In 2003, my husband Al drew up some plans and started building a gazebo for me in the back yard, because I am allergic to both insect repellants and insect bites. And because we wanted to watch thunderstorms in comfort, no matter which direction they were coming from. Previously we had been using the utility shed in the back yard, which faces North (wrong direction), using a sheet of plywood to keep the muddy water from soaking us to the knees when it splashed into the shed. We had power for the amateur radio transceivers in the shed (for following the weather spotters net when we didn’t go out spotting), but the rain could get at them.
The dogs in the photograph, Ladd and Rascal, lived to ages 15 and 14. We still miss them. Samantha is living as a single dog and enjoying the attention of both of us. She’s carrying on the tradition of sitting at Al’s feet, watching him eat. And now she doesn’t have to share the leftovers.
The house is no longer blue, and the gazebo walls have been painted. And it is time to move a lot of the junk out of there, so that I have more leg room. I spend a lot of time in the back yard.