Wednesdays are particularly tough. What sounds like bowling balls being thrown down wooden lanes turns out to be monstrous trash cans pulled out from backyards, rolled down sidewalks and then dropped off the edge of curbs to land with resounding thunks on the street. They sit there until the behemoth of a truck lumbers up to them, stops, scoops them up, dumps out the contents, and then smacks them back down onto the asphalt.
And then there are the gardeners.
FEMALE PEEP: “Those are the mow and blow guys, Charlie Bear. They don’t take long.”
They pull machinery out of the back of their trucks, first untying ropes that bind them or bungee cords that hold them, and then they pull cords that roar those machines to life. I listen to their ear-piercing leaf blowers, screaming mowers, scraping rakes, and spraying water hoses. I don’t mind the raking and the hosing, but there ought to be a law against those mowers and blowers.
One day, there wasn’t any noise at all. The air had an eerily silent calm to it. It was a day in early November, just a couple weeks after I arrived here. Something didn’t feel right. It was like static electricity through the pads of my feet or something. I was on high alert, head held high, bouncing back and forth around and around the yard. Then I ran up to the screen door and stopped short. That’s when it hit.
It was 9:07 a.m. and a 3.8 magnitude quake hit in Long Beach, just a short ways away.
FEMALE PEEP: “Wow, Charlie Bear, that was a jolter.”
It knocked the house like someone took a huge fist to it and then residual waves flowed through the ground. I grabbed my little squirrel and ran to the top of the sofa. If you ask me, earthquakes are worse than mowers, blowers, and gardeners combined.
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NOTE: If you want to catch up with what happened in LBA (Life Before Adoption), you can look under “Charlie Chat” on the right. All the posts are there, and these new ones about LAA (Life After Adoption) will be there too. Watch for more of Something to Chew On by me, Charlie Bear, in the weeks ahead.
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