What day is it?

I’m home alone. Most days are the same for me. My chores are the same. Even my phone calls are the same, “Yes, I’m still home and I’m okay. How is it at your home? ….. The same, huh…..”

It’s hard to tell what day it is. I’m not going to Sunday church, though I did set a timer to tell me that mass will be broadcast at 10:30. But often I have to think, “What day is it?” “Monday? …… Wednesday? …. or what?”

Another reminder for me is the due date for my column, but I really have to think about that so I have something written and ready to go to my editor.

People who take pills daily have a reminder at their fingertips. It’s called a pill organizer. Sometimes this is the only reminder I have, but it does work…

As long as I remember to take my pills.

I’m counting the days of confinement. Today is number 14 for me….I think

Copyright © 2020 by Susan Manzke, all rights reserved

Beauty on the wing

I love watching out my kitchen window and seeing the birds that come to eat at the feeder. Nature is moving forward. It’s is spring and the wildlife are all getting ready to reproduce.

Eastern bluebird

Here are a couple photos I have snapped of neighborhood feathered friends.


There are many cardinals flitting about the yard. These birds call to each other from the trees around our house. Sometimes I whistle back and listen for a response. Often, they answer me even if my cardinal impression isn’t very good.

As I write this blog, crows are voicing their opinions to each other nearby. Bob actually was very fond of crows, so listening to their squawks reminds me of my husband.

I hope to see many more feathered neighbors come for more visits. I keep the outside cats well fed so they are too slow and fat to notice the birds, which is a good thing for all.

Copyright © 2020 by Susan Manzke, all rights reserved

Visiting Country Critters

I was looking through videos I have on youtube.com and found one of Bob releasing a raccoon into our woods. This was back in 2011.

Bob captured this raccoon in a live trap after it was poking around our chickens. Here’s the link. Copy and paste the whole link to see Bob release it……………………………………. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gI7_r7P9sdU

A different raccoon on our front porch

I haven’t set up the critter camera yet this year, but I’m thinking about it. Bob loved the critter cam so much. He wanted to snap a photo of the bear that moves through our area. He never got that photo or saw the bear, I’m sad to say.

When the raccoons come up to finish cat food, they can be very quiet or they can make a lot of noise, moving the metal food pans around.

If I have to go outside in the dark I make a lot of noise so the wild critters know to scatter.

Copyright © 2020 by Susan Manzke, all rights reserved

Achieving a good feeling

I’m not worried about running out of food for myself, at least not for quite some time. I was worried about others though. The critters I live with rely on me to feed them and I didn’t know how long their food would hold out.

Yesterday a solution occurred to me. I figured a way I could stay a hermit and still get dry food for our dog, Sunny and our cats Othello, Cruella, and all the ones that show up on our front porch every morning and night. All I had to do was to call Infinity Feeds in Seymour.

While on the phone at home, I ordered large bags of dry food, one for Sunny and one for the cats. I also remembered to order softener salt. I paid with my credit card and then drove to town to pick up my order.

All the bags were sitting by the door when I pulled up by the Infinity Feeds office. I waited only a minute before one of the workers came out, opened up the back hatch of my car and loaded the heavy bags inside.

I am so relieved to have all this food at hand. The driveby service worked perfectly. Now I’m sure together we can survive for weeks to come.

I haven’t unloaded my haul yet. I still have critter food in the house. When my containers are almost empty, I’ll work at getting everything where it’s needed.

Oh, yeah, I did a drive-by at Sissy’s, too. There Francine brought out my order of two Ruben sandwiches. I didn’t have to even open my door. She was watching for my car to pull up outside her shop.

These purchases are my little effort to keep our local business going.

I have to let my family know that when I came home, even though using drive-up services, I made sure to wash my hands and disinfect doorknobs and such. I am being a good hermit.

Copyright © 2020 by Susan Manzke, all rights reserved

Cruella the Cat

I have a furry friend hiding in my house. She is a cat. Her name is Cruella.

As a tiny kitten, Cruella was rescued when her mother abandoned her. For her early weeks, she was fed with a bottle. She should be the sweetest pet ever after all that special care. She is not

Cruella is crazy. That’s probably why her mother left her and took her siblings to another hiding place in the barn.

Cruella has fights with her tail. This video is just a small sample of her tail attacks. It’s difficult to catch her on video as I never know when she will have one of her tail issues. Here she’s watching her twitching tail. She growls at it around the 20-second mark. It’s not her biggest tail encounter, but just an example.

I tried embedding the video here and it just didn’t work.

Staying mostly to herself, Cruella avoids visitors. Son-in-law Andy came across her a couple of weeks ago. She was on my bed upstairs. For the first time ever, she didn’t run and hide. In fact, Cruella let Andy pet her–he was honored.

I hope the attached youtube video works for you.

BTW: Cruella sleeps with me every night. She purrs like crazy right by my head. Too bad she uses her claws to knead and wake me.

I’m going to try reading another old column later today, but first, before the rain, I’m going to take Sunny for a walk.

Copyright 2020 Susan Manzke