Godzilla 1998-2014

She died peacefully in her sleep, the only one of our cats so far not to need a last trip to the vet. it is difficult to believe that of all the cats who moved here with us from Massachusetts, there is only one left.

Cataclysm 2013 to 2014

He died on the way to the emergency vet, there was no warning other than being a little "off" on Friday. The vet said that he seemed in very good shape and at a good weight, and felt that it was some catastrophic issue or even a birth defect, and that there was nothing we could have done to prevent it or save him. He was very like our beloved Binky, and we already miss him terribly.

It becomes a habit when...

you no longer feel a need to meticulously post your statistics.

i haven't posted, I have no idea how many days in a row I have walked, but I am at the point that if I don't walk, I feel unhappy. As of today, my walk is roughly 2 miles long, 1 mile out and 1 mile back, and it takes about an hour. I have lost five pounds (that's 1/4 stone for you literal Englishmen) and some clothes I ordered from Land's End that were too tight are now wearable.

When I first started this project, the thought of walking two miles a day wasn't really something I expected to happen very fast, but now here it is, and my walk takes enough time that I won't be increasing the distance for a while--an hour to exercise is fine, but I really don't have much more than that time-wise.

Next, I am going to try to speed things up. I honestly don't know how fast I will be able to go. According to, a portion of the walk reaches the equivalent of a level five climb (and one section has an 8% grade, which is lovely going down but another matter entirely on the way back!). I expect that after all the hill practice, I'd probably be pretty darn close to a fifteen minute mile if I were on level ground.

If I can speed up enough to finish the walk in 30-40 minutes, I'll start increasing distance again.

Pockets of Air 37:0:365

Took my walk really, really late today, just getting in.

It's the oddest thing to be in the mountains. You know in theory that the higher you go, the cooler it gets, and you know in theory that you can have all kinds of pockets of air depending on which way the wind is blowing and how warm the day was and so on and so forth (microclimates with a capital M!), but it's so strange to actually experience it!

It was hot today, it went from about a high of 65 degrees yesterday to a high of at least 85 today, and it was still hotter than blazes when the usual walking time came around, so I waited. Took the little solar lantern with me just for additional visibility, and off I went up the hill.

As I came down the first section, it was almost like going from outside to AC--I swear, the temperature dropped at least five degrees over the space of maybe 100 feet. This felt marvelous, because even as I write this, it's 81 degrees. It lasted almost until I hit the bottom of the hill, then it abruptly warmed up again. Got to the sign that I use for a marker, and wow, I was glad of cooler air for the bulk of the climb back.

Someone actually stopped and asked me if I needed a ride, that was really kind of them. I assured them I was just on a walk, thanked them and we all went forth on our merry way. Now I'm back and I'm going to get a well deserved drink of water!



We had a very busy weekend! Tell me, does anyone else find it ironic that my daily walk is JUST about long enough that I can make it to the local ice cream parlor? We usually have a treat of some kind on Saturdays, so this time I walked over there and brought back a couple of sundaes.

We did a bunch of brush trimming on Saturday, there was an autumn olive we wanted to take down before it got any bigger. (a noxious weed, according to the West Virginia State list. I got about six forsythia plants from the neighbor's planting, and planted those on the very top of the hill. Hopefully it will choke out any other autumn olive attempts, and look very pretty in the spring into the bargain.

I have some poison ivy, but I'm more-or-less immune to the stuff, so all that happens is I get a few itchy bumps which, if I don't scratch them, disappear within 24-48 hours. I ripped most of it out, and next weekend I'll go and check to make sure I didn't miss anything. We have to pick up some more garden tools, ours are old and in really sad shape. I'm hoping to find a nice pair of stainless steel grass trimmers, and we want to get a ratchet pruner like the one my neighbor has. That will take up to 3" diameter branches, and i's really easy to use into the bargain.

Today I took my walk fairly early, and I'm glad I did because it loosened everything up nicely. Despite all the extra work and hiking around, I don't have any pain, just a bit of a tendency to stiffen up if I sit still too long.

Rydia's eyes seem to be improving still. We have taken her outside a couple of times under very close supervision, and it seems like she does see, even if it is badly. I've got to pick up some more medicine for her soon.

That's all the excitement for now, hope everyone enjoyed their weekend.


I am going to change my titles to reflect any days that I missed.

Still hanging in there on the walking thing, although I have to admit that this week has been tough to do because now my calves are fine but my thighs are pretty darn sore.

The timer is up to 7 minutes, but I don't think I'll be changing to 8 until the pain goes away.

Nothing much else exciting is happening. Work continues, Rydia seems to be showing further, slow improvement and Mischief is a lot better. I still think we're going to need the vet to get a good look at her teeth, but right now we're trying to feed her up a bit so that she's in the best possible shape for it.

The weather has turned warm at last, I am hoping we aren't going to have any more cold snaps. They predicted the low 70's and partly cloudy today, but as it turned out, there were almost no clouds and it's 80 degrees at 6:39 PM. Bring it--I definitely want the warm weather to hurry up and arrive this year!


Still keeping up the walking. I keep forgetting to charge the battery for the timer, but I increased my distance slightly and I bet it's darn close to 7 minutes rather than 6.

No more calf pain at last, but I'm definitely feeling it in my legs. I haven't bothered to step on the scale, I don't want to get focused on the idea that I *may* lose weight--I have to be doing more like an hour a day for those benefits. I'm trying to concentrate on the health aspect of it, as in it does me good to move around.

I have progressed from actively hating having to get up and go to merely being disinclined. It's a hell of a lot easier to get moving when I'm merely disinclined.

In other news, Rydia's eyes seem to be responding to the medication. I'm going to have Ben snap a picture with his chromebook to be sure, but it seems as though her pupils are less dilated and becoming more responsive to light. I'm also seeing better obstacle avoidance during the day, she's much less likely to bump something that is in her way. She's moving more confidently now regardless of whether it's because she's better adjusted or because she can see a little more. Her appetite is good, and she seems a lot healthier than she was.

Edit: It's DEFINITELY her eyes improving. Three pictures for you, under the same lighting conditions:

This was taken just before we started her on the blood pressure meds. Please note how dilated the pupils are:

This is tonight!!!!!

This is SO hopeful! :)

Mischief, on the other hand, is not doing so well. I'm going to call the vet tomorrow--it seems like she has a bad tooth and I'm going to want him to get a good look at it. We were reluctant to do this given her age, but she's clearly having a problem eating. It's not that she doesn't WANT to eat, she does--she's hungry, but she can only eat a little bit at a time. If it turns out she's got a bad tooth, it's way better to risk than anesthesia than to let her starve, that's for sure. More on this when I know more.