A New Life! Retirement at its Best 71

New Adventures

On Sunday afternoon, in bright sunshine, I decided to take Lani to Wimbledon for a long walk. The stretch along Cary Parkway, with many cars racing by, was scary, because she was pulling hard to get to the street. Just imagine her leash or collar would break, I would surely lose her. But the sidewalks and greenways were nice and clean, so walking was less stressful for me, although she kept pulling. On the way home she climbed her first stairs, next to the tennis courts. That was scary at first, but before we had reached the top she got the hang of it. We walked together for over an hour and covered 2.5 miles. I carried her across ”the Divide” and thought she would promptly fall asleep when we got home. But her energy was boundless and she started running after her ball! I was ready for a nap! Another 2.5 walk in Wimbledon this week was enjoyable, and when we got to the stairs she raced up the top part and arrived before me!

A few days ago her new kennel and pad arrived: she had outgrown the first one. We thought we would get a very little dog, but the new 30 x 22 crate fits her better. Two days in a row, when we went out for a walk, and she was fussing with her leash, she suddenly stopped and looked at the floor, stunned. She put out a foot, like a cat does, and then stepped back again. I looked and saw a tiny tooth! The next day, the same scenario took place. I found another tooth, and just now, on the dark brown rug by the front door, another one, smaller than the first two. I have to look in her mouth and see where they came from. She did not  whimper or indicate a feeling of pain when it happened, just looked dumbfounded. Our puppy is teething! I gave her an ice cube and it was incredibly funny to watch what she was doing with it before it had melted away, the last part in her mouth, I think.

On Monday morning early, I took her to the Vet to be spayed. Aww, such a little body to do surgery on… she came home that afternoon in a daze, her head in a cone, so she would not lick her incision, a 2.5″ scar. She ate some food, we sat on the floor, she cuddled up, I stroking her, stroking her, a soft massage, and then had a nice long night. She will have to wear that cone for ten long days, imagine. But the worst is behind her and we will continue the training. We’ve started on the bells; the goal is that she will ring the bells when she needs to go out. Step one of three she got in one day!

Make a Termite Hill out of an Ant Hill

Remember that I had found an ant hill in the border last week, and compared that to the huge ant hill that I had seen in South Africa when we were on safari in an elephant park? Well, in all probability those hills were not ant hills, but termite hills. I never noticed any sign of life near either hill, but just assumed the ants were inside and underground. Well, this week I saw part of a documentary on TV about a Chimpanzee, who used a reed to suck termites out of a termite hill that looked just like my ant hill! No wonder the tunnels I saw inside were so wide – termites are wider than ants!

Recycle your Poinsettias and save your orchids!

We got two large Poinsettias three weeks before Christmas and we put them up high, where the dog could not get to them. One is still beautiful, but the other one had lost all its leaves – only the flowers were still good. I cut the stems as long as possible and quickly put them in a round vase with water. Now I have a lovely bouquet of red Poinsettias. It has lasted ten days already and is still beautiful. I changed the water after a week, because it got cloudy, but the flowers don’t use any water at all. Another source of joy, I call it my little miracle, is a Phalaenopsis in my office window. We got it from the kids as a welcome gift when we arrived in Cary on May 10, 2017. It bloomed for two months and then went dormant. At Christmas time I moved it from the sunroom, Mike’s office, to my office, to make room for the poinsettias. And as of today it is showing a 6″ flower stalk! It does get some sun, but probably likes it better in the cooler front room. Never before have I managed to get an orchid to bloom again. But now I know that where there is life, there is hope.

Visits in Assisted Living

Walking to the exit in Assisted Living yesterday, after visiting two couples, I noticed the name of Onno on one of the doors. A month ago his daughter had told me that her Dad had felt so lost a year after his wife had passed away, that she had put him on the wait list for Assisted Living. But I had seen him recently in the dining room…had he already been admitted? I texted his daughter right away and heard that she was with Onno in the hospital in the Critical Care unit, for he was very ill. He had moved the week before but had not lived there yet. Poor Onno. I have not heard anything yet today, so let’s believe that where there is life, there is hope!

It’s a Wonderful Life!

Until next time,








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