Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A decent day

Today's radioplay: 'Girl with Gazelle'

I finished cleaning my desk out today. There's just taking my extra stuff home and that's it. The furniture is being moved tomorrow. My desk has one pen and a sticky pad on it. Even my bulletin board is bare. Sometime next week they'll put the cubicles together. The overhead bins will come a little later, though, so for now my plants are in the windows by the computers.

Interesting factoid I learnt today: Vanilla bean is from an orchid. They are naturally pollinated only by a specific bee native to Mexico which has not been successfully raised in other vanilla-producing countries. For those plantations, workers must inspect the plantation for open flowers (they only last a day) and peel back a membrane separating the male and female parts of this hermaphroditic plant. I'm brushing up on orchid basics (I bought a book on them the other day) so I can get mine to rebloom. I have a Dendrobium and a Phalaenopsis. I've never seen the Dendrobium flower--I bought it for $5 after the blooms were spent--but I think I found the same type of plant later and the blooms are pink. So are the Phalaenopsis', but lighter ranging to a mild pink. They are both epiphytic (growing on trees), so they're in a special potting medium. The Dendrobium has pseudobulbs, the Phalaenopsis does not, but rather has three thick leaves that spread out from the centre. I am having some trouble with brown on the Dendrobium's newest growth, but I don't think it's a fungus. I'm still getting the whole watering schedule down, so it may be too much water or perhaps the artificial light of the library is too strong for the new growth. I'm digging to find a cure, and in the meantime snipping off the areas affected in case they are fungal and being careful with it around other plants.

I was out running errands today and was sitting in the car when I heard the most exquisite, clear birdsong. I think it may have been a mockingbird. Last night I sat in the quiet with just the hum of the computer and the chirping of a cricket outside. It's those little things you appreciate, or at least I do.

My foot's still giving me trouble, but nothing I can't live with. I did try the hand-towel-in-the-boot thing and am happy to report that there was no new acerbation of the abrasions that had been forming on my legs.

Well, I need to go, Cerys needs to go out and I need to get ready for the carpet cleaners who are coming tomorrow.

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