Sunday, April 1, 2012

»The little bits

The little bits

Several nights ago, I saw a local skunk. I haven't seen them up until then -- it was dusk but still quite light. Stephen saw a couple of little ones on the deck the other night, he sees them more frequently than I do. When he came home that evening, I told him about it and told him how they remind me of short little old ladies with big bums hobbling up the trail.

He told me that there was an old, ratty, mean skunk that had been around. Steve avoided this guy at all costs. I asked if he ever called animal control. I should have known. Stephen and a telephone are not a miscible combination. He said that if he had ever seen animal control in the area, he might have mentioned that there was a scary old skunk around, but make the effort to call?

We've learned that we can't spoil Diego. He doesn't like treats -- neither the commercial kind, nor bits of our dinner that we feed Chips. Chips, whose hearing is going, I think, can still hear us use a knife on a plate -- his signal to come and beg at our feet. He is getting very fussy, though; he doesn't like meats that are heavily sauced or spiced. A little plain chicken or ham, steak is appreciated, shrimp is quite nice, thank you. Diego turns away or tries to bury the treat. This makes us a little sad. We like spoiling cats.

Diego may never be a lap cat, but when I wake up in the middle of the night and go downstairs for the bathroom and a drink of water, he comes down with me for a drink himself -- cats always know that bathroom time is captive attention time. When I start to climb the stairs again, he races up around me so he can stand at the top as my head clears the floor and we can head butt and he purrs his tiny purr.

Sometimes he doesn't come down with me, but he jumps down from the chair he has been sleeping in to greet me and bump when I return.

I think he is the sweetest cat I've ever had.
Diego and Chips will stretch out and sleep on either side of me or Steve for an afternoon nap, but neither will sleep with us at night. Chips sleeps on a stack of pillows above my head. Diego sleeps on a chair, in a box, or on a stack of fabric on a platform over the stair.

While I am dealing with a singular lack of courage in my creative project, I realize that I am courageous in my gluten free life. Courage to attempt making things one would never have thought to try if it weren't for the fact the product doesn't exist in manufactured gluten free food.This week I made, with the help of a website, gluten free phyllo for some spanokopita. I did not get it rolled as thinly as it should have been, but I am looking forward do doing it again. Then I can make some baklava and galataboureko and tiropetes and…

The dough for these was very much like the dough I remember using for the gluten Chinese dumplings, so I will be trying it the next time I make those. It might very well be appropriate for Chinese scallion pancakes. Oh, my mouth waters. I may be making those soon. With some hot and sour soup, I think.

Sheet update. I mended our poor sheet two more times, but when the sheet was in shreds around the new mends that I had done the day before, I called it quits. Esther came through with a set jersey sheets. We weren't sure they would work -- we thought they would bind when Steve whirled. But the bottom sheet has been great, it stays on the corners and actually looks neater than any other sheet we've had on it. And the cats like it. They'd like me not to put the covers up over it. Diego looks great against it -- the sheet is a coral pink. Chips, not so much.