March Miscellany

by cheri

Our friends Don and Donna came for an overnight visit last weekend in order that Don (a lifelong citrus nurseryman) could help the good judge to prune his 58 olive trees before they start to bud.

Donna and I spent our time washing our chicken and white bean chili down with rose wine, taking  an invigorating walk,  sharing our love of art, and then drinking hot coffee. Donna is one of my most eclectic friends–a landscape designer, tennis player, pastel artist, and serious reader (among many other hobbies). She even had the fortitude to work in my office years ago.

We wandered into the olive orchard but no husbands were working. We became suspicious. Then up on the hill, out of the orchard, we saw that they had escaped their labor and had shrunk with their pruning knives and shears on belts and in hands. They had become miniatures! What would Donna and I do with two tiny men, the size of gophers?



I suggested to Donna that we leave the property immediately and escape dinner preparation while the mini-men figured out how to enlarge themselves.

Besides, I wanted to show Donna a tree that I had discovered on my last walk up our road. In all of my writing on this blog, have I ever shared my love of dragons? When I was a young girl, I read every story I could get my claws and fangs on that concerned a fire-breathing dragon. ( I’m sure Jung would have something to say about this odd fascination).


Here is my dragon tree.

We walked up the road, our bodies warmed by pillow parkas, wool gloves and mufflers made of the softest wool.

I observed to Donna that the Escobars and Bettencourts (ranchers) had placed two outstanding bulls in their herds…Bull #301 and# 403. After all, that time was coming.

Here is Bull #403

IMG_0997And farther up the road is Bull #301.


I told Donna that by the time we returned for cocktails, our miniatures would have become bulls.

We reached the top of the hill and were rewarded with this view.


I showed Donna my finished piece titled ” A Penny for Your Thoughts,” a 16×20 oil painting of a Quarterhorse named Penny that I photographed in December.


Back to business. Where were our guys?


They were coming along.


At last, out among the herd, two men emerged ready for cocktails.

At the end of the weekend, the good judge and I settled back into a familiar routine.


To disabuse you of any notion that the good judge likes Dinah, she is there by his feet and easy chair only because he often drops crackers, nuts, and pretzels (accidentally of course) and someone must clean up the mess.

To think this is only March 1st!

About Cheri

Writer, artist, cable television host, grandmother to four!
This entry was posted in dogs, Growing Olives, healthy eating, Life, My fiction, Nature photography, People, Places and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to March Miscellany

  1. Cute story. Did the tiny men finish their pruing job? If not, what did they find so interesting at the top of their hill?

  2. shoreacres says:

    Those are some fine looking bulls out there under the trees, but I have to confess I couldn’t see the dragon. Perhaps I haven’t spent enough time in the company of dragons to be able to recognize one when it presents itself. As for your miniature men: that photo made me laugh. I’m going to be humming “Don’t Fence Me In” the rest of the day.

    • Cheri says:

      The Dragon Tree does not have a head. The body is crouching. Can you see that?
      The photo made me laugh too. That’s why I built a story around it. Thanks!

      • shoreacres says:

        Hmmm…. now that I know there’s no head, I kind of see it. Actually, it looks more like Nessie to me now. I suppose she’s a bit of a dragon — sans all that fire-breathing, of course.

  3. wkkortas says:

    Males as miniatures and bulls with numbers, not names. Gives a feller pause.

    • Cheri says:

      Yes. Those bulls are mighty healthy. We hear them growl from our windows. They are warming up for a big season. Naturally, the cows have hidden.

  4. Brig says:

    The bulls look healthy and so do the goats, can’t really tell about the minis. But from the sound of it they made it back for cocktails, a win, win!

  5. Christopher says:

    In a comment on your last piece, I had said, “…….no-one can accuse you of not being eclectic in what consumes you……..”

    When therefore I saw that “…..Donna is one of my most eclectic friends……..” I said to myself it would be natural you would have friends who are eclectic too.

    Are Donna and your other friends, perchance, Catholics also?

  6. Cheri says:

    I’m not sure what “also”means. I am not Catholic. My friends Don and Donna are not Catholic. I do have Catholic friends however! In fact, when I was a little girl, we lived in a Portuguese area of town and most of my friends were Catholic. I was so jealous at lent because they were able to leave school and go down to the Holy Ghost Church, miss school, and get soot on their foreheads!

    • Christopher says:

      “……I’m not sure what ‘also’ means. I am not Catholic…….”

      What I was trying to suggest, was that you, being eclectic (catholic) in what consumes you, and with eclectic (catholic) friends, you and they just could be Catholic in your religions too (also).

      Could it be, then, that although not Catholic in religion, but nonetheless eclectic (catholic) in your tastes, you and your friends are, like, ecumenical in matters spiritual?

  7. Cheri says:

    Oh there I go again…being literal. I tend to do this type of thinking quite often. I would say we ARE ecumenical in matters spiritual!

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