Mia and Ali are visiting.
That means the canine population in this (crazy) house consists of:
- Fat Charlie who is 15 and almost a half
- Mama Pajama who is 35 minutes younger than Fat Charlie
- Delia who will be thirteen in March. (Oh how we miss her brother Luciano, who died in August.)
- Sam I Am, a youngster at 10 and a half.
- Swede William. He's six.
- Lindy Loo. She's six, too.
- Jabber who will already be two in December how is that possible.
- Baby Tindra who already turned one in September how is that possible.
- and 10. Jabber's litter sister Ali, and her housemate, the ever ebullient Mia.
And Bill went away. He went to McKinney Texas where he exhibited his work in a dazzling one man show at the Laura Moore Fine Arts Gallery. (If you clink on that link, and then click on portfolio, and then click on the first image - phew - you can see the paintings in the show. Which are, by the bye, for sale.)
Now, when Bill goes away and I have to work, Lee and Dee let out my dogs. Only this time Lee and Dee were going away too, and I would have their dogs oh..good..Lord. Enter dear friends and neighbors Deb and Karen and Steve to the rescue.
The dogs have been exemplary! Fat Charlie wasn't quite continent on the days I worked, but he did fine and Mama Pajama was excited to see her special friends. Delia and Sam I Am have been uncharacteristically gracious and have surrendered the best seats in the house to Mia - never imagined that, in my wildest dreams. Ali remembers that she was my darling pup pup and has snuggled, woo-woooed, and sparkled her way back into my heart, deep into my heart, that it's a Very Good Thing I am so fond of Lee and Dee. That's all I'm saying about that.
I've been walking them in three groups. (Today Bill walked Delia, so she isn't pictured, but she went on the first walk on the other days.)
The first walk was Sammy and Lindy Loo. We went a bit over a mile. The weather was perfect. Sixties and breezy.
The second walk was Swede William and Mia. We walked two and a half miles. During the first half a block we saw two squirrels. Two STINKIN' STOOPID CITY SQUIRRELS, who chattered at us and flicked their hideous bushy tails. I was ready; I held a leash in each hand. My arms are now longer. So much longer in fact that my knuckles are dragging on the ground when I stand. This will be quite helpful at work, as I will henceforth be able to empty foley catheter bags without ever bending down! And if I'm charting, and I drop my pen? Ha! Sweet!
The third walk made me happy just because; all these related Swedish Americans on one walk. Jabberwonkus, beautiful Alison, and spunky Tindra. (In the above photo, L to R are Tindra, Ali, and Jabberdude.) I was happy - for a moment, at least. One block from our home, a large saunter-y, penultimately evil C.A.T. spat at us. Oh, really? Whippet gods you think this is funny, don't you? Ali hates C.A.T.s. Tindra? Tindra must have been a mouse which was tortured for days on end by a gang of C.A.T.s in her last life, so great is her loathing. And then there is Jabber who is only good. He takes after his Swedish grandmother, Sotis, and his American great granduncle, Fat Charlie. He is purely goodness in a dog body. He is one of those rare souls who has no concept of the meaning of "NO", because he's never heard it applied to his dear self.
When we spied the devil C.A.T., Jabber looked at me and said, "Oops. A nasty! Over there, Dear Servant." Which is exactly the behavior I've been training for, so he got a Good Boy treat from my pocket. Good Boy! His sisters? I will skip over the events of the next several moments other than to let any neighbors reading this know that there wasn't actually an axe murderer wreaking havoc in the neighborhood at 8:30 this morning. It was just the whippets. Sorry.
I walk these days with Pandora radio in my ears. It makes the city walks less ... city? I listen to songs from my youth: Paul Simon, Cat Stevens, James Taylor, Carol King, Elton John, John Mellencamp, and Abba. Crosby Stills Nash & Young, Rod Stewart, 60's folk, and 70's rock. I am a singer along-er. I was singing along as I walked past the Quilt Museum, when I thought I heard my name. I focused on the real world and saw a lady in the museum parking lot calling to me. I didn't recognise her.
"Patience," she called. "Are you Patience?"
"Yes," I said, pulling Sweet Baby James out of my ears.
"Oh! I thought you must be! I'm from Tennessee, and I read your blog! I knew you live in Paducah and you're always walking your dogs, so I thought that has to be Patience!"
Oh how happy this made me. And oh how sad. My poor, neglected, cobwebby blog.
"You make me laugh out loud," she said. "That Sexy/Taxi story! I could see it all, just like I was there!"
"That happened, um, right at that corner," I said, pointing a block over, to 4th and Jefferson. We spoke some more, me apologizing for abandoning my blog, she being gracious, acknowledging the difficulty of writing and maintaining a job.
I miss my blog. I especially miss my blog friends.
I thanked this kind and timely stranger for her kind words. I hadn't thought to ask her how she had found my blog. She mentioned that she had cats, for goodness sake! I put James Taylor back into my ears. We walked over three miles on that last walk, giving me a total of six miles today.
I decided somewhere around Dolly McNutt Plaza that I would come home and write a blog.
So I did.
hug your hounds and be grateful for the kindness of friends and strangers