Saturday, January 30, 2016

Bike chain

-went out this morning to feed the cats, as usual.  The hubs had the car, so I rode my bike the five miles down the shore.  There was nothing much to report.  The cats were all well hidden in the bramble and under the rocks.  I left wet food in the camo-rock-sleep-space, put some kitty treats in the little cat cubby, and dished out some grub to those that lurk under the bridge.

I was about to pedal home when I spied a city vehicle making its way up onto the bike/ped trail by the first feeding station.  The city truck was hauling what looked to be a small, red buggy.  Intrigued, I ditched my plan to cycle home, dropped the bike against some bushes and peeped at the workers as they exited the truck.  Setting out cones to mark off the area around their vehicle, the guys then unloaded the buggy from the truck bed.  The little vehicle was kitted out with plastic tanks containing some sort of fluid.  The workers got into the buggy and made their way into the wet areas just beyond the brush that had, in recent weeks, become full of stagnant rain water.  Up until now, ducks had been using the area as a make-shift pond.

As the dudes drove through the water spraying something odorous in their wake, I walked up to the parked truck and saw that it had been dispatched by some sort of mosquito vector control team.  I'd never seen the municipal logo before and wondered if its presence had anything to do with that new(ish) Zika virus I'd been reading about the papers, or if the city dispatches sprayers every year when the waters are high along the shore.

I checked out the workers for a few minutes longer to see if they were inadvertently going to disrupt the feeding areas (they didn't) before picking up my bike and going home.  I must have really chucked my bike into the bramble because when I picked it up I could see that the chain was not only off, but twisted around the pedal and also disengaged from the back derailleur.  I couldn't put the fix the chain and it had started to rain, so I just sucked it up and walked with my bike home.  At least the cats are probably okay.
Tommy, about a month back.


  1. Good that the cats are probably OK, that stinks about the bike chain and walk home. I'm starting to have mild anxieties about this zika thing...

    1. Yeah, the hubs fixed the chain in like two minutes. I felt dumb. I read that Zika only affects the first trimester of pregnancies, so may that put your mind at ease. :)

  2. Hi Bea, you and I are like minded. Years ago, I found three cats at the barn and began feeding them. At some point, I could not keep up having them fixed as a new litter appeared and before I knew it, there were more than 50. I kept feeding them all and loved them all. I found a place in Connecticut that provided feline birth control for feral cat colonies. I signed up and it worked for 3 years. The vet had a donation that enabled his study and it was based on the number of cats in the colony. Seems that progesterone no bigger than a grain of sand, given with soft food, was all that was needed. The vet died and the funding fell through. I just know someone else could do this and very inexpensively. I now have 2 barn cats and 4 cats up at the house and all are fixed. And, nice to meet you.

    1. Hi, Donna! Nice to meet you as well. What an amazing program that must have been up in Connecticut. The colony here was, I think, around 75 strong some ten years ago. The original volunteers became quite savvy at cat-trapping and all the cats have since been neutered. Today's colony is no more than ten kitties and all are geriatric. It's now about keeping the cats well fed and as safe as possible as they live out their 'twilight years'.


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