Fake Accents and Bad Jokes

Note: Some of this might have happened exactly as described. 😉

Yesterday during my volunteering stint I launched into a bad British accent and couldn’t get rid of it. Is it any wonder that the team leader sent me to the edge of the site to clean out the Cambros? For the uninformed, Cambro is the brand name for a line of containers that keep foods hot. The ones I was sent to sanitize because I couldn’t stop sounding like Eliza Doolittle pre-transformation, were styrofoam boxes on steroids.

I became fairly efficient at the task while prattling on about scones and tea to no one in particular. When a couple of other volunteers joined me I welcomed them and showed them the ropes.

“So, are you a Brit?” asked one of the women.

“No,” I said, in bad cockney. “But I play one on the telly, luv.”


Peace, people, and always remember the rain in Spain falls mainly in the plain, and all that Jazz.


You know how Facebook reads your posts and all of a sudden your feed is magically filled with content that is in some way related? I’m hoping you do, because if it’s just me that happens to that might creep me out.

Anyway, after I returned to Hurricane Michael ravaged Florida from Texas I posted on FB that I was looking for opportunities to volunteer in some way. Voila! Within mere minutes a post seeking volunteers for storm relief miraculously popped up. The group, Operation BBQ Relief, made it easy to sign up.

As soon as I’d answered a few simple questions their website told me I’d be contacted with a place and time to volunteer. I kept checking my email and text messages all Monday evening, but hadn’t heard anything by the time Studly Doright and I went to bed last night.

First thing on Tuesday morning, though, I saw that during the night I’d received three emails. The first one told me I’d been “deployed” to help on Monday morning the 15th. Hmm. That boat had sailed. I figured better late than never, though, and hurriedly dressed to drive into Tallahassee. The second email just told me what to wear and where to go, and the third told me I’d been okayed to help. I might’ve read them out of order, but I figured everything out.

When I arrived at the staging site around 7:30 a.m., things were already hopping. I signed in, got a hat and a name tag and tried to find my niche. I hadn’t been there long when a man with an official looking t-shirt on tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I knew of a laundromat in the area that would pick up and drop off clothes. I’d just been to the closest one a couple of days ago and knew they weren’t doing that at this time. One would think this would be THE time for such services, but what do I know? I volunteered to take the items and launder them. Soon, I had a large trash bag full of gloves, dish cloths, and aprons. I was cool with being the laundress. Once everything had finished drying I hurried back to see what other tasks were in store.

Basically, OBR prepares, cooks, and packages foods to be picked up by groups like the Salvation Army and local churches. These groups deliver to places without electricity and water. One of the team leaders told me that even yesterday they spoke with local folks who hadn’t had a meal since the hurricane hit last Wednesday.

I found myself packaging and labeling items such as red beans and rice, peas and carrots, and bbq beans. The meats were handled by a separate crew–those with food handling certification. As volunteers packed items, trailers pulled up to be loaded. Everything was well organized and efficient with permanent team members directing volunteers of all ages, sizes, and ethnicities. What an experience!

At lunch time, they fed us an amazing lunch. The country group, The Zac Brown Band donated the services of their huge kitchen trailer and a cook to feed volunteers. I got a quick tour of the trailer. It’s like a chef’s dream.

After working until two p.m. on Tuesday everything on my 62-year-old body hurts, but if I am able to walk on Wednesday morning I’ll go back to work again. It felt good to know we were there to help. Here are a few photos I took during some downtime.

One of the volunteers wrote little love notes on the box lids:

Pallets stacked with water bottles:

Peace, people.


At Tallahassee Animal Services there’s an adult male cat named Badger. He’s the sweetest guy and loves to be snuggled and groomed. But Badger has only one eye, so people barely pause by his kennel. 

Sometimes they look in, but I’ve not seen one person ask to take him out and hold him. Of course I’m only at the shelter for a couple of hours each week. I fervently hope that he gets some attention when I’m not there.

I’ve begun taking him out of his kennel at the beginning of my shift and again before I leave. We talk. I tell him my problems and he listens like a pro. He, on the other hand, never complains. But he does wink, and you know a girl enjoys a good wink.

