posted by Lorraine (L.L.) Bartlett

To everything, there is a season.... And the warmest season is already winding down. My question? Where the blazes did the summer go?

It seems like only a couple of weeks ago my Dad and I planted my bean crop at our cottage. (Those not familiar with my attempts at farming may want to check out my personal blog--under the subject of gardening.) I'm now harvesting my cottage crop, which is far too much for two people to eat. (Thank goodness for extended family. And what would we have done with the bounty if the bunnies hadn't eaten the plants here at home?)

Our tomato plants never really took off. Last year we had a bushel full--this year I estimate we'll have a dozen and a half in all--and very small, too.

My roses which joyfully gave us color for most of the summer have already decided to call it quits.

My beautiful cosmos plants have shriveled (so when I see other people's plants still in bloom I turn Kelly green with envy). Our black-eyed Susans, which have attempted to take over the garden have suddenly turned brown and ugly. It's only the petunias and geraniums that are still thriving, even though most of the other annuals have already given up. (Other non-drought years, the plants have thrived into late October.)

Pool_jan_07 The money pit (otherwise known as our in-ground pool) gets covered for the winter on Thursday. That's when the Big Black Baggie goes over the top. The lovely blue liner and the shimmering water scream SUMMER. The Big Black Baggie means winter; freezing temperatures, snow and an often relentless wind.

Betsy_toys72107Worst of all, I'm counting the days I have left with my baby girl cat Betsy. In early June she was diagnosed with lymphoma. We've spent the summer hoping and praying that chemotherapy would save her. She's had ups and downs and the ups were marvelous, but suddenly the downs have come with a thundering crash. Unless we went to send her to Cornell for experimentation, our vet has more or less told us we should enjoy the time we have left with her. Is it weeks or is it days?

Turn, turn, turn....

As a mystery writer I spin tales about death. In real life, in the garden, or with your cat (and god forbid family and friends), it ain't any fun at all.

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