A Long Weekend

sixstringsamuraiicon It’s Friday again. I would have a Friday photo for you, but things are a little topsy-turvy here right at the moment. I am having to carry a fifty-pound dog down the stairs for loo breaks. It’s a grand workout, and this is the dog with sense enough to stay still during the entire operation, but still.

What happened? Well, yesterday I had to answer the door.

Perhaps I should explain.

Neither dog can be trusted when I have to do so, but Odd Trundles can’t make it down the inside stairs. (This gives the cats someplace to go to escape his exuberance. If he ever finds out they’re perfectly navigable there will be FURRY HELL TO PAY OMG.) So the thing to do has become to put both dogs in my bedroom, which smells like me (and like them, let’s be honest, because that T-shirt that says “Sleeps With Dogs”? That’s me.) and does not hold anything that can harm them.

Unfortunately, Miss B was Very Excited at the prospect of SOMEONE AT THE DOOR. She dealt with this excitement by throwing herself at the bedroom door.

What I think happened next was that Odd, who had been napping on my bed (look, just don’t ask) got excited by all Miss B’s excitement, and made a beeline at whatever she was trying to get at. He relies on her to tell him what to do almost every minute of the day, including when to breathe and where to pee.

SO. I think Miss B landed on Odd. As a cushion, he leaves a little to be desired. He’s built like a brick shithouse, really, and not much can damage him, but brick shithouses are not pillows.

I closed the front door and heard a yelp. It activated the Mother Circuit in my head–you know, the one that flips when you realize your child has been Too Quiet For Too Long, or when you hear an “I’m hurt” noise, which is totally different than “I’m having a meltdown over not riding in the grocery cart” or “I am too tired for this shit” or even “MOM HE’S BREATHING ON ME!” noises. I all but teleported up the stairs, and the first Wrong Thing I encountered was Odd Trundles on the other side of my bedroom door, wiggling and pleased with himself but very baffled, since he is rarely allowed to be the first to greet me.

Miss B was holding one of her back paws up, and looking at me with a similar baffled expression. Then she put it down, picked it back up, and hopped three-legged towards me.

“Oh, fuck,” I said.

As far as I can tell nothing is broken. She is putting some weight on the leg and the bones are all in the right place; the entire leg moves as a whole with no floppiness and she has regular range of motion in all the joints. Her paw is a bit swollen but she lets me palpate each toe, so I think there’s nothing broken in there, she just landed wrong and sprained something. If she’s still limping tomorrow, it will be time for a vet visit I probably won’t be able to afford right now.

But today, I am carrying her up and down the stairs out back when she needs to pee. There will be no running for her, for the foreseeable future. Which is just going to be all sorts of fun if she can’t work off her nerves. And Odd Trundles, trying to be helpful, is chewing up the coir mat at the entrance of my office, because he has no clue what to do when Miss B isn’t bossing him, and this is the best he can come up with.

I said it yesterday, and I’ll say it again.

It’s gonna be a loooooong weekend.

Badonkadonkus Felinum

My backpack's got jets.
My backpack’s got jets. Wicky wicky.

I had occasion to take this picture of Madame A yesterday. She bears little resemblance to the scrawny baby her rescuers found. Now she is a queen, and baby, well.

Baby got back.

I half suspect she was a dog in a past life, because her furry belly is not a trap. Despite having pitons for claws, she does not take blood after you give her tummy rubs. In fact, she throws herself on her back and demands Miss B give her belly-nosings every time we go downstairs. She would be on my heels, like Miss B, all damn day–if not for the fact that Odd Trundles is also at my heels all day, and he is far too Loud and Obnoxious for her taste.

One of these days, she’s just going to smack Odd in the face when he wiggles up demanding at top volume that she play with him, and from then she will rule him unmercifully. (At least, that’s what the Mad Tortie does.) Until that day, though, she heads for the stairs whenever she suspects he’s awake.

Anyway, here is our calico wonder. If you listen closely you can hear her purring.

King Trundles

Surveying His Domain
Surveying His Domain

The Princess snapped this shot of Trundles chillin’ halfway down the deck stairs. Proud and rugged, and sitting sidesaddle (he says it proves he’s a Lady of Quality, and cannot understand why Miss B snickers every time) as he watches me weed a bit of the auld sod. This was after his Afternoon Constitutional and before the rains rolled in; it was a little too warm for Odd’s taste but he wasn’t about to go inside if I wasn’t. Goodness knows I might do something interesting, like suddenly produce some food. Or I might need protection from an ankle-biting zombie.

This dog, you guys. This dog.

Trundles in Protest

growing up cullen Odd Trundles is having a bit of a morning.

It’s bad enough that Frau L left, and does not appear despite his yodeling down the stairs. Thankfully, the intervals between said yodels are growing longer, as he grasps that she may not just be down there ignoring his sad self. There was also Spring Break, during which the Prince and Princess were home to distract him from missing the lovely young lady who learned how to rub his ears despite their relationship getting off to a rather rocky start. (It was rom-com worthy, let me tell you.)

But now Spring Break has ended. The children are back in school. And Odd Trundles cannot bear it. The house is empty, he moans. His breakfast was not adequate and the house is empty. Mum is watching the glowing screen and tapping as usual but the house is empty. He did not get nearly enough pets (only a half-hour!) this morning and the house is empty.

He is a dog and the house is empty.

