It seems that all bad things happen when Mike is not here. Hamsters die and need burying. Dogs attack and leave half dead chickens. Goats that are found wandering the road get tied to our mailbox (yes, that one really happened). Horses escape pastures and run off down skinny busy roads. Dogs dig out of yards and right into very proper neighbor's yards where their very proper small dogs reside.
Sigh. I suppose it should come as no surprise that most bad things happen when Mike is not here. Given that the greater portion of time finds him away from home, I guess, statistically, most bad things would fall during those absences.
Mike is out of town this week.
Last night I was up 'til about 12:30 organizing old photos. At around 3:00am I woke to some loud sound outside our window and then a whole lot of clucking and flapping and over all crazy terrified chicken sounds. I lay there frozen – trying to process what might be happening. Then I heard Thor coming over -- barking insanely and rushing from outside our window back towards the back yard. I decided he was probably chasing a cat or raccoon that had come snooping around our chickens. I was still a little terrified though . . . because, maybe it was a raccoon . . . or, you know, also it was maybe a murderer who wanted to rile up the chickens before coming to kill us all.
Still, Thor's barking was far too loud to go unnoticed by sleeping neighbors, so I went to the patio door and called out to get him quiet. I still was afraid to go out, so I went and tried to look out our bathroom window to see what was going on with the chickens. Of course, I'm pretty much blind with out my contacts and it was very dark. I could sort of make out the shape of something that appeared to be climbing around on the chain link of our dog run (where the chickens now make their home). There is wire over the top to keep them in, but I wasn't positive that this critter hadn't somehow gotten in as well (raccoons are smart little fellas, you know), so I figured I better go out. So, I got a flashlight and headed out back. As I walked around the side of the house I felt very much like the foolish girl from a horror movie who says, “I think I hear a sound in the bushes. I better go out all alone in my frail little nighty (although I was actually wearing cut off sweats and a t-shirt) to see what it is.” Luckily, whatever it was was gone. I shined the flashlight around to make sure there were six live chickens and then scampered nervously back to bed.
It only occurred to me later that Thor was over barking on our patio while the raccoon (or whatever it was) was still climbing on the fencing . . . which leads me to believe he was barking in terror rather than in brave protector mode, and had been running away rather than chasing away.
I tried to go back to sleep, but with no Mike here I kept thinking again how that raccoon probably meant more murderers lurking about. Minds think very differently when it is late and dark and they are alone, I've discovered. When I did finally fall asleep it was only to bizarre dreams of a dog coming into our yard that looked just like Thor and Mike aiming a gun at it and then me noticing that its paws looked weird and then realizing it was because it wasn't a dog that looked like Thor, but several people crammed into a dog costume. And, oh no, Mike was about to shoot them . . . even though I am not sure why a dog that looked like Thor would need to be shot.
Even that disturbing sleep didn't last long. At 5:00 am Goldie woke up with a bloody nose that could not be stopped for about 45 minutes – which was, of course, another bad thing happening with Mike away.
Oh well. What's to be done? Let's just look at these happy pictures instead.
Wait, that's not happy. That's very sad.
Oops. Still very very sad.
Now we're talkin.' Happy to be throwing the towel I carefully placed over his lap to catch all his crumbs and spills.
Oh, and happy to be with his two favorite items in the world -- monkey and a half deflated rubber ball that if anyone else ever even touches sends him into hysterics of sobbing. Now that is MUCH better. Even Penny is happy now.
And you better believe that's Mike teaching his kids nunchuck skills. Practicing violin with Abe. Let's hear it for TV!
Abe and his pal Zach teaching Jesse to play Connect Four. Zach is the youngest in his family, and he thinks Jesse is one of the coolest things at Abe's house. P.S. For those of you who don't use google reader and just come straight to my blog, there is actually another new post just below my Mister Steamy post. I'd typed it a few weeks ago but never published it because I kept meaning to add some pictures to it -- which I finally did tonight.