Letter to Florida or Come-On, Make My Day

Dear D,

Thanks for the quote; it seems like all my days are crazy like that!  It’s nice to know that God is watching me and not laughing.  I’ve certainly had another few busy weeks.  Always something!  When our 10-year-old Australian Terrier,  Miss Marta, dropped dead at our feet I went into shock and P was inconsolable.  But, for the first time since we’ve been married he wanted another right away but of a different breed so that he wouldn’t think of her each time he looked at the new one.  Usually, he won’t look at a dog for a year (which is why I made the mistake of getting “Spider”, who ended up for me – good mistake though!  I was pretty much numb about Miss Marta so I went onto Petfinders.com.  I asked what P wanted from rescue and he said “hairy with stick out hair like a terrier, the younger the better, female and black and tan”.  However he said that he would be happy with MY “Sam” who is a Yorkshire Terrier x Skipperke x Smooth Fox Terrier.  Now, I originally got “Sam” for P because we both knew Marta was going to go sometime soon because of the hole in her heart.  The vet said she would be gone probably by the age of 5 years and at that time she was then 8 years already.  But, P didn’t do anything with “Sam” – no training, no picking up, no keeping an eye on him.  So, of course, I took over and “Sam” is now permanently stuck about a yard from my leg at all times.  I take him on errands and went to Maine with him.  The love of my life, “Spider”  is 10 years old and isn’t crazy about riding anywhere except on my lap which is a “no-no” when I’m driving.  “Sam” politely sits on his seat until he hears the beep of the door lock when I get out, then he goes to look out my window at me.  When I get back and he hears the two beeps for the unlock he politely moves right over and sits in his seat.

Well back to petfinders.com.  Each dog is “supposedly”  from a pet rescue or shelter (usually you can tell if they are non-profit if their web address ends with “.org”) and needs a home so I combed the ads for “baby” (thank goodness I didn’t have to look at the old ones because I know no one will take them and they make me cry), then “female” then “Australian, Silky, Welsh, or Yorkshire terrier” which are all black and tan.  Most were black and tan but some shelters don’t know a dog from a hole in the ground so were other colors.  P then went through my selected dogs and picked which ones would work for him.  That brought it down to about 6 so I had to fill out 6 different applications which were about 2 pages long with the questions ranging from if I owned my own house to information on my other pets and then vet and personal references.

The first turned me down because I mentioned that I had a 15-year-old cat who was not up to date on her vaccinations. She stays in the house and I don’t believe in over vaccination.  They said I had to get her up to date so I told them that I had no intention of killing my cat so that I could get a puppy.

The next one was in MO and they said you had to live in MO to adopt one because they want to be able to drop in and check on it.

The next one was in TX and they had no transport.  Sometimes these places have people who will collect the wanted dogs and bring them to a central place where you meet them.  I WAS approved on that one.

The other two never did reply.

This last one was in SC and was still available and I was approved.  So, since none of the other places were interested in adopting out their dogs I sent Richardson Rescue  a $50 deposit, called my daughter, T, and asked if she would go. She said yes because she is always afraid that with my luck I’ll drive into the ocean or something.  That was Thursday evening and T said she had just gotten back from class and convinced me to wait until she had some sleep.  So about 3am I was on my way to her which usually takes about an hour.  About half-way there I got out of my shock about Marta and realized that I was replacing her and had to park the car because I was crying so hard.  Anyway, I recovered, made it to T’s and after looking at me she just got in my car on the driver’s seat and off we went.  It was kind of a fun drive.  we circled Canandaigua (about 15 minutes away from T’s house) about three times before finding the right route. (Great start!) and by the time it was getting light were in PA.  Since we were on a main drag and it was winter it was pretty bad scenery with all the mills and what looked like penitentiaries.  Going into Virginia was much better with the hills and mountains and farms even though I was surprised that everything was so brown and no leaves were on the trees – just like in NY.  Isn’t VA supposed to be warm?  So, forget about moving there!  It was Saturday afternoon when we entered SC and the Rescue was close to the border.  If we got the puppy by 3PM when they closed we would be able to start back sooner because they wouldn’t open again until 10am on Monday even if we were coming from China.  We made it after calling them twice because we got lost on a country road.  They were way out in the sticks!  The place was not a Waldorf hotel for dogs but it was clean, the dogs all had covers on their pens and all had a companion so weren’t alone.  There were little houses in the pens and some residents were wandering around and the young pups were in a mobile home.  One of the residents that was wandering around was an ancient dachshund that had been dropped off on a road because (probably) it had a large cyst on its neck.  The Rescue had it removed but it was still skin and bones and wearing a sweater.  They said she looked much better than she did when she came in.  She came right over to me (naturally!) and sat down and looked at me and said “please take me home”.  I think that P would be proud because I pet her then looked away at the others.  A lot of them were missing parts but were all fixed and looked comfortable.  Then we went into the puppy house,  thank goodness;  and the dachshund walked away.

