Day late, this week. However, still the same week. That counts, right?
I even have a relatively good reason. I was having a particularly iffy body day yesterday, and sort of fell into a book. Which was followed by sort of autonomically picking up the second and continuing the tale… which was followed by not enough sleep. So if this wanders a bit, I apologize.
Life, Our Universe, and Pets:
We’ve had a relatively gentle week. Mister Tea finished his training for the “Big Boy Job” I’ve mentioned prior, and begins his normal schedule next week. There is going to be a bit of adjustment involved in that, as he will be working four ten hour shifts. I think it will be the first time since his stint in the Army for that kind of hours for him. Taking classes and working shows and building sets was a bit different, because there were breaks in between, even if the day itself was longer overall.
The car trouble that occurred last week seems to have randomly sorted itself out. A diagnostic showed nothing, and the issue has not repeated. Which is a little frustrating, as I would rather have had something to fix, but at least things are working again.
Last week I mentioned that our wolfhound was intimidated by chickens. She finally seems to be relaxing a little, but I thought perhaps I should tell the story of why.
When she was a much younger pup, there was a morning where I wasn’t quite awake enough to be processing visual input. The kind of morning where information is flowing into your brain, but the capacity to comprehend said information just hasn’t quite come online. I’d let our three dogs outside, and then realized I’d forgotten my coffee or book or… something. When I came back around to my desk, I glanced out the window, and actually processed that our chickens were out of their coop.
To this point we’d been fairly careful with having them out around Dulce. Some of the things we’d read about Wolfhounds indicated that they really liked to chase things. A lot. To death. Though not necessarily on purpose. I started to head for the backdoor immediately, and was spurred by the sudden horrible noises that I was sure were coming from one of our chickens.
When I managed to get outside, Dulce was trotting around the corner of the house with a terrified chicken in her mouth. First response, admittedly, was sheer panic. I told her to ‘Drop It’ rather sternly, and she looked confused and a little worried, but she didn’t let go of the chicken. Frick was continuing to make horrible noises, and shed feathers like mad. I finally convinced Dulce to let go of the chicken, and sent her back inside. Through all of this our older dog had been sitting, happily panting and watching the show. Our middle dog had her stock “You know the chickens are out, right?” expression.
Going back to the chicken, I calmed her down, and checked for injury. Not a scratch. She didn’t seem dazed, or like she’d been shaken.
Our eventual theory was that Dulce knew that the chickens were supposed to be in the big wood and wire thing and that she should gather them up and wait for a human to put them back where they belonged.
Frick didn’t leave the henhouse for days. Dulce, for her part, seemed to decide that being anywhere near the chickens got her into horrible trouble. (It was the first time I’d ever had to be stern with her.) Until just recently, if she asked to go outside, and she saw a chicken, she’d blanch and just sort of lie down in front of the door, and look outside somewhat mournfully. If she did muster the courage to come outside, she’d either stay on the porch right next to the door, or wait until they’d gathered far enough away, and slink around the side of the house to get into the furthest back of the yard.
Thankfully, she’s starting to let them near her. Eventually she may learn the serenity of our older dog, Domino, and be perfectly fine with them using her as a perch.
Social Media and the Internet: From SHINY! to the RNG hates me
This week felt like a bit of a mess, as far as the internet is concerned.
I had a colossal and embarrassing Twitter fail where I grabbed the wrong bitly link, so instead of the short story (by Elizabeth Bear) that I had meant to praise, I linked a “sign this so gmos get labeled” campaign. I wanted to melt into a puddle and sink into the floor. In my next tweet I somehow managed to typo…. if I hadn’t been in the middle of a number of work-things, I would have just decided to give up on the internet for the day, because I was apparently too incompetent to be there.
For a personal project (attaching some of my favorite quotes to images), I also did some image searching this week. This is never a good idea for me. The internet loves showing me things with tentacles that I can’t unsee. Usually original artwork. Mister Tea has performed the exact same searches at near the exact time… and he doesn’t have this issue. However, since this is fairly standard for me, not particularly traumatic.
