Friday, August 29, 2008

Friday Ficlet! Steamy, Sultry, and Getting Rave Reviews!

Stirrings That Pre-Date the Dawn

They’d had a late night. The white gown was still crumpled on the floor. A trail of silks and linens led to a hotel bed in disarray.

It wasn’t even light out. The horizon was barely a lighter shade of midnight blue to the blackness of the dewy landscape.

But they were awakened by stirrings that pre-date the dawn.

A line of golden light beamed on the floor from under a closed door. Tendrils of steam danced out, permeating the light, shining a cool gray and rising quickly into the stillness of the darkened room.

Suddenly the door opens, a fog envelops the form of two humans holding onto one another, completely immersed in each other. The fog quickly dissipates into the dark room and the couple follow it toward the bed.

In the lit bathroom, two water droplets race, zig zagging down the cloudy mirror, pooling together, moving faster, until they reach the filigreed edge.

Two drawn hearts overlap on the mirror. Two real hearts beat against one another in the morning as the sun slowly rises on love.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

When They Know, You Know, Ya Know?

Today I took my oldest to Kindergarten! I almost feel old, but not as old as when I'll take my youngest. Look at him, running to get to the door! He actually just wanted to push the wheelchair button, but let's not underestimate his eagerness!

He found his friend inside those doors where we waited, and they compared backpacks and shirts. His friend wasn't excited. He was sort of like, I'm back, so what? They met at this school for preschool. While I had to transfer my oldest to another preschool mid-year, this other little boy had stayed at this building all year. My son was therefore happy to be back, and not at all anxious about staying here. His friend, was a little nervous and quiet. His friend knew he would be in a new room with new people, two things he obviously had time to think about. My son, has no idea what it will be like, but he's had two teachers in the past and he can handle a third! His confidence is stellar, born of ignorance, but stellar!

Many parents walked down to the room with their little tykes. I however, knew better. No tears today. Mommies and Daddies need to separate themselves at the door. I waved good bye to him and said urgently to follow his teacher. That was all he needed. If I would have followed him, he would have time to think about separation anxiety. He would have time to grow alligator tears and hug me fiercely. Not gonna happen. No. I know he's ready, and I know he'll be fine. Because of how he ran into the building!

And me? No tears either. He's ready for this, I'm ready for this. I'm looking forward to the stories when he gets off the bus in a couple of hours!

Monday, August 18, 2008

A Tutorial for Cleaning Your Turtle

Since ALRO asked me "How do you wash a turtle?" I have decided to share my knowledge in a blog post!

First you must remove the turtles from their tank and clean everything in it in bleach water. I scrub the basking rock, run all of the gravel through the water with a collander to keep the gravel in, and let the particles out. Because, let's face it, those particles are poop. Poop and shell flakes. I even scrub the tank with bleach water in the bath tub and rinse it before putting all of the now clean items back inside.

The turtles, meanwhile are placed in a small tub with water and Betadine to kill the germs. They swim around dislodging algae, particles, germs. It is important that they swim so the water mixture can get into the crevices they won't otherwise expose for you.
Here, the Betadine has had time to dissipate into the water. You should put in enough to make the water tea colored. Then let them swim until they've mixed it all up and it dissolves.

You can see the scratches on my turtle's shell from the dog's teeth. She has been shedding the darker colored layer of her shell revealing the lighter underneath.

Once she developed a soft spot and hole in her shell from a fungus, and these Betadine washes became more frequent for two weeks. :)

Next I lift them up and check for new discolored places, algae that hangs on their legs, and take a soft baby toothbrush and gently scrub their shells. Especially inside beside their legs, which they pull in in fright. The baby turtle tries to run, while the big one hisses at me, but they have to be cleaned. Hopefully with more handling, they will become tamer.

The Betadine makes the bristles of the toothbrush yellow, so I rinse it out when finished. It's a good indicator that it's clean. Besides, Betadine is an antisceptic. I just wouldn't brush your teeth with it!

Next you see me dumping five gallons of water back into the tank. We get our water from the dispenser in our local supermarket at the Kiosk. five gallons is heavy! About 40 pounds of dead weight. It's a lot more difficult than lifting my 43 pound son who's skeleton provides a distribution of the weight!

Lastly I put some reptile conditioner in the water to make it a little slimy. I also clean the filter and put a new filter in it.

And now I have happy turtles! They are relieved to be back in their home, clean, and not being touched!