Oy, what a day!

First things first: the status of Potato Beetle.

I have no idea.

We never took him to the vet, because we couldn’t find him!

I did see him this morning, and should have locked him up in the sun room, but I didn’t want him have him locked up like that for almost 6 hours. A couple of hours before we were planning to leave, we went looking for him. He was nowhere to be found!

So I called the vet and explained the situation. Whenever we manage to snag him, we are to give them a call and they’ll fit him in. Unless, it turns out not to be needed. I took some photos this morning, and offered to email one in, and they were good with that.

I still couldn’t see his wound this morning, but I can often get photos at angles that let me see more than I could manage otherwise, so I took a bunch of shots while he was eating.

You can tell from this first one, why the wound was so hard to see. If it had not been so matted and had dry blood in the fur, yesterday, I would not have noticed it. Today, it looked much cleaner.

This is the best look I’ve had of the wound itself, ever. It’s not actively bleeding, and does not appear to be infected. In showing the photos to my older daughter, she told me she had seen what she thought were puncture marks on either side of his leg, where the fur goes white, but I could see no sign of anything like that. Likely, they are small enough for the fur to hide completely.

He was chipper and active enough to follow me as I did my rounds, when he helped me demonstrate perspective on some tracks in the snow.

My brother’s dog has huge paws! šŸ˜€ With yesterday’s warmth, followed by the overnight freeze, there were a lot of his tracks sunk deep into the snow during the warmth of the day, then frozen overnight. šŸ™‚

There were lots of other tracks. Mostly from deer. Probably including these ones!

I spotted them outside our north facing window. Only one of them went to the feeding station by the living room window, though from the lack of feed on the ground, I think the herd was leaving rather than arriving.

When my daughter and I went outside to try and find Potato Beetle, and he wasn’t in the usual places, we decided to do some noisy chores. If he were at my younger brother’s place, or the empty farm yard across the other road, he would likely hear us and come over.

He didn’t. Which tells me he went further afield. I suppose that’s good news, since it would mean he was feeling strong and healthy. My daughter, of course, was fretting that he might be hurt in a ditch somewhere.

We never saw Potato, but I did get this job done.

When the girls shoveled snow off the roof, before things started melting, the snow covered my path to the feeding station, and no one had a chance to clear it until today. After the melt and freeze we had, I ended up having to use a metal garden shovel, instead of our plastic snow shovels, because it was the only thing strong enough to break through the hard packed top layer. My daughter, meanwhile, used the ice chipper to clear the sidewalk. As things warm up, the paths will melt away and clear faster.

With all the chopping and scraping, we were making more than enough noise to attract curious kitties. Just not the one we were after!

I was thinking that, tomorrow morning, I could put him in the sun room with some food and water – I’m just not sure what I can use as a litter box – and we can keep him tucked away. I won’t be able to take him in to the vet tomorrow, because tomorrow I will be doing a big shopping trip. Not quite our monthly shop, since I will be using my mother’s car, but enough to stock up for at least a couple of weeks.

And why will I be using my mother’s car?

Well, I ran the van today, and it’s still making that whining noise that I thought was the serpentine belt, but now think is the power steering pump, next to the belt. I checked the fluid level, and it’s full.

So when I had the chance, I called up the garage and left a message about it, asking him to call me back.

Which he probably tried to do, but would have gotten a busy signal.

You see, I did something else today. I purchased and downloaded this year’s TurboTax and started the tax returns for myself and my husband. Because of our internet connectivity problems, I made sure to get the desktop version, not the online set up, like we used last year. Our returns are pretty basic, so I finished them this morning. Tax returns are easy when your incomes are “nothing” and “better than nothing”. I was able to file mine electronically, but when I tried to file my husband’s, I got a message saying I’d used up all the available returns and it wanted me to buy more. Considering the software I bought allows for up to 20 returns in total – and the checker even showed I still had 19 left – it should have worked. After several failed attempts, it was time to contact TurboTax!

