Thursday, August 11, 2022
I am back home again, happy to be off the plane and unpacked and relaxing on our couch with some coffee. The dog is in the garden sunbathing, as usual. She was very wiggly when I first got home but now I think I'm getting the cold shoulder: "How DARE you leave me here with a total stranger!"
Warren seems to have taken good care of her, as she hasn't noticeably lost weight or any limbs or teeth. He took good care of the garden too, for the most part. Look how big the daturas are in the photo above! They're as big as Olga!
Some things didn't fare as well:
The sunflower and the zinnias look pretty baked. I've watered them and hopefully they'll bounce back. This isn't entirely Warren's fault because that pot is probably rootbound and those plants need watering every day. I haven't closely examined the Russians' plants yet but as far as I can tell from our patio they appear to be alive.
The drought conditions in England have continued unabated during our absence. Here's a photo I took as we were landing at Heathrow. As you can see, the fields and farms are brown as can be. We're due to have temperatures in the 90's (F) through the weekend, and although rain is forecast for the beginning of next week, I'll believe it when I see it. This summer, rain has danced in our forecasts like a shimmering mirage on an asphalt highway, but it never quite arrives.
The picture is a little wonky because I had to lean across my seat-mate, an accountant named Natalie from Dayton, Ohio, to take it. Fortunately she didn't seem to mind. She was quite chatty, for better or worse. Overall, the flight was good -- I almost finished "Coming of Age in Mississippi," an autobiography by Anne Moody about growing up black in the Jim Crow South. Mr. Pudding's daughter Frances kindly sent it to me while clearing out some of her old books from University a couple of years ago, and I'm glad I've finally gotten around to reading it. It's well-written and vividly evokes how terrifying it must have been to live in that place and time under those circumstances. I think I'll add this copy to our school library -- it would be a good resource for high school kids studying the Civil Rights era. Thanks to Mr. P and Frances!
I've put clean sheets on the bed and after I take the dirty ones to the laundromat and do some grocery shopping I should be ready to face the week.