was dark and cloudy and we had rain between 8:00 and 10:00 and again between 1:00 and 3:00 this afternoon. The high temperature was only 64. but for most of the time it was around 60 or a little below. It was extremely humid all day. Yuck.


Grayson was glad to see BettyAnn. He likes her, but of course, he likes everybody. She likes him, too, so that makes it even better. And in the middle of the afternoon Louie came up to see what she was doing and she picked him up. Now he thinks she's OK and he hasn't run away since. I'm glad to see that. He's a nice cat and everybody should meet him. They did sleep for most of the day, though. The weather was so yucky that even having stuff going on in the house wasn't enough to keep them awake.


The only problem I had was that the cool dampness was so bad for my back and my knees that I couldn't do everything I wanted to do. And my feet got sore.


So now I will read just a little longer, then I need to take a bath before I go to bed. It's a cool, moist, nasty evening in the field and it will probably rain some more.


July 24

Oh, I stared at the screen with a blank mind for far too long last night, although I was in bed by 11:30. I slept well, with only three wakeups. I got up around 9:00, I think. I knitted three repeats of the edging, which seems to be about all I can handle before I get terminally bored. I'm coming up on the end of the first third of the edging. It's long and boring.


I didn't do much else. Randy the drain guy came around 11:30 and left without any resolution. The circuit breaker for the pump came on, but it didn't pump, so the pump may be bad, but he doesn't know enough about the system to be sure. It seems clear he'd rather not deal with it, but he won't leave me without anybody, I don't think. Or I hope not. Now my options are to call the Health Department, which I don't really want to do, or try to get ahold of my builder and see if he knows anybody who can service the system. I don't really want to try to do that, either. Oh, the joys of the happy householder.


Otherwise, I got the dishwasher almost ready to run tonight and I washed the jeans and underpants I'd been stashing in the washer. They're in the dryer now. I guess I'm going to treat the septic system like it's OK until I learn otherwise.


The weather was cool and mostly clear again, at least until late this afternoon. The temperature finally got up to 65, but it was in the low 60s for most of the day. There was some north wind for most of the afternoon, but it  has now died down to almost nothing. It has clouded up some, too, and there is rain up in Canada that might come our way. I'm not sure, because the Marquette radar has been down all day and it still is. Anyway, it wasn't a bad day at all.


The guys are finally settling down. Louie got a long tummy rub and he slept on my lap until Randy arrived. Grayson has been around, but except for this morning in the bathroom, I haven't been able to pet him much.


The doctor called this afternoon, and the results of the biopsies they took have come back. It seems I have a "mild acute colitis, not ulcerative," whatever that means. Her take is that if I can get things to slow down enough, it should clear itself in time. Her recommendation is to eat bananas and rice, take Imodium regularly for a long time, and take probiotics to repopulate my gut. So I've been doing as much of that as I can. I don't have any bananas right now, but I have rice and I have started the Imodium and probiotics already. We'll see how that works. I guess I'll know I'm over the colitis if my stools begin to get more or less normal. It will be interesting. She agrees that it was no doubt caused by the chemo. Well, it saved my life, but I'm still learning about the side effects.


I won't be going to church at all this week. I wasn't planning to go on Sunday because it's the outdoor service plus picnic down in Lake Linden, and I don't want to go to that. Then a rather recent reader of the site is going to be in town and invited me to dinner Monday at Harbor Haus. I'm not going to turn that down. I may go back on Wednesday, but I'll take any and all chances to eat there.


Bettyann is coming tomorrow, and maybe she can do some of the things there wasn't time for last time. She is such a nice person. We'll probably go to Mariner for dinner tomorrow night, since I don't have a lot of stuff in the house to make dinner for anybody but me.


Now it's a partly cloudy, coolish night in the field, and I am going to try to get to bed earlier, except that they just announced that they're going to play Allegri's Miserere. and I have to stay up to hear that.


July 23

Well, it's over and the outcome was all I could expect. There were no polyps, and I won't have to do this again for 8 to 10 years. I can live with that. They took a lot of samples, and I hope to hear the results of that in week or so, but the worst is over.


It was the worst. I was late getting to bed, because I wanted to down the last of the laxative - big mistake - and I had to take a bath. Well, I miscalculated and took far too  much laxative, so between that and all the fluids, I was up about every hour. Unfortunately, I was up around 5;00, so I didn't even get my last 45 minutes of sleep. Needless to say, I felt pretty rough this morning. 


So we got down to the hospital when they said - and we waited. Then they took me into pre-op - and i waited. Then they got me into the OR and I waited. No wonder they call us "patients." The procedure only took half an hour or so, which is normal if there are no polyps. Then I was in the recovery room for a while and finally got back where I started, where I had cranberry juice and soggy toast with jelly for "breakfast." Ugh.


They're doing things a lot different than two years ago. They had to wheel me out in a wheelchair, and Ron had to drive the truck into the emergency entrance, and he had to sign to say he picked me up. I can imagine all sorts of horror stories that might have made them do that. The last time, I walked out. Or maybe it's just the lawyers who are thinking about the horror stories.


We made it home in time for Ron to get to the post office on time. My only problem was, around the time we left Laurium, I expelled something that wasn't gas, and there was more before I made it to the powder room. I've been doing the same all afternoon. I guess the laxative irritated me so much that nothing much has changed.


I had something more to eat when I got cleaned up, then I went to bed. I slept for over two hours, and I feel much better now. I feel a whole lot better since the drain guy called me and said it will be more like noon before he gets here, so I don't need to be up at the crack of dawn tomorrow, either. I needed that. 


Except that I'm still dribbling off, everything is back to normal, thankfully. So that's over. Whew!


The weather was beautiful but cold. When we left the harbor this morning, it was cold and cloudy, about 50. It finally got up to 63 late in the afternoon. There was a strong north wind - in the 15-30 mph range - from the north all day. By the time we started for home, the clouds were all gone, and the rest of the day was clear and beautiful. 


The guys were still worried this morning, since what I was doing was so much at odds with what I usually do in the morning, and they were very relieved when I came home. Grayson went away, but Louie slept on my lap for a long time, until I had to pee. Now, finally, Grayson is asleep on the desk. I hope they will settle down soon. Any change in my habits really worries them. 


So now I think I will be going to bed early, but I have to wait until the Microsoft update is done on the laptop. it's a cold, windy, beautifully clear night in the field and the moon will make it nearly as bright as dawn.


July 22



It's early, but I think I will write this now. I have three more doses of my glop to take, and I suspect I'm shortly going to have to go up to the north end and stay in the bathroom for a while. Ugh.


I was late again last night, of course, but I slept until about 10;15 this morning, so I got enough sleep. I knitted on the edging, and I'm finding it very boring, with just enough gotchas that I have to pay attention - and I don't think I'm a third of the way done yet.


I forgot to mention yesterday that for the first time since the last solar max, my weather station, which gets its time signals from Denver, got a corrupted signal and was off by 30 minutes all day yesterday. It was fine this morning, so evidently it was just a glitch, but it's a taste of things to come. I have so many clocks around here that I don't really need it, but since it shows the time and date, and it's usually extremely accurate, that I've gotten used to it. I have an analog clock (mostly because of the piece of needlework that fits into it) but it's very hard to read because the second hand is as thick as the minute hand and sometimes I have to wait several seconds to see what time it really is. And of course, there's the computer...


