11 April 2010

Pics from this morning's walk

It was chilly this morning, but the sky was clear and the sun was shining brightly. Here are a few pictures from my walk with the dog today.

Callie on our morning walk in the woods, 11 April 2010

Yesterday we spent the afternoon with Jean and Nick down in Le Grand-Pressigny. As always, it was a good time, with good food and drink. And beautiful weather. Nick said that yesterday was as warm and pleasant as a good summer day in the English Midlands, where they are from. It was pretty much as warm as a good summer day in Saint-Aignan, from my point of view. Their patio is sheltered and the south-facing walls of their cottage really capture and reflect the heat of the sun, which is still fairly low in the sky.

Fruit trees in flower around the neighborhood

We sat outside on J. and N.'s patio for five or six hours. That's how long lunch lasted. We also looked at some of the renovation work they've been doing in the house: new pine floors in a bedroom, refinished beams, and more. Theirs is a beautiful old cottage in the middle of the village.

Their work has inspired us to rethink our plans for the flooring we'll put in our converted attic space. More about that later.

A neighbor's driveway

Bertie the tomcat was fine when we got home — Callie the collie had made the trip to Le Grand-Pressigny with us, even though she hates riding in the car. The cat stayed home, of course. When we got back at nightfall, Bertie was happy to see us. Everything seemed fine. He ate some, and I spent a few minutes petting him and playing. His head sore is definitely better. Janet, who gave Bertie to us, said the wound came from a recent encounter with a weasel. She had told us about that incident before, but I had forgotten.

The Renaudière vineyard in April

At four this morning, I heard Bertie meowing loudly downstairs. Callie was in the living room sleeping, with the doors closed, and she didn't seem to take any notice. I ended up going down to the utility room and bringing the cat into the bedroom before dawn because I didn't know why he was meowing so insistently.

It's spring, but the vines haven't budded out yet.

Once in the bedroom, Bertie curled up and slept peacefully on the bed for three or four hours. He seemed content, and I think he was just lonely after having spent the day all by himself. He really is dying to go outdoors, but for that he'll to wait a few more days.


  1. I think Bertie's going to like living with you. I agree that he was probably lonely. I'm glad Callie didn't notice he was in her territory.

    Spring is a treasure, non? I enjoyed the walkabout and I like your banner of the backyard with garden.

    I hope your Sunday is going well.

  2. You may not see Jean again, but if you do, could you tell her that she won a giveaway on my blog please?!

  3. Elizabethd, maybe Jean will see your comment here. We won't see her again for a few weeks.

    Hi Evelyn, we are hoping that those plum trees, which blew down in the late-February storm, are stressed enough to produce a huge crop of plums this spring. If so, I will make many jars of plum preserves and jam. Then we'll saw the trees up for firewood.

    I'll be planting potatoes soon, thanks to Jean. She gave me a couple of dozen seed potatoes yesterday. They are already sprouted.

  4. Bertie wanted to be with you, no doubt......or wanted to go out! At least he knows how to use a litter box.......glad he was allowed on the bed...lol...only the start of his home domination plan

  5. Melinda, you are shattering Ken and Walt's dream of having an affectionate, adorable cat who is tough on voles. I laughed at your comment and hope it won't be true.

    I bet Bertie will turn out to be a good sort of cat who will fit right in and do his outdoor work (instead of claiming to be prince of the house like some I could name).

  6. Melinda, cats are sneaky and devious, aren't they? That said, Bertie seems very affectionate and genuine. We'll keep an eye on him, though.

    Carolyn, moles are the issue, more than voles. We hope Bertie will be the lord of the yard, while Callie continues to guard the house.

    Candy and John, what advice do you have? How do Jasper and Chaucer get along?

  7. They've said it was the coldest winter in quite a while, maybe the vines need a litle more time to adjust to spring.


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