Tag Archives: dog

Flying—need I say more?

There are a few things I do because they are necessary and inescapable. Physical exams, root canals on my teeth and flying…don’t forget that. If I had a choice of flying or being run over by a fast cyclist, I believe I’d take getting run over!

Unfortunately, getting run over by a cyclist will not get me rapidly from one place to another, so I must fly. I know I should have paid more attention in science class and if necessary, I’ll take a make-up exam now if it will help, but so far, no one has been able to tell me to my satisfaction how that giant, heavy machine can stay in the air like that. A balloon, maybe, but not a plane.

In spite of all my misgivings, getting to a family wedding this week made it necessary for me to get on not one, but two planes. There were some handicaps involved in this enterprise, the main one being my tendency to make wrong choices, and the other being that I was wearing glasses that were ten years old. Why, you might ask, was I not wearing my current prescription which would have allowed me to properly read airport signs? Well, because this last week I made a wrong choice in laying my good glasses down and the dog made an even worse choice in eating them!12514086_1035695299802233_1135785988926585391_o

With this handicap, I spent a lot of time peering through these old glasses and asking random people, “Is that Gate T17 down there?  Do you see any bathrooms listed down there? Is the Sioux Falls flight on this baggage carousel?” Not the best way to make friends and influence people, I assure you!

Once I actually got a ticket and checked my bag, I had the joy of security, but there, surprisingly, I generally have pretty good luck. They take one look at me with my hair hanging in my face, my handbag slung around my neck and my boarding pass in my mouth and they decide that I’m probably not a threat—a terrorist threat anyway. This time, however, they ran my hand luggage through their scanner and decided it needed a further check. What red-flagged it? The fact that I had the papers I was correcting for school all neatly paper clipped—with those giant, oversized clips—a lot of them.

After deciding that my research papers on the Grapes of Wrath were probably not a threat to national security, they sent me on my way. The next step is always the hardest because I like to be there early. What do I do with all that time on my hands? Sometimes I read, sometimes I write and sometimes I just watch the people coming over to join my flight group, trying to determine what a terrorist would look like and making bets with myself about how close to me the couple with the fussy baby will be sitting; ordinarily, it’s somewhere within a row of me!

This particular time, I got a ticket for a middle seat. For a woman of my size, a middle seat is a torture test, not just for me, but for the poor passengers on either side of me. I found my seat in row 25, seat B (the middle seat). I sat on the woman in seat 25A, tried to grab her seatbelt to fasten and wedged my heavy bag under the seat in front of me. No way was that thing going to budge during flight!stm51658b789b9f520130410

I apologized to the poor woman I had sat on and then settled back. Glancing to my right, I got a look at the seat row on the overhead compartment: Row 26. It was necessary for me to grope the woman beside me again to undo my seat belt and then I spent several minutes huffing and puffing as I un-wedged my bag again. I crawled over the lap of the disgruntled man in the aisle seat in row 26 and crawled over the lap of the disgruntled man in row 25, sat on the disgruntled man on the other side of me and groped him as I found my seat belt. I spent another few breathless minutes as I again wedged my bag under the seat.

Now, you might think I would re-check the row number one more time, just to make sure, but you would be wrong. I sat in that seat which I believed to be Seat 25B and never looked to the right the entire way to Chicago. If I was still in the wrong row, I just didn’t want to know about it!

Flying is definitely for the birds!

 

 

 

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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You are there, but where is there, and can you call?

When she ate my socks, I just thought she was expressing the thought that my feet were so beautiful, they didn’t need cover. When she ate the letter I had ready to send to a book agent, I thought maybe she was expressing a literary critique on my work. When she ate the Christmas presents, I assured myself it was simply her silent protest to the commercialism of the holiday.

But when the dog ate my address book,  the fun was over. She ate it in pieces; I had plenty of warning. She started on the leather cover and chewed out a couple of addresses for people I didn’t contact anymore anyway. But I was careless once more and left the battered book where my intrepid billy goat dog could, by stretching herself up onto the desk, retrieve it, and my communication notes became her endive salad!

It was so angering—all my addresses, telephone numbers, important dates—gone in a flurry of ripping teeth. I banished the dog to the basement, but that did not recover my address book. And for a woman with the memory of a kitchen sieve, this became a real crisis.

I knew from the start that it was serious. Not only is my memory notoriously unreliable, but I have a real mental block when it comes to numbers. It’s true; you can ask my high school math teacher—oh wait, his telephone number was in my address book. Well, take my word for it. Although I might remember that my daughter lives on Green Street, even though I’ve been there, I have trouble conjuring up the  house number.  I don’t remember zip codes, and as for street, avenue, drive, boulevard, etc. and S, E, NW, SE, forget it!

