rancherwriterpoet

Poetry, musings, reflections, life

Archive for the tag “rancher”

Go West Young Silkies

This past Monday afternoon, five of the “Rancherette’s Silkies flew the coop. I guess their feathers got ruffled. They headed out west to the Morris Bird Ranch in Yoncalla, Oregon. As I understand it, this is a kind of a Dude Ranch/retirement coop for chickens and these five birds had seen the propaganda and were hooked. I don’t know how they found out about this place, they have no WiFi in their coop. Heck, they don’t even have a TV. Evidently, they must have had some help.

But. three square meals a day, meal worm treats, fresh fruit and veggies, and of course, cooler weather than here in Texas, along with a substantial pension convinced these little Silkies to give it a try. Well, it convinced Little Mick. He in turn, convinced the rest of the brood to defect with him. He said it would be so much fun and they all agreed. He would have convinced more birds if he had his way.

So these three little Porcelain Cream Silkies, Little Mick Jr,, Bubba, Baby Sis, and a mated pair of unidentified Silkie whites (they snuck in the car) departed for the wild, wild west. Some folks think Texas is the wild, wild west (wild, perhaps, but not west) but according to the map, Oregon is actually in the west while Texas, is a bit south. But you probably already knew that. They still have cowboys in Oregon and rodeos. I know of at least one chicken wrangler in Yoncalla, Oregon.

The story goes like this; I’m thinking that the “Rancherette” should not leave her cellphone unattended when she goes into the coops. One never knows what stranger may choose to pick it up and make unauthorized phone calls. I do know she has a secret place where she keeps her phone when she goes to the coops, so I’m not sure how Little Mick Jr., could have got it, I am curious, tho. Nevertheless, I’m pretty sure he was the culprit who used her phone. He, undoubtedly, had to use caution when texting, as his toes are not opposable. He reserved all First Class seats for his accomplices on the USPS AIRINES service. He seems to be the leader of this ring of foul fowl. But the “Rancherette” got wind of this and managed to change their 1st class seats to Coach class. However, there was a fee to change the tickets. Little Mick, Jr., had already charged the tickets on the “Rancherette’s” SilkieEspress Card and they were non-refundable. She should be more careful with her password. I’m pretty sure that 12345 is not a secure password. But, I believe he used his cleverness to lull the “Rancherette” into helping him with his plan. He has always had the “Rancherette” eating out of the palm of his chicken feet.

Since these chickens were resolute in their desire to leave, the “Rancherette” gave in and put together all the paperwork to help these ungrateful birds with their passports, (Coming from Texas, one has to have passports to enter Oregon, it’s the law). Texas will take anybody. She had to take passport photos, secure their medical history, and place their identification bracelets on their ankles. These thankless critters were now ready to fly away. She secured their luggage and provided them with snacks for the trip,The USPS does not take chicken feed in exchange for snacks. 

As they were about ready to leave, Bubba  asked if Uber was here yet? Another unauthorized use of her cellphone. She should take that app off of her phone. Needless to say, she canceled that ride.This was out of character for Bubba. I would not have guessed that he knew about Uber.

I did not tag along on the ride to the USPS AIRLINES. I’m guessing the birds were cackling all the way while the “Rancherette” was quiet and somewhat reticent. Before they left, I made it a point to ask Little Mick, Jr., if he would let us know when he and the gang arrived. He crowed he would. And he did.

On the flight, they had a one day layover in Salt Lake City. However, they were unable to take in any sights. So, today, Wednesday, the 28th, about 9 A.M., Texas time,the “Rancherette” received a phone call. However, it was not from Little Mick, Jr., it turned out to be the curator or the headmaster, or the farmer’s daughter, or maybe it was the Innkeeper, I’m not sure of her title. But the gang all arrived safe and sound. The “Rancherette” is breathing a sign of relief. These little fowl were also hungry.They probably pigged out on the snacks the first hour and then were left with nothing.

Now, I look at the Lavender Pen, it is empty! No birds! I must admit, I miss these little birds from the Lavender Pen. You birds mind your manners, don’t be pecking. No squabbling or bickering. And if you get homesick, well, call the “Rancherette”. Or better yet, call the “Rancherwriterpoet”.

Have a great day.

