If federal sharpshooters show up here and pick off some deer, they won’t be acting on my behalf even though a resident deer family devoured the Christmas cactuses that were outside for the summer. The cactuses had gone out and in for years, flowering for Christmas, so I’m particularly aware of their loss this week. If I had known how hungry the deer were going to be, I might have been more watchful. Four small cactuses of the variety that blooms nearer Thanksgiving have taken their place, but they’re scanty substitutes.
On Monday this week I awoke — I won’t say like Ebenezer Scrooge — to the awareness that the year was rushing to an end. Two and a half weeks till a new year. . . . And so I hurriedly began getting ready for it.