Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Beautiful Fall Day

There are all kinds of signs telling me that the season is changing from summer to autumn. One of the biggest, of course, is the change in temperature. I don’t need a thermometer to know the nights are getting cooler. I don’t even need to stick my nose out the door to know if we had a frost. I have Lily.

I know the outside temperature is somewhat cool if I can’t move my feet during the night because her fat little body is lying on top of the covers. But I know it’s gone from cool to cold if, during the night, I feel her walking around sniffing heads, looking for the person who will let her under the covers. She’s a smart kitty. She’s smart enough to know that if she waits at the bathroom sink someone will turn the water on for her so she doesn’t have to drink dog-slobber water. She’s smart enough to know that each night after dinner I will give her some Greenies —as long as she doesn’t trip and kill me in her race to beat me to the bag of treats. So you’d think she’d be smart enough to know that Dean sleeps on the same side of the bed every night and she doesn’t need to waste her time sniffing his head. I’m sure she knows the odds that he would quit hoarding junk collecting treasures are a thousand times greater than that he would ever lift the covers for her to snuggle up next to him.

You just never know when you're going to need a trophy or computer part.

But that doesn’t stop her. She sniffs his head; then she walks over and sniffs my head. Safe in the knowledge she has found her favorite human form, she begins butting my head and doesn’t stop until I roll over onto my side and lift up the covers. Then she crawls under, pushes herself up next to my stomach, and drops her fat, furry body like a lead balloon. That’s one way I know it’s not summer anymore.

Another indication that those lazy, hazy days of summer are ending is Dean trying to weasel out of letting me use one stall in the garage to park my car during the winter. We have a deal. Dean can have the whole garage to do whatever he wants as soon as winter ends, and I get one measly stall when it gets so cold that I need to scrape my windows in the morning.

The other day he even played the retirement card. “I won’t retire this year if you let me build a second story above the garage so I can have a big workshop. That way you can have the WHOLE garage.” Right. I’ll “let” you continue to work so you can fork out more money than you would lose from retiring to make our house look like Rapunzel’s tower. Then I’ll go get a second job to pay for your medical bills and the repairs my car will need after you walk out of your huge workshop, lose your footing, roll down the stairs into the garage and dent my car with the chunk of wood you were carrying. Nope. Not happenin’ buddy.

But for me, the Farmer’s Almanac of all indicators that the dog days of summer are ending and Indian summer is beginning is … here it comes … get ready … the waterproofing of the BFD. Yes. The ·  F  ·  D. Betcha weren’t expecting to see those three letters again! It is still alive and well. Not only well, but healthy and whole. And FINISHED! Totally, absolutely, no question about it, completely, for-reals done. It has new stairs! Beautiful new stairs.

Stairs that will give the grandkids a fighting chance if they accidentally somersault down rather than walk in the normal upright stance most of us take.

You’re amazed aren’t you? And impressed, I’ll bet. Me too. Nice job, Justin!

Oh…you thought WE built the stairs? We could have. Oh, we could have, but it wouldn’t have been fun, and I would have been forced to torture you with dozens and dozens of BFD stair-whining posts and then you might get grumpy from reading cranky posts so when Windows froze up you’d lose control and throw your glass of ice water at the monitor. The computer would spark and smoke and as you were running for the fire extinguisher you’d slip on the ice and break your leg and you’d have to drag yourself through the gritty dog and cat fur on the floor to get to the phone to call for help, but before you got there the fur would make you sneeze and then not only would you have a broken leg but your back would be spasming and … anyway … we did not build them so you should probably be counting your blessings now. The thing is, one of the best parts about getting old(er) has been spending some of the money we used to spend on tuition, books, dentists and doctors on us. What could be more enjoyable than hiring young muscle to do something for us we both dreaded doing.

I’m telling you, the feeling of having somebody working outside in the sweltering heat FOR you, all the while remembering that last year it was YOU who was out there  ... well  ... it’s blissful. And, after the stairs were completed, I somehow (unintentionally, of course) managed to be busy during almost all of the 12 hours it took Dean to completely waterproof the whole dang ·  F  ·  D again.  That was as heavenly as a crisp fall day with nothing to do but watch the leaves fall gently onto a new deck.



Art Elser said...

Ah yes! BFD, Beautiful Fall Day. You thought you'd sneak that one past us, didn't you. When you were showing some of Dean's treasures I thought you'd show that bumper he was going out to fetch out of some meadow. ;-)

I love reading your blog because you can make anything funny. Ever thought of retiring into a second career as a humor writer? With Dean, Lily, and BLM, how can you lose?

Abby said...

Wasn't that wood in the garage (since last summer) suppose to be used to finish the deck? What are you going to do with it now? I'm assuming it's too much to hope for that you might actually get rid of it...