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ON THE ROAD AGAIN

The “Rancherette” took her Fuzzy Chicken Band, “On the Road Again,” this past weekend. We usually begin road trips listening to the “The Fuzzy Chicken Band with lead singers, Cowboy, the Cochin, and Zorba, Not the Greek, rehearsing for the “big show”, and this trip was no different as they practiced by warbling out “On the Road Again”. Cowboy crows the lead and Zorba, Not the Greek, harmonizes, (Cowboy pictures himself as Willie Nelson) and of course, he makes a few changes to the lyrics.

On the road again
Just can’t wait to get on the road again
The life I love is seein’ chicken friends again
And I can’t wait to get on the road again

On the road again
Goin’ places that I’ve never been
Seein’ things that I may not want see again,
But I can’t wait to get on the road again.

I apologize, Mr. Nelson; I am only the bus driver, not the manager. I know you were making music with your friends and you had absolutely nothing to do with chicken bands. But you do not have to listen to these squawking birds for another four hour trip, I do. They have the most up-to-date and comfortable seats in the bus and they still complain. (Only a personal opinion, after all, this Fuzzy Chicken Band has won numerous awards from their performances and they pay a decent salary).

This particular road trip sent us to the West Texas Fair and Rodeo, in Abilene, Texas, for another live chicken show performance. After consulting with the Fuzzy Chicken Band, their agent (and manager), the “Rancherette”, booked this performance. The Fuzzy Chicken Band only plays at marquee performance halls and the Taylor County Expo Center in Abilene was certainly one of those.

Regardless, every musical group has a bus driver, so I went along to provide the chauffeuring for the trip. I am also in charge of providing accommodations and cuisine for the “Rancherette” and the band’s bus driver. I’m always looking for restaurant signs along the way that say “bus drivers eat free.” That appeals to me, for financial reasons of course. Typically the “Rancherette” prefers a different epicurean adventure.

Now the Fuzzy Chicken Band can eat anywhere and anything, however, they have their own special cuisine, concocted by their handler. The “Rancherette” is in charge of that department. Yet, when it comes to eating, no one can match up with “Cowboy, the Cochin,” who happens to be the lead singer; not even the Little Cochin Sisters, who have their own reputation to maintain.After, or should I say, during, the rehearsing by Cowboy, the Cochin and Zorba, Not the Greek, the Little Cochin  Sisters were warming their vocal cords with this little ditty:
“Abilene, Abilene”
Prettiest town I ever seen.
Hope the judges don’t treat me mean
In Abilene, my Abilene.”

I apologize to Mr. George Hamilton IV. He sang it much better, but, as I told Mr. Nelson, I am only the bus driver, not the Fuzzy Chicken Band’s manager.

Eventually, we arrived at the Taylor County Expo Center, where the Fuzzy Chicken Band would be performing, along with other chicken bands in a contest to determine which band or performer is better. However, the band was a little disappointed in their dressing rooms. But being the troupers they are, they would manage. Cowboy did occupy a prominent location and was happy about that; however, Zorba was relegated to a lesser spot. The Cochin Sisters are happy as long as they have sufficient food and water. When they do not, they get happy feet. Their stage is not large enough for performing the Chicken Dance, yet they still do their little happy dance.

Cowgirl joins The Cochin Sisters in the Cochin Trio performing their own work “Pecking and Scratching” and the Little Motown Clucking Silkies, with Cowgirl in the lead, presented one of their oldie favorites, “R E S P E C T”, (again with apologies, this time to Aretha Franklin.)

They still get requests for other clucking songs and also autographs. They are happy to oblige. But Cowboy stole the show. He received numerous standing ovations for his performance and a very élite accolade. He was the only one to receive this award from all the fuzzy chicken bands performing there. Other members of the band did well, with a few 1st place awards.

This was only a one nite stand, and they, meaning the band, were exhausted from their performance, thus the drive home was one of mostly silence. I, being the bus driver, was happy about that. I couldn’t wait until I got back home and put the bus in the garage. And speaking of the bus, Cowboy, being the star, wants a new ride. He chose this one.

rooster-car-copy

Hope you have a very happy day.

