Eleven fishes and two cats

Last Sunday night, we went to traditional Italian Christmas Eve party. Our friend Tony who’s the chef at Terra Luna, one of our favorite restaurants when it’s open in the season, and his mother Karen, who is also a fabulous cook and baker, do this every year and we love to go. instead of the traditional seven fishes, they do eleven kinds of seafood. It’s a really festive and delightful occasion, although Kaen was a bit down because her grandchildren came down with the flu and couldn’t come from New Jersey.

My little poetry group met this week and that was very helpful for the poems I’d written recently and I hope so for others. We meet once a week. The weather has been fierce. Tuesday we rose at five. The cats thought it a great idea until we left the house at 5:55 to drive to Boston. We have a coating of snow here that had almost vanished, when another slight coating appeared while we were asleep last night.

But when we got into Boston on Tuesday, it was covered with a sheet of ice. The main roads were clear and fine but the sidewalks and side streets and everything else was covered with ice and treacherous under foot. The violent winds of the day before had also knocked out power here and there. For once our power stayed on, but friends were in the cold until 11:30 Christmas day and many people were still out the next morning. We’ve lost power six times since the beginning of the summer. Eversource really sucks.

Anyhow, the 26th of December is the only time we ever go into department stores. I was very focused on three things and three things only: sweaters to replace those the moths destroyed last winter; cheap watches to replace two that had broken and some good chocolate. We hit lord and Taylors, Bloomingdales and then west to the outlets at Wrentham. There was no traffic at all until we left Wrentham just before noon. We got around and home in record time. I was exhausted but got exactly what I needed and nothing else.

When we first brought Willow home as a kitten, Xena adored her and treated her as her daughter. But when Willow grew to being a sizable cat – though considerably lighter and smaller than Xena—and when Willow cuddled with me at night, Xena began chasing her sometimes and scaring her. Now Willow has become the chief and most efficient mouser [we live in the woods and mice come in regularly], she is gaining confidence and Xena is more accommodating to her. Sometimes they hunt together. Xena is permitting her to sleep in the bed when she is there. Willow has been standing up to her and Xena seems to accept that. In the meantime, Schwartzie is vying or top cat. Sometimes Xena lets him and sometimes she admonishes him. She still treats Mingus as her kitten and is very affectionate to him. Most of the time, they all get along and play together and eat from the same plates.

I am beginning to learn the PC today. Before we get me one, I’ve brought up the smaller one from downstairs that I bought for my assistant before it turned out she couldn’t use it and quit. I figure I can give it a try and practice on it. Dale uses the old MAC downstairs when he works for me on Mondays. I’m pretty much done with my novel and plan to send it off next week to my agent in NYC for shopping it around; maybe try some small presses.

I figured out how to turn it on but now I don’t know how to turn it off. I’ve done a couple of little things on it. I’m trying to find where the two books are I bought to try to help the woman I’d hired in September, the one who quit after I spend three weeks training her.



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