I didn't do anything much but I did make my appointments in Detroit - for the week of October 13. I'm hoping that all goes all right. The electrician came and pronounced my generator fit, which is nice to know.


The weather turned out nice. It was partly cloudy this morning, and while I was knitting, I heard a couple of rumbles of thunder, but that soon went off to the east. There were a few clouds for a while, but they have mostly gone away. The temperature was weird. It got up to 79 at 3:00, and then the wind shifted abruptly to the north and it went down to 60 for a couple of hours, and then at 6:00, it was 81. Geez. Now, at 8;00, it's dropped to 72. There was quite a wind, with gusts up to 26 mph. It started out from the southwest, then when the temperature dropped, it switched around to the north before it went calm  and after wavering around for a while, it has started up from the northwest. If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes...


The guys were sleepy, and I think they realize something isn't normal around here today. Louie got his tummy rub, and Grayson got to sit on my lap for a while, too, but mostly they slept. I found Louie stretched out on the footstool in the great room with his legs hanging over. Grayson is on the desk now. They both have been looking at me rather puzzled.


Things are progressing, so I will publish this and take my last doses of glop before I go up to the north end. I need to take a bath, so that I'm as clean as possible for the doctor. It's a nearly clear, breezy evening in the field.


July 21

It was nearly 10:00 when I got to bed last night, and while I slept pretty well, I feel like I didn't get enough sleep. i got up at the usual time, but I had to spend quite a while in the bathroom, and then I wanted to read my funnies before I got dressed, so I was a little late getting out. It didn't matter much; while there was quite a bit of traffic going north, there was none going in my direction. That was nice.


Church was good, with communion again, and Pastor's sermon, on Mary and Martha, was a good one. And two adults were confirmed, so it was a long service.


Then I was off to Pat's, because there were a few things I wanted to get - one of which I forgot. I did quite a bit of damage, though, because I have decided to try some different flavors of canned cat food on the guys, and I always get a bottle of JD when I shop. It did help with my gas, though. With everything I'd accrued over the past two trips, I got 65 a gallon off on the first 15 gallons - $9.75. That helped a whole lot, because my tank was pretty empty. For a while, I wasn't getting anything off, but for the past month or so, I think they've changed the rules a bit. It's been enough to keep me shopping at Pat's and getting gas at their Holiday station.


Going home was not quite so much fun. I got behind a bunch of excruciatingly law-abiding cars going out of Calumet, and only by taking Cliff Drive and going fast did I manage to lap them. I followed a few rather slow drivers up the covered road, too, including a couple of motorcycles, but by then I was almost home and the slowest guy pulled over and let us pass him. Well, it was a nice day for a Sunday drive.


The weather was beautiful but quite cold. When I got up, the temperature was under 50. It warmed up fast, though, and by the time I left for church, it was 59. It never got over 64 here, and that was only for a little while. For most of the day, it was around 60. There wasn't much wind, and the sky was nearly clear all day, although now there are some clouds, particularly off to the east.


The guys were glad to see me come home, because I was late, but I think they've been sleeping for most of the day. While I was changing my clothes, Grayson went out on the porch and laid out in the sun and almost went to sleep, and the next thing I knew, Louie was bugging him. I still haven't figured out the dynamic between them. Louie got his tummy rub, and he slept on my lap for a while this afternoon. 


Well, tomorrow is my prep day for the colonoscopy. I ended up buying some of those Jell-O snack cups. I was going to make my own, but I didn't feel like going to all that trouble, and besides, the fridge is so full, I don't know where I would have put the dishes. I don't like Jell-O, but it is filling and it has some protein in it. I have the feeling I'll be sleeping late tomorrow, so maybe it won't be too bad.


Now it's a partly cloudy, cool night in the field and I'm tired.


July 20

I was a little later getting to bed than I planned, but I was in bed by 11:30, I think. I slept quite well, with the usual wakeups. I was awake around 7:45 and I really wanted to go back to sleep, but Grayson got himself into the very middle of the bed and when I woke up because my hip hurt, he wouldn't move, and I couldn't move either, so I got up at about 8:30. I knitted, but I lost my concentration and made some mistakes so I didn't get very much done. It's a long way across the bottom of that thing.


I didn't do anything today. I was sleepy, and I'm sleepier now, so after I did my surfing, I read. I'm starting part 7 of Trine now.


The weather was cold! For most of the day, the temperature was around 55. I had to close up the studio, although I've opened one window again, because it's 78 in here now and that's too warm. The skies were clear and blue, and there wasn't much wind. It would have been nice to be out in, but it wasn't so good for sitting around.


The guys are back to normal, I think, although they were sleepy. Grayson went to sleep between the toilet and the wall while I was knitting, and Louie fell asleep on my lap twice. When I went to get dinner, he was asleep mostly in the sun on the porch, looking like a little angel cat and resting his cheek on his paw. Grayson slept for a while on the desk, but he just went away now because I started to sneeze.


The pollen forecasts say the pollen shouldn't be bad, but there's something out there that I'm allergic to.


So I guess everything is set up for Tuesday, except that I don't know who's going to drive me - Ron or Trevor. I guess we'll be using  my car. I have to get gas tomorrow and also get a few more things to drink on Monday. 


Now it's a clear, cold evening in the field, and I won't be up very long.


July 19

I did it again. I won't say when I went to bed, but it was far too late. I got up around 10:30, because I got a call from the hospital confirming my date for Tuesday, and I had to pee. I knitted a while before I got dressed.


I didn't do a whole lot; there wasn't time. I did go to the post office, and wonder of wonders, I took a bag of trash to the compactor! Rich was there and he tossed it in for me, which was good, because it was heavy. So now the trash bag in the breezeway is empty and there is more room in the fridge, although not as much as I'd thought. I did forget the container from my dinner of last night, but I'm not sure I could have gotten that in anyway.


I called the sewer guy and we had a long conversation, and we have an appointment for Wednesday morning, although he wants me to call him Tuesday night. I found the thing from the eye doctor, which reminded me that I need to make my appointment, but after I sat on hold for 20 minutes, I hung up. Their excuse is that they are rolling in a new patient records system, but that doesn't matter. I have left the paper out, and I will try to remember to call them Monday.


The weather has finally gotten nice. It rained from before 10:00 until around 5:00 this morning, and after midnight we had 1.36" of rain, which means that since Wednesday, we've had 2.72" of rain - a goodly amount. and 5.17" so far for the month, an astounding amount. By dawn, the sky was clear, and it stayed clear all day. The high temperature was 75, which is just nice, and there was a brisk north wind, with gusts up to 25 mph. Whitecaps on the blue harbor! After about noon, the humidity dropped, and it is now 49%, which is just fine. It was lovely.


Grayson apparently spent most of the night in bed with me. He does get up when I do, and he waits until I settle down before he gets back in, just to make sure I don't roll on him or something, and I suppose I sort of shake the bed while I'm rolling over. Louie has made himself a little nest on the top of the bed rest pillow I have in the chair there, and he was curled up in that when I got up. He got a tummy rub this morning, too, which he was very happy about. They are pretty happy right now; no people tromping through the house, no loud machines outside and no thunder and lightning. And while mom went out, she didn't stay long. 


So it was a quiet day, and while I may read for a little while longer, I am going to try hard to get to bed early tonight. It's a lovely, clear, warm evening in the field and our rain has gone away for a while.


