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Hermitage Letters

Still No Washing Machine!

Well, as you might have heard our washing machine still isn’t repaired! Lowe’s sent the wrong papers to the repair shop. Just think: a big company can’t do an easy little job – terrible, don’t you think? Mom only said, “Oh, well . . .,” but I know she wasn’t happy. Wednesday (today) was the new repair day. Mom told Lowe’s and the repair shop that the washing machine just needed a new belt.
When the repairman came he checked many things on the computer part of the washing machine – he even had to call the main Maytag office – his report said a lot of things were wrong. Mom said, “You should look under the machine, the belt is broken.” Mom handed the repairman a flashlight and helped lean the machine back so he could see.
“Yeah, the belt is broken,” he said, “that could be the cause of the other problems too.”
“So can you fix it now?” Mom asked.
“Oh, no, I have to order a new belt – that will come in two or three days, and then we can schedule another appointment.”
Fortunately for the repair shop, their receptionist gave Mom an appointment for Monday – even before the new belt has come in. Just think – two weeks without laundry . . . Mom is not happy, especially since they didn’t listen to her in the first place! Sometimes the easiest solution is the right one.
It has rained for two nights and two days and now our yard is all mud . . .I’m glad that we cats don’t go outside! Most of the doggies hate the mud and rain too, but I think the geese and Jack (our horse) and even the chickens like the rain. The chickens can go into their coop anytime, but they choose to stand under the tree even in the rain. That saying, “mad as a wet hen” must not be true – at least Fredell, Faith, and Frances don’t get mad when they are wet!
Mom says it’s time to feed the cats supper, so we have to say good-bye and turn off the computer.
I’ll write again soon,
Gus
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End of Summer?

Finally our weather is not so hot! The leaves and walnuts are falling from the black walnut trees, and the wild clematis is blooming, and school buses go past our house in the mornings and afternoons, and the wild geese are flying south. But Meg, our goose, is laying eggs – Meg had a Spring nest, but none of her eggs hatched, so maybe she thinks this will be a better time. Mom and I think she is wrong about that, but she is very determined to sit on her nest.

Guess what?! Our washing machine stopped washing – Mom says the cord that makes the drum agitate and spin is broken. Our washing machine is almost new, still under factory warranty, so a repairman is coming tomorrow to make it wash again. A week without a washing machine has made Mom very impatient . . . she loves to do the laundry. I like really clean towels too – better than these hung-on-the-fence-washed-with-the-hose ones. I asked Mom why she likes doing laundry so much, and she said, “It’s in my genes, Gus.” That seems like a funny thing to inherit – she could have played the piano or had a better singing voice or been a better archer or painter or a sailor – but she likes to do laundry! Life is funny like that . . . you just have to take it as it comes. Anyway, Mom will be a lot happier when our washing machine is repaired!

As of yesterday we have a new online wish list – just in case anyone wants to send us treats, toys, or Fancy Feast – please, please, please! To find the list go to amazon.com and click on lists, then type in Mom’s name: Sister Mary Winifred – the Sanctuary House Wish List will be right there. There are a few non-cat items too: dog biscuits and toys, and tarps that we need before winter, but mostly the list is for cats – I guess that means we’re the most important, right?

Stay safe, and enjoy these early days of Autumn . . . and be sure to look at the moon tonight – it’s fully bright and beautiful!

Gus
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Already September

It’s hard to believe, isn’t it, that we’re already into September – today is windy and rainy because we are just on the edge of Hurricane Hermine! A few days ago Aidan and I caught a mouse in the bathroom – a tiny mouse – and were just playing with him, but Mom took him away from us, and then she let him go outdoors. She told us that the mouse really didn’t want to be our toy, and then she gave us a green toy mouse and two ping pong balls, so we are glad we traded with her – and I guess the mouse is too!

We are reading three books all at once again:
A Complete Guide to Bird Feeding by John Dennis
The Sabbath by Abraham Heschel
Praying with Icons by Jim Forest

Mom has been reading the icon book for weeks, but she explained to me that it is a book to read and ponder, not rush right through, so I guess we may be reading it for many more weeks.

I really don’t know about feeding birds – Poirot and I have thought of catching birds, but I suspect Mom will never let us do that! Every day we watch pigeons and grackles and black birds eating and drinking in the yard with the geese, and sometimes there are blue jays and cardinals and crows, too. I like to see the birds fly, but Poirot mostly watches for the smaller birds – sparrows, titmice, and wrens that come into the tree near the window. Sometimes we hear woodpeckers and flickers. “Don’t even think about them,” I said to Poirot, “those birds have beaks that could really hurt a cat!” I think the same thing about blue jay beaks – we are lucky cats to be indoors!

Today is sad for us because our kitty Darlie died this morning. We don’t know how old Darlie was because she was all grown up when she came to Sanctuary House, but she had cancer and there was no way to make her well. Mom told her to wait at the Rainbow Bridge and we’d catch up with her there one day. Darlie was a dark gray cat with light gray fur on her tummy and nose, with a dark spot right on the middle of her nose – I think that’s where God kissed her before she came to earth . . . her blessing spot!

We’ll write again soon – in the meantime, have a safe Labor Day weekend!
Gus

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