Here’s wishing you all a happy and prosperous New Year! Once again, I have let far too much time go between blog posts. So much has happened in the past months.
We have finally had our trial. It was supposed to only be on November 16th, but wound up carrying over for another half of a day on December 7th. The first day consisted of nothing but Cathy testifying. I’m told that she did very well (since I was on the witness list, I had to wait outside the whole day). The town counsel’s entire argument and rationale for denying our exemption is that they believe we are a sham out to defraud the town. Never mind our 501(c)3 status, never mind that we have the status of a nonprofit religious corporation, never mind that we have an established theology that has been enumerated on our website for years. No, we’re just a sham. The defense strategy consisted solely of cross-examination. The town introduced no witnesses, no evidence, nothing. It was just Vincelette and on Day 2 his associate trying to knock us down on the stand, and failing. Their arguments were, shall we say, utterly absurd.
It was my turn on the stand on Day 2. We were not sure at first if I was going to be called, but given that I am the Housemother here and the only person who has lived consistently on the property other than Cathy during the years in question that it seemed impossible for me not to be called. We were worried that I would have to endure some serious, irrelevant nitpicking, but fortunately that was not the case. Although I was nervous as hell, I was told later on that I did very well. On the whole, we feel very confident that we will succeed in this, but now we have to wait another 3 months or so to get the verdict.
As for other news, I’d like to welcome some new residents to Central House. First, the warmest welcome to Kassandra and Melanie from Saugerties who moved in earlier this month. Kassie has become a novice here, finally. It’s something we had hoped for for a number of years now. They’ve been a great addition to the household.
We are also home now to three young chickens! This has been another one of our dreams was to have a flock of layer hens for our own eggs. We opted to start out with three pullets, since this seemed like the most cost-effective way to get started (i.e. no expensive incubation equipment for eggs or chicks). We got them in late October, and now they are all grown up and laying! They are a hybrid variety called Black Stars known for outstanding egg production and they have already lived up to their reputations, each giving us one egg per day. We have named them Boudicca, Sheeba and Nancy. Why Nancy, I don’t know. Cath insisted on it. I was all set to call her Jezebel. Oh well, maybe the next batch of hens will have a Jezebel. ~:>
Not long after I posted the last blog entry, I woke up one morning at 4am to water dripping on my cheek – and my room is on the second floor, mind you. This was during the week that Tropical Storm Lee hit us, and it was a several-days long, soaking rain. I cussed up a storm of my own, vowing to get the roof done if I had to haul my fat @$$ up there to do it myself! Then that day at work, I had an idea. I created an event on Facebook: Maetreum of Cybele Roofing Party for that Saturday, and it was a success! We got several volunteers and as it turns out, I didn’t have to get on the roof myself. My job was to haul heavy buckets of latex roofing goop up several ladders to make sure that the roofers were well stocked. I don’t want to get into what kind of pain I was in afterwards, but it worked! The roof is now done. YAAAAAY!!!!!!!
We also reached another milestone this fall: we’ve been painting the house. As of now, the west wall is completely done and the south-facing front of the house is now almost done. The base color is a very, very pale pink and the trim is maroon. They both look very good together and the house is now looking better than it has in years. Unfortunately, since it is now winter, we will have to wait until spring to finish it, but at least the most difficult parts of it are now done and the house is really looking good!