Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Manic Monday

It's Storytime.  For those of you who aren't my close friends and don't follow me on Facebook - I'll get you caught up...

So I go out to water the flowers on Sunday mid-morning and Hello!  There is a turtle digging under Evelyn's Petunia's she planted (and have totally thrived I might add).  So I scream because it took me by surprise and because this turtle was pretty big.  The shell was probably 10 inches in diameter.  Then I yelled for Evelyn to come and see it.  The entire the turtle is moving it's little back legs digging.  Joe and Evelyn and both dogs come out to see the turtle.  I had this wonderful (not great) idea to move it over to the bridge in our neighborhood which goes across a backwater area of Clabber Creek that only has water if it rains for 7 days in a row.  Joe and I were so proud of ourselves for giving him a shady area to hang out in and that bridge is prime real estate.  Evelyn named him Blue and made up a song about Blue Under the Bridge a la Christina Aguilera style singing. 

As we walked back to the house I thought aloud "Aren't turtles reptiles?  Don't they like to be in the sun?"  We assumed he was digging under the petunias to get some shade.  That one flicker of doubt caused me to grab the iPad when we got home and start researching. 

"Blue" hard at work

After a few minutes of researching I found out we had encountered a red-earned slider turtle.  Very common - he probably had come up from the creek.  But then I read further that they leave water to lay eggs.  And when they lay eggs they do a "dance" when their back legs and pack the dirt on top of the eggs.  So I tell Joe all this and we mark our calendars for 60 days because that's the gestation period. 

Monday comes and I get up early and get E to school early and when I get home I decide to water the newer plants I've planted to help get their roots established.  So I water the back and then the front and I'm standing over in the turtle-ized area and I see a petunia and roots flutter across the yard.  So I look at the petunias................then I run to them.

Some sort of predatory animal had come in the night and dug up the (yes, they were there) eggs the turtle had laid and cracked them all open and ate them.  I cry.  And I am not a crier.  The last time TV made me cry is when Jesus from True Blood** got whacked on Southland (one of the most powerful episodes of TV ever made).  I can count on my hands which movies have made me cry:  Patch Adams, Armageddon, Message in a Bottle, PS I Love You and The English Patient (most of which were during emotional times in my life).  I'm just not really a cryer, but I cried for so many reasons:  I was sad about those poor baby turtles and I felt guilty for moving the turtle before she was done covering up her hole completely.  Maybe if we had let her finish none of this would have happened.  Maybe she pees on the dirt or something and that throws off predators. 

So I text Joe and it's like he can sense my tearducts have opened and he's like "are you crying" and I'm like "Yes!" and I thought he was going to come home from work because he didn't quite know what to do.  So to cope I completely ignore the situation outside and decide to eat some breakfast and shampoo all the rugs downstairs and watch Extreme Makeover - Weight Loss Edition.  Little did I know what this show was about.  So I'm balling the entire episode.  Now Joe's really worried and he tells me to take a bath ( I did do this later in the afternoon).  So I start texting my friends about the horrendous scene in my front yard to kill some time until I have to clean up the mess and get the flower bed back in order.  I did not need Evelyn coming home and freaking about her flowers and then see the eggs cracked open.

When I finally tell myself I need to get out there and clean up the eggs and fill in the hole before it gets too hot; I put on my gloves and get a bag and pick up the egg shells and realize the hole the turtle dug was almost a foot deep.  That turtle must have been working on the digging and laying and recovering all night.  Probably the predator had been watching during all of that.  So I'm crying and cleaning up.  I just hope that maybe the hole is bigger than I thought and some eggs are still down there making a baby turtle.  Needless to say I'm crying during the cleanup and get angry, Very Angry. 

I come inside and google "Animals that eat turtle eggs".  Most likely it's a raccoon - which I see dead in the road in our neighborhood once a month.  Turns out they hate Tabasco sauce.  So I mix gallons upon gallons of Tabasco in hot water and pour them all over my flower beds to hopefully keep them at bay and in case there are any more eggs.  That made me feel better.  I came very close to calling up my good friends at Terminix and having them come set up traps. 

Let me assure you my day did not get better, our central vac system was broken when I tried to use it.  And the reason I tried to use it is going to be the subject matter of my next blog entry about the ottoman for Evelyn's room.  Let me tell you - worst DIY project I've ever encountered.  I'm praying E takes a long nap so I can get the bulk of the sewing done this afternoon and can then make Joe help me staple when we get home and then I can move on with my life - and onto the matching chair. 

As my final advice for the day - audit your EOB's from insurance companies.  I called about 6 different items yesterday and am getting about $500 bucks back.  Turns out our insurance company had my chiropractor listed on their internal site as "out of network".  He's not.  Just ridiculous!  Joe use to work as the financial reporting manager for an insurance company and literally his first day of work he was told that they purposely don't pay anything that's under $15 because most people receive a bill for $12 and say "it's only $12, it's easier to pay it than to argue with the insurance company".  Insurance companies make MILLIONS of dollars a year by doing this.  Don't let them get away with it.  And don't ever pay money at your doctor's visits unless it's a copay.  We were overbilled by 3 different doctors so far this year and I've got refund checks coming.  I received a bill about 3 months after E was born that I didn't understand so I called the company and argued it twice.  It started at $320.  The next bill was $120, then $50, then $12, then $3.  I paid it when it hit $3.  It's SO frustrating how their business is run - what a ripoff.  As my Paga (dad's dad) would have said "It's all a racket".

** And what is up with Jesus from True Blood*** getting whacked off every show he's on?  He was the sister's boyfriend/baby daddy on Ugly Betty who got shot.  Then he gets killed by a gang on Southland.  And on last season of True Blood his possessed boyfriend (yes, boyfriend) stabs him.  Why we gotta keep killing the hottie?

***If I don't know an actor's name I refer to them from their most famous role.  During my obsession with Flash Forward (the greatest show to get cancelled EVER), I referred to the guy that Olivia had a flash forward about as "The Pirates of the Caribbean guy" and I still do because now he is on SMASH. 


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