After not being able to find contact information of any kind on the website (they route people to the community, instead), I finally went to their Facebook page and sent a message briefly explaining what was happening. While my daughter and I were outside making noise to try and attract Potato, I got a response with a phone number to call.

I made that call after calling the garage.

I ended up on the phone for about 2 hours.

Among the problems we had was the software simply not opening. It kept “not responding”. We were using a sharer, so the tech person I was talking to could see my desktop, and my computer decided that today was the day to get all sluggish on me. I ended up reinstalling the software and trying to open it again, and it still wouldn’t. After several more failed attempts, we tried restarting my computer.

Which stalled during the restart. I ended up having to do a hard shut down and trying again.

Once I finally got the computer itself started, I tried opening the software before linking up with the tech, only to have it want to restart the computer again, because changes were made.

*sigh*

Eventually, we did get it going. I was able to open the software, our tax returns were still there, with my husband’s ready to be sent, and the tech person could see my desktop. I tried to file my husband’s return, and it sat there, spinning for a while. On that one, I did assure her that it was our unstable internet that was the problem, this time!

The screen telling me I was out of returns popped up and she finally got to see what was happening. She got me to check a few things for her, she asked all sorts of questions, before finally settling in on her side to find a solution.

I was not at all surprised when she told me it was passed on to someone in Tier 2, and she was waiting for a response.

There was a lot of waiting. She was very apologetic. I told her I didn’t mind the wait. I just needed it fixed. Particularly since we have to more people who need to file! So I didn’t have a problem with the wait.

I ended up being put on actual hold a couple of times before we got to the end, and it was pretty much what I had suspected would happen.

The problem is going to the next level.

It’s a bug, and there’s nothing that can be done about it at our end. Someone will get back to me, possibly within 24 hours, as they fix the bug. I should be able to file my husband’s return tomorrow.

Well, I won’t be holding my breath on that, but we’ll see.

By the time I got off the phone I had no doubt that, if the garage had tried to call me back, he would have given up rather quickly.

So, tomorrow morning, I will try calling him again, before I head out. Hopefully, he won’t be too booked and I’ll be able to bring the van in, soon. Depending on how early I can get the shopping done, who knows. Maybe we can still get Potato Beetle in to the vet! Unless they look at the photo and say not to bother. It’s possible, I suppose.

As if all that wasn’t enough, I got a quick phone call from my older brother. He had just talked to my mother but was about to start a meeting, so he wanted to let me know that our vandal had called her today. Three times! She let it go to message, thankfully. So while he went off to his meeting (which will be 3 hours long!), I called my mother to see if she was okay. She did sound upset. Our vandal had said “the usual”, but I had to clarify that. There are several “usual” things he says. He had been ranting at her about “giving” the farm to me and my brother (why he still thinks I have any ownership of the farm, I have no idea), apparently brought God into it (he knows she’s deeply religious, so one of his things is to tell her she won’t go to heaven to be with my late father and brother, because she’s not doing what he thinks she should be doing). There was a new one in there – at least new to me, though it’s possible he’s used this before and my mother never mentioned it. Basically, he was telling her to talk to him – as in pick up the phone, rather than letting it go to machine. Of course, anytime she does try to talk to him, it’s very much a one way conversation, as he doesn’t let her get a word in edgewise. Then she ends up hanging up to him. We’ve been working on getting her to let calls go to the machine, unless she can see who is calling. If that means my siblings and I ended up talking to a machine and calling her back later, we’re good with that. Better this slight inconvenience than her being verbally abused.

I have no idea what triggered him to call her today. Especially three times! It does remind me that I should call the court office this week, and see if a court date for the restraining order I applied for will finally happen. It’s already been pushed back three times because of the shut downs. šŸ˜¦

So… It’s been quite the day, today!!

If I were a drinking person, I’d be pouring myself a stiff drink right now! But I’m not. So I will brew myself a pot of tea, instead. šŸ˜€

Everything’s better with tea!

The Re-Farmer

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