Which means he’s making a bubbling groaning whine at irregular intervals, and I have grown unsympathetic. Occasionally he trots to the stairs, burp-barks, and then cowers and yells because the noise echoes. Which means I have to come out and interrupt his terror at the BIGNOISE OHMUM BIGNOISE SNORTWHISTLE BIGSCARYNOISE by going half down the stairs and reassuring him there’s nothing there.

Dogs. Miss B is much less trouble right now, she’s just nosing me every once in a while because she knows this is a day for RUNNING and she wants to RUN. Her leg seems to be just fine, and today is only a short jaunt, so I may very well take her so one damn dog gets what they want today.

Of course, when the kids come home, Odd will have sort of forgotten they live here, so he will greet them as if they’re NEWFRIENDNEWFRIEND SNORTWHISTLEFART before he foggily realizes they are, after all, familiar unto him. Miss B will watch his excitement and glance at me as if to say, “Really? Seriously? What is wrong with this kid?”

Ah. As I write this, Odd has performed his last barking ritual at the stairs. He has retreated to my bed, where he glares pitifully at me as I pass the door to grab my running togs out of the dryer. Clearly I am not coddling his grief and confusion as much as he thinks I should.

Poor Trundles. To add to the problems of piloting his corkscrewed body through space, there’s separation anxiety and the fact that there is never enough breakfast to suit him. He’ll take his morning nap, certainly.

But he won’t enjoy it. He may even have to take two naps, in protest.

Many Grief

ohai

Miss B: OHAI. WHERE YOU GO YOU LEFT YOU LEAVING?

Me: I just went downstairs to get–

Odd Trundles: WHERE YOU GO? YOU LEFT. FOREVER.

Me: We needed a can of–

Miss B: YOU GONE FOREVER. WE MANY GRIEF.

Me: Look, it was less than two minutes–

Odd Trundles: MANY GRIEF. MUCH EAT PAPER BAG.

Me: What?

Miss B: …HE DID IT.

Apparently, whenever I go downstairs to fetch a can of diced tomatoes, they think I’m never coming back and Odd Trundles decides he’d better get a head start on eating anything even remotely edible to prepare for the lean times ahead.

*headdesk*

Old Bones

diningmonster Another day of the big yellow thing in the sky glaring at us all. Yesterday was oddly warm, so the kids and I went out back and did some general garden cleanup, planning, putting some more bulbs in, all that type of springlike stuff. It’s only February but the crocuses are up, the daffodils are already a hand’s-length tall, and the trees cannot be restrained from swelling their buds. I just keep wincing and telling them all, don’t get too comfortable, it’s only February, we could still get some ice, oh, my dears, do be careful.

The Princess trimmed her lavender, and Emphysema Joe thanked her kindly for it. Norbert the gargoyle has come through the winter somewhat physically cracked, but there is a new twinkle in his eye and his smile is much more pleased than it has been in recent years. “I’M GLAD YOU’RE LETTING ME STAY HERE, EVEN IF I’M A BIT OLDER,” he said yesterday, while I basked on one of the large rocks near the garden for a few minutes. “THAT’S THE TROUBLE THESE DAYS, YOU CAN’T FIND A PLACE FOR OLD BONES TO REST.”

“You can stay there until you’re shards and dust, my friend.” That was my promise, and he grinned even more widely. It’s a change to see him so happy, but maybe he’s just drunk on early spring. He’ll be cantankerous again in no time, I’m sure.

I’m a little worried the mason bees will hatch too early, as well. I have beans and winter peas in the ground and a few favas have decided to come up from last year, but I’m not sure they’ll be flowering in time. I suppose I should just hope for the best, as usual, and trust that they know what they’re doing.

The only fly in the ointment was the people up the street, who started lighting off fireworks during the big American football game. Screaming and booms, and Miss B startled almost out of her skin. I had to dose her with her anxiety meds, she didn’t stop trembling until they kicked in. It was awful. Fireworks are illegal around here except on the Fourth–and that may change soon, being illegal all year ’round. This, in my opinion, cannot happen soon enough. Not only is the noise physically stressful for both me and B, but the mess afterward that doesn’t get cleaned up, the accidents flooding the emergency rooms, the fires, dear God, just make it stop. I have never liked fireworks, ever. Watching them in a crowd just makes me want to hit the ground every time the artillery goes off and each year I am deathly afraid our roof will catch on fire, or one of the trees around our house.

Anyway. Time to head out into the yellow glare for a run. Miss B will be much easier after all the stress is run off, and I daresay I will be too.

Then it’s back to the projects on boil now, and catching up with some of the chores I played hooky on yesterday. As per usual, I probably need a weekend to recover from the weekend.

Over and out.

Odd and B, B and Odd

B and Odd

Ever since he was a frail, sickly puppy, there have been some days when Odd Trundles cannot settle or sleep unless he is as close to Miss B as he can possibly get. We often (half)joke that she reminds him to breathe. When faced with something unfamiliar, Odd’s default is to hide between my ankles, but if for some reason that shelter is unavailable, his first instinct is to glance at Miss B for guidance.

Miss B was used for breeding too early in her life, and still has medical problems resulting from that. Additionally, if she can’t herd something, she’ll attempt to mother it. Really, it was a stroke of luck we came across Odd, because from the instant he showed up, she’s been ready to unceasingly guide, correct, boss, and direct him about. Odd, bless him, needs such constant supervision, and B’s need to supervise is large enough to cause problems if not properly directed.

Really, they were made for each other. It hurts my heart to think of the inevitable, but I know that if Odd ends his sojourn on earth first he’ll wait for her spirit to tell him what to do, and if B goes first, Odd will have someone waiting for him when he goes.

Such is love.