Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Last Rose of Summer

Even though it's horribly hot today (84 F up here, 107 down in the valley where my sister lives) this will be the last rose for this growing season. In a couple of weeks the temperatures will drop drastically...I hope. They've always done so in the past, but the weather is so abnormal this year, who knows? I always take extra time to inhale the delicious scent of the last rose, fixing it firmly in memory. Then, in the depths of winter, all I have to do is close my eyes, inhale deeply and I'm back in the warmth of my summer garden.

My Double-Ruffled Impatiens won't last much longer either. They can't take temperatures much below 45 F.

They've always reminded me of little miniature rose blossoms. Unfortunately, they have no fragrance. They do well in pots and hanging baskets, so I have them all over. I've been after my husband for years to build a greenhouse for me so I can over-winter my Impatiens and Fuchsias, but alas...
I'm always amazed when I go down to visit my sister. She has Fuchsias growing in the ground that are four to five feet high!!! It's like visiting another country when I drive from these mountains down into the flat lands.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Beautiful Sunset?

Not really. It's caused by all the smoke in the air from all the fires here in Southern California. Everyone has sore throats, noses and eyes from breathing the smoke, although it had cleared quite a bit when I took this. Everyone is on edge. County Fire Units have been patrolling the mountains and foothills, and will continue to do so until fire season is over. Local people are also patrolling, very much in "vigilante" mode. I think if they (the locals) caught an arsonist, the state would not have to worry about the cost of a trial...

And speaking of trials, the arsonists who set the 2003 and 2006 fires have been caught, tried and sentenced to death. People died in both of those fires.

Usually we don't get this sort of thing until late October. I hope the rains come early, and I hope that the Santa Ana winds, or Devil Winds as some call them, never come at all.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Some of the squirrels I feed aren't as appreciative as they might be...

Sam: "YO, lady! Yeah, I'm tawkin to YOU! Get that camera outta my face! Doan make me say it again!"

Stan: "Yeah...that goes for me, too! Freakin' paparoo...uh...paparara...uh...slimy voyager!"

Stella: "Sigh...lighten up, you guys. The peanuts she puts out for us are our modeling fees! Haven't you figured that out yet? And mean 'voyeur' which she is most definitely not! Sheesh. Some boys..."

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Gossiping 'Round the Water Cooler

I wonder what these Raccoons were talking about?

Oh, no way! That can't be true!Really, it is...and there's more! Here, I'll whisper it to you...


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Autumn Age

Some of these Dogwood berries are turning red, a sure sign that Autumn is on the way. I'm praying that it's a cool, wet one.

My "autumn" is well underway. I don't have many wrinkles (yet), but things are definitely heading south.

Today an acquaintance of mine, who had a face lift a few months ago, looked at me and said, "Well, you don't need a face lift yet, but you do need to have your eyes done." I said, "Why do I need them "done"? Yeah, the upper lids are sagging a bit, but I can still see perfectly well." She replied in a matter-of-fact tone, "Well, you know. You don't want to look OLD." She was shocked when I said, "I'm not looking forward to it, but I'm not going to do anything to stop it. I've had my time being young and beautiful, now I'm ready to be old and beautiful." She said, "You can't be OLD and beautiful!!" I said, "Yes, you can. It's just a different kind of beauty, and it's too bad that most people today can't recognize it." She looked at me as if I had just said "Watch out! I'm crazy and it's contagious!" and hurriedly walked away.

I don't know if it's as pronounced in other parts of the country, but here in Southern California aging is looked upon as a disease that must be eradicated at all costs, a social "no-no" that puts you in a class slightly lower than a convicted criminal.

Anything sagging? Hurry, get it lifted! Got fat? Get liposuction! Got any horrible, socially unacceptable wrinkles? Quick, get Botox! Lips thinning? Well, what are you waiting for? Get them injected with something! Do anything, any painful, potentially life threatening SOMETHING to avoid aging!


I do have my hair dyed a flaming red (it's naturally black with quite a bit of grey around the front) but I started doing that when I turned 50 as a way of saying, "Yes, I'm aging but I refuse to disappear." When my hair turns completely white, I'll quit dying it. Maybe. Or maybe I'll do what my Mom did sometimes when she was feeling feisty; tint it a temporary outrageous color (pale green, lavender, purple, whatever matched her outfit. She was a strong, brave woman and a quite a character. I miss her more than words can convey).

I have no respect for a society that says I'm worthless because I'm old. (I can't say middle-aged anymore because, really, who lives to be 120?) I have no respect for a society that says I have to have painful, dangerous things done to me just to "fit in." I've never been a person who has striven to "fit in" and I'm not about to start now.

It doesn't bother me when a woman, or man, has cosmetic procedures because they want to have them. It bothers me when they have them only because they feel they're worthless if they don't.
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