Turtle is getting to the age where she can start to make magic.
When I was in primary school, my classmate Bryan introduced me to a great set of books about a boy and a lady who may or may not have been a witch. Mrs Graymalkin was old, wise, and never intervened too early in Kerby’s troubles, until he learned as much as he could on his own first. I loved Scott Corbett’s “Trick” books, and admired Mrs Graymalkin. I wanted to be like her.
In my teens, my stated ambition was to grow old enough to pass from being weird to being eccentric.
Just about there now.
My first Trick, this week, was turning a magical 49 (seven times seven) the day after I turned 16.
Friday was my birthday; Thursday, I passed my driver’s test. The woman at Service New Brunswick performed magic of her own, taking my G-1 license and making the restrictive “-1” disappear. Poof! Now I can drive with one passenger, two or three passengers, or no passengers at all.
On Friday morning, I went down to the cellar for a few moments, and when I came upstairs, E.g., too, had pulled some magic: Poof! A largeish box, wrapped in cheery blue bug-strewn paper, sat on the coffee table.
You can see the contents in the photo above.
They’re work clothes. A lined canvas vest, a hooded jacket, sturdy painter’s pants, various upper layerings, and a thick pair of socks.
As many of you know, last autumn I did quite a lot of basic landscaping here at home. As some of you (E.g.’s family members who tune in here) may know, this summer I’ve been doing a little yardwork — pruning, painting, stump removing — for E.g.’s parents, Rose and Eddy. Eddy calls me “a dab hand with a saw”, which makes me all smiley inside.
Now I have work clothes. And a little car. And a license.
And so, for a few moments, my low-level chronic depression?
Here’s wishing Tony in Tasmania…
from Lavenderbay, E.g., Flat Tony, Baby Tracy, Cai, Fergus, and Cuca.
The furchildren found a playground!
There were two more dogs at agility class today, plus Bear, who came last week. Plus another dog on the sidelines working on desensitizing. Plus the trainer’s move-modeling dog. Plus another of the trainer’s dogs, who liked wandering through the tunnel to look for abandoned tidbits.
Unsurprisingly, it took a good half hour before Cai started paying me any mind at all. Kiddo, you and I have some homework this week!
Anyway, with the extra students, I found a free moment to get the camera out.
Here’s the instructor, smiling because Bear has gone through the tunnel. Bear is much braver about enclosed spaces than he was last week; his daddy is very proud of him.
Behind the instructor is a blue and yellow chicken-walk. It’s part of a thing called an A-frame. Veteran hikers Cai and Fergus had no problem trotting along this shaky piece of plywood and jumping the 50 cm to the ground.
Then we tried the real A-frame.
There it is, on the right. Five and-a-half feet high. Cai got up nearly to the top with a bit of help from me, but I ran out of armlength to get him up and over. Then E.g. and Fergus approached, and Fergus went Whee! right up the thing and down the other side. So Cai tried again — and did it! My Woo-hoo resounded off the corrugated walls.
Fergus was a little less sure about that tunnel, especially once it was bent into a J-shape. E.g. would bring him to the entrance, race for the other end, and Fergus would back out and run around it, beating her to the exit every time.
Look! Here he comes now, wondering whether there’s a light at the end of that tunnel. Ready, set…you can do this…c’mon…
Whew! And look — even better than a light — it’s Mummy!
Here are two plants, and their fruit, from my herb garden.
Specimen #1 clears the brick edging by a few inches.
Specimen #2 reaches to my waist.
Specimen #1 has fruit with light yellow, papery husks. Specimen #2’s fruit have soft green husks with purple stripes.
Open the husks. Are they the same? Nope. Small, yellow fruit with dry skin versus large, green fruit with sticky coating.
Here they are all nudie. The little one is a ground cherry — ‘Aunt Molly’s’ ground cherry, to be exact. The big one is a tomatillo.
So why did I tell E.g.’s cousin, when we had a family party chez nous two weeks ago, that both plants were ground cherries?
Because I thought they were.
And why on earth would I think that, when the plants are so obviously different?
Because they came from the same seed packet, a business-card-sized manilla envelope with a sticker that says “Aunt Molly’s Ground Cherries” on it, from a small mail-order company in Quebec. Not surprisingly, this company also sells tomatillo seeds.
Does Turtle believe everything she reads? Maybe sometimes.
It took some ‘net surfing before I was sure about the tomatillos. Surprised? Yep. Feeling foolish? Yepper.
But that’s okay; the one we’ve eaten so far made a tasty addition to our movie night refried-bean dip.