Morning kitties, and various updates

Gotta love weather forecasts.

We are supposed to be warming up, and predicted highs and overnight lows were all forecasted to be above -20C/-4F at night, and around the -15C/5F range during the day. Pleasant stuff, really.

At the same time, the app on my phone had a warnings that the cold spell would through to today. I’d read that, look at the forecasted temperatures, and wonder what “cold spell” they were talking about.

This morning, the actual temperature was -28C/-18F before wind chill.

We’ve already warmed up to -16C/3F as I write this, but it’s frustrating to see such wildly different predictions, at the same time, within the same app.

For the outside cats, this is spring, already.

And by “spring”, I mean “mating season.” This morning, I looked out the kitchen window and saw Tuxedo Mask, whom you can see by the water bowls in the above photo, getting lucky with Broccoli.

We don’t know how many female cats we have out there right now; most of the newest cats that are reaching their first birthday in the next couple of months, are cats we haven’t been able to get close enough to see. Of the ones that we could, only Nosencrantz, who is now fixed and indoors, and Broccoli, whom we can’t touch, were identifiable as female. Of course, with the older cats, we know that Ghost Baby, Junk Pile and Rosencrantz are female. Tuxedo Mask is Junk Pile’s baby, while Broccoli is Butterscotch’s, and with both tuxedos and calicos showing up in litters only since we’ve moved out here, we’ve at least got some new bloodlines being introduced. When we first moved here, it was mostly orange tabbies.

By the time the Cat Lady is ready to start taking in outdoor cats for adopting, we’re probably already going to have more kittens. Which I don’t mind, really. If they got taken earlier, they’d probably still get spayed, and I’m not okay with kitty abortions any more than I am human ones. They can be spayed later.

While setting food out under the shrine, I found myself being watched! I’m not sure which if the ‘iccuses this is, other than it’s not Chadiccus, who was busily trying to trip me over by the kibble house, or Bradiccus, who it the only one with a white tail tip.

Speaking of trying to trip me…

Agnoos really wanted attention!

When I came into the sun room, he had the prime spot in the window, on the pillow lined box. 😀

We’re leaving the sun room doors propped open regularly now, with the heated water bowl in there kept on. The outside heated water bowl had ice across the top, but was not frozen solid, which suggests it is still working, at least a bit. Very odd. I look forward to being able to being able to pick it up and give it a thorough examination. Since we know the extension cords are fine and the water bowl is still plugged in, that leaves the cord to the bowl itself, and most of it is under packed snow. Maybe the deer stepped in it or something and damaged it somehow. There is nothing obvious that can be seen, without being able to actually pick up the bowl and looking under it. At least we’ve got the second one’s cord taped up and it’s working fine, inside the sun room. It just means we can’t close the outside doors completely! With things warming up (if we can trust the forecast), that should be okay now.

In other things:

We have our van back. The tensioner got replaced and, so far, that seems to be making a difference – though I get the sense that there is something draining our battery while the engine is off. No idea what it could be. The mechanic wasn’t seeing anything obvious.

Our wipers are working again. Something got misaligned somehow – possibly accidentally knocked about while the alternator was being replaced. With the wipers mounted so low and under the hood, that’s entirely possible. It took next to nothing for him to fix it, and there was no charge for it. The cost to replace the tensioner was on the low end of the estimate, so we are still under budget on that, which is nice.

As for my mother’s car…

We’re still hopeful it’s something minor setting off the check engine light. After I’d sent him the codes my scanner showed, he’d done his own research. If it is related to the transmission, he couldn’t do the work himself. With one code’s possibility, it would have to go into the city to get the work done. With the other, it might have to go to a Dodge dealership for recalibration after the part was installed – a part which he might be able to find second hand, for $1200.

That would be the less expensive of the potential problems.

Not going to happen.

Those are the worst case possibilities, and our mechanic knows we wouldn’t be able to afford that kind of work. It’s my mother’s car, but I already know she wouldn’t pay for it, even if I asked her to, which I won’t. I’m sure he remembers how difficult it was to get her to pay for the major work that needed to be done, the first time we brought her car in to him. He’d owned the garage for less than a year, at the time, and her car was stuck on a lift, with parts and pieces removed, for about a month before my mother finally agreed to pay for it. My mother firmly believes that all garages lie and cheat little old ladies like her, so even if work clearly does need to be done, she doesn’t believe it. My poor brother put up with a lot of abuse from her, when he was the one getting her car taken care of for her. He’s much kinder and gentler than I am, and her behaviour was very hurtful to him. I’ve become an old crone with very thick skin and, as frustrating as her behaviour can be, at least she can’t hurt me anymore. My brother is a much better person than I am! 😀

All that over a car. :-/

We shall see what the garage finds. I don’t have any expectations for when he can give it a thorough check, since he’ll be working it around the appointments he already has.

All in good time.

Meanwhile…

When we discovered the belt broke on our new vacuum cleaner (probably my fault… LOL), I ordered replacement belts from Hoover in early February. They sent me a USPS tracking number, but it always read, ‘information unavailable’. Once we got a running vehicle and I could check the mail, confirming it was not in, I contacted Hoover about it not being in.

I got a response saying that, according to their information, it was delivered. It turns out that, once the package got to Canada, it was shipped by Purolator. I got a new tracking number and…

According to Purolator, it was delivered to us on Feb. 28.

We did not get any deliveries.

I wrote back saying we don’t have it; wherever they delivered it to, it wasn’t us. I also mentioned we might not even be in their delivery zone.

This morning, I got a new email. They’re sending it to us again – with a different delivery company! I also got an order confirmation for the re-order. I made sure to write back to explain our physical address won’t show up on GPS because our road is not labelled on maps, asking that our land line phone number be available for the driver if they need to call for directions. I also made sure to mention we are in a cell phone dead zone, so a driver might not be able to get a signal in our area.

I recognise the delivery company name, though, only because companies my daughter has ordered from have used them. They are not common here. If I remember correctly, they were one of the delivery drivers that left her package tied to the gate.

We’ll see how that works.

I think it’s time for me to send another edit to Google Maps to get our road properly labelled.

The Re-Farmer

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