In My Mind’s Eye: Remembering Dad

Here’s my annual Father’s Day post, adapted from an article I wrote in 1997 for the San Francisco Chronicle about the relationship I shared with my dad. Here’s to fathers everywhere…There’s an image I have captured in my mind. I’m in my car in front of the home my parents have shared for most of their 45 married years. Mom and Dad are standing on the front porch.

From the street, I can see the huge eucalyptus tree in their backyard, silhouetted against the evening sky. It’s gently swaying in the warm breeze while the full moon illuminates the manicured lawn. My parents are smiling and waving as I drive away after a visit.

Mom lives alone now that Dad is in an Alzheimer’s nursing facility, so that scenario has changed. But it never does in my mind. My parents always stood on the porch to wave good-bye when I left. Even in pouring rain, they still stood in the open doorway together. I always looked back and returned their waves. Continue reading

Be Careful What You Wish For

I’m driving along, again wondering what I should blog about this week. What can I write that you might want to read? So I thought, I wish something interesting would happen so I don’t resort to posting a previous blog out of desperation. Word of advice:

be careful what you wish for

Recently I’ve undergone some procedures: a bone scan for oldies like me, a pap smear, mammogram…all the fun stuff. So I’m getting my pap when the doctor says, “I see you have osteoporosis.” What? Appears my bone scan showed I’d graduated from soft bones to full-fledged-about-to-crumble-bones.

Oh the joys of being short, small-boned and Caucasian (risk factors for osteoporosis).

Then the next day I had a mammogram even though, as I’m pushing 63, they suggest doing it every 2-3 years. They can suggest all they want; I get one every year.

better safe than sorry

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Along for the Ride, in Spirit

Susan in Mendocino

Today I was thinking about my late business partner, Susan, while I trapped feral cats on a 50 acre water buffalo farm where they produce mozzarella in rural Marin County. Talk about farm fresh. As you’ve probably guessed, it’s uniqueness is evident. I mean, seriously, it’s where the buffalo roam. (And, I’m guessing, where the deer and the antelope play.)

water buffalo3

water buffalo2

Anywhere rural is bound to have feral cats. Like being in one of those revolving doors at fancy hotels, they tend to come and go. But not before we ensure they stop having kittens. Still, that’s a tall order to fill when, if we miss 2 cats of the opposite sex, well, there ya go.

revolving door

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Vacation Time!

vacation time

It’s not often I get an opportunity to take a vacation. Too many animals, too much to do, never enough time. Well, this time I said pshaw! to all that then called my sister to come pet sit my menagerie of eight. She actually loves it. I know, strange, huh? Next thing I knew I was in Charleston, South Carolina with Sharon, who dropped her hubby off for a boys week of golfing.

Sharon and Jim Ireland

Ready to tee off

Well, you know what they say, don’t you? While the cat’s away, the mice will play. And boy did we play.

mice dancing

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The New and Improved Tippi

I believe I’m destined to be forced into wearing a rather gaudy accessory, one which promises to be exceptionally unflattering. Especially when I’m wearing a dress and heels. Wait, who am I kidding? That scenario only happens at weddings and funerals. But I digress…

What’s this accessory I’m referring to? A neck brace, that’s what. Now don’t get me wrong. I didn’t fall over the doggie gate (again) and wrench my pencil neck. No, it’s much worse; it seems my cat Tippi prefers to sleep across said neck every night, as opposed to snoozing in one of many pet beds spread about the house.

neck brace

It’s my fault. I’m a big push-over, unwilling to insist my cat slumber on a body part impervious to suffocation. Owning a cat weighing the equivalent of a 10 lb. sack of sugar draped across one’s windpipe, is not exactly conducive to a restful night’s sleep. Consequently, I have a rather annoying neck kink.

Tippi on my neck

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