Tag Archives: Calvin

First Day of Fall

AvocadoAlthough the wind did its share today in rustling and whipping through the leaves in the trees, it accomplished little to nudge them into a descent. Perhaps it had more success in other parts of the Country. Blue skies and sun pervaded at least the East Bay today. Our leaves turn color late — a lazy bunch here.

A bit tired and lethargic today, I nonetheless baked some banana bread this afternoon, and was rewarded with the sweet aroma of it drifting from the oven, when I opened the door a couple of times, to check its progress. Leftover food cleanup today, I also made an avocado sardine sandwich — which was a first for me, and it’s not bad at all, if I may say so. My cat Calvin also had his first sardine of his feline life, just devouring it, without lifting his head even once. I have never seen him eat like that. So — brain food for the both of us — we both hope with positive results.

May the Lord bless you with his peace on this quiet Sunday evening, and for the coming week.


Back to reality. It’s time to pack the big green bag for California. It looks like half a grocery shelf that I’m bringing back for family and friends. My cat Calvin, a Rent-A-Cat for the time being, is most likely wondering where his human is. Solitary confinement in a house from his perspective, with squirrels mocking at the windows. But perhaps preferable to the feline brutes of the current neighborhood. I’m sure my old neighbor Bill has spoiled him rotten while I have been gone.

Should I confess to cavorting with dogs? Perhaps a bit later, after my absence has been forgiven. There is a pouch of rabbit in gravy sauce (a German cat food specialty), among the contents of the green bag, which may help to facilitate the matter…

My View on the Matter



Well, here I am, another year older. Five, if you must know (for those who were not at my birthday party, or to whom I forgot to mail an invitation). In case you were wondering, I did not invite any of my species in the new (one hopes temporary) neighborhood to my party. So far since residing here, I have seen two: the first one is an unruly Calico brute that has tried to pick a fight with me on more than one occasion. He is three times my size, leaving me no choice but to hide under a shed (as I’m clearly outmatched), when I am forced to go “play” outside by my caretaker. My caretaker has heard a neighbor refer to him as a junkyard cat, an apt description if I may say so. Luckily he hardly comes around now, as my caretaker has yelled at him numerous times — and this I note with great satisfaction — has turned the garden hose on him once successfully. It seems to be a deterrent that is working for the most part, only sporadic appearances on the part of the brute may be seen in the distance now and then. The other of my species I saw from the bedroom window sill one night, while I was overlooking the back alley, surveying the goings-on. This one was an unkempt individual of shaggy black and white appearance, that mistook the bird bath for his personal drinking fountain. I am none too eager to encounter that one up close either, from what I have observed.

Now to the matter of my fifth birthday: notice the indignity of what I was forced to wear for my birthday party for the amusement of my caretaker, who calls himself an author and photographer. A nice party hat — I was told — a crass cultural stereotype in my opinion if I may impart my perspective on the matter. Playing along with this nonsense, I at least expected perhaps some fish or maybe even some chicken tacos as due compensation, but fat chance in that regard. I did however get a can of delicious tuna fish (in water – for those who must know), to my caretakers credit. How on earth I was expected to blow out the candle is beyond my comprehension though — luckily my caretaker saw to that particular aspect, once the ridiculous singing was over. One dreads what is in store for me next year.

Yours sincerely,


I Love Spring

It’s been a joy to finally see the rain during the past few weeks. The gray hills that looked so barren a month ago, are a lush bright green once again, as the sun kisses them, waking up the orange poppies to new life. It never ceases to amaze me, just how quickly this change happens after just a few heavy rains. Although I was able to capture some of the beautiful green hills in my photography (http://mleuephoto.wordpress.com/), the smell in the air just can’t be done justice to in a photo.

Speaking of green: my cat Calvin was sitting in my office window this morning — making sure that the gardener visible in the distance was doing a good job of cutting the grass (Calvin really does have a very nice vantage point on the window sill — one that he frequents often). Taking a cue from the feline supervisor, I decide on a walk, which leads me by the “supervised” lawn, which is trimmed to British standards (although a Brit might object to my hasty comparison). There is nothing like the smell of freshly cut grass — I stop to breathe in deeply. In the distance I see pink and white blossom filled trees competing with each other — or perhaps a better word would be complementing each other. I just love spring.

Have a blessed week

Not Just Broccoli

Cats must have a kitchen homing instinct. No sooner had I started prep work tonight, when Mr. C. appeared in the kitchen yet once again, from playing, or perhaps exploring outside. Surprise, surprise — it’s only broccoli I’m cutting up and washing — you doofus. As he sat there looking up at me, I walked over to the fridge, and got out some chicken breasts to trim and then season. I love using rosemary — and I miss my rosemary bush I planted in Oakland in my old place, where I could just walk out the front the door and pick a few sprigs. So — Mr. C. knew indeed, that there is more to a meal than broccoli. You are very smart my friend. Did I mention, that Mr. C. understands probably close to 30-40 words — some English, and some German? Speaking of German, my niece Jacqueline enjoyed it when I sang the cat food song (that I composed and rhymed) to her on the phone, that I sometimes sing to Mr. C. before I feed him. Granted, it’s not Mozart, and she is 10 years old and not very critical (neither is Calvin), but it sure is fun. Oh-oh, I smell some yummy chicken in the oven, so it’s time to leave the keyboard alone, and tend to the more important matters in life.

Have a blessed week

Bright Yellow Breakfast

I could feel that my orchids were overjoyed to be put outside for a few hours today under the rain. There is just no substitute for rain to keep a houseplant happy and healthy. On an afternoon stroll, I enjoyed the rain too, although with an umbrella over my head — after all — I’m no Phalaenopsis. While walking through one of the small alleys, much to my surprise, I found a large grapefruit that had fallen on the ground from its tree above — a bright yellow breakfast — there  for the taking.

And yes, in case the reader is wondering: Calvin got his Schnitzel morsel.

Have a blessed week.

The Big Blue Monster

It must be Thursday today (I lose track of days once in a while), or rather garbage pick-up day to be more precise. My cat Calvin never ceases to amuse me — he is more than well aware of what day it is, much more so, than his caretaker. This morning, coming out of the shower, I saw him duck under the couch, as the big blue garbage truck could be heard on the street. Now mind you — there are garbage trucks, and then there are garbage trucks. This particular one, doesn’t pick up the regular home garbage cans, but the large metal ones that businesses tend to use, which it lifts over its head, and then empties into its innards, before returning it to the sidewalk. The racket is pronounced to say the least. For cat ears, I guess it must be a 9 on the Richter scale. The big blue monster has passed now, and Calvin re-emerges. After some breakfast, I walk into my little office and sit down at the computer. Calvin hops onto the window sill and looks out, something he loves to do, as many interesting things can be seen here, people, bicycles, dogs, squirrels, kids, and the occasional cat (the latter two are not among his preferences — but interesting nonetheless). What do we have here? The big blue monster is coming back, this time on another route through the alley. Calvin sees it right away of course, and I get up and pet him, and tell him it’s OK — it’s just a garbage truck. Then I actually hear him give a small growl — the enemy is sighted and acknowledged. It rumbles down the alley getting closer and closer. This is too close for comfort, and Calvin jumps off the window sill, and under the couch is once again his destination until the enemy has passed.

Have a peaceful, garbage-free Friday