Life and Pets

Down to a dull roar …

or should I say that we’re down to only a couple of dogs barking (as opposed to any roar). An old client of mine once called the occasional outburst here, a “dogophony”!

The guest list right now consists of:

Duke and Lady, a father and daughter pair of chocolate labs, and Winston, a labradoodle, Zeus, a pitbull mix, and Tilly, some other mix. Also Festus, a large, biddable German Shepherd, Carly, another pitty mix, Sadie, an elderly terrier, and Lilly, a chubby senior lap dog.

It did not take too long to care for everyone today, so I made some headway toward planting the garden. The “household” section, that which is not for garlic, is about 3/4 planted. It is small by many standards. We usually stick to regular vegetables, and by that I mean peas, beans, beets, carrots and salad greens. Also onion sets and a few cabbages, sometimes broccoli. I planted some kind of amaranth that was sold as “painted” spinach, and “Chinese Pink Celery”.

The celery was one of the things I tried starting ahead of time. I already told you that I suck at seed-sprouting, right? The entire packet of celery seed came up thickly in a tray of soil, but I didn’t get them separated and transferred to individual cell packs.

There I was this afternoon, trying to transplant the threadlike seedlings directly into a row, while hundreds of mosquitoes 🦟 found this hapless gardener. I felt frantic and attempted to swat the ones which landed and pierced me, and I was cursing in frustration. Little, loving Cinder got up from his post at the side of the garden to see if he could help or comfort me.

If the mosquitoes stay bad for long , I will put repellant on and keep soldiering. Another day though. I had planned to mow both properties in McBride, but I don’t have enough left in me. My renter at the older house is moving and I will list it again. I dread visiting the other house, but keep reminding myself that it’s not a social call. I have a task to perform, and she can’t actually hurt me.

Somewhere between the care of dogs and the staking out of the garden, I threw together a banana cream pie, and a sort of Greek salad for myself for later (so I could skip the pie). All right, so this afternoon for a break, I skipped the salad and we both had pie.

Today has been a journey from one small anecdote to another. I was so happy to have a visit from Shelly, and we had stories to exchange, but mainly she had me laughing as we drank coffee and “caught up”.

One of the first things my daughter noticed after arrival was that our rooster John was crowing over the dead body of one of his hens. Now isn’t that poignant? I was sad that the chicken was dead, but there was nothing I could do for her. Evidently John had finished grieving, too, as he had wandered off by the time I brought the body bag.

Something or someone else I wanted to talk about is Festus. He is a large German Shepherd who was diagnosed with cancer more than a year ago. His immune system seems compromised because he often has an infection in his gums or jaw, or inflammation in his ears (common in dogs anyway), but he has “held his own” for all this time with regular meds only for pain. While he is here, he gets any pills that are indicated, on the correct schedule.

This afternoon, while I was checking on every doggy guest and pet, I was greeted by the sight of Sam, my cat, waiting on the inside of a dog kennel gate, beside Festus! Sam used to go into dog runs more often when he was younger and lightweight, but hardly ever when they were occupied. I didn’t have my camera. I opened the gate to let Sam stroll out, and lavished praise on the big, quiet dog.

I have no illusion that Davy’s tragic death-by-dog in December had any effect on, or lesson for, Sam. But my first thought was, “Omg, I thought we were done with this.” If I prayed, I guess I would pray that we never have another incident like the mauling death of Davy.

Thank goodness for Festus’ patient constitution!

Festus is extra alert when a cookie is near …

Sam doesn’t even know that he courted catastrophe.

It’s 4 pm and everyone is fed and watered and meds, if indicated, are given. I have made spaghetti sauce and it is simmering in the slow cooker, garlic bread 🥖 to be heated later, and I will, if I have the strength, make Caesar salad. Or we’ll have the greekish salad I referred to earlier … call it a fusion dinner. No wonder I fight the battle of the bulge … I keep eating the salad that is supposed to be my whole meal … and then all the rest as well. No, not going to put Gary on a diet, as he doesn’t need to be on one.

Look, Deb, it’s a tiny “Garden Party”!

All for now. Stay well, everyone, best you can.

~ Ann


2 thoughts on “Down to a dull roar …

  1. The sweet little pansies at the end of your blog reminded me of having dinner at Doris’s a month or so ago . . . Laine and Susan invited me. They created a huge bowl of salad greens, all from their garden of course, and the top of it was literally covered in edible flowers (pansies and others). If I had been thinking, I would have taken a picture, it was really lovely. To me the flowers have no taste, but they sure do make for a beautiful presentation.

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