A continuing tale of life in the boonies

No. 065

Falling for Emma

Ambrose Bierce defined a cat as "a soft indestructible automation provided by nature to be kicked when things go wrong in the domestic circle."

Nonetheless, listening to Larry Parent's heart-rendering account of his cat, Emma, being marooned up a willow tree for four days, meowing pitifully the while, I was moved. Although his remarks were addressed to Mrs. Meyer, other members of the Dock Square breakfast club joined in freely with suggestions. Vets, firemen, animal control officers, and a chain saw, were considered.

"John Nolan could climb a ladder!" pronounced Lorraine Meyer. Hmm. Being Citizen of the Year is a plague and a curse already, I thought to myself, wishing that I had ducked behind my Boston Globe a fraction sooner. Site review followed.

Emma the tortoiseshell cat was lodged on a fork of the willow about 25 feet up, beyond the reach of the borrowed ladder. However, I climbed to the topmost rung and stepped onto a limb beneath the cat. A plank was passed up and holding one end of it, I positioned the other into Emma's fork, accidentally nudged the cat, and sent it clawing another 15 ft. higher. Someone mentioned a 12-gauge shotgun as the only way left to give the neighbors peace.

Certainly, the cat was now nearer to its Maker and quite removed from its dwindling band of friends on earth. There was nothing to do but descend the ladder. Two rungs from the ground, I jumped, landed on a tree root and twisted my ankle. As I writhed in unspeakable agony, the cat descended to its original positin, presumably for a better view. It was rescued a short time later by the Fire Department - but I'm hobbling on a crutch left over from the Long John Silver Agon. Ironically a crutch originally donated by Lorraine Meyer.

As I sip on a whisky kindly provided by Larry, I reflect on an eerie prophesy made to Strafford County Kennel Club, in a letter sent the previous day. "Neist I'll gaun wi' baudrons..." I had written in Lallans, which translates as "Next time I'll write about cats!"

Bad Luck II: Special Police Officer Bob Bennet jumped in the new cruiser a while back (details have just emerged) and reversed into another vehicle parked outside the station. The cruiser was unscathed, but the front door panel of the other car was badly dented. Unfortunately it belonged to him!

Bad Luck III: The Farmington Fire Department No. 3 pumper recently required repairs to its tank, and had to be driven to Indiana, it being the nearest place where the job could be competently handled. Accompanying Chief Moulton on this long trip across country was cribbage player and former fireman, Wayne Spear. Being a two-day journey, they put up overnight in a small motel, and Wayne, at some stage, visited the bathroom. Unluckily the door jammed and he found himself trapped and had to yell and thump for a while. A small apologetic manager squirmed through a tiny ventilation shaft and together, he, Wayne and a screwdriver, after nearly two hours, succeeded in prising the door off its hinges.

Outdoor Club News: Leslie and Larry Kelly hosted 15 members for breakfast, a pleasant amble up Blue Job Mountain via Scruton's Field Road, and then an afternoon cookout. No wild dogs were spotted. A few days later, on the 23rd, Ken Buttons and Steve White led a climbing expedition to Whitehouse and Cathedral ledges in North Conway. Anyone interested in snowshoeing in the winter months, call 755-2405.

Ballbouncing News: Farmington and District Basketball League for Men held a meeting to decide the date for commencement of the 1986/87 season. This will be Sunday, Nov. 16. At this meeting, it was voted to admit Bob Emerson's team, Square One, into the league, hopefully bringing the number of competitors to eight. However, at the time of writing, Davidson Rubber seem unable to raise a team, leaving a vacancy. Therefore, anyone from Farmington or an adjoining town, wishing to enter a team, please contact 755-2405 ... league fee is $150, payable in two installments. Individual players seeking a team call Jim Mabey, Ron Howard, Ken Hoyt or Gary Boulay.

Main St. School: The school principal, Dorothy Hoffman, successor to Jim "Goldpan" Bibbo, announces open house for parents on Nov. 12 from 7-9 p.m. On Nov. 13 Beechum Products, of toothpaste fame, will be putting on a program illustrating the evils of smokeless (chawing) tobacco. Any interested adults can also attend, Archie.

Woman's Club: On Oct. 17, the club was entertained by a lecture from Lorus and Margary Milne, swankeepers of Durham. A new batch of office-bearers have just been elected, including President Geraldine Morphy, Vice-president Blanche Magee, 2nd V.P. Mary Kibbe, Corresponding Secretary Bernice Woodside, Recording Secretary Marjorie Hunt, Treasurer Lois Diprizio, Publicity Betty Mros, Auditor Jean Pease.

Farmington Business Association: New office bearers for 1986/87 are President Sandra Canney, Vice-president Stuart Pease, Secretary Judy Brownell, Treasurer George Mucher, Directors Betty Mros and Priscilla Fuller.

Oct. 28, 1986

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