July 18

Poor little Grayson. I was reading, which I did for too long, and sometime after 11:00, a storm cell passed pretty much over the harbor, although the first lightning was out over the lake. Then, suddenly, there was an enormous bolt of cloud-to-cloud (fortunately) lightning that was almost on top of us, or a little to the east. I know it was close because the thunder was less than a second after the lightning. And it scared Grayson. A few minutes later, there was another one, and he bolted. Grayson is not having a good week.


I read for far too long last night, and it was 1:30 before I got to bed. I slept well, as best I can remember (a good sign). I was awake around 8:00, when I found Grayson in bed with me, but that was too early, so I went back to sleep and didn't wake up again until around 11:00, when my hip was sore. Grayson was still there.


I knitted a couple more repeats of the edging before I got dressed. Then after breakfast, I had an accident and had to change my bottoms. I didn't wash - I didn't want to waste water on one pair of underpants and a pair of shorts, at least until I'm sure the septic tank is fixed.


I didn't do a lot. I was so late that it took me most of the afternoon to do my surfing. Something (I forget what) sidetracked me. I washed dishes last night and I unloaded the dishwasher while my breakfast was cooking. That was about it. 


The weather was very unsettled all day. The squall that went through before midnight left 0.46" of rain behind it. It rained again between 5:00 AM and 7:00 AM, then again between 8:00 and noon. The thunderstorm squalls started around 4:00, although the only result we got from the first one was a 46 mph gust of wind right after 4:00. It blew hard for about two minutes, then calmed down again - really weird. The rain came after 5:00 PM, hard, and I ended up having to close the great room windows because it was raining in. Since then, we've had several squalls go through (that's what the Weather Underground is reporting for Houghton, so I guess it's a good word). Between 10:00 and 11:00, we had " of rain, and we've had 1.26" so far for the day. There was thunder, but nothing came too close to us, for which Grayson was grateful, although he was upset. The temperature got up to 78 briefly between 2:00 and 3:00, but once the rain started it went down into the upper 60s. Needless to say, the humidity is close to 100%. From radar, it looks like the worst of the rain is east of us now, but one never knows.


I think Louie spent the day in the basement again, because I didn't see much of him. Grayson has wanted to be with me, and just a little while ago, he was playing with a catnip mouse under the sewing machine chair, before he went off, probably to bed. He doesn't like that loud thunder, and i have to admit that when those cracks echoed off the hills last night, it was pretty noisy around here. 


At least that lightning was all cloud-to-cloud. I might not be writing this if it had been cloud-to-ground. I just saw some lightning off to the south somewhere so maybe it isn't over yet. No, according to radar, it isn't over yet. there are a bunch of little cells coming up on us. I'm tired, and I should take a bath tonight, but there's not much use to going to bed until the thunder stops, since I couldn't sleep anyway.


I've been interested in these storms. They came from the northwest, from Canada and over the lake. After so many years when all the rain came from Minnesota and tracked south of us, it's a real treat to have rain come right over us and miss the central UP. Maybe my prayers have helped.


So it's been an interesting, stormy day and night in the field, and the storms may not be over yet.


July 17

Well, today was better.


I read for a while last night, just to relax and cool off, and then I was so sticky and icky i had to take a bath. The drain works fine, at least for now. I didn't get to bed until after 12:30, and even though I opened up the windows in the window seat and I had the ceiling fan on, I didn't sleep well. I had forgotten to take my Neurontin, and when I did take it, it took a couple of hours to kick in, so my feet hurt and my legs were twitchy. I am not used to sleeping with a breeze around me, and it always takes me several days to get used to that. In the meantime, I don't sleep well. It was warm, too. Until after 5:00, the temperature was 82 and it was windy. Then, between 5:00 and 6:00 the temperature dropped from 82 to 64 as the wind picked up 26 mph gusts and shifted to the north. Then I was cold. I did sleep after that, though.


I got up around 9:00, I think, and knitted a bit more on the edging. For some reason this edging is going very slowly. I don't know why, because except for one row, it's very easy.


I didn't do a lot more. I closed up almost all the windows I had opened yesterday, because the temperature has been varying between 60 and 70, and even though the wind died down quite a bit, it was cold.


This afternoon, I cut up half a watermelon and two quarts of local strawberries and finally - finally!! - cleaned out the veggie drawer in the fridge. I didn't grind up the watermelon rinds, so while I was making a garbage bag, I put all the yucky stuff that had died in the drawer into it and washed out the drawer. I just remembered that I didn't put a bunch of stuff in cartons in there, but I can do that. I had hoped to get to the compactor today, because it's still warm in the breezeway, but I was too late. Hopefully, Friday. It seems strange to me that there is a window of sleep between not nearly enough and much too much when I seem to have more energy. I think the cooler temps had something to do with it, too.


Tonight I met Suzanne and Paul at Harbor Haus and we had a nice dinner. Their food is just as good as ever, and they have added a bunch of new things this year. No more creamy bacon salad dressing, though. Well, they've had that forever, and I can understand them wanting to update the menu. They still have plank-style whitefish, and it's just as good as ever. I need more time to really peruse the menu, but they still have most of my favorites. I expect to take myself to dinner on my birthday, so I'll be going back in a couple of weeks.


I guess I've covered the weather pretty much. We had a lot of fog again today, which always makes it feel chilly. Overhead, the sky ranged from partly cloudy to completely cloudy. The half moon is peeking through the clouds out the south windows right now.


Louie is OK, but Grayson is still settling down. All the noise and confusion around here yesterday really freaked him out. Something in his background has made him afraid of diesel motors, and of course, we had a big one around here yesterday, not to mention the septic alarm going off every so often. He's sleeping peacefully on the sewing machine chair now, though. He was not pleased when I went off this evening. Well, I can't help that.


Now I am tired, and it's cool enough that I think I will sleep well tonight. I don't need another bath yet and I can just crash. I think I will read for a while - I'm starting Trine  again - before I go, though. I don't have any reason to get up early tomorrow, or I don't think I do.


It's a partly cloudy, cool evening in the field.


July 16

Ugh. What a day.


I got to bed before midnight last night and I slept well. I was awake around 8:00, but that was too early. We had a short thunderstorm between 9:00 and 10:00 but I went back to sleep for a while, and then I got a really weird wrong number, so I got up. 


I knitted a few repeats on the edging, and I'm beginning to get the hang of it. I don't like the way it attaches to the shawl very well, but probably nobody but me will ever notice.


I had trouble with the drains again last night, so this morning, I decided to try to nail down what the problem is. I filled the tub half-full of water in two parts, and then I thought the drain plug was still closed, because no water went out. So I ran water into the laundry sink and flushed the toilet in the powder room, and none of them ran out at more than a trickle. So before I even had breakfast, I called the sewer and drain man. I was afraid all along that I knew what the problem was, but I thought I would start with the drains. I'm glad I did.


He came, without calling back, and when they took the lids over the access holes in the septic tank, the problem was obvious. The crud was up to about 6" from the top of the hole. Yuck. However, he also discovered that the pump from the septic tank into the drain field had tripped the circuit breaker. He reset it, and it would pump for about two minutes and then stop. That did bring down the level in the tank to about 2' below the access hole, which was good. When it got down there, all the water in the pipes ran out.


