One gardener's observations, discoveries and random thoughts whilst simultaneously worshipping and dallying in a Cape Cod garden. "A garden," said Ralph Waldo Emerson, "is like those pernicious machineries which catch a man's coatskirt or his hand, and draw in his arm, his leg and his whole body to irresistable destruction."

Cabin Fever

I know it will be a surprise to you that I’ve been impatient about healing.  I shouldn’t be, I actually have the luxury of a little time just lately…and I do seem to have banged it up pretty seriously, for it to still be so sore this week.   I don’t know what I thought; I guess that I’d be all better by now.   And I’m on the way, but you know, meanwhile there are all these sunny days that I’m not out there walking through.

It’s a good time of year for a little enforced lounging around, although I am becoming an accidental fan of more television programming than I might like.   At first, it was just a few self-indulgent episodes of Law and Order, but that’s a slippery slope to a couple of episodes of Bones, and then CSI:NY and before you know it, there’s an all-day marathon of Leverage and suddenly you’re jonesing for another episode of Southland.  Sigh.  Yes, I’ve been riding the TNT Express some lately.

But I’m not a total cable zombie either.  My dear friend Heidi sent me a box full of gardening books culled from her personal library recently.   A fan of herbal remedies, but not much of a green thumb, her books are focussed pretty tightly on herbs and herb gardens, which happens to be sort of a bare patch in my experience, so I’m glad for some new things to consider.   Especially since growing more herbs on the deck this summer was already seeming like a good idea.

And there’s all sort of other things to do on a winter’s day.

You can snuggle in with a kitty and enjoy a good book.   Or check out a movie or two you’ve been meaning to watch.   But the siren song of the outdoors always calls us back and my roomie and I find ourselves at the window, studying the comings and goings of the feathered neighbors.

There are two pair of cardinals who I’ve spotted at the feeders recently, one of whom you can see here, checking out the new deluxe bird restaurant.   It was installed in the side yard this autumn, but I’m not sure I’ve ever properly shown it off here at the blog.   It’s fun because it’s a nice big station, and on a tall pole that elevates it enough to afford us a nice view from the second floor.

Of course, there are lots of other birds who visit besides the cardinals.   Bluejays are here all the time, and regularly practicing their hawk impersonations.  All the smaller birds, chickadees, titmice and sparrows are out there almost all the time.   I hear that the bluebirds have been visiting the suet feeders every morning, but so far, we have only spotted the woodpeckers there.

We watch out the windows as the footprints and tire tracks in the snow drain and fill with shadows as the day passes.   In the same vein, we watch as the prism-born patterns of rainbows on the living room walls change throughout the day, with the rise and fall of the sun.

Sometimes we play together, my buddy and me, but as often we like to give each other a little space, but that doesn’t always work.

We’ve both been feeling a bit of cabin fever.  I’d noted how happy my buddy was to get out on the deck for a little walk about and some fresh air last week and I’ve been hoping some mild-ish weather would allow us another similar opportunity.   And then on a recent sunny afternoon, we were tired of looking out windows and at one another and Mister Purry Pants started to yell at me rather insistantly, I hitched him into the harness and led his eager self downstairs.

He could barely wait for me to be ready and seemed annoyed at waiting the extra moment while I grabbed the camera, but I had a feeling it would be a short little adventure and I didn’t want to miss it.   It turned out to be even quicker than I’d anticipated.

Sir Purr dragged me insistantly downstairs and waited on the lower steps while I opened the inside door, so he could peer out at the world.   I can’t remember if cats see in color (I think they do not, which is sad), but it must be troubling for him to look out at what is normally (from his experience peering there) a green and lush view of the world, and see only that barren white landscape.  I know how it feels for me.

But it wasn’t long before Himself was yelling again for me to open the door so we could go out and then we were on the step, he surveying the white world in each direction and not spying a single blade of grass.

There was no wind, so even though our temperature was right around freezing, I thought we might stay out for a moment or two.  Then again, I was wearing shoes and clothes.

After only the briefest of reconnaisance, not even stepping off the path to the door, my Purry Pal turned with a plaintive cry to be let back inside, where he tore up the stairs to wait at the door of the Nest.

Our adventure was done, exchanged for a couple of Whiskahs treats and a patch of late day Sunshine in the  bedroom.  Just a taste of the alternative left us happily content with the cabin fever we’d been so tired of earlier.

There’s plenty of things to do here inside.   Now that my foot’s starting to feel better (it’s my gas pedal foot and yesterday I drove for the first time in a week – still a little sore after that, but on the mend for sure), I have resumed the project of giving the whole place a room-by-room cleaning, turning my attention today to our bathroom.   I’ve been painting the old door that leads out onto the deck, so it looks little less dull than it had before.   I’ve untangled the cords of the bamboo shades, given most of the houseplants some pruning attention, begun salvaging photos from failing old photo albums, and installed new shower curtains (one with kitties on it!).   There are kitchen shelves and cabinets to be reorganized.

But I really look forward to getting out for a walk sometime soon.


Comments on: "Cabin Fever" (8)

  1. As always, lovely & thoughtful photographs. Wishing you to be well & lots of warmth from a fan in Portland, Oregon!

  2. Ooh, that shot where the Gray Catsby is staring at the camera is frameworthy. He’s gorgeous and he knows it.

  3. Heya Greg….thought I would drop by and say hello…Hope all is going swell with you…:)

  4. Hope you can indeed make this walk soon, btw your Badum makes almost scary impressive looks, my warmest wishes for your healing progress.

  5. Glad to hear you’re doing better, Greg. Climbing stairs to try to let The Cat out and driving sound like events to be celebrated.

    If I had any sunshine and warmth I’d package it and send it your way. We’re having some serious rains which are briefly flooding the yard and rendering the outdoors way too wet for my little ms Scooter, who’s beginning to suffer as much as Badum. Of course we need the water out here, but try explaining that to a cat.

  6. Have you been asphyxiated in your cabin Greg? Love the winter pics. Hope all is well.

    No asphyxiation here, Rick. Update coming soon!

  7. That cat just kills me. His expressions, his crystal clear communications, all of it. Kills me.

    Glad you’re feeling better. I believe you’ve done some dancing since this post went up, so I’m trusting that means your foot is feeling better.

    You’re right, pal. There _has_ been just a little dancing. But lots of great music, including some opera…and some trifle…and bread pudding. Some sunshine, with rainbows. And a little snow. And some rain…and lots of time with that Most Delightful Cat. Details coming soon!

  8. Salina Inzaghi said:

    His Royal Catness grows more handsome in each picture :)
    lotsa *hugs n kisses* for him
    take care of yourself, Greg. get well soon…
    cant wait to see another spring entry in ur blog :)

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