Teas, Cocoas, and Coffees (Oh My!)
Another fairly slow week for the actual making of tea. Still so many little backed up chores and piles of paperwork and…
However, I did finally manage to list our ‘Fertile Ground.’ Still a couple of other new teas waiting for listing, as well. Hopefully those will happen next week.
There were a few things accomplished that are moving us forward, or giving us new options.
One of these was making it about a third of the way through the needed supply stock checking. Due to how very ‘interesting’ this year has been, I had fallen behind, and actually had to delay an order by a few days while waiting for the blending tea I needed to arrive. Making sure we have enough of the fruits and nuts and herbs we use is on the list for early next week.
I also domesticated my desk drawer. It has an odd habit of somehow gathering random things from all over the house, and seems to have a slight Tardis quality. I’ve cleared it out, and actually put a system of organization in place. With luck this will keep it tame for the foreseeable future.
We also finally have a real camera. With a proper zoom. (Among a number of other mildly intimidating features.) No longer will Mister Tea be consigned to balancing an ipad with the utmost care and patience and skill when he settles to take the pictures to introduce our wares to you. There is glee.
Lastly, I know the first two teas I will be blending as soon as I am allowed to again. The first will be a green (haven’t decided which idea to go with yet) that will be named with Doctor Who in mind. The second is going to be a smoky chocolate fruit tea. I can hardly wait to start experimenting.
Entertainment: The Final Frontier
This week Mister Tea went back to an old favorite, and reread Terry Pratchett’s ‘Dodger.’ (Which we both enjoyed the first time around.) He did this, in part, because he hoped it was enough of a departure in content and style to distract him from Weber’s ‘Safehold’ series. Given our conversation yesterday when he came home to find me buried in the first book, I do not think the distraction was as effective as he had been hoping.
For my own part I continued to work my way through a couple of reference texts. One is a full textbook on veterinary herbal medicine that I am finding extraordinarily fascinating. (I might have actually settled down to finish that one, but for the unwieldiness of a book that size.) The other is an older herbal, which I have to take in slowly, as it is little more than a list of plant names and designations and uses over time. Bit like an encyclopedia, but on a single topic. I did allow myself a couple of not research books, and discovered a couple of enjoyable short stories. I finished Brom’s ‘The Child Thief.’ Dark reimagining of Peter Pan, which was strangely relaxing and much enjoyed. As previously mentioned, I also started David Weber’s Safehold series. I am not feeling particularly patient with the mail at the moment. However, I am glad that Twitter introduced me to Thriftbooks, as it will be a good way for me to sate my “must have all the books” urges while still affording things like food and bills.
For short stories, I read Elizabeth Bear for the first time – The Leavings of the Wolf. Also discovered Amal El-Mohtar with Pockets. Enjoyed both. It has been a bit since I’ve read a short story, and they both added a nice pause into the workday. I have searched on goodreads and added selections from both authors to my… staggering to-be-read list, and am looking forward to reading more of both.
In arenas not bookish, last weekend Mister Tea and I rediscovered the Civilization franchise through the latest – Beyond Earth. If you’ve ever played and enjoyed any Civilization game, you can probably guess where our weekend went. I like many of the changes they have made to some of the basic elements of gameplay. However, we were both a bit saddened that the result of wonders and technologies is more banal than it was in Civ5. We also miss the voice of Nimoy.
‘Tea & Jeopardy’ continues to help me with sanity during paperwork and much needed laughter. I’ve worked my way through about half of what is available. If you decide to have a listen, I suggest you start with the first, and follow them in order. I started at the most recent and have been heading backwards. Loving it, but starting at the beginning would have been a better idea.
I think that’s about it for the week.
It has been nice to have a week that didn’t have any minor (or major) emergencies or deaths or… any of the other chaos that had started to feel like our new normal this year.
If things go the way I hope, there will be new and interesting news in tea next week.
And, as last week, since I am now into my second cup of hot drink involving caffeine, I shall sign off, and go looking for images. (The new camera will be used in this process.)
May the next week be what you need it to be.