So the next task was to get the septic tank pumped ASAP. The service I've used before was too busy, so they referred me to someone else - my plumber's brother. He came right out, and in a couple of hours had the tank all pumped out. Now all i have to do is wait until the drain guy gets back. "Always Available" isn't. I think I've said that before. However, it's a 1500 gallon tank, so I can do my regular stuff, pretty much, and they will try to get here by the weekend. Oh, the joys of the happy householder. It's also erasing the little bit of bank balance I had managed to store up. Sigh. And we still don't know what the real problem is.


The weather only made it worse. The rain this morning left it terminally humid, and then the temperature began to rise and the wind to drop. I rustled around and turned on a bunch of fans, and I reversed the one in the great room that was blowing down. I discovered that I never reversed the other one. Every so often, the wind would pick up over the harbor and that helped, but it has been a most uncomfortable day. The skies were partly cloudy all day, with lots of sunshine, unfortunately. I took a bath last night, and I think I'm going to have to take another one tonight. It should be marginally better tomorrow. I do not like this weather!


In the meantime, I came back to the studio with my dinner to discover that my weather station is going haywire. I suppose it needs a new battery, which means I will have to go through the pain of synching the sensor up to it again. Right now, it does not show a time and the date says "8/18." Heh. (I just replaced the batteries, and it seems to have synched up just fine, but of course it will be a while before it gets the time signal).


Grayson was very loving all day. He actually got on my lap in the bathroom this morning. I don't know whether the thunder upset him or what, but he needed love. I got that. I didn't see Louie until I was rustling around running water, and I think he has been hanging out in the basement; it's cooler down there. Grayson was sleeping when the drain guy came, which caused him to wake up and upset him, and when the pumping guy got here with his big rig, which makes a lot of noise, he was really upset. I don't think he has gotten over it yet. He did spend most of his time close to me, so I guess he thinks I can help. He is still clearly upset. 


However it has cooled off a bit - down to 78 - so that should help all of us. Now he wants to cuddle, and it's too hot to cuddle.


In the meantime, Suzanne and Paul stopped by before I was ambulatory and asked if I wanted to go to dinner tonight. She left a note, which I didn't see, so she called around 5:00, and I had to rearrange their plans again. I was sorry to do so, but i didn't know how long it would take Gordy to finish the pumping, so we are going tomorrow. Yay! I haven't been to Harbor Haus yet this year. It was just as well I didn't go tonight. Before I ate, I was feeling sort of queasy, which turned out to be hunger, but I still have a headache, so I wouldn't have been good company anyway. 


I can't handle hot weather. I know to some of you 87 isn't hot, but remember, the humidity was over 60% all day. The Weather Underground doesn't report heat index, but it sure felt like mid-90s at least. I was miserable, but then, so were both Randy and Gordy. We who live around here just aren't acclimated to such heat.


When I went out to the garage to show Gordy how he couldn't get through the back door, I got a bite that looks like a black fly right on the knuckle of my right thumb, and I got bitten to pieces by those horrid biting flies. We haven't had those for the past couple of years, They were biting me right through my compression hose. I don't react to them, like I do to black flies and mosquitoes, but they hurt when they bite. I keep having to remind myself that this isn't paradise, and one of the things that makes it real is the bugs. Something bit me on my chest under my bra strap, too, but I don't know what that is, except that it itches.


Well, we haven't had a summer like this in a long time, so I suppose we are about due. Now there is a nice breeze coming in the south windows, which is helping a lot. I actually got my hair up in a pony tail today, but not a very good one. I simply can't reach back there anymore. It was enough to keep it off my neck, though, and that has helped. That and shorts - hang it how I looked to Randy and Gordy - has kept me as cool as possible. 


So now I will read for a little while, not long, and after I take my shower, I will turn on the fan in the bedroom and lie very quietly, but I don't think I will have much trouble sleeping tonight. It's a very warm, humid, partly cloudy night in the field.


July 15

Wow, July is half over already! Where does the time go?


I was late getting to bed again last night. Instead of going right up to the north end, I read for a while. I finished Voyages, Part 4 and started part 5. So it was 11;45 before I turned out the light. I slept well, with not too many wakeups, and I got up around 10:00. I was up around 8:00, but that was too early, and besides, it was foggy outside, so I went back to sleep.


I ended up not doing anything much except surfing the Nordic Needle website for hours looking at all their sale stuff. I put in an order, of course, but they have free shipping right now, and they were going to delete a list I had made, so I decided it was time. I do like their stuff.


Tonight was church, and it was very nice, although there weren't even a quarter of the people who were there last week. Pastor's sermons are good and I'm getting the hang of evening prayer.


It was a warm day. The temperature only got up to 79, but there wasn't much wind and it was very humid - over 60% even after the fog went away. It was partly to mostly cloudy, although it has cleared up a bit now.


The guys did what any self-respecting cat would do on a day like this: they slept. I don't know where Grayson went, but when I left for church, Louie was laid out full length on the porch in the shade of a table. He got a brushing this morning, but he still looks kind of ratty. Grayson was there to greet me when I came home, though, and I don't think he was happy that I went away.


So now I'm hot and tired. I think I will take a bath tonight, but before I do, I'm going to take the cover off the drain in the shower and see if there is hair in it. Otherwise, I've decided to start tracking down my drain problems by getting the drain and sewer people out here. There were some very alarming gurgles and gulps Saturday after I took my bath, and the shower almost overflowed again. Oh, the joys of the happy householder!


We are down to 15 hours of daylight now, so the sun has just set, and it's a warm, humid night in the field.


July 14

I made it into bed by 9:45 last night, and I would have slept well except that I was up four or five times. I slept well in between except for the last time. I woke up around 6:30 with a very sore left hip (i was sleeping on my right side) and I couldn't get back to sleep, so I got up a bit before the alarm went off.


i had time to do some of my surfing and I got off quite early. It really does make a difference when I don't have to put on a coat and all that stuff. My drives were not fun. There are a lot of tourists around, including any number that never consider that someone behind them may want to go faster than they do because they have an appointment. It's the one thing about having an iffy exhaust system that I like - when I take off around them it makes a very satisfactory noise. Grr.


Church was nice, with communion, and the lady who usually sits behind me, who just transferred in from the Wisconsin Synod church that closed, sang the anthem. She has an amazing voice. We got out earlier than sometimes, and I got home before 1:00.


I changed my clothes and had lunch and I didn't do anything for the rest of the afternoon. I am tired enough that I had a sort of headache all day, so I guess I'll be going to bed soon.


The weather was not the best. It was cloudy all day, and the temperature here zigzagged around all afternoon and finally got up to 75 briefly. There was hardly any wind. The problem is, it's quite humid. The humidity was over 70% all day, and that makes it uncomfortable, at least to me. In fact, on my way home, I went through some areas of sprinkles. Yuck.


The guys were like the weather, too. Grayson did come and sit on me for quite a while for him, and he sat and purred and stuck his little prickers into my midriff. He apparently doesn't understand that there is me under that tee. Anyway, he was very loving. Now he's sound asleep on the desk. I didn't see much of Louie. They were both full of ginger when I got up this morning, chasing each other around all over the place, but that didn't last long.


The clouds seem to be sort of going away now, and there might even be a star or two tonight. I am going to bed and I am going to sleep as long as possible. It's a warmish, partly cloudy, very humid night in the field.