The County Fair, Part II

County fairs are so much fun, with all the vendors selling everything imaginable. The sideshows, the rides, (which I do not attempt) and , of course, the food, which I clearly DO attempt. There were concerts each night with several name stars performing. We were only there for Friday night, and the concert featured The Triumphs, a band from Rosenberg, Texas. They were an outstanding band and starred B.J. Thomas, with special guest, Roy Head. Roy is old school, very popular in the 60’s and 70’s. We were pleased to visit with him at the hotel where we both were staying, even meeting his wife. They also enjoyed holding one of the “Rancherette’s” little Silkie chickens. Later, we attended the show. Since we are of that generation, it was very entertaining for us. The “Rancherette” was fortunate to get a “selfie” with him.  It has been difficult to live with her ever since.

jennie-and-roy-head

While the entire fair is exciting, I think the main focus is on the kids, the youth who participate and show their animals. These young people work very hard to care for these animals and reap the rewards for such endeavors. If you have never been to a county fair, you can only imagine how many sheep, goats, cattle, pigs, ducks, geese and chickens these kids have entered in competition for various awards, scholarships and sportsmanship trophies. They receive  medals, belt buckles, plaques and other prizes. They experience the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat, yet they hold their heads high and show good sportsmanship to each other. Time and again I watched these youngsters compete with their animals. The judges for these premier competitions are extremely helpful to the young people. They explain different aspects of their particular animals and always in a helpful manner with words of encouragement for each one. I am in awe of the maturity of these youngsters. I think the country is in good hands when these young people reach adulthood. I also want to commend all the adult volunteers who help make this a great time for these kids. And hats off to the Fayette County Fair officials, great job.

The segment that inspired me the most and gave me particular pleasure occurred when a very young girl entered the show ring leading her heifer as her grandfather walked beside her. It was a very moving picture. I spoke to her grandfather after they finished and he told me that “they like to start them young”. A lack of wisdom on my part, I did not get their names.
grandaughter-and-grandfather-2

For me, however, this was the sparking event of the fair. That is, except for the awards the “Rancherette” received for her birds. She did well, but then she was not up against the youth either.

Our part of the show ended and you know what that meant, a four hour drive back home in North Texas with harassing among chickens. It has to stop. If I could have just send these birds home via FEDEX or UPS, then I would have had a quiet ride home.Should have stopped at Walmart and bought a pair of ear plugs. because you know the birds in the back discussed all the way home, cackling, squawking, and crowing about how some birds won a ribbon and some did not.

Just take a look at the gloating after we arrived back home. This may be the Silkie that Roy Head was holding at the hotel. Regardless, she definitely has a big head, flippant little chicken!

just-a-strutin-2

Check out the county fair where you live, you will certainly enjoy it.                                               Have a great day.

THE COUNTY FAIR, Part I

Many of my readers know that I have experienced some heath issues these past few months. Thankfully, I can say that I am recovering nicely and beginning to hold my own, partly, thanks to steroids and definitely thanks to God. So, in a manner of speaking I was able to take a side trip this past Labor Day weekend from our North Texas home to La Grange, Texas. The “Rancherette” was showing her prized Silkie and Cochin bantams at the Fayette County, Texas Fair. La Grange is a great little town. This was our second trip to La Grange and we thoroughly enjoyed it.
So we began our trip with a pickup load of chickens. Let me assure you, they ride in their custom made chicken containers in the back seat of the cab. The seats fold up, thus creating room for these spoiled fowl. They have the air conditioner vents spaced in such a fashion, that each bird practically has their own personal vent. Wonder how all this fits? Well, the ice chest with all the drinks and snacks for humans, along with the expensive luggage, rides in the bed of the truck. Obviously, if one needs a drink or any other personal item, I pull over and climb in the pickup bed to obtain such creature comforts. One can probably identify with the priority.
The trip was fun, if you can understand chicken language. Because space is limited, some birds must share their crates with each other. The hens are cackling, causing one to think eggs are being laid. Wrong, they are communicating with each other, discussing the pros and cons of traveling to a chicken show, like which chicken is going to win and squabbling and arguing with each other. I’m thinking that we were not 10 miles down the road before they began asking, “Are we there yet?” Sometimes, they quarrel and fight and then blame the other for starting it. “You started it”, did not, did too”. When this happens they must disciplined. The “Rancherette” is in charge of discipline. I suggested she use the code words, CHICKEN NUGGETS!, however, she disagreed. If you have children, you will understand the personalities of fowl.
When the “Rancherette” scolds them, most of the time it doesn’t work. When it seems to make a difference, they cease cackling and begin pecking on the bottom of their crates. You may think they are only pecking, however; they actually are speaking in Morse code. It is a trick to confuse us humans, thinking, of course, we do not understand. They do not know I was in the military and can understand every utterance. Then, if that is not enough, the roosters get in on the act with their crowing. The “Rancherette” encourages it even farther by pitting Cowboy, the bantam Cochin against Zorba, the Silkie, in dueling squawks. First Zorba crows, then the “Rancherette” says, “your turn, Cowboy”. And back and forth, they crow. Meanwhile, the hens are still engaged with their Morse code. Reminds me of the movies where the incarcerated rattle their tin cups against the bars and pass notes from one cell to another. The “Rancherette’s” chickens are very smart, but they do not possess the skills to write notes. Therefore, they use codes so the correctional officers will not understand.

