Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Knitting and other wildlife!

My section of the milkweed project, which accompanied me through emergency rooms, surgical waiting rooms, intensive care waiting rooms, telemetry units and acute care rehab! quite an adventurous piece of work.

Miss Adventure, the puppy next door, struttin' and stylin'

Local varmint!

Beautiful old trees we see over the roofs out back, with starlings starting to gather.

One of the good things about the digi camera is being able to take pix at home and when I go in to visit HP, show him what was what at home just a few hours earlier.

I finished my section of the milkweed project, size 52 x 8 inches, approx., shipped it, and then turned to other forms of wild life....

Portrait of the Flying Puppy from next door, very proud of her exploit, meanwhile, the local chipmunk showed up, and took a sunbath on the back of our patio chair while musing over which vital wires to chew up, and the starlings started showing up in numbers in the trees out back, beautiful before the leaves start to come out and hide their shapes. Then they're beautiful with foliage, lovely very old trees, a relic of the old farms that used to be here.

NJ, surprising to people who haven't visited, is packed wall to wall with trees. To this day it's illegal to import and grow gooseberries, because they carry white pine blister rust, a fatal disease to the white pine, a major export of the state.

And if you go up to a high floor in the hospital I've been visiting daily all these weeks, and look down, it's like being in a forest -- no sign of traffic, even houses are obscured by wonderful trees, many of them very old. There are even virgin pine trees in the grounds of the Institute for Advanced Study, Einstein's old stomping ground, a stone's throw from the hospital, and undisturbed since colonial times.

Chipmunks, are, however, a different story. When we first came to live in the US, we were unfamiliar with a lot of wildlife, and I remember on the main street of Madison, WI, seeing this tiny stripy animal, very cute, on the sidewalk, and I stopped a passing student and said, what's THAT? he kind of backed away from me, and said, uh, it's called a, you know, chipmunk, looking at me as if I must either be joking or demented. Who wouldn't know what chipmunk was....

And then there are the friends whose basement was totally flooded by a chipmunk's chewing through a small water pipe down there, unknown to the family until someone went downstairs to find something...and the friend who accidentally let a chipmunk into the house, where he scurried behind the dishwasher, which made terrible noises, then a big screech, a bang and a puff of smoke....no more dishwasher. No more chipmunk,either, I guess.

This was a good day, HP feeling stronger and better, always a good thing. Plans for coming home postponed possibly, but he is handling it. Snowdrops are finished, but I took a couple of daffodils still in bud in to his room, and they are opening up and looking wonderful, smelling of springtime.

I had a St. Patty's Day lunch with a friend who showed up looking fabulous in green with great jewelry, and I forgot what day it was and showed up in red with red lace knit scarf.....not a protest against St. Patrick, I explained, just absentmindedness. We both have Irish grandmothers we didn't know, so we were kind of honoring them.

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