Valentine’s Day in Ocean Park

It’s a chilly ocean here in Maine, compared with the 80-degree water at Maho Bay, where I was swimming last week every morning on St. John, USVI. I’m heading back to Cambridge, Mass., this morning after a brief stay at the cottage. Darlene is at a quilting workshop this week in Harpswell, Maine, so romance today is confined to text messages and a card she left me on my pillow. ¬†That will do. I love knowing she is deep into the creation of her next incredible quilt, based on a photo of a baby elephant. I took advantage of a couple of mornings here in Ocean Park to press ahead with learning how to format e-books for Kindle.

Claire is in my charge for the week, a challenge for both of us. Yesterday she drove me nuts by running away whenever I tried to put on her coat and leash to go outside in the freezing cold to do her business. She thought it was a hilarious game, and I thought otherwise. Technology came to the rescue. My parents have installed an ingenious vacuum-powered tube elevator in the cottage, and when it’s operating the sound is exactly like a Hoover. ¬†Claire hates Hoovers. At home she barks nonstop whenever a vacuum cleaner is turned on, stabbing her tiny teeth at the hose. What’s even more fun for her is to ride in the elevator here at the cottage, barking all the way up or down in a frenzy of excitement. So whenever I open the door to the contraption, she runs in like a mouse to the cheese. She waits expectantly for the ride to begin, and I feel like a louse putting on the jacket and leash instead. It works every time. I’m not sure what I’ll do back in Cambridge, where there’s no elevator. Maybe I’ll just turn on the Hoover.

The things you do for love!

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