Sharing My World 91

Share Your World August 31, 2020

Share Your World Meets Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Roger’s Magical, Mystical Questions

Many local regions, especially rural areas where I live, have haunted houses. Have you ever spent the night in a house that was supposedly haunted? Anything ‘strange” happen?

Once in the farmhouse where I grew up we were all present and accounted for at the kitchen table eating dinner when we heard someone coming down the back stairs. I remember saying, did you hear that? Who was that? and looking at the doorway to see who would show up. But nobody did, because we were all there already. Someone said it was just the house creaking. But I know what I heard. I guess whoever it was quietly left by the back door and never came back because that’s the only truly spooky thing I remember happening in that house.

There were a lot of odd sounds in this house when we first moved here. I believe the original owner died so the house was sold. And then the next owner died and that’s when we bought it. I dont think either of them died in the house, but I wondered if one or the other might still be hanging around. Because I sometimes wonder weird shit like that. I may have mentioned in passing that our new house could be haunted, but no one else heard things being moved about in the basement or footsteps in another room. After a few weeks I guess I got used to the different house noises because I didn’t notice them anymore. Or the ghosts were bored silly and left. I’m open to either explanation

The Quidditch Cup (riding broomsticks while chasing a small ball) was a huge sporting event in the land of Hogwarts. What is the largest sporting event (or concert, etc.) that you have ever attended?

I went to a Blue Jays baseball game in Toronto! Can’t remember when it was or who they played! That place was HUGE! So happy to share this vivid memory with you all.

When you go for a swim, do you prefer an ocean, the seaside lakes, or a pool?

I prefer NOT going for a swim anywhere, thanks. The ocean would be my very last choice. The shallow end of a pool or a sandy beach where I could wade in up to my knees might be tolerable.

Ron Weasley received a horrid robe to wear as formal wear to the Christmas dance at Hogwarts. Tell about the most ‘ghastly’ fashion statement that you have ever made.

Oh dear, so many choices. But you never know they’re ghastly until the photos surface ten years later, do you?

I used to wear crocs to work. Ghastly fashion choice all on its own, but those things were SO comfy. I was getting out of the car at home after work one night and noticed that one of the crocs I was wearing was navy blue and the other one was black. All day I walked around like that and no one told me.

Muggle Questions (from Melanie):

What is the last song you sang along to?

Honestly can’t remember, other than it would have been something from the sixties to which I knew ALL the words. I sing along in my head only now. Sounds much better that way.

What was your scariest nightmare about?

A big black dog growling at me and ready to bite. I was maybe 5 or younger and terrified enough to scream in the middle of the night for my dad to save me. He told me to roll over in the other direction, go back to sleep, and the dog would go away. Smartest bravest dad ever.

What food do you crave most often?

A big bowl of hot delicious homemade soup. My instant pot makes 5 or 6 servings, so I make soup every 5 or 6 days I guess. It’s a very creative endeavour with lots of experimenting and mostly great results. Perfect way to consume lots of vegetables.

And now for the truth. I crave CHIPS. I make myself eat soup first though.

What’s your grossest bug story?

I don’t know if anyone remembers spirals of sticky fly paper hanging from the ceiling with sad buzzing half dead flies on them. There were always so many flies on the farm mom had to do something to keep them under control in the kitchen. That doesn’t explain why she hung one of those things at the bottom of the stairs where a normal person would see and avoid it but a kid in a hurry could come thundering down the steps and run right smack into it and get it all tangled up in her hair. Never been so grossed out in my life.

And that’s my world sharing all caught up until next week. I’m calling it caught up even though I’ve missed over six months worth of prompts and skipped number 89 in my own series.

I blame childhood trauma.

Sharing My World 90

Share Your World 8-24-2020

Share Your World Meets Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

One of my favorite gifts that Harry Potter received came from the Weasley Twins; and was “Mrs. Mooney’s Marauder’s Map”. This magical document showed every classroom, hallway and secret corner in all of Hogwarts. It also showed you the location- by name- of every person in Hogwarts. If you had such a magical map of your town, what would you use it for? If you would not use it, is there another person to whom you would gift it?