And one other thing, the next trip I am going to record some chicken songs on a CD for these birds to listen while we travel. Songs like, “Ain’t Nobody Here but us Chickens, or Ray Steven and the Hen House 5’s version of “In the Mood”.  If you wish to hear their favorite ditty, click on  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PENJxl-THS8. The chickens just love this version.

The last thing I need in the back seat of my truck is a flock of chickens dancing to the tune of the “Chicken Dance”, so that one will not be included. And to think, this is only the first leg, we must still travel back home with these bickering little birds.

Have a great day and Stay tuned for Part II

Sun’s Gonna Shine in my Backdoor Someday

Well, hello there and in the words of Arnold Schwarzenegger, I’m back., sorta. I have been on the mend for several weeks now and with my current medications, the severe bouts with RA are dwindling. This is what has kept me from my writings for several months. I can certainly empathize with anyone who suffers from this immune system irregularity. It is said you can’t really know what another person feels unless you walk in their shoes. My feet are firmly implanted in the shoes of a sufferer of RA. But now, after many doctor visits, specialists, x-rays, MRI’s, medications, and all those wonderful prayers, it appears that this old “ritus” character is going into remission.  I continue to improve; however, my treatment plan still requires medicine.

For the better part of four months, I was unable to drive. The “Rancherette” did all the driving. I might add, well appreciated. Now that I have some degree of mobility, I can drive my truck again. A few days ago, I was returning from a trip to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription and with the modern day conveniences of satellite radio, I was listening to my type of music. I am a huge fan of Bluegrass music. At that particular moment, Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs were sounding off to an old tune that seems to fit my situation, at least the opening line. I turned the volume up. Being alone in my truck, I am allowed to turn the volume up loud. Not so much when the “Rancherette” is with me.

The tune, “Sun’s gonna shine in my backdoor someday”, speaks for me, especially here in the middle of August, in Texas, where the temperature is a balmy 103 today and a heat index approaching 110. And since my back door faces west, I can feel the brunt of that heat.

Living in a rural area, I am exposed to many facts of nature. As I was driving home, I noticed a lonely oak tree in the middle of a pasture. Mind you now, this was not a large oak tree. It bordered on a twenty to twenty-five feet umbrella. A nice enough shade but not very large.

Standing underneath this canopy was a small herd of cows. They were huddled so close together that I doubt one could slip a sheet of paper between them. At first glance, they appeared conjoined. I am well aware that cows prefer the shade to the hot sun. However, they were so tightly packed together that I cannot believe they were feeling any cooling effect. Cows have a “pecking order” just like chickens. If one does rank high enough in that order, then they do not share any benefits. They are left out in the cold, except in this case outside the parasol of the shade tree. There were two or three standing in the sun just on the edge of the shade. I assume the “leader” had the best spot.  And if I had rolled down my windows, I probably would have noticed a scent of bovine methane. They must ignore that aroma or maybe they do not have a good sense of smell. I noticed one cow standing in the tank, (if you are from South Texas or pond if you are from somewhere else). I figured she (or he) was the smartest cow of all, not to mention, the coolest. One can learn a lot from observing cows.

But that tune by Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs means to me that “someday” has arrived. The sun is shining through my windows and doors and the sky is so blue and the trees are waving greetings at me when I walk out the “back door” without my cane and the cottontail rabbits stop and wiggle their noses at me.  The birds chatter a “welcome back” chirp. The kennel dogs seem glad to see me, even the chickens seem to recognize my voice. Yessiree, God is good. And because we need a cooling down and rain, showers are quenching the thirst of the plant life today and the temperature is hovering around 72 degrees in the middle of the day. God is indeed good.