Badger is an easygoing guy with a sweet personality. He’d make a fine companion. 


Showing his best side.
Remember, don’t shop, adopt!

Volunteering at Tallahassee Animal Services

My second shift as a volunteer at Tallahassee Animal Services went well. We were really busy this afternoon with a great many potential adopters coming through the cat lobby. 

So far, I have resisted the urge to begin adoption procedures, but I find myself being a cheerleader for certain cats. There are several who’ve been at the center since I first signed up to volunteer.

One of my favorites is a pretty adult female named Kandy. She’s got such a sweet personality and loves to talk. Another is Margarita. What a gorgeous darling! She’s also an adult cat with a friendly nature. 

Then there’s Peter Parker. He was surrendered by his owner who became too ill to care for him. Peter loves to be petted, but is nervous about coming out of his kennel. He needs a loving, stable home.

Of course kittens are all the rage, and they’re awfully cute. One sibling pair, Paul and Newman are so playful. I doubt if they’ll still be at the shelter next Wednesday. And that’s a very good thing.

Remember, adopt, don’t shop!

I’m a really lousy cat photographer, but this is Newman. he liked me. He’d love going home with his very own human.

Volunteer Gig

One week from today I will begin volunteering at Tallahassee Animal Services. I’ve passed the interview process, attended an orientation, and even successfully answered a brief quiz. I’m so ready!

Lately I’ve been dreaming about the cats I’ll be working with. Cats and kittens of all sizes visit my subconscious, demanding love, food, and care. In my dreams I also feel I am responsible for naming them: Vader, Anakin, Katniss, Four, and Tris. Okay, I read way too many young adult and scifi novels. 

Sometimes in my dreams the cats carry on full blown conversations with me. We discuss their days and the people they saw come through the shelter since my last scheduled visit. These cats have a lot of hopes and dreams for their futures. I sure hope I can help them with that.

Peace, people! 

sample cat

Kitten Cuddler Update

I have good news and bad news about my bid to become a Kitten Cuddler at the county animal services center.

Good news: I did not babble too much during the interview and have been offered an opportunity to volunteer at the shelter.

Bad news: I know it will come as a shock to my readers, but I am not qualified to be a Kitten Cuddler. Kitten Cuddling is a Level 2 volunteer position, and I must first attend an orientation and log 20 hours as a Level 1 volunteer. 

The bad news isn’t terrible; in fact, it’s wonderful news, but “good news/wonderful news” doesn’t carry the weight of “good news/bad news.”

I’ll still be working with felines, learning the routines, feeding cats and kittens, and cleaning cages. I am beyond excited. The next orientation is scheduled for an evening during the first week of August, and I can’t wait!

Thanks for all of the positive vibes sent my way. I’m sure that’s what kept me from sharing embarrassing details from my youth.

Peace, people!

Kitten Cuddler

My weekdays have become boringly predictable:

Rise, eat, blog, cruise Facebook, send a positive message to President Obama on Twitter, eat, do some chores, blog, cruise Facebook, check email, help Studly Doright build stuff in his new shop, eat, watch Ray Donovan or True Detective while enjoying a glass of wine, read in bed, try to sleep, have a hot flash, get up, change p.j.s, go back to bed, sleep, repeat.

Hopefully tomorrow my life will change. I have an interview at the Animal Services Center in Tallahassee to become, wait for it, a volunteer Kitten Cuddler! I have mad skills in this area, and I hope the volunteer coordinator recognizes this.

Often during interviews I provide way too much information. The question, “could you tell us a little about yourself?” often begins innocently enough with me giving my work experience and somewhere towards the end with a recounting of my first sexual experience. Awkward!

It’s as if my mouth and brain are waging a battle and my mouth has the upper hand. My brain begins saying, “Shut up! Just shut the hell up!” While my mouth keeps spewing my life’s history.

Keep me in your thoughts tomorrow. And if you’ve got any skill in telekinesis, please put a seal on my lips.

Peace, people.