nicely adapting to Switzerland (Melvin is French) and to the Wisconsin Northwoods
You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
Following the sad departure of the Squirrel in mid-February 2017, Melvin the tiny Selkirk Straight lost little time in joining us in Switzerland from his parental home near Annecy in France. At age 2, one of his favorite little torments is curling up on the keyboard and producing random effects on the screen (14 January 2018).
Another favorite Melvin pastime is watching TV, from close up.
Melvin practicing being inconspicuous
Melvin investigating the concept of 'mirrors', in Venegono Superiore on our Lodi trip, 26 February 2018
Melvin assisting in the stormy route-finding over the Simplon Pass, 28 February 2018
We've judged that Melvin would be healthier, if not happier, confined to the apartment and patio, but he's still working hard at finding away out of his green plastic chicken-wire prison, into the great outdoors of downtown Ollon (4 April 2018).
At last, a little peace and quiet (14 May 2018). ( --Close the door please.)
Melvin sightseeing on the long drive south past Alba, Italy, 16 May 2018
As we're decamping from the Valle Talloria in the Langhe region of the Piedmont, Melvin is determined not be left behind (22 May 2018).
Exploring the rainy countryside from the terrace of the Casa nel Vente ('House of the Wind') in Vignale Monferrato (26 May 2018).
Back home in Ollon and sliding off the bed asleep (4 June 2018)
Melvin has so far beaten us with all the fortifications we've been able to devise -- in fact, he's out in the yard with 20 minutes of each improvement we make (11 June 2018). We may have to reconsider his status.
In Leesburg, Virginia, 15 June 2018, assembling the luggage by the door for the drive to Staunton -- Melvin is taking steps to not get left behind.
In Kristin's cottage in Wisconsin, Melvin is locked indoors again, but only because it's nighttime -- there's some kind of special moon out tonight and everyone's out on the lawn, 28 June 2018.
In the unfamiliar cabin on Lake Superior, Melvin goes to ground (25 July 2018).
Who's got the return mailing label?
Exploring the armoire
Exploring the big blue fake amphora, 30 August 2018. Melvin's facial expressions don't vary a great deal, but they are all dignified.
Exploring a chest of drawers, 6 September . . .
. . . thoroughly.
Melvin debating whether to hitch a ride on the hydrobike (but opted for terra firma)
Melvin preparing for the three-day drive to Virginia (8 September 2018). Always dignified.
Melvin checking out the new digs in Staunton, Virginia, 11 September 2018 -- we'll be coming back in six months' time to occupy the place.
Melvin approves of the fancy bathroom, 14 July 2018. Very dignified demeanor.
Back in Switzerland, he's pretending to observe the cat-toys whilst plotting a new route over all the green plastic chicken wire.
-- Remove all your restraints on my freedom, and I'll release your keyboard without changing your settings.
In the end, i.e. mid-October, we gave it up and tore down the barricades -- Melvin's free at last to roam the backyard and bushes. And he does, as he promised, stray not at all into the streets or other yards, and even frequently comes in when called.
-- See you guys; don't wait up.
Newfound freedom in the backyard hasn't entirely resolved the keyboard problems.
We've been in Bobbio and the south of the Piedmont region for the past two and a half weeks, and now Melvin, anxious to get home, is directing us through the Grand St-Bernard tunnel to Switzerland (2 November 2018).
Out of the tunnel on the Swiss side of the frontier
Only half an hour from home, and just time for a little snooze
Into the tunnel under Martigny, Switzerland, and so to home.
Back in Ollon, Melvin's in the fireplace (17 November 2018)