Hunters and Gatherers

The old rancherwriterpoet has not been around lately. Maybe you noticed, maybe not. Medical circumstances have prevented this old drugstorecowboy/wannabe writer from some of his usual activities.

He has reached a point in his life that calls for a time of observation. For example, little things that originally had no clear-cut basis for consideration have now become seemingly a big deal. Discovering in these past few weeks, simple things I previously performed on a daily basis are not always easy tasks to perform. Sometimes, they become complicated, difficult, and even impossible.

In the earliest of days, eons ago, man was declared the hunter and woman was declared the gatherer. The roles of man and woman were clear. “Me Tarzan, you Jane” I am not making a judgment for or against that thought. I do not necessarily subscribe to the “me Tarzan, you Jane” setting, however, as a man, I have always felt I had a role to perform as a “hunter”. This was ingrained in me as a youngster. There were roles for the male and roles for the female. After all, boundaries were established and not to be crossed.

Well, that was then, this is now, and it never became clearer to me than in these past few weeks.

This “hunter” is here to tell you that in our household, the “gatherer” is perfectly capable of performing the tasks of not only her perceived responsibilities, but also those that I considered to be solely in my domain. In fact, she has stepped up the game. As I said, I am in a time of observation and I have observed the carpentry skills she has acquired, her chauffeuring ability, and her lawn maintenance proficiency. She has the leading role of managing the dogs, the chickens, the cooking, the grocery shopping, and auto upkeep and without a doubt the excellent care she affords the “hunter”. That only scratches the surface. Without the capable assistance of the “Rancherette” this old “Rancherwriterpoet” would have had a most difficult time.

I am making progress toward a time when this “hunter” can once again share in the family tasks alongside the “gatherer”. It will be a challenge, she is very good at what she does and I am so very grateful to her and to God for her.

Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes 4:9-10a that says:

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up…

I doubt  Solomon wrote that with my circumstances in mind, but I claim it. I can say for certain, I am blessed.

The Hat

In Bible study last Sunday morning the subject of wearing hats in church was put out there for comments. Is it or is it not in the Bible? That certainly put a “Bee in someone’s bonnet”, I’m pretty sure I do not want a Bee in my bonnet. But, then, I’m not about to wear a bonnet either. My grandmother wore a bonnet. Maybe if I did wear a bonnet I might not have to make a regularly scheduled trip to the dermatologist.

I do have a western straw hat that I wear when I am in my “Rancherwriterpoet” disguise. One can only wear a straw hat in the summer. It bears a resemblance to the rule that says you are not to suppose to wear white after Labor Day. I don’t think that is in the Bible. If someone says it is, then, they are “Talking through their hat”. And if someone finds it, I will consider “eating my hat”.

Someone suggested that we should “Put on our thinking cap”. I haven’t had a thinking cap since the first grade and even then it was a pointed hat. I confess, I did not wear that “cap” voluntarily. The teachers of my day had a way of “wearing many hats”. I’m certain that that aspect has not changed. In some situations, the hat they wore brought fear. In my case, the most feared teacher was “Coach Knight” and his Board of Education.

Here in Texas, you will see two types of hats. The Baseball cap ( or any number of what is called “gimmee” caps) and the cowboy hat. The baseball cap does not really make you a baseball player nor does it metamorphose you into a cowboy. You need a horse for that. There are places where you can wear the head coverings and places where you cannot. For example, you can wear a Texas Ranger’s (the ball team not the law enforcement) cap to the ballpark, but if you go inside the restaurant, you must take it off. You can roll it up and put it in your back pocket. You can wear your John Deere cap to the John Deere dealer, but if you go inside the show room, you must take it off. If you step inside an elevator, you do not necessarily have to remove your hat, except if a lady is present, then of course you must remove it. A gentlemen never keeps his hat on in the presence of a lady.

Now for you ladies, you can wear your hat anywhere you want. Even into church, well, unless it is a baseball cap. They are considered unisex caps and have the same rules as the men. You can remove it and place it in your purse. Men have the same option of placing their cap in their man bag.

The other type of head covering here in Texas is the cowboy hat. Over the years, the cowboy hat has played a major part of the everyday lifestyle of both the female and the male. In the early days, the good guys wore white hats and the bad guys wore black hats. See my profile pic. Unless you are a country music star, in which case you can wear whatever you want.

