Monday, November 28, 2011

Truth

 I haven't written about the Austin older-middle-aged-men's group in ages as their cafe conversation has been mired in sports talk and local politics.  But you never know what life has in store so I haven't given up.

Lately I've been taking a book to the cafe with me, opening my ears at the end of each page to see if the guys are going anywhere.  

I'm reading Edward Abbey's Desert Solitaire, an exploration and love letter to Utah's high desert.  Denny and I spent our honeymoon in a Utah fantasy region of rock, wind and time.  I love the earth's sculpture. 

Life stretching from a slot canyon in Bryce Canyon National Park. ---->

I chose Abbey's book because the writing is beautiful, like High Street Chocolate--smooth and sumptuous and so rich I can only eat a few bites at a time.  

And I've been wondering if our Hill Country home is evolving to desert, although I'm more hopeful today with another 1 3/4" of rain last week.  That makes a total of 12.2" in the last 13 months, still squarely within the average rainfall of the west Texas Chihuahua Desert...but I can see tiny wildflower plants poking through the crust in my front swale. With one more good rain in December/January, spring could bloom.

Last week, finally, I heard promise from the older-middle-aged-men when the subject turned to T-shirt sayings. The lawyer said, "Well I only wear shirts that say what I really think."

The group chuckled, knowing the lawyer's thoughts are as unpredictable as rain here.

"I wear this one when UT loses a football game: 'I'm only wearing black until I find something darker.'"

Smiles and an 'Amen'.

"And  I wore 'Future Dead Person' to the office about three weeks after I'd been diagnosed with cancer."

Silence.  Followed by grins.  It must have been a while back.  The t-shirt is still true, but he's here today.

Copyright 2009-2011 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happiness is Contagious

  Four generations are reason to celebrate.

 Wishing you and yours a happy holiday,
 Kathleen

Copyright 2009-2011 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Dinner Music

 I love small-town Texas.  There's a relaxation to living at a slower pace. 

One of my regular pleasures is going to the feed store. Before you ask, yes, every Texas burg large enough to be called a town has a feed store--along with a Main Street and the Dairy Queen.

I'm a little slow about my feed store errands.  It's hard to hurry past the open-topped glass cases just inside the entrance, where ferrets and bunnies hang out until families take them home. 

Yesterday four ferrets nuzzled my hand before commencing a race up my arm, provoking a vision of a squeaky squabble on top of my head.  I thought for a moment they were going to make it, but I managed to extricate my arm ferret-less from the box.

Beyond the bunnies are small birds. My current favorites are a pair of exotic green, red and blue parakeets who seem to think Beethovan's Ninth Symphony is good dinner music.  I know this because I whistle a bit of the Ninth to them every time we go in. 

Beethoven's Ninth is the music that runs in the background of my mind, rolling into my consciousness when I'm not paying attention to anything else.  It's been there since January 2003, when I had a stressful time and needed calming. The Ninth entered my sleep one night and I woke feeling so refreshed that the music made itself to home.

So of course that's what I whistle to the birds.  One of them does a little bob-dancing at first but they generally end up at the feed tray, crunching to the tune.

And I finish my errands with a smile on my face.

I thought you might like a smile too, so here's 50 seconds from one of my parrot concerts.

Copyright 2009-2011 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Hill Country Fall

In the Hill Country, we don't call this season Autumn.  We call it Fall...because the leaves just turn brown and fall off. 


But we mark the season in other ways.
The arrival of the first chipping sparrow, early for the rave.  By February's Great American Bird Count , we'll see hundreds from the kitchen window.
And it's don't-walk-outside-at night time, AKA rutting season.  Deer are running the roads and woods around our house, doe in the lead, buck panting after her.

A doe would probably shy away if she saw you in time.  But a buck in mating has just one thing in mind. A person who ended up between him and satisfaction might be in for a fight, and the odds aren't in two-legged favor.

Hope you're enjoying the change of seasons, however you mark them. 

Copyright 2009-2011 Kathleen Scott, for Hill Country Mysteries. Unauthorized reproduction is prohibited.