Monday Off-Kilter

Dog with Attitude: "Excuse me, do YOU have an appointment?"

One of the less wonderful parts of Ann’s work is “on-call”, this coming after she’s already worked a 12 to 14 hour day. Often, the night passes without an interruption, though she has her pharmacy resources and calculator piled near the phone.

Last night, the phone rang a half-dozen times, one of which occasioned her water glass being knocked off the night stand in the dark; this is a long-standing family tradition. But the dog and I had a late night out (Superbowl up through half-time) and Gandy was sleeping soundly through all the commotion overnight, and past her usual time) we emerged only as the outline of the ridge became visible out of the darkness. It is calm, cold, and Monday-feeling.

Moreso even than the recent usual, my brain and ambition are missing on a couple of cylinders. I really need to regroup and decide what I want to do when I grow up. But the dog fills those gaps yet, but maybe not forever.

Today, she’s the lady, yesterday the tramp. I still don’t know how to explain the mood swings during or between days; but the overall trend is less beast and more beauty.

She has quadrupled her weight since coming home with us 7 weeks ago. I just weighed her, which will soon become impossible by holding her, then weighing myself. She is a bit over 27 pounds. Based on the 15 week weight times two that I’ve seen as an approximation of adult weight, she will end up between 55 and 60 pounds. So we want beauty, the lady, the soft mouth, the wanting to please and the gentle soul we suspect is buried in there somewhere.

Share this with your friends!

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

Articles: 3013


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. If it were not for the ever present elixir of hope, I wonder how we with the need for animal companionship and a compassionate heart would continue to exist on a daily basis.

  2. What a pose! She’s so fine looking!! I hope you will see a pattern eventually and be able to determine what “sets her off” and avoid doing it!

  3. I gave my puppies rawhides and the adults get them occasionally. Many people have many opinions on them but the puppies really used them a lot and I never had any problems with them chewing on the wrong things. But then I’ve always had bird dogs that are known for their soft mouths, “able to retrieve a wounded bird without ruffling a feather” and all that. My poodles do hunt, kill and eat rabbits and groundhogs. They leave cats and livestock alone. I’ve never really understood them completely. I hope the obedience training is a big help, I know it was for me and my dogs.

  4. Hey, Fred!

    Good to see you still going strong!

    Love this post, and the photo of the new member of the family. 😀

    For some reason I thought I’d deleted you from one of my blogrolls, a couple years ago, because I though the blog had ended.

    So imagine my surprise, in going