Telephone numbers are even worse. I didn’t realize just how much I relied on the address book to call people. Since the dog’s impromptu banquet,  I have  had occasion to need to call my sister, and I had several short and apologetic conversations with the people I called before I finally hit on her telephone number. My children’s numbers are all in my husband’s cell phone, but I’ll have to wait until he has more time to assist, so I can retrieve them. By then, I’ll have acquired them some other way—perhaps I’ll write and ask them…no, that’s not going to work is it?

The author of all this misery, is of course, living at my house so I don’t have to call her or remember her address. She’s clever enough to know when I’m thinking about that lost address book, because as soon as I start squinting at the ceiling with the phone in my hand, muttering, “That’s 857…or is it 587..or, oh, I don’t know,” she puts her tail between her legs and slinks down to the basement.

Eventually, I’ll get my address book back together and this time the pages will be stainless steel with a lead lock. In the meantime, I’m going to do a lot of driving around, trying to use the GPS I call a memory to find the people whose addresses are presently in the digestive system of a dog who seriously did not get any nutritive value out of my records!

 

© Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In the Well, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jackie Wells-Fauth and Drops In The Well with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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I’m just gonna walk my paint cans now…

Some people go skiing in the mountains on the weekends. Some people enter marathons and walk and run their way through days at a time. I envy these people because they have normal, ordinary activities—things people would understand and often, things that they admire.

That’s right, I’m about to tell one of those whiny tales about how all the bad stuff happens to me. If you don’t want to read that, stop here. But I warn you, you’ll miss a pretty good story. The things that happen to me aren’t necessarily normal, but they are entertaining!

The storeroom needed cleaning and I decided that definitely, this was the weekend. And what’s more, all that stuff I didn’t need was finally going. I sorted the paint cans and put everything that I couldn’t identify (and that was too many of them) on the track of the exercise walker that has been serving as a laundry hanger because it hasn’t worked right in a year. All of that was going.

I surprised the cat, who has apparently been taking afternoon naps on the Easter decorations and while I was stopping the rain of plastic eggs, gaily-decorated baskets and multi-colored Easter  eggs from hitting the floor, the cat chose that moment to walk across my arms, over my head and then cast herself off my shoulders onto the freezer, from where she could get to the floor.

While digging the Easter decorations that I couldn’t catch out from behind the freezer, I encountered an empty beer can. Aside from wishing at that moment that it had been full and cold, I was left to wonder how it got there—Roy drinks beer, but not usually behind the freezer.

The next order of business was cleaning the shelves because the dust had me sneezing so much, I was bumping my head on walls, shelving and the window. I pulled an old hand vac out and plugged it in as best I could behind the freezer.

Except I didn’t plug in the vacuum, I plugged in the mal-functioning exercise walker. Guess what? It wasn’t malfunctioning right then, it was ON. Paint cans began shooting off the sides and the end like a mortar attack in a war zone. Once they were done and I had cleaned up the damage, I tried to look on the bright side: at least the walker was working. Except it wasn’t. I discovered with some experimenting that if you unplugged it and then plugged it back in, it would run for approximately a half a minute…or about the amount of time it takes to walk about 10 paint cans at a sharp jog.

It was getting  to be too much. I was contemplating a break when the dog decided to aid me. She found some Christmas wrapping paper where I had put it in the hallway outside the door. I was alerted to that fact when I heard paper ripping. I looked out to see her joyously dismantling  a half-used roll of paper. As I was cleaning that up, she nosed her way in, trying to get some of the bigger pieces and that’s when I noticed that her head was extremely damp-looking.

I was busy; I didn’t ask questions, but I should have investigated. When I finally dashed upstairs to get more garbage bags from the kitchen, I did some unexpected cross-country skiing across a very slippery kitchen floor. When I slammed into the stove, I discovered that the dog had washed her paws in a skillet full of frying grease that I had left out to cool off. She had distributed it over every counter and surface and turned the floor into a pre-greased skating rink.

By the time I had cleaned up the paint mess, the shredded Christmas paper mess and the greased kitchen mess, it was time to call the weekend to a close. So, although I didn’t go skiing in the mountains or run a marathon, I skied through my kitchen and I definitely walked those paint cans at a brisk pace! However, I don’t think anyone’s going to admire me for it!

 

 

 

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A Simple Walk in the Park…Dark.

It was going to be so simple. I was going to be the good wife and get the dog’s walk out of the way. Roy has been working some late nights, so I have been coming home early enough to get the dog’s walk in before it is too dark. Simple, right? Well, you’d think so.

Tonight, I was finally too late for a pleasant stroll in the daylight. But I knew that to leave that wild, rambunctious dog with no exercise would just lead to grief…and random chewed up items around the house. So, I got out the walking in the dark supplies and let the dog out of her room.

