A few weeks ago, I took an afternoon off and went with my friend Bethany and her little dude Dominic to a pumpkin patch, where we wandered around and admired the pumpkins and ate samples of apple crisp from the little bakery. At some point, I apparently lost my mind, because I picked out a rather large pumpkin and then purchased it, in spite of the fact that I had no real end game in mind. At various points later that same day, the pumpkin fell out of Bethany’s car and rolled down her driveway, and then smacked repeatedly into various parts of the back of my car every time I stopped at a stoplight on the 30-minute drive home.
It survived that ordeal okay, and when I announced to Mike that we would be carving it, he greeted the idea with enthusiasm that likely belied his skepticism about whether or not I would actually follow through on this, given that I am neither a patient person, nor a crafty person, nor a person who particularly likes the feeling of ooky things on her hands. He IS, however, a patient person, and since he works at a desk all day long doing mathy things he likes to spend a lot of his free time doing manly things with his hands, he googled a carving template, printed it out, and carved the pumpkin, while I burned roasted the seeds and said encouraging things. The end result was a lovely jack-o-lantern that we placed in the windowsill of the bathroom at the front of our house on Halloween, since our front porch is rather small and that window faces the street rather nicely. None of our trick-or-treaters complimented us on the jack-o-lantern, but I like to think he enhanced their Halloween experience in some way.
It just so happens that we have a fat, orange cat that loves to sit on the ledge of that window, enjoying the sun and gazing out onto our street, contemplating what a lucky cat he is that he is a member of our family, rather than the family that lives across the street that yells all the time. (Or something. It is a little difficult to tell what he is thinking. If he is, in fact, thinking anything at all, other than idly looking forward to the next time I make a tuna sandwich.) The end result of this confluence of events is that for the better part of the week following Halloween, every time I went into that bathroom, I said “Hi Max!” brightly to the pumpkin, which never once gave me a soft headbutt or purr of recognition in response. It is bad enough that I talk to the cat at all, and it’s worse still that this mix-up happened even ONCE, so I am somewhat hesitant to tell you that I confused our cat with a pumpkin SEVERAL TIMES A DAY for several days, but I’m sure you will understand when I say I’m relieved that the pumpkin is now in the combost bin in the garage, and I am feeling significantly less crazy.