Well, that brings us back to the subject at hand, wearing hats in church. Of course, you can’t wear your hat in church. If, as a child, I ever failed to remove my cap in church, well, I cannot explain the consequences in this family style writing. I can say without hesitancy, that it was much easier to remove the cap than having to stand while I ate my Sunday fried chicken, if I was lucky enough to get a piece of chicken. I did some research, thanks to a Biblical scholar in our midst. He suggested I read First Corinthians 11:1-15. I did and it makes perfectly good sense to me.

Cowboy hats should be removed in places of worship, courtrooms and generally in private homes, unless everyone else is wearing one and then it is ok to go along with the crowd Also, if you are in a restaurant that serves anything not coated in BBQ sauce, it might be best to lose the hat. Cowboy hats for ladies fall in the category as “unisex” hats and you must use the hat rack just as the men do.

The etiquette for wearing hats has changed over the years. Hats are worn less now, but at the turn of the 20th century, all adults wore hats whenever they left the house. Ladies also wore stylish hats in public, reserving the bonnets for daily wear around the house, but always with their heads covered. Gentlemen tipped their hats to ladies and removed them upon entering a building. Sadly, those days have passed us by. What we encounter today are the wearing of caps on heads in such a way one cannot tell if they are coming or going. I think maybe their heads are like owls, they swivel.

I think the lesson I learned today is the removal of men’s hats in church is a sign of honor to God. I ‘m not “Keeping this under my hat”. You can “Hang your hat on that”.I certainly hope this clears up the confusion about the wearing of hats in church.

It‘s best I tip my hat to all
It seems the thing to do
A sign of my respect
To those within my view.

Pete Robertson
© 2016

Poodle Home Security

So during the past few months, I have had a tooth pulled, finished the 3rd chicken coop, gone through cataract surgery, (hooray, my vision is excellent), experienced flooding from the May rains, (now back to the August drought), and gained a new resident, (not counting all the chickens that come and go). I have much for which to be thankful.

In the meantime, I got behind on my writing. Not having the ‘muse’ sitting on my shoulder, I must take action and determine a subject for another fine piece of literature. Then it comes to me, I mean literally, he comes to me. Apollo, our Standard Poodle, places his head in my lap, looks at me with his big eyes and says, “Write about me, Dad”. He calls me Dad through the voice of the “Rancherette”.

Apollo firmly believes himself to be the dominant character in this household. He has rules, his rules. Several years ago, he became a business owner. He established Poodle Home Security. He is the CEO and the lead investigator. He is quite adapting at fending off the UPS and/or FedEx drivers. He allows no cars to enter our driveway unnoticed. The weekly refuse truck should not tarry long or perhaps suffer the consequences. He wards off squirrels, bunny rabbits, gophers, etc., which threaten us from time to time in our yard. Even evil spirits are subject to his menacing bark. Occasionally, when the cattle in the pasture across the road begin to chase their food truck, he hurries them along. And, we always know the comings and goings of our neighbors.

Once a day, he makes his rounds in the back yard. He checks his PeeMail, for messages, and replies if necessary.

PeeMailHe also inspects the kennel dogs and their surroundings, much like a drill sergeant with his recruits. He is constantly barking orders. Some recruits are a bit more stubborn than others are. This only increases his authoritative nature.
He alerts us to storm threats, issuing warnings of severe thunderstorms and comforts the “Rancherette” when there is lightning followed by thunder. Yes sir; we have the finest Poodle Home Security money can buy. Life could not get any better, or so Apollo thinks.
Enter his new trainee, Alfie the Airedale. So named for she looks like Alf, the alien from the TV series in the late ‘80’s. Notice the eyes.

AlfAlfie the Alf

Unbeknownst to Apollo, he is going to have to work overtime to shape this “recruit” into a lean fighting machine. She already has one strike against her. She is not a Poodle. That can be assuaged as long as she takes her training seriously. I dare not forget, Apollo is an  equal opportunity employer.He does not discriminate when it comes to hiring.  However, if she expects to wear a detective badge for Poodle Home Security, she must immediately realize this is serious stuff. The offenders that drift into Poodle Home Security territory do not necessarily have treats in their pockets. They do not have squeaky toys under their arms. Not everyone she meets will come bearing gifts.

