Well, another rap video-esque weekend is winding down here at The World’s Smallest Apartment. I’m doing CLEs today/tonight (I have a goal, people. It might not be an important one, but there is a reward for achieving so many hours of Lifesavers CLE, and I WANT IT. Reward? Line on my resume. Because the self-employed need those.) and needed a break.
So Saturday dawned bright and early. Earlier than I had planned because The Sir has picked up a bad habit from his brother.
Cody, being a simple, SIMPLE dog, doesn’t have a very complex method of crisis management. And boy has lots of crises in his life. When something doesn’t go according to how he thinks it should go (the tennis ball rolls under furniture, the tennis ball “accidentally” gets thrown into the pool-where he would never venture, Cooper has a rawhide that he wants, we’re eating something that looks tasty, etc.) his first line of response is to stare intently at the thing, or the place where the thing was last seen. If that fails to produce the desired outcome (return of the item to his jaws), then he runs around to the backside of the place where the thing was last seen, or if it’s Cooper chewing, he runs around to the other side of Cooper’s head. And then he stares intently at it. If THAT fails to produce the desired outcome, he stares intently at us. And since that, too, infrequently produces the desired result, Cody switches to his end-game, barking at the item or the spot where the item was last seen. This has been a frequent occurrence since Scout entered the picture. Homegirl can escape faster than Cody’s brain can process, and so he’s barking at a chair that she hasn’t been hiding under since two hours ago.
This would be funnier, but Cody’s voice never really changed (this should not be construed as an argument against neutering your male pets…your furniture and guests do NOT enjoy your male dog’s ability to procreate and would much prefer it if you took away their “paternal instincts”-I don’t think that Labs do the whole puberty/voice change thing) and he has the shrillest bark I have EVER heard on a dog, including those little purse-sized dogs. Yellow Dog sounds like a chihuahua. We love Cody, we really do, but this habit of his is a nuisance.
And Cooper, Saturday morning, decided to try it out. I had awakened, I was stretching, thinking about the day, and contemplating a short, ten minute snooze. Cooper ran around both sides of the bed, staring intently at me, and when I didn’t spring forth from the bed ready with a full day of activity planned for him, HE BARKED. This is the first time ever that Cooper has demonstrated this behavior, and even when I yelled at him and told him that Santa was indeed watching and that kibble was a privilege not a right (oh, I kid), the boy remained unrepentant. Stubborn beast. The difference is that Cooper’s voice changed early on in his life, like at birth, and he has always had a HUGE (HUGE) bark. Like, frightening. Rattling windows and cracking drywall. Which is totally the sound that I wanted to wake up to on Saturday, when I knew I had a long day of physical labor ahead of me.
Anyway, once I was up, I did a little bit of work, and pretty soon, P and I were on our way to the Uhaul joint. Where van was secured. The wine was loaded, and we drove to the nearest gas station to both put gas in the Uhaul (really, Uhaul, the entire point of your existence is people moving things larger than will fit in their car, nobody rents a cargo van because of the superb handling and nimble agility, so the items are going to be GOING SOME DISTANCE. Would it hurt too much to FILL THE TANK AND REQUIRE US TO RETURN IT FILLED? Because the first fifteen minutes of an amateur driving a VERY LARGE VEHICLE are TOTALLY the time you want them to have to navigate a gas station parking lot filled with overhangs, pedestrians, and tight turns.) and to purchase ice.
It’s nearly 8,258 degrees here now, and after the labor that was packing those bottles of vino for dry storage and inventorying them, I feel kind of attached to them. I did NOT want to create fifty cases of very well-traveled vinegar. Heat and vibration (such as are caused by the smooth ride of a Uhaul van) are wine killers. Some would also argue that oxygen is a wine killer. There is research going on at a top-secret vineyard and winery in the Napa Valley that actually seems to disprove that argument, but since the techniques in winemaking advance slowly, it will be several years before that idea is adopted by the wine community as a whole. So for our purposes, heat and vibrations.
I can do nothing about the vibrations. Driving out to the Ranch is going to be bumpy, Dallas county hasn’t had money to buy paperclips for two years now let alone keep roads in any kind of condition. BUT, I could do something to keep the vino cool. Tarp was purchased, placed on top of the cases of wine, and Ice was strategically placed around the layer of tarp-covered boxes, in case we were somehow delayed in getting to the Ranch. (Most of the way is two lane divided highway, and one accident can SHUT ER DOWN.)
So far, everything was going very smoothly. We arrived at the Ranch without incident, and opened up the back hatch.
Did you know that ice melts at temperatures greater than 32 degrees farenheit? And that 8,258 degrees is actually a good deal hotter than that? We now do. I’m still not sure why the (waterproof) tarp failed, though.
So we got to unload 50 soggy cardboard cases filled with (HEAVY) wine bottles. It was unfun, nervewracking, and we could have never done it without the assistance of P, who maintains that he enjoyed the diversion and physical labor. (We have an appointment for P to see a professional about this.) (But we are still grateful.)
Anyway, after visiting and eating some lunch, we drove back to the Uhaul place, with the gas tank at the appropriate 1/4 level, and I raced across town to spend the evening with some of my favorite people in the Under-3 set.
I had forgotten how FUNNY watching television with a two year old can be. It is a MUCH more interactive experience watching “Dinosaur Train” with a two year old than watching “Dexter”. Even last season’s finale. How do they memorize the episodes? It was nuts. Picking episodes at random, The Abby could recite them from memory. Complete with hand motions. If we could tap that brain process? Lifesavers exams would not be the giant balls of awful that they are.
Plus, I got some good snuggling in with The Abby’s interloper of a baby sister, 11 month old Ella. Who weighs one pound less than The Abby. A fact that I find HILARIOUS. I think Ella and I are going to be good friends, because clearly, Ella is a budding foodie. Except for one tiny little problem. Ella is a stealth barfer. Totally silent about it. She’d be crawling along, and all of a sudden stop. The first few times I thought something had caught her eye, but actually, she had barfed. So I’d go get the paper towels, clean it up, and while my back was turned, Ella would crawl in another direction, and I’d see another puddle there, too. I felt like I was potty-training the labradors again. It really got to be quite comical. (I was pre-warned. Apparently, babies can barf without being either sick or drunk. They just spontaneously ralph.) Somewhere around the third change of jammies, I apologized profusely to the 11-month old who I’m certain could totally understand me, and told her that I knew it was totally a breach of sisterhood to let her stay in her soiled outfit, but that things had gotten ridiculous and that I just didn’t trust her not to hurl again. That what would happen is I’d clean it off her face and hair, but no more clothing changes until just before bed time. I hope in time she will forgive me. And pick her future sorority based on whether or not her sisters would allow such shameful behavior as allowing her to stay in, um, soiled clothes.
Anyway, today has been spent working and CLE-ing.
And with that,