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      Friday, November 15, 2002

10:00 AM - 11/15/2002

The topic: I will NOT open the doors when the weather is nice…

Friday, November 15, 2002 I will NOT open the doors when the weather is nice. I will NOT open the doors when the weather is nice. I will NOT open the doors when the weather is nice. How many times do I have to repeat this before it finally sinks in? I will NOT open the doors when the weather is nice, not until Autumn acquaints her little self with the use of the cat door. Man. The weather has been really pleasant and I open all the windows and doors and the sliding screen doors are left open about six inches, so that the cats can go in and out. Earlier this year, Brian even put a doorstop on the side garage door so we could prop it open and we place a child's gate across the bottom so that the cats can come and go as they please and Junior cannot get into the garage and partake of the litter buffet (that would be great for his diabetes, I bet). Now, I know I've said before that if Autumn wants out, she can go through the cat door. But it's so nice out and I know she'd just love to be out there and then there's the annoyance of the cats wanting in and out, it's just easier to leave the darn things open. Well, shortly after sundown, I was still working on getting the bedding stripped and I was real sure I'd seen Autumn in the window, so I went through the house and shut all of the doors. Well, about seven thirty, I latched the cat door to in only and did the little blocking thing (put the gate up about six inches or so away from the door so cats can come in, but the little stinkers who can open the in only door to go out by catching the bottom with their claws and pulling it towards them, don't have the room to maneuver). Then at eight, I started the headcount. I couldn't find Sammy or Autumn. Brian said he'd gotten Sammy in and after about a half hour of looking for them, I finally found Sammy in the rafters laying down behind the fan. You can't see behind the fan from the ladder, which is why I didn't see him. But still no Autumn. We looked everywhere. Under the sofas, behind the beds, in closets, all through the office, in the exercise room, in the garage....no Autumn. I went out with the flashlight a couple of times, walking completely around the pool and shining the light into the water (scary thing to do, when you think of the reason I was doing it, always makes my heart beat a little faster), into the tall grass around the pool (maybe I'll pull some of this when Brian is gone, that would be a nice surprise for him), under the pool pump and in the tube. I looked into the catnip garden. Nothing. No Autumn. I came back inside and sat down to watch some of ER (we've got 4DTV, a big satellite dish and we get network feeds from back east and Colorado, so we have our prime time viewing done by 9:00 on Thursdays). I missed most of ER looking for cats.

Anyway, since the sheets were clean Brian took a shower then went to bed. At one point, he thought she was in bed with him, but it was Daniece. I filled the food bowls, because sometimes that will bring her out to eat. It didn't. No Autumn. I was convinced she was inside, but where? Since she still wasn't showing herself, I went back outside with the flashlight and looked under the wood at the side of the shop, the place where Daniece hid herself back in September. I banged on the wood with the butt of the flashlight, hoping this would scare her out if she was indeed hidden someplace in the wood. Still nothing.

Meanwhile, I figured since I knew that there would be no sleep for me until I knew she was safe, I came back into the office and turned on the computer, thinking this would be an ideal time to check for errors and defrag my harddrive. I unhooked the cable modem, turned off all of the programs (I thought) and started the drive error check. I left the office door open, in hopes that Autumn was snoozing somewhere in here. Then I went into the family room, looked for something to watch, found an old Nash Bridges show, turned the sound down and turned the lights down. But I just couldn't relax and I got the flashlight and went back outside. Somewhere between ten thirty and eleven, I started scanning the bank for the reflection of cat eyes at night. And I happened to flash on the cathouse with the deck. Could that be her in the bottom? I went closer. Yep, it surely was. I reached in and she ran out, towards the house, to the door for the living room. But it wasn't open. Then she ran to the side of the house, to the garage door, which was also shut. I went in through the laundry room to the garage and blocked the cat door to the house and opened the door to outside, turning on all of the lights. Then I went out to see if I could get her in. She was at the corner of the house when I walked toward her and she ran into the office. I went behind her and shut the glass door, then back to the garage, where I had to shoo Gracie back inside. I locked and blocked that door, opened the cat door back up to the house, and that was it for the night. All cats were accounted for.

That off of my mind, I checked the error checking on the computer. Crap. There was a message that the program had restarted ten times, that I should close all other programs. I thought I had. But I forgot all about the screen saver. I disabled that and restarted the disk check. I covered the computer, turned out the lights, got all cats out of the office, then went to lay down on the sofa and watch tv. I think I ended up on an old Dick Van Dyke show on Nickolodean and couldn't get into it and just turned the set off. I fell asleep, woke up around one thirty, came back to the office and saw that the error check had finished and I started the defrag. Then, I finally went to bed.

I woke up a little after five, came back to the office to see how the defrag was going (78%), opened the door to let some of the cats out, closed it before Autumn went out, got their chicken heated and dispersed, unblocked and unlocked the cat door in the garage, fed the out fronts their morning food (saw MeezerKitty, OC and SpotTee) and went back to bed. Sometime between then and six, Georgie came in and tried to get something going with one of the cats on the bed. Brian yelled at him, then we went back to sleep. I was rudely awakened by Brian yelling. It seems there had been some sort of chase or freakout (people with cats know about freakouts) and Brian's face was in the way. He got out of bed, very very upset, very verbal (can't repeat what he said in mixed company) and when I asked if he was okay, he let me know the cats just about ripped his face off. I went into the kitchen, where he was and saw that he had a wet papertowel held to his face. A very bloody papertowel. Oh, my! :what But his face didn't really look all that bad, the worst was the dig at the side of his nose. I found Georgie and put his little butt outside and Brian and I both went back to bed. It was after seven when I got up (gee, I guess we're not going walking today). The computer was still in the process of defragging the hard drive. That was finally done at about seven thirty. Then I did all the other drives, which were finished by eight, then I shut down, booted up and here we are.

I did the error checking and defragging because my memory got here yesterday afternoon. :yippee I got it installed last night, it wasn't really hard, but I'll tell ya, I sure get nervous working inside that cabinet. I unplugged everything and opened up the case, only to find that the area I needed wasn't right there in front of my face, I had to lay the computer on its side to access the memory boards. Then I couldn't figure out how to get the new ones in. I had skimmed over the instructions in my manual, so I read them more thoroughly and all went well. Of course, the room was fairly dark, none of my lamps reached the computer and I started getting some major power surges. I was holding the flashlight in one hand and attempting to snap in the memory with the other. And the sweat started. Just what I needed then, drips off of my nose. *sigh* Luckily, after I read the instructions it took less than five minutes to get the memory boards installed. I shut the case, started up the computer. Ah! It works! And there's all that memory. 384M of RAM! Up from 96M. :B-wave When I got my cereal this am, I noticed a spot of blood on the family room floor. Hmm... There's another, on the dining room floor. Two more in the kitchen. Crud, I guess some cat was bleeding. Thinking about it a little more deeply, I realized this was not cat blood, this was hubby blood. Cool, that's nothing to worry about. Let's hope the rest of the day goes a little more smoothly. It's 71.4° outside and it's not quite ten in the morning. I've got my first load of laundry in and I'm now going to go clean windows. Then I might do paperwork (which I really need to do) or I might just relax. Right now, relaxing sounds real nice.

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lisaviolet is sixty something, married with no kids, takes care of lots of cats, likes taking photographs, loves Southern California weather and spends altogether too much time avoiding her responsibilities.

In her spare time, she makes pretty things to sell in her store.

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