Stars and Cats

Good Morning Everyone.

I had my alarm set for 4am this morning. The plan was to get up an hour early and get some writing work done before I had to start the get-the-kids-ready-for-school-Samba. I only pushed the snooze button three times. Then Panda came into my room, sat on my chest and proceeded to give me sandpaper purring kitty kisses until I got up to feed her.

Panda
Panda

She was being sweet this morning. Usually she sits on the night stand and knocks everything off, one item at a time, until I get up. It goes something like: swipe, thump. Book falls in floor and Panda glances over for a reaction from the human. Swipe, thump. Second book and a hair tie meet the ground. Still no reaction from the human feeding unit. Swipe, rattle-rattle, glasses get close to the edge and the human jumps up…

 Anyway, I got up early to write and feed the cats. So, after feeding the cats, I sat down at my computer with a cup of coffee and stared at the screen for awhile. My eyes roamed over the bookmarks toolbar at the top of my screen, looking for inspiration, and found a link to something about the Night Sky.  I remembered there was supposed to be a meteor shower this month. I couldn’t remember the dates but since I had time and it was still dark, I decided to go spend some quality time star gazing.

The thing is I live in a suburb. When I was a kid and lived in the country the sky stretched spaceout in every direction, a dark cloak scattered with fiery diamonds and imagination. Now, once I turned off all the lights in the house, there is like a scrap of real night above my house that fades at the edges as the light pollution from other houses and street lights reach out to blur the beauty. If the night sky of my childhood was a diamond studded cloak, then the one I have now is a stained version in a second hand shop made with cheep rhinestones that have mostly fallen off.

Still, I laid down on the back porch and gazed up at what I could see. I opened all of my senses and took in the smell of recently cut grass and the sound of a train whistle. I felt the chill from the boards under my back seeping past my shirt and I watched my small window patch of sky. I felt recharged and more awake than the coffee could account for. Then my neighbor’s air conditioning unit kicked on at the same time one of the cats stuck his nose in my ear and I managed to levitate off of the porch.

I had left the back door cracked open so that if the kids woke up I would hear them. The cats had apparently saw that as an invitation to follow me.  Even the blind one, Max. I had three furry faces gathered around me on the porch, trying to figure out just what I thought I was doing. Laughing at myself, I gathered up Max and went back inside. I sat back down on the computer and I wrote.  Good Morning…

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A Chilling Post

Monday’s post wasn’t really a post, so I thought I would make up for it with this one.

tissuesI went to bed sick last night.  I’m still not feeling that great this morning.  I had nightmares all night, (I always do when I get sick), and I woke up with a pulled muscle in my right shoulder and a slightly swollen left eye.   I am not sure what I did to earn either of those, but I am guessing I wrestled with something in my sleep.

It is cold outside. The local weatherman says it is 25 degrees right now, my computer reports 22.   The kids did not want to go to school this morning and I don’t blame them.  Still, I did the evil mom thing and made them go anyway.

However, after dropping them off I could not force myself to return home.  I do dumb things sometimes, and this may prove to be one of them, but instead of going home I took a walk. I haven’t seen “outside” since last year.  It feels like the last sixteen days have been nothing but a repeat of: work, home, school, grocery store.IMG_20140116_074816_035

There is an entrance to The Greenway, a walking trail that goes all over town, just down the road from the school.  So despite being sick and injured,  I decided to stop and take a stroll.  It was great.

I do not like being cold.  It is near the top of my list of things I don’t like.  That’s what makes my impromptu side trip even more odd.

IMG_20140116_074145_770But as lost feeling in my nose and my toes turned into icicles, I also forgot about the pain in my shoulder.  I remembered crunching frozen mud puddles as a kid and I marveled at the steam rising from the small brook that runs near the trail.  The grass was frozen white and reminded me of frosted mini wheats.

There was just one cloud in the sky. It stood like a fluffy white pillar in the distance and IMG_20140116_074504_990gave me a great idea for a story.  Shivering I returned to my still warm car and drove home.

The warm cup of tea I am currently sipping seems like the best I’ve ever had, even though it’s “the cheep stuff” sweetened with a spoon full of honey.  My walk only lasted fifteen or twenty minutes, but it is good to remember what cold feels like every now and again. It makes you enjoy warmth that much more.