July 13

I got to bed about midnight last night, and I slept well. I woke up around 8:00, I think, and that seemed too early, so the next time I woke up was 11:30. I'm still tired. I spent about an hour taking out the provisional cast-on and making sure I have the right number of stitches. The next time I can knit, I will be transferring the stitches to the right sized needle and increasing four stitches, and then I can start the edging. I thought about several ways to do that, and I finally decided it would work best on the large needle. So I put the points on a 40" cable, and I'm good to go. It will probably be Monday.


That was about all I did, except that I had to bring in the next load of cat food before I fed the guys. Now I have a decision to make. I've been feeding them the same seven kinds of food since I got Louie, and they don't like most of it very well. Grayson seems to like beef, and Louie doesn't seem to like much canned food at all. I don't want to give them only dry food, because that isn't as good for them, but I'm not sure how to figure out what they want, since when I get it through the mail, I have to buy it by the case. Well, I'll figure it out before they eat all of this.


The weather was so-so. The high temperature was 78, and it was in the 70s for most of the day. It seemed a little humid and it was mostly cloudy, with not much wind. Meh.


The guys were their sleepy selves. Today Louie didn't even try to get on my lap. He hasn't cleaned up his rear end, either. He is so fat I'm sure it's nearly impossible for him to reach back there, but he won't let me do it either. I don't think he leaked any more, though. Grayson is sitting on my lap and purring right now, which makes it a little awkward to type, but he's small enough that it isn't as hard as when Louie is here. Louie is sleeping on the kitty condo.


I'm sleepy again, too, and I don't think I'll be out of bed long tonight. It's a warmish, cloudy evening in the field.


July 12

Well, I zoned out last night, listening to the nice music with a perfectly blank mind. Usually I do that in the bathroom, and not usually for so long. I won't say when I finally got to bed, but it was much too late. I got up around 10:00, which was not nearly enough sleep.


I knitted for quite a while, and I finished the body of the shawl! Yee-hah! Tomorrow, I will unpick the provisional cast on and then I can start the edging. I've already identified a couple of problems: 16 rows doesn't go evenly into 540 stitches, so I will either have to add some stitches or decrease some. There were also a number of errors in the last few rows of the shoulder chart that annoyed me. Oh, well, that's over with now.


I didn't do much of anything during the day, because it took me most of the afternoon to do my surfing. This evening I went to the campground and spent the evening with Suzanne and Paul and a nice young couple they met. We had a good dinner and some good conversation, and at least I was sitting in a place where I don't think I got any bug bites. They have a couple of chipmunks that were the life of the party, stuffing unshelled peanuts into their cheek pouches. I like chipmunks, even if they are pests.


The weather was lovely. It was already 75 when I got up, and the high was 81, which is a bit too warm for me, but I'll take it. There was a strong southwest breeze, and it has gotten quite gusty as the evening has worn on. It was partly cloudy for most of the day, with just enough sunshine so it didn't seem dull. Summer. Nice. I can't tell you how intoxicating the smell of the breeze was when I opened the porch door this morning. Aahh! Summer in the Harbor!


The guys were rather active this morning, but they seemed to be rather grumpy. Louie didn't get to sit on me because his anal glands seem to be over-expressing themselves, and he either can't or won't clean himself up. When I tried, he wiggled so much I had a hard time hanging onto him, and I got stuff all over me. They were not pleased when i went away and didn't come back until late, but now that they know I've come home, they've gone off again.


So that was my day, and it's late now, for one who didn't get much sleep last night. Suzanne and Paul are such nice people, and I always enjoy spending time with them. Now it's a warmish, windy night in the field and I think there may be a star or two.


July 11

Instead of going to bed early like I said I would, I started writing and I wrote about 3200 words on Bolin. I've been thinking about it a lot, and I wanted to get the next part down. I've written a little bit tonight, but now I'm stuck again and I'm going to have to think some more before I write any more.


Anyway, I slept well with only two wakeups and i got up around 9:00. I think when I was up around 3:00 there was a glow in the north, although it wasn't far from the horizon and there was no movement, so I did manage to see the end of the aurora event. i knitted six more rows and I'm making very good progress. In fact, I think i have only about four more rows before I start the upper border. I got dressed, and after I ate my breakfast, I had an accident and had to get dressed all over again. Sigh.


That meant I didn't finish my surfing before I had to leave. Portage Health is about 10 miles further south from Calumet, and sometimes drivers are weird there, like they were today, so I like to leave myself enough time. 


I saw the doctor and she was pleased with my progress and with my labs, although I had to get another blood test, of course. I should hear tomorrow or Monday what my uric acid levels are. Apparently the drug I'm taking can be toxic to the liver, but my liver tests are good, and my kidney function is OK - not good, but OK - and I was able to assure her that my tophi are getting smaller. In fact, while I was waiting for her - she's always late - I started knitting on my sock and I just naturally laid the yarn over my fingernail, like I used to, and it worked pretty well. It's still not exactly the right place, but at least I can do plain knitting, and it goes much faster because I don't have to move my right hand so far. Come back in November. Try to find the lab. Try to find the restroom. Try to find the exit. That place is a rabbit warren.


Anyway, then I was off to Pat's for a bag of lettuce for tomorrow - a bag that ended up costing me $42, since of course I got a few more things... After that, I stopped at Ace Hardware and got some rubbing and polishing compounds for when I touch up the scratches on the car.


My trip home was pretty good. The nice thing about going south at noon and going north around 3:30 is that most people are going in the other direction. I got home around 4:30. Now the fridge is really bulging at the seams. They had local strawberries! Oh, yum! I can't wait to eat them.


Last night and this morning, I had some alarming problems with my drains that lead me to wonder if I need to have my septic tank pumped. I will call the guy tomorrow and see if he can come soon. The drain in the shower backed up, and when I used the plunger on it, I heard some strange gurgling, and when I flushed the toilet in the powder room and washed my hands, they didn't work quite right either, at least right after I got home. The last time I used them they seemed all right. We'll see what happens when I take my bath on Saturday. If it's not one damn thing, it's another.


The weather was just plain glorious. It was nearly clear all day, although there were a few clouds while I was coming home. The temperature in town got up to 75, while it got to 68 here. There was a strange dip between 1:00 and 4:00, but I think that was probably mostly because of the clouds. It went down to 57 for a couple of hours before it recovered, although my car thermometer didn't report that low a temperature when I came home. There wasn't much wind. It was lovely, except that the inside of my car got like an oven. I had to use the A/C to cool it off.


I don't know what the guys did while I was gone. Louie was not happy with Grayson this morning, for some reason I don't know. Maybe it was because Grayson slept on the end of the bed for part of the night - he was there when I got up this morning. Louie would like to do that, too, but Grayson won't let him. 


After I took my bath last night, my broken blister was so sore and it looked like it might be getting infected, so I put a bandage on it. It still hurts, and the way I put the bandage means it's coming off already. I may try to just stick it down with tape, because it's one of those advanced care things and I'm sure it's stuck to the blister now and I don't want to remove it. The blister area is still sore, because the skin hasn't grown over it. It must look yucky, because it looks yucky even through the bandage. And it hurts. 


So that was my day, and now I have a week or more of nothing much except people coming to me, which is nice. i didn't get enough sleep last night, and I don't think I will be staying up tonight, because I don't have much to write. It's a lovely, nearly clear night in the field.


July 10

I was in bed by 9:45 last night and I slept well. I was only up twice, I think. I got up around 8:30 and today I did 8 rows of knitting. I'm getting there, slowly. I really think starting these things from the big end is better, because they go fast about the time I'm getting really tired of them. Of course, after I do the body, i have a long edging to do along the bottom, but I can at least see the end.