Before we left for the walk in the dark, I needed to take care of myself – bathroom, snack, etc., so I let the dog outside to take care of her peeing issues while I got ready. I also had to change the batteries on the flashlight, since, when I turned it on, I couldn’t even see to the end of the hall because the beam was so weak.

Having taken care of that, I picked up the lighted-up collar that flashes in the dark and went to put it on Josie. She misunderstood when I opened the door and rushed into the room. She saw the flashing collar and knew a walk was in store. That’s when I found out she had not gone downstairs to pee. Instead, in her excitement, she peed all over my floor.

After a quick mop job, I tried to put the collar on the dog. She wanted to go for the walk, but she didn’t realize that she had to stand still for me to get the collar on. The struggle to get her collar on went from inside the house to outside. I tried to get the collar on and clipped, but it kept slipping through my fingers as she tossed her head and wiggled about. In the end, I laid on her on the porch step and cursing and swearing, finally managed to get the thing clipped on and the lights on.

She tore off down the steps and I followed more slowly, flashing my flashlight around, praying I didn’t run into a skunk or something. The dog joyfully flew about, looking like a fast moving Christmas tree and the lights were the only thing that kept her in my view.DSCN2296.JPG

I walked quickly in the dark, flashing my light from side to side, trying not to think what might be out there, just beyond my beam. The dog had no such qualms, her light trail could be seen moving from side to side, stopping just long enough for me to get close.

Then it happened: She disappeared. No matter where I looked, I could not see her. All I could do was keep walking along and looking. All at once, there was a set of beady little eyes, there in the dark, not moving, engaged in a stare down with me. I knew it was a skunk; my worst fears realized!

I began to slowly back up, when suddenly, the “skunk” relaxed its shoulders and the lights around the neck reappeared. It was the dog, who had covered her own collar as she took care of her bathroom business.

Normally, we walk a little farther, but tonight, that was enough for me. I took my pseudo-skunk decorated with Christmas lights and went back home. That’s all the walking in the dark I plan to do for a while…but the dog may have different ideas. We’ll see who wins!

 

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Reasons I Miss the Dog

We lost our Golden Retriever, Ammie, in May. It was a real blow to my husband, who loved his hunting dog and spoiled her to the point that his family nicknamed her “The Princess.”

Ammie

Ammie

After the dog died, I comforted Roy the best I could, but I confess that in reality,  I put my feet up and relaxed because without a dog, things could be easier.

I celebrated like this for more than a week (okay, maybe a little longer) and then I realized that something was wrong. At first I couldn’t pinpoint it, but when I finally investigated, I discovered to my dismay, that it is possible that I MISS the dog!

For one thing, what do I have to torment Roy about? I can’t talk about my red-headed rival or bug him about his favoritism towards the Princess. It’s no fun to make jokes about how much he loved the dog when he just lost it. I’m not terribly sensitive to his affection for the dog, but even I can’t be that much of a jerk!

Second, I miss the dog because now I can’t blame her for the mess in the house. With dog hair and toys, she was always a good fall guy for the house being a mess. Without her, I must just face the fact that I’m a slob!

Third, I miss the dog because it means now when Roy wants to take a walk, he wants me to go along. Before, the dog was his companion, but now, it’s me. And I don’t walk as well or as fast as the dog. Nor do I like the feeling that I’m a poor replacement for the Princess!

I miss the dog because she entertained my grandsons. She would play with them, run around with them or play fetch. My oldest grandson spent his annual visit to Grandma’s house informing me that I don’t play catch (or fetch) as well as the dog did! My younger grandson found meals boring because his favorite activity has always been drop the food on the floor and laugh at how fast the dog scoops it up. Now, Grandma just whines at him for dumping food on the floor! It’s not nearly as much fun, but it works.

And that food on the floor is one of the main reasons I miss the dog.

"The Princess"

“The Princess”

I spilt some eggs on the floor a week ago. I stood there and wished the mess would clean itself up, but of course, this did not happen. There was no dog. There was no eager tongue, ready to lap the whole thing up and leave the floor cleaner than it had started.

Then, of course, there was the goat-like tendency of the dog . She would eat anything; plastic, cloth (she really liked dirty dishcloths), and various pens, pencils and particularly markers. She would eat it all and then promptly regurgitate it all over my floors. This happened on a regular basis….oh, wait a minute, I guess I don’t  miss that. Without the Princess,   I don’t have to worry about the three Ps in my house(puking, pooping, peeing). I don’t miss the dog hair everywhere either. Oh! And I don’t miss the impromptu snacks the dog had by jumping up on my counters to consume whatever she could find.

So, in fact, I don’t miss the dog as much as I thought. This could be serious. I just told Roy he could get another dog. I don’t suppose I can take it back now, huh?

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