Winter is back. Not the pretty, snowy kind, but the blustery, get into the cracks, raw, miserable, wet kind they always had when I was in England. In those days it was the only kind and Summer wasn’t a lot different. Before climate change disrupted everybody’s weather.

I’ve even got the sore throat that always went with it, but I’m going to be careful who I admit that to.

Being hauled off to a hospital is not part of my plans.

If I’m honest, I don’t have any plans.

Which is probably a good thing, considering.

It’s just strange, not having a list of what needs doing, attending to, or sorting out.

And it makes me feel guilty,

My mum never sat still for 5 minutes.

But I stopped hoping to be like Mum a long time ago, given that I have none of her talents, or her drive. She kept going well into her 80’s, where she discovered that the meals she provided for Dad were no longer appetizing, and furthermore she was more apt to throw them at him than place them before him.

Living in Seattle made it more difficult to “drop in” on my parents, so I was spared the ugliness of those last months of her life. Dad told me some of it, and having some experience with dementia, I was inclined to believe him. My uncle’s mother had done some strange things at the end of her life.

Having an abundance of time to think can be unsettling when you begin worrying about possibilities.

Covid-19. Everyone is worried about that. It’s not so much fretting about the end result, as the days leading up to it.

The asthma I had as a child lingers and I have been using my inhaler much more often than say a year ago. Perhaps it’s psychological.

I don’t think overmuch about Covid.

What troubles my mind far more, is the knowledge that dementia is in my genes and I am anxious that it should not trouble my mind.

Stocking my pantry and wearing a mask offer no defense.

Does anything?

It seems that I need to keep my mind functioning, but in the right way.

For now, I find my brain occupied with thoughts of all the red-hued creatures which surround my home.

It’s better than watching “News”.

I discovered that there is, in fact, a creature called a “red squirrel, “Tamiasciurus Hudsonicus”, which is peculiar to the Adirondacks.

We are really only on the fringe of the Adirondacks, which maybe accounts for the variation we have.

The Adirondack red squirrel has a reputation for being aggressive but “Our Red” gets chased off by the greys, as far as it is possible to tell. The greys are always fighting each other. Bolshy little blighters they are. However, when there are peanuts to be had, the greys will sit side by side shoveling them in, but they will not tolerate having Red nearby.

To me, our Red looks different. In the above, the two end pictures were taken from the “Adirondacks Forever Wild” website. They seem a lot darker red than our guy.

So, have the greys and reds been co-habiting? “Our Red” is the only obviously red squirrel we see, but there are quite a few that are “Half Red” or “Semi Red”. Hmmm.

As I have never seen ground hogs anywhere else, I can’t comment on whether our Mr Charles is more red than average and I think chipmunks are always that colour. Their colouring reminds me of the Utah desert. It’s a wonderful deep, earthy red.

“Gimpy”, the disabled squirrel, I would have said is totally grey. But on the other hand:

Is that a red stripe?

Gradually, we are naming all of them: Charley, Harley, Farley, Marley….kidding.

I think my mind is scrambled.

4 thoughts on “Red?

    1. I’m supposed to dismiss them as rodents but to me they are all creatures of Nature and I have room for all of them. Maybe not earwigs…
      Two days since we saw Gimpy….:(

  1. That last photo of Gimpy is priceless. What a look! In the two above, is he actually reclining in the grass or was that when he had just taken a tumble? I have multiple brown squirrels here, but they are always busy and never still for a second.

  2. We haven’t seen Gimpy for two days and we thought she was looking very frail. 🙁 Hope she’s OK. In those pictures, she had just keeled over, or rather she sinks to the ground and then she just stays that way carrying on eating, lying down. She is still able to climb trees like the others.

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