She does have the ability to keep the little Silkie chickens in line, as long as they stay on their side of the fence. That is fortunate, a good first step. However, I’m thinking that the Silkies do not pose any threat to the Rancher or “Rancherette”. She is also good at urging the lawnmower along, digging holes, and chewing doorposts or any other inanimate object that gets in her way.
She is smart, already learning from Apollo that water tastes better with ice cubes in it. Not bad for a rookie. She has quickly become adept at frisking pockets. In case you have something in there that is not allowed, like doggie treats, she will promptly confiscate any items not allowed. Occasionally, for training purposes, certain objects are left in the bark of trees and other locations for her to find. She is very good at searching out those items. I might add, they smell like cheese and her smeller is superb. However, I think Apollo must work with her on her attention span. She has so much to learn before taking her place in the barking order.

I have heard that when life deals you lemons, you should make lemonade. I am not a lemonade aficionado; however, I suppose I could learn. I can use rainwater to make the stuff if it ever rains again. That is, if Alfie hasn’t stolen the lemons. We probably should have done a background check before “hiring” her. Apollo, you still have work to do. Poodle Home Security 2

The Bookstore Romance

Today, the “Rancher” and the “Rancherette” celebrate their sixth wedding anniversary. At my age, it is important to celebrate any day, but especially the day when two people became one. An encounter in a Barnes and Noble bookstore and a Starbucks coffee with a double shot of espresso evolved into a romance. They fell in love, thus rewarding themselves with vows of devotion to each other. The “Rancher” wrote the story the day following this occurrence and named it “The Bookstore Romance.” It is a romance story never before published. Based on a true story and told from the perspective of the clerk who shall remain anonymous, it is rather lengthy. I apologize for that. However, I do not apologize for the romance.

The Bookstore Romance

I spend much of my day helping people find a particular book. As I am in the business of service to people, I find myself observing them and their actions. Let me explain. I am a student at the local university working as a clerk in a large bookstore chain. English is my major so working in a bookstore is a plus for me. I prefer to call myself a librarian, but in reality, I am a clerk. I really enjoy my work for it is intellectually stimulating. Honestly, I do know more about books than many librarians do. But I also know quite a bit about people. Read my thoughts about two individuals I met today.

The older gentleman was deep in thought as he searched through the World Atlases and the many maps we have in stock in the World section. He had previously asked me to direct him to the map section. Since we do not have a separate section for maps, I escorted him to the Atlases.

I noticed that he looked up each time somebody walked through the door. It was as if he were waiting for someone. I became busy with other customers and forgot about him.

A Few minutes later, my co-worker said to me, “Melody, Watch that old man.” “What do you mean?” I asked, He replied, “Just watch.”  The old man would look at the clock on the wall, then the door and back to his reading. He did this several times.

Then, a very attractive woman walked through the door. She stopped at the desk and asked my co-worker where she might find the latest novel by Nicholas Sparks. He directed her down the middle aisle to the Romance section on the right. This happened to be on the opposite side of the aisle from the World section where the old man was reading from a map book of the Gulf waters.

When he saw the woman, his eyes covertly glanced at her. He quickly returned to the page he was reading. I could see what my co-worker had meant. This may become interesting.

The old man kept looking from the corner of his eye at the woman, but not really wanting to make eye contact with her. I could tell she fascinated him. She certainly looked charming and smart, smart as in smart looking. This seemed to go on for a period of time. My co-worker and I busied ourselves with our job, but kept watching as best we could.

Now, we saw that the scenario was becoming more curious. The very alluring woman was casting glances of her own toward the older gentleman. Her glances, too, were discreet. But it was obvious, that something was going on.

The gentleman with the multi-toned grey and white hair was carefully taking in all her shapely figure and curves, leaving out not one detail. I know this because I have seen how most men look at women. Being female myself it isn’t hard to understand how a man looks at a woman he admires. He was definitely admiring the beauty of this woman. She had a presence about her that signaled just the right vibes. I’m not sure they would call it vibes; maybe chemistry would be a better word.  I believe he picked up on that rather quickly.

And she was not much different. Her quick looks at him became obvious to us. You could see her eyes giving him the once-over. She was watching his every motion, noting every detail about him; his hair, slightly rumpled, clean-shaven except for a small mustache. It was also turning that same multi-toned grey and white. She was taking in every aspect of the distinguished looking man. He was not necessarily the best-looking man I’ve seen, but she certainly had her eyes on him. Even the starched creases in his trousers caught her eye. His boots, western in style, although old, were sharply polished. But still, her eyes avoided his.  Have you ever watched someone trying to avoid eye contact? It is rather humorous, for the more you try the more it becomes obvious. They were not very adapt at avoiding avoiding eye contact.