Suzanne and Paul came by about the time I finished breakfast, and they left me a whole box of canned goodies, for which I am very grateful. Then a while later the guy from the glass company came by (the same guy as last time) and rescreened both my doors, sprayed the tracks and worked on the two windows in the great room that I had a hard time opening. So that is done.


I was sorry to have to change Suzanne's plans, but she wanted me to come for steak tonight, and I didn't think that was a good idea, seeing as how I will probably be having a uric acid test tomorrow. So we are going to do it Friday instead. They are such nice people! Grayson thought so, too, although Louie ran away when he heard the car.


The weather was cool and windy. The official temperature did get up to 69, just a while ago, but it has dropped back. For most of the day, the official temperature was in the low 60s and my thermometer was reading in the high 50s. The reason was the wind, which got as high as 25 mph with 33 mph gusts from the north. That is dying down now, too. For quite a while, it was all clear, but there are some clouds in the sky now. It was a pretty day, with lots of whitecaps on the harbor.


The guys were a little discombobulated today by all the comings and goings. Grayson likes meeting new people - maybe they will pet him! - but Louie didn't like it at all and he went away and slept until a long time after the glass company guy left. Then he got to sleep on my lap for a while. Grayson was happier, but he didn't get his usual amount of sleep. Well, they'll just have to sleep tonight. They were outside while I was making my dinner, which told me the wind was dying down. They don't like wind.


I didn't get anything done today, because of all the visitors. I did get the dishwasher almost ready to run, when I get tonight's dishes into it. I need to take a bath for the doctor, but I think I'll be going to bed early again. I have sleeping sickness again. So it's a cool, windy, partly cloudy night in the field.


July 9

I didn't get to bed until nearly 11:00 last night, but I slept well, with the usual wakeups. I got up around 8:30, I think, not because I wanted to, but because I had to walk. Since I was early, I knitted six more rows, and I'm now I'm down to 135 stitches. it's going really fast now. Good thing, too, because it's getting tiresome.


I had time to do most of my surfing before I packed up and left for my appointment. That was a short one; I think there is a rule or something that the doctor has to see you within a month of your colonoscopy, and they wanted another blood test, too. No big deal.


I stopped at the car place to get the touchup paint I'd ordered - very expensive for what I got - and then I was off to Pat's. I seem to be doing a bit better about only getting things I need, and I had a lot of bags for my money, but it was a lot of money. Oh, well.


I had a rather slow trip down, because of the tourists, but that was all right because I was early. My trip home was a pretty good one. I had to pass three very slow drivers coming out of Mohawk, but after that it was clear all the way home. I had to go through Mohawk because Cliff Drive is closed. I have a vague hope that they're repaving. They've been patching the patches for a good many years now and the road is horrible. About half a mile in, going south, there is a patch where a heavy truck coming out of one of the side roads (probably somebody's house) completely destroyed the road for about 20 feet, and that has been a real speed bump. They're also doing something in Mohawk that looks like they are laying new water pipes, but that wasn't much of a problem. At least those yellow lengths of pipe looked much too small to be sewer pipes.


I got home around 3:30 and by the time I got everything in the house and put away, I was hot and exhausted, so I haven't done much since. My fridge is now bulging again, but I have lots of good things to eat.


The weather wasn't the best. The temperature only got up to 73, but the humidity was over 80% all day long, so it was miserable. There wasn't any wind. There wasn't any rain, either, until after 6:00. I was minding my own business - actually, downloading a piece of software I've been looking for for a while - when I looked up and it was raining. It probably started closer to 7:00 than 6:00, and it's coming down steadily but not heavily and it's foggy again. Not nice. I'd hoped we were over the fogs in June.


I think the guys just slept all day. At least, they didn't show up until I started bringing in the groceries and when I sat down again, they went right back to sleep, both together on the desk. Grayson did sit on me for a few minutes, just to tell me he was glad I was home, I guess.


When I sat down in my chair after I got home, I sort of fell into it and my jeans seam rubbed against the blister and broke it. I wasn't happy about that, but it looks like the weeping was actually over, so now I will try to find a big BandAid Advanced Care and seal it up until it heals. It hurts. Well, at least that's over with. Dr. Benyi is the only person I've shown it to who had seen things like that before and knew what it was. She seemed much more laid back today, and I think she'll be fine for what I need her for. She was very casual about my regimen for cleaning myself out, which I appreciate. She doesn't care how I modify the instructions as long as I'm cleaned out when she sees me. Good.


So that was my day. I didn't actually get enough sleep last night, so I won't be up late tonight, I don't think. I was already tired when I got to Laurium, and I'm really tired now. Besides, it's a foggy, rainy night in the field and it will be a good one to sleep.


July 8

I was in bed by 8:45 last night, and I slept well, although I was up a number of times as usual. I got up around 8:00. I had to take a walk, and I figured I should have had enough sleep. So I got to knit six rows for a change, and I'm down to just over 170 stitches. 


I got myself out and to see Johanna and I felt much better after my massage. This cool, damp weather has been hard on my back. 


I haven't mentioned it before, but now that it's more or less general knowledge around here, I can report that Johanna is pregnant. She has always wanted a baby, and she is just delighted about it, even though she's had some queasy stomachs. Her significant other is just as delighted as she is. She has had some special tests, for various genetic problems, since she's a little old for her first baby, and in a week or so we should know what gender it is. She is so happy that I'm very happy for her.


I didn't do anything much when i got home except start loading the dishwasher and fill the dry cat food bowls. You should have seen the look on Grayson's face when I went out this morning and left all his bowls empty, even though he had canned food. Usually he smiles, but he wasn't smiling then.


This evening was the first evening church service in Copper Harbor, and they started early, so I was late. It was a nice service, though, and there were a whole lot of people there, most of them from one family reunion group that, I learned later, includes six pastors, a deaconess and several parochial teachers. They also have a whole lot of kids, some of whom were not well disciplined. But it was nice to have so many people in attendance. They sang loud, too.


The weather was just about the way it was yesterday, although the fog lifted by 4:30 and the temperature spiked to 60 at 7:00 PM. For most of the day it was foggy and around 50 with no wind. I'm getting tired of this. I feel like I'm growing mold.


The guys were sleepy, of course, just like the weather, although they were full of energy around 6:00 this morning. And Grayson was not pleased with me for going away without filling his bowls. He is happier now, but then I went away again. He won't be pleased tomorrow, either. Too bad about him.


Now I think I will go up to the north end and take my bath (for the doctor) and try to get to bed sort of early. It's a cool, cloudy night in the field.


July 7

I managed to not get to bed until about 10:00 last night, and I was up three times, and that wasn't enough sleep. I'm going to crash tonight, for sure. Besides the regular wakeups, around 3:00 I woke up to hear thunder. It was over the lake, and it never got nearer than about a mile offshore, but as the cells were passing by, it started to pour rain - it turned out that we had 0.8" of rain in an hour! I knew it was raining hard.


Anyway, I got up a bit before the alarm went off, and it was so dark I had to turn on the lights in the kitchen to see to make my breakfast. When I got up, it was pouring, but before I was ready to go to church, the rain had stopped and the fog was beginning. it hadn't hit here when I left, but it was thick around Medora. Besides that, there were a lot of slow drivers on the way south - tourist season, you know.