Nope, I would never use it. I have enough going on keeping track of myself and my own movements and my reasons for them. I would gift it to W though and he’d say what the hell do I need this thing for (ever the gracious gift recipient) and then proceed to study it for hours and hours and ignore me completely.

When was the last time you made a snowball? Were in a snowball fight?

It was the winter of 1957 on a cold and dreary afternoon after my brother had finished his snow fort and stockpiled ammunition and then lured me outside to kill me. God we had some good times. This memory is not crystal clear of course, and he is no longer around to consult about the details, but I probably fought back with no enthusiasm whatsoever until getting hit in the face and stomping off to tell on him. Not surprisingly, snowball fights don’t immediately make me think of fun.

Many cultures set great value in each child of the family having godparents. Did you have godparents? Are you a godparent yourself?

We never called them godparents but we knew that my moms youngest sister and her husband were named as guardians for us if our parents died. That would have made a family of 8 kids, so as much as I loved them all, I’m thankful it never happened.

We had good friends when we lived in Yellowknife who asked us to be godparents to their youngest son. We were flattered and said yes and then didn’t have a clue what was expected of us in that role and did pretty much nothing. They may have regretted their choice and eventually picked someone else but were too nice to mention it.

You have found a secret tunnel under your house. Where does it go?

I’ll never know because I don’t do tunnels. They are underground and dangerous and can collapse without warning. I did a touristy tour of a mine shaft once by accident. It was a rush decision because it was the last tour before they closed and I agreed to it without thinking. That won’t happen again unless I’m on some really excellent drugs.

Muggle Questions (of a more philosophical bent this week):

Is intelligence or wisdom more useful?

Definitely intelligence. You’ll never get to true wisdom without it.

How important is play in living a healthy and fulfilling life?

It’s absolutely essential. “All work and no play makes Jack a boring jerk” or however that old saying goes.

Is happiness just chemicals flowing through your brain or something more?

I have no idea what happiness is in scientific terms. It’s different things for different people because everyone creates their own. Aim for contentment, gratitude and kindness. After that, happiness can’t be far behind.

Patchwork Gardening

Early on when the fruit was tiny and gorgeously green.

People are doing all sorts of industrious and ambitious things these days waiting for this viral threat to subside. Or they’re binge watching Netflix in a stupor. I don’t judge. There is nothing special or unique about growing a garden while you’re stuck at home with time on your hands. ME doing it is a bit special though.

I’m not proud of the fact that plants in my care often die from neglect. It’s nothing personal, I don’t kill them on purpose. Pulling weeds and watering things is very low on my list of priorities. Might not be there at all if I’m honest. In a perfect world vegetable gardens would spring up on their own and take care of themselves until harvest time. Like rhubarb. I have never killed rhubarb.

We had our garden plot done over with grass years ago when it started producing giant thistles. This spring our son used his rototiller behind our garage, on the flowerbed under our front window where dogwood grew wild (another plant that grows totally on its own) and widened the flowerbed along the back of the house. The other narrow raised bricked-in north facing flowerbed at the front gets little sunshine and even less rain because of the roof overhang. It’s also an awkward distance from the garden hose which is a pain in the ass with things close to it as well, as far as I’m concerned. No green thumbs on me baby. We’ve discovered it’s a perfect place for yellow beans and have harvested enough of them now to put some in the freezer! Tiger lilies thrive there too. Weird combination, but these are weird times.

There is one exception in my generally garden loathing bones. I can grow tomatoes. I asked W in the spring to pick up three small tomato plants for me, preferably a variety of different kinds, and he came home with a flat of six healthy little Romas. He had already planted yellow beans, radishes, onions, zucchini, cucumbers and lettuce here, there and everywhere, leaving a lovely little space for me big enough for 2 tomato plants. It’s like he didn’t want me to succeed or something. No problem, I like to have excuses. I put three plants there, (and he promptly planted carrots in front of them), two in front of our little volunteer pine tree, and one in a pot. Then I had to put the pine tree plants in pots as well after reading that tomatoes and pine trees fight for the same nutrients. Every plant got tomato spike fertilizer and tomato cages and lots of sunshine. And away they went.