Now here was the fun part!  There was a cage full of terrier/beagles that were 4 weeks old.  There is nothing cuter than a baby beagle.  Luckily I knew what they grew up to be!  Nice dogs but coats like a rug and they think with their noses.  I was sad to see that they would have let me take one at 4 weeks but what choice did they have when the mother wasn’t there.  Then I saw “Harryit” and her brother.  Adorable!  (As you can see on my Face book page).  She looked like trouble but females usually are because they are so smart and her brother “Wookie” was also adorable (he was a male and they love to cuddle because they are kind of dumber than the females).  I love the males.  I kicked myself all the way home for not taking “Wookie”,  too.  I know I could have found a home for him.  However, they emailed me and told me that he had been adopted the next day.  After filling out millions of pages of paperwork and signing a contract they gave us a collar that fit, a leash, food, poop bags and a travel dish.  I wanted to stay and look at the dogs but T gave me a dirty look and we left.  Probably a good thing because I know my heart would break.  The reason I named her “Harryit” is because she just had that look that said “come on – make my day” and, of course, that was from the movie “Dirty Harry”.  So we call her “Harryit”.

If you would have been closer I would have come to see you but we were SO tired of being in that car and we had the pup and I knew you had a house guest.  We were so tired that we went back to Charlotte to look for a hotel.  I figured I could put the pup under my coat.  T  just said that we would head for a dive because they take pets and we only needed a bed for the night and at that time we were ready to sleep under a tree.  The first one we pulled into had two men outside one of the units (you could tell they lived there) who made a suggestion to us so that we just looked at each other and left.  I’m so glad that T was at one time a corrections officer at a prison before she was an EMT.  Knowing T I figured that she had a gun within reach also (which she would never tell me).  The next hotel was a step up so we stopped and they did take pets.  In fact they had one that was sitting in the window that looked like the RCA dog only was a HUGE Mastiff/Pitt Bull cross!  They gave us a room which was on the end and on the first floor across from some green grass that we could walk the pup on.  T found out later that had we gone about 1 mile further we could have stayed in a much better hotel than one that cost $39 for two people and a dog.

The hotel was pretty disgusting but it had a bed, shower and sink.  After checking for bedbugs we put one of our blankets on top of the bed, wrapped t-shirts around the pillows and covered ourselves with another blanket that we had brought.  We had ordered out for a pizza to be delivered.  We konked out from 5pm until 10am the next morning.  The pup was in bed with us and when she whined we just set her on the floor, she went on a piddle pad (told you – smart) and then whined to get back into bed.  She was shivering so we cut holes in one of T’s socks so she could wear it as a sweater.

AM we were on the road back.  It was raining.  We stopped to eat in Virginia at some Captain something’s place and had the most delicious salmon and the most horrible things called hush puppies that I had ever eaten.  We packed up the hush puppies for T’s husband who loves them.  During both drives he had been calling about every three hours and telling us where we were (and he was always right!) because he used to haul two horses from Ohio to Florida because he was the lead pony rider at a race track down there and lived in Ohio.  In Virginia while we were eating it really started to get nasty out with all the snow and ice. (This was Sunday).  T was driving which made me feel safer because since she is an EMT she has pretty much seen what happens when you have an “oopsie” in a car and besides – she works at a race track and has to follow all those little people on their horses in all that mud and stuff so that she can stop and pick them up.  So, as we were going about 40 MPH with our four-way flashers on these uhhh…people…were tailgating until they had a chance to (literally) slip into the lane that had the cars, trucks and semis going by us at about 70-80 MPH.  I’m not sure about what is happening with the big truck drivers.  When I was young they used to flash to say you were safe moving over, etc.  They were really polite and would stop if they saw you stuck on the road.  Now they try to intimidate you by coming right up to your bumper so that you get out of their way.  We didn’t so they would pass.  Then, about 5 miles up the road there the uhhh…people… would be: facing backwards off the road with yellow “caution” tape wrapped around their cars and trucks.  The storm was moving slowly South to North so we were out of it in PA.

Again, we were in PA in the dark and I was not impressed.  I have to say that in VA after got out of the storm the trees and mountains were covered with snow and it was gorgeous.  Little puppy stayed on my lap the entire ride except when she had to do her business, then she would whine and I would put her in the back on the piddle pads.  I do love my Subaru Forester.  During the entire storm we didn’t slip once :o)  When we reached T’s home I was on my second or third burst of energy and insisted that rather than spend the next 10 hours sleeping at her house – I would drive the hour home.  I was so tired I can’t remember what I did with Harryit!  T and her husband D had a fit but I was insistent.  About 15 minutes before I reached home it hit me how tired I was.  I’m so glad that it hit me then and not before.  I reached home about 5 am Monday morning.  I handed puppy to P, hauled the necessary things into the house and hit the bed.  I think I was there until Thursday am.  I also think that I had caught the flu because the only time I was out of bed was when I was sitting on the toilet!  Thursday, I went bowling at 6:30 pm.  I bowl on one of my sisters team and I hate to say it but she got me again.  I was just so tired that when she made one of her verbal zings to me.   I just told her to shut up or I would jump over the table and wring her neck.  Then I just looked innocent.  She did shut up though :oD.

So, here it is, Sunday and “Harryit is”  doing wonderful.  “Spider” is insulted that she is sleeping on the bed and spends the first five minutes with her back to us and during the day “Sam” is stuck about a yard from my leg as usual.

Well, I’m sure you are tired from hearing about one of my wanderings so I shall say “noodles” and take a nap.

Resting on my Blankie

2 thoughts on “Letter to Florida or Come-On, Make My Day

  1. I love all your posts. They are so entertaining and humorous! Thanks you for sharing your day to day life with us!! Jackie

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