Church was nice and pastor's sermon was a good one, all about dealing gently with Christians who sin. As he pointed out, we frequently do it backward - being harsh with penitent Christians and being gentle with unrepentant sinners. Not the way to do it.


Anyway, since there was no communion, we got out early, but I was so tired - actually sleepy - that I decided to postpone my food shopping until Tuesday. I did have to get gas, and prices seem to have settled down at about $3.50 a gallon - 70 cheaper than it was around Memorial Day. They have all their excuses, but I think they were trying to gouge us. Anyway, it was nice to fill my tank for less than $70. 


So I came home, and there were slow drivers coming home, too, although I lapped a bunch of them by taking Cliff Drive. As soon as i got near the cliffs, it began to get foggy, and the harbor was completely socked in. Cold, too.


When I got up, the temperature was 63, which I didn't think was too bad. It was warm and humid in town. Actually, it was only about 71, but the humidity made it feel more like it was 80-something. Between 10:00 and 11:00, here, the temperature fell from 62 to 53. That was when the fog rolled in. For the rest of the afternoon, it has been extremely foggy and cold, varying between 48 and 50. I have all the east windows closed and the window to the porch only open a little bit, and I was cold all afternoon until I had dinner. I decided not to have something hot for lunch, and that was a mistake.


Not that I did anything. I spent the afternoon reading. I must report that my blister is even bigger than it was yesterday. Now it's about 18mm (3/4") in diameter and 5mm high. I wonder how much bigger it can get? It looks like half a grape adhering to my thumb. Even Jan, our organist and nurse, had never seen anything like it. I am trying to keep it from breaking. What amazes me is how much skin will stretch. I might have thought just the stretching would cause it to rupture, but it hasn't.


The guys reacted to the weather in typical fashion - they slept. Louie slept for a long time on my lap before I finally moved him under the east windows, and a while after that, Grayson sat on my lap for a long time. They are up and active now, but I don't imagine that will last very long, especially when I go to bed.


The Clear Sky Chart, which uses Environment Canada data for this exact spot, has been much more accurate today, and according to them, it's going to be cold and cloudy until at least 3:00 PM tomorrow before it clears up and warms up a bit, although it's still going to be very humid. This is the kind of weather where the marine forecast is much more accurate than the Houghton forecast, just because we're out in the middle of the lake. I'm not looking forward to that. Suzanne and Paul are here, and I'm sure they're wondering what they've gotten into. I had hoped we were over this weather.


So now it's a foggy, cold night in the field, and I am going to bed very shortly.


July 6

This was an interesting day.


I didn't get to bed until about 11:30 last night and I didn't sleep well. I think the heat was mostly to blame, but I was up about every two hours, due to the fish. I finally got some sleep after 3:00, and I got up at about 9:00. When I got up, it was already 75 and the wind, of which there was a lot overnight, had died down. So I put on shorts and a camisole.


Well. I was minding  my own business when we had three or four power glitches followed by a solid down, at a little after 1:00, I think. At the same time, the temperature took a dive, from 82 down to around 64. I started by closing windows and doors, but eventually I had to put on a tee shirt because I was frozen. 


In the meantime, the glitches had totally zapped the computer. The first time it tried to reboot, it said it couldn't start Windows. Eek!! So I rebooted again, and it was all right, except for Norton. I tried all the local fixes and it wouldn't fix. I'm afraid it was in the middle of an update when the power went away. So I had to download the whole thing from the internet - when the internet was there - and that took a long time. It did come up, finally, but then I noticed that there was another program running. Norton provides an online backup program that will back up my files into the "cloud." I'm rather suspicious of the cloud, and besides, with the speed of my connection, it would take forever. So I finally had to have an online chat with their support staff to get rid of that thing. About the time I finished that, just after 7:00, the power finally came back. Oh, yes, and about the time the power came back, there were rumbles of thunder out east of the point. The power is still on, but we had a short shower, and now it's horribly humid.


Oh, yes, and the internet was up and down at intervals all afternoon.


What a nasty day. I hate it when I have computer problems, especially on weekends.


The temperature did recover a bit after its dive, but it never got over 72 again. We set a new record yesterday, but not today. It has been cloudy all day, with some wind, although now it's calm and very humid and foggy. There's a laker sounding its foghorn out in the lake right now.


The guys were very sleepy. Louie slept on my lap as long as I'd let him and while he's awake now, Grayson slept for most of the day. I think they were up almost all night again.


My bite blister is even bigger than it was last night - it's about 13mm in diameter (that's about half an inch!) and 4mm high. I took another picture, but I won't gross you out with it. I've had a lot of black fly bites since I've hung around here, and I've had some big blisters, but this is the biggest one I've ever had. So far, I've been able to keep it from breaking, but I'm not sure how long I can do that. It doesn't itch very much anymore, but it is sore. 


Now I think (I hope!) the computer is all back in one piece again. I am going to have to seriously consider getting a UPS, just to prevent nasty accidents like happened today. Maybe they've come down in price since the last time I looked into them. Everything is usually all right if the power just goes right down, but this time, it glitched at a speed that let the computer try to reboot about three times. That's never good for any computer. Can't live with them, can't live without them. Sigh.


Now it's time to totter up to the north end. The wash is all in the dryer and all I have left to do is fill the pill dispensers and take my bath and I can go to bed and try to get a better night's sleep tonight. It's cooler, and that should help.


It's a cloudy, humid night in the field.


July 5

The fireworks were very nice, as usual. I was a bit disappointed that some of the shots disappeared very quickly, but I suppose that was the atmospheric conditions. I missed the first couple of minutes because I was in the bathroom and I couldn't leave when the first boom sounded, but what I saw was lovely. There were a couple of new things that were really neat. I think the show was about 35 minutes long, and the finale was wonderful.


So it was about 11:45 when I turned out the light, but I had a very hard time getting to sleep. I think it was partly because I was jazzed up by the show and partly because it was warm in the bedroom. It was after 2:00 when I finally began to sleep normally, and I was up a couple of times after that, so I didn't get up until 11:45. I might have lain in bed for 12 hours - with time off for bathroom breaks - but I certainly didn't sleep that long. I'm tired again. I knitted, and I am now down to 199 stitches. Yay!


Sometime during the night, I realized that the bite on my left thumb and probably a couple on my right wrist aren't mosquito bites. I have gotten my first black fly bites. I thought I would show you what happens to my hands when I get black fly bites there, although be aware, it's nasty. That's not a good picture, but it was the best I could do. Yes, that is a humungous blister. Now, not only is it itchy, it hurts, especially when I move my thumb around, and I'm afraid I will hit it against something and break it. From having tried it, I can tell you that breaking one of these things is worse than letting them sit. I may put a BandAid over it, just to try to keep it intact until the swelling goes down. I think the only way I could treat it would be to treat it like a snakebite and try to suck out the venom, which is under the blister. Eventually, it will all go away but it will take a couple of weeks. Yuck.


I was so late getting up that I didn't do anything but my surfing today. 