The plants grew tall, probably because they’re crowded together, and are loaded with little tomatoes to the point where W is sure the branches will break with their weight. He likes to pick things before they’re ripe and lies awake at night dreaming up reasons to do that. I made that last bit up. I really have no idea why it drives him nuts to let a tomato fully ripen on the vine.

This is what we picked yesterday. There are also a bunch doing their final ripening in a cupboard drawer. W has distributed tomatoes in the neighborhood and I’ve put some in the freezer. We are expecting our daughter to come over for more, and our son wants a bunch for soup and sauces I think. I’ve consumed a LOT of the grape sized ones in various ways, including snacks just as they are because they’re delicious, so I’m doing my part, and we have tomatoes with every meal. And it’s time to pick them again. Still lots of green ones. If we’re lucky they could keep coming through September. Always have to watch for frost here though because our growing season is shorter than more southerly spots.

Now I’m wondering if southerly is a real word. But I promised not to go off on tangents so look it up yourself while I slowly die an acidic death from fresh tomato overdose. I’m not looking that up either but it sounds like an interesting way to go.

Here We Are

Add title! Start writing!

That’s what this new WP block editor is telling me to do, except without the exclamation points, which seriously they should think about adding for people like me who seem to need more than the normal amount of encouragement. It’s not like I haven’t thought about writing. I’m always thinking about writing. In fact, earlier this year I thought about it so hard I actually sat down and did it with this astounding result.

Since my last attempt to say something vaguely intelligent for posterity was in mid January, and it is now finally May, I’ve decided to pretend the last one hundred and six odd days were ALL just one big extended January because that’s what it felt like. Now that the sun is shining and the days are longer and the grass is green I believe I can let my January mood go at last. So tell me, what’s the new normal like for you? The whole world has seen so many changes, and post pandemic it will keep on changing because that’s what worlds do. We might as well embrace this new reality. The old one was so “January” after all.

I guess all that reality embracing stopped me from going on with whatever I was about to say next and then it got me through another three months of writerly procrastination as this blurb sat in draft purgatory. Don’t ask me to explain that explanation because I don’t think I can. And suddenly here we are in almost September.

I have been more or less home bound since…I don’t know…mid March? My kids joke that my life during this pandemic has been eerily similar to the pre-pandemic one. I like my house and can go days and days without coming across a really good reason for leaving it. Like running out of coffee cream. That one gets me off the couch. Mostly I’m relaxed and happy, if you cut out the COVID worry. And maybe my Twitter likes.

W didn’t go east this summer because of the travel restrictions and the quarantine guidelines and a healthy fear of getting sick. It’s been harder on him, all this staying home. Introverts like me just accept isolation. Prefer it over crowds and noise and gawd awful things like shopping. There was a new rule early on about one person/one grocery cart, and one shopper per household. W gladly grabbed that role just to get out of here. He also does lots of over the fence visiting with neighbours in three directions, plus the ones across the street and also down the street in both directions now that I think about it. People walking their dogs probably avoid our street altogether so he can’t start a socially distanced yelling conversation with them. Anyway I’ve appreciated all the grocery shopping and grass cutting and gardening he’s done. I could live without all the info about what everybody around us is up to, but it seems to be important to him to share it with me so it must be equally important for me to pretend to listen.

And that’s the bare bones of our existence to date. Next up I will choose one topic and supply relevant details with less rambling. As pigs fly. We are so incredibly blessed to have our immediate family close and healthy and concerned. I can’t tell their stories because they’re not mine to tell and I’d never get them right anyway. Once again it’s all about me, and boring or not there’s no point in caring. My therapy, my blathering drivel. Here we are.

The other night I woke up from a dream telling some random dream person to “put an axe and a sock in it and then we’ll talk”. Then I lay awake for a long time wondering what the hell that meant. So, you know, have low expectations is all I’m hinting at here. I’m older and even more confused now than I was last January. It can only get more weird.