Saturday, September 22, 2007

My New House Guard

Just goes to show in this town, you can never be sure what will greet you when you get home. I am just recovering from chasing this little fella all around my front door to a position where I could actually be brave enough to unlock my door. I then summoned all my courage and opened the door and went inside only to find that he'd scarpered - and of course my subsequent fear was 'oh shit he's in the house'!!

Luckily he'd hopped the other direction... whew!! I had a tense few hours when we were in Miami chasing a tiny lizard (perhaps salamander - but it was green??) round our tiny studio apartment and I didn't fancy doing the same with a New Orleans tree frog!!

I don't do well with creepy crawlies or amphibians....
and I live where...????
I must be crazy - or just brave!!!


charlotte said...

Awww....I love the tree frogs! Doncha think they're cute? I find frogs and lizards fascinating and I'm the official lizard-catcher at work!

Cursed Tea said...

charlotte - I'll get you to come over the next time I have this problem!! (pleeeease!!!)
yes, I think they are cute but they make me go all girlie when I have to touch them or have them in my living space - but they are very nice in the garden!!!

Carl said...

There are literally hundreds of thousands if not millions of the little fellers all over the part of Florida where I reside. There have been as many as two dozen of them clinging to various places on the front wall of my house on the porch. I have to double check the front door if I come in at night to make sure one of them isn't hiding there only to jump off inside the house.

scrimp said...

Here is an excerpt from the supernatural novel, The Beatitudes, by Lyn LeJeune, now available at and all booksellers around the world. Lyn is donating ALL royalties to the New Orleans Public Library Foundation to help rebuild the public libraries of New Orleans. If you like what you read here, order the book, enjoy, and help NEW ORLEANS. (blog is come and join The Beatitudes Network – Rebuilding the Public Libraries of New Orleans) “BUY A BOOK, BUILD A LIBRARY,” AS QUOTED AT FREAKONOMICS, NEW YORK TIMES, 8/14/07.

Again the dream: Pinch smiling, her skin glistening, her smile solemn. The pliant light of dusk folds over her body. A deep purple cloak spreads white, colors like a kaleidoscope ripples at its heart, red, blue and pale white. A hand moves out of it’s chest and swiftly, before I can wake, before I can scream, she is run through with an instrument that flares gold, blood bubbles and a whiff of vapor coils across the scene. A voice that is me but not me calls out a truth that I have known for too long: that when I wake to the soft shadows of dawn, she will be no more. They say that cops routinely dream about their partner’s death. So why should it be different for social workers? This is my dream of Pinch’s murder. It is as clear as I see myself in my bathroom mirror, in the soap and grease-encrusted mirror at work, and in the mirror that is Pinch’s eyes. I had told her about it, about how sometimes what I saw in my mind came true, how other times I just couldn’t know because it happened in places far away. She said she understood. Her grandmother had practiced voodoo. “Perhaps you’re a Gran Met. A voodoo guide or something,” she had laughed. It wasn’t until a week later that I remembered to look up the term in a history of voodoo in New Orleans. Gran Met: intermediary between the living and the dead. A priestess. Mildly shaken, I had gone to St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 and watched as tourists with cameras hanging from their necks scratched three Xs on Marie Laveau’s crumbling tomb. Mold and soot attached themselves to the stucco encasement no matter how often it was cleaned. Admirers and sycophants had cluttered the area with tokens, most of them trinkets that symbolized appeals for a better life. And then I heard children laughing, a sonorous but faraway tinkling, like a bewitched wind chime. There are times when we scoff at what we perceive as the irrational, brushing away stentorian alarms; and we pay dearly for that foolish action. I had done that most of my life, hushing the voices that begged for validation, closing my eyes to the pulsating shapes that followed me. As I surveyed the gaggle of tourists on that now far away day, I saw no children. Gran Met with two souls, one the gros bon ange which gives her the will to live and survive and connects her to the living and should she wish, if good works are done, she may return, I guess be reincarnated, for a better life. Soul number two: our personality, the face we see in the mirror, our earthly essence: ti bon ange. I walked away shaking my head and thinking perhaps it was time I paid another visit to the department’s psychiatrist. I had watched my mother sit at our kitchen table talking to people who were not there, soothing their fears, understanding their pain. The year before she died, she stared at me as though I had become air; the night she died, I was but a ghost in her life. My mother died a madwoman and that was something I never wanted to tell Pinch. Better a voodoo princess than the madwoman of New Orleans.
I woke on the first morning of my suspension just as the sun crested the rim of the world. City noises reverberated and called the people to work. But I would not answer the call today. I dressed quickly, washed, pulled on my boots and headed out for coffee and a big breakfast. I stumbled along Royal Street, sensing rather than seeing my trilling reflection in the show windows. Antiques, shadow, paintings, shadow, an undulating form sparkling. I stopped abruptly, turned, and looked at the glass. I hadn’t realized that I had dressed in complete black. A black turtle neck sweater, black jeans, black leather boats with steel toes. My face was devoid of makeup; my skin was pallid, as though a vampire had taken my substance during the night. I turned sideways; I had become almost stick-like except for my protruding breasts. A very tall form moved into the picture, an older man some two heads above me with a mane of white hair. Some doll, uh? He asked. I turned, fully expecting to have it out with him, but there was no one there.
I finally made it to Café du Monde and sat as far away from others that I could get, against a wall that hedged on an embankment. Beyond the embankment was the Mississippi River; already horns from freighters split and cracked the air, gulls circled overhead in search of garbage. In front of me, I could see St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square amassed with tourists, vendors and natives heading for work. A young man approached me and I bought a Times-Picayune, knowing my face would be spread across the front page. I waited for my espresso and beignets before opening the paper, before confronting the fact that I had been made a fall guy in the press.