The story was the weather. When I got up, the temperature was already 81. It zigzagged for most of the afternoon, with a high of 84. but then the wind shifted to the north and it went down to 76, and then the wind dropped and it went back to 84 at 7:00, and now it's down to 78 again. That high is a new record for the date. There wasn't much wind anytime and it was all over the map. The skies were partly cloudy all day, although the clouds were those high, featureless ones that partly cover the sun. Now it's cloudy again. I do not like this kind of weather, especially since I won't get my screen doors fixed until Wednesday and I don't want any more flying critters in here. Enough get in already, already Actually, the deck is the hottest place around most of the time, because of the sun shining on it, so keeping the doors shut may actually keep it cooler in here. I have a lot of windows open and I have the fan on in here. Ah, summer, how I hate thee!


The guys were sleepy all day, too. Their response to hot weather is to do as little as possible. They may actually have spent some time in the basement, where it's cooler, although Louie did sit on my lap for a while after breakfast (lunch?), and Grayson came to see me a while ago.


I broke out the shorts and the sleeveless top, and I was about as comfortable as I can be, although my hands are all sticky and my underwear is wet. Much as I wish, I don't dare take off the compression hose, because my ankles swell even worse in hot weather. I know most people prefer summer to winter, but I don't. I am a cold-weather person. After all, you can always put on more clothes, but there is only a certain amount you can take off. I can't take off my skin, like the rhinoceros. I just sweat like a horse.


So as soon as I upload this, I will be off to the north end to crash - well, not exactly; it's 10:00, but you get the idea. 


It's a warm, cloudy night in the field, but there is a breeze.


July 4 - Independence Day

So last night what I was reading was interesting and the music was nice and it was extremely late before I got to bed. I got up around 10:00, I think, because I don't want to get into the habit, but I didn't do anything much today.  The plan for tonight is to take my bath and get into my nightie, watch the fireworks and go right to bed.  Hopefully, I can do that.


I now have two very itchy bites, one on each hand, and two on my face. I wish I knew where those things were coming from! Something was nosing around my hands today, but I don't think I got any more bites. This has really been the year for mosquitoes, but I think it was all the rain we had in June. Mosquitoes hatch in still puddles, and there were a lot of those around for a while. I want there to be lots of rain - the lake is rising nicely - but I could do without the mosquitoes, especially when they keep getting into my house!


It was another nice day. It was pretty clear, although not pristine. The temperature hung in around 65 or so all night and most of the day, before it went up to 77 at 7:00. It has now dropped back a bit, but it's still nice. There wasn't much wind until lately, and now it's rising a bit. We'll hope it doesn't get too windy so the fireworks stay where they're put.


The guys were sleepy, as usual. Louie got his loving, and Grayson was around for most of the day, but they're not very active. I guess that means they're really settling down. They haven't even wrestled very much lately. I think they are up for a good part of the night, though, but when it's as warm as it was last night, I imagine they're out on the porch.


So I don't have much to report. It's a clear, warm night in the field.


July 3

Well, last night I spent a long time staring at the floor in the bathroom, so it was at least 11:30 before I got to bed. I slept well, after I turned over, and I got up around 9:00. There were stars, but they weren't especially bright ones. That high haze we've had so much of in the past few years was in the sky again.


I knitted and I started on the shoulder section of the shawl. There are 46 rows before the edging, but they should go increasingly fast, because I'm decreasing four stitches a row rather than two. 


The weather was about the same as it has been lately but a little warmer. it was around 55 all day, until just a while ago, when it went up to 73 for a couple of hours (and 80 in here, before I opened the window). There wasn't much wind again, and it was clear all day. Nice.


The kitties were themselves. Grayson came in while I was knitting and sort of went to sleep between the toilet and the wall, but mostly he wanted to play footsie with me. The only problem is, he plays footsie with his claws out, and that hurts. Louie came along after I changed my underwear - small accident - and he slept on my lap for a long time, until I had to do something, and he has wanted to come back all afternoon. Geez, Louie, I'm not your pillow!


I forgot to mention that the glass company called yesterday and I am going to get my screens fixed next Wednesday. It will be expensive, but at least it will get done. I have the feeling I'm going to want to have those doors open, and I don't want the bugs in here. There has been one today, and I now have new bites on my face and my hand. They're still all mosquitoes, but they do itch.


I noticed yesterday that the vetch is blooming - the pretty purple cow vetch - and the daisies and buttercups, as well as the Indian Paint Brushes are coming out. I haven't smelled any roses yet, but they must be coming out, too. I think there is a little coral poppy in the garden, and it makes me sick that I can't get out and weed that bed. Oh, well.


So now it's a clear, almost calm night in the field and I'll be going up to the north end soon.


July 2

I got to bed a little after 10:00, and it took me a while to get to sleep. It was a night of strange dreams and I was up any number of times. I got up around 9:30, I think. I knitted my four rows, and another two rows and I get to turn the page. All the time I was knitting, Louie was sleeping on the rug - he looks so cute when he's asleep - and after a while Grayson sat down between the toilet and the wall and he went to sleep, too. Four rows take me about an hour and a half, more or less, but I'll be decreasing much more rapidly now, and the number of stitches will go down fast. The last row I did is the one where i had to move all the markers, too, and that takes more time. 


I didn't do very much after that. I did go to the post office, where there were packages, to the store, and I went to the fish market, where I got a nice piece of whitefish and some fish spread (yum!) and they now have a bakery, so I got a turnover for dessert. It was a delicious piece of fish and the turnover, which was filled with thimbleberry jam, was very good, too.


The weather was clear and cool again. The temperature for most of the afternoon was in the lower 50s, although now it has warmed up to 59. There wasn't any wind. There were a few cirrus clouds and the sky looks hazy, so I guess our clear skies are going to end tomorrow. 


I did see some stars last night, although I was anxious enough to get back to bed that I didn't spend much time craning my neck out the window. I did manage to see Polaris, sort of, and Arcturus was shining in the window. The temperature went down to 44 overnight, so it was good sleeping. What my problem was, I don't know.


The guys were very sleepy all day again. For a while they were both under the south windows, before Louie moved over and went to sleep on my lap. Like I said yesterday, it seems like we all have sleeping sickness. 


I do, and I have to take a bath tonight, so I won't be reading very long, I don't think. It's a clear, cool, calm evening in the field.


July 1

Last night, I was in bed shortly after 9:30 and I got up around 10:30 this morning. In between, I slept very well, thank you. I'll be a bit later tonight. I knitted my four rows, and I'm  making good progress still. 


I didn't do much of anything else, since I was so late getting to the studio. I thought about going to the post office and the store - I need a few things at the store - but I decided to wait until tomorrow, when maybe I will be a little earlier. I did do a few things in the kitchen. I'm trying hard to keep things cleaned up, but i don't know how long I can keep this up.


The weather was pretty, but cool. It was clear all day, but the temperature was around 50 for most of the day. Late in the afternoon, it rose to 57 and it's about 55 now, but it was cool to cold. There wasn't much wind. I don't suppose our tourists are very happy, but I am. I'd rather it was cool than hot, although it would be nice to be able to open the windows. Oh, well, we can cope.


The guys coped by sleeping. I think we have sleeping sickness in this house. While I was knitting, Grayson slept between the toilet and the wall and Louie slept in the bathtub. When I got to the studio, Grayson socked out under the east windows, as he's been doing lately, and after I got back from the bathroom, Louie spent a long time asleep on my lap. Then they went someplace else to sleep. When I went to get my dinner, Grayson was sitting on the footstool on the porch.


So I don't have much to report. I didn't do anything but read this afternoon. It's a cool, clear night in the field.


Last  updated 08/01/13 09:54 PM