Now I cannot tell you what she may have been thinking, I can only observe what I saw. I imagined that she imagined herself running her fingers through his hair. This was better than any movie. This was clearly poetry in motion. Finally, he made a move.

He walked over to her and spoke. She replied in agreement. Almost like teenagers. I can attest to that, not being far removed from teenage years. I am glad we did not have any customers waiting to check out. We would be missing this bookstore romance right before our eyes.

Very quietly, I maneuvered myself into listening range of their voices to eavesdrop. When he spoke, her eyes met his. I could see her green eyes sparkling. He looked old enough to be my grandfather and she perhaps my mother but I was hooked. And this old guy had been smitten. He began stumbling with speech and stuttering a bit. Feeling guilty for encroaching on this moment in their lives, I started to walk away.

I heard him say, “I don’t think I need this ‘map book’”. I wasn’t sure just exactly what that meant, but she laughed aloud. She said, “Let’s go find a jigsaw puzzle”. They headed for the mall entrance, she holding the rose with one hand and his hand with the other.

I am now left wondering, are they entering a fantasy world? If it is, it is their fantasy, and fantasies are real to those who dream. It surely seemed very real to me. I hope it works out for them.  I hope my dreams will happen something like that, too, a budding bookstore romance.

Happy Anniversary to my wonderful “Rancherette”

 

 

 

 

I’m Not Complaining, However…

I approach this posting with delicate sensitivity. It includes what some might believe to be private information. I could be embarrassed by this. You could be embarrassed by this. It is possible it may even be censored. Even in the United States.

Then there are those who might say this is TMI. However, it is a story is that IMT (I must tell).

First, let me say upfront, the “Rancherette” is an excellent housekeeper. And, as such, she always keeps a variety of cleaning agents around our home. She does such an outstanding job In spite of the “Rancher’s” habits because she is always up-to-snuff with the latest cleaning equipment and supplies.  The vacuum cleaner is a top line machine. There are mechanized mops and dust rags and  even a especially designed gadget for cleaning ceiling fans.The “Swiffer WetJet” contraption certainly is an excellent device for hardwood and ceramic tile floors. That same company also makes a dusting tool with top quality materials. And, I dare not forget the polishing resources. Then, there is the famous “scrubbing bubbles”, my favorite. I can only imagine what these little fellows could do if they really put their mind to it.

However, I do have one complaint about an item in the “Rancherette’s” repertoire.

Allow me to explain. I do not know of a single person who does not have a phobia about something. The very definition of phobia in the Greek language means fear. Consequently, everyone I know has a fear of something. In one of my earlier postings, “Pogonotomy-A Male Rite of Passage”, I spoke about the fear of beards. If you do not believe you have a fear of anything, then take a stroll through Google for an indexed list of phobias. You are sure to find one that fits your situation.

So, this is where it could get embarrassing.  In the closet in my bathroom is a plethora of the aforementioned cleaning supplies. While the “bathroom toilet bowl cleaner” is certainly one of the cleaning tools, it is not in the closet.  It is placed strategically (by someone who shall remain nameless) beside the toilet bowl. Accessibility, I suppose. It is there in plain sight. I think it should be in the closet. It stands all alone within my view. I swear I believe it watches me. There are times when one desires a bit of privacy. This is one of those times. Now you must be thinking I am a nut case. What could possibly be so weird about a bottle of “bathroom toilet bowl cleaner?”

Here is my problem. That bottle of “bathroom toilet bowl cleaner?” Well, it greatly resembles a gnome in my opinion.

Toilet Bowl Cleaner   Gardern Gnome

I do not like gnomes. I do not like gnomes that watch me. I do not like the everyday garden gnomes that people place in their gardens. I do not like gnomes that hide in dark places waiting to scare the bejabbers out of me. I guess you could say it was the little gnome that could. I do not like gnomes that ‘travel’ from place to place. It is only a matter of time before they team up to slaughter humankind. I have Gnomophobia.

I believe the only cure for this phobia is to put that ugly gnome-a-cleaner in its place.

05-gnome4

 

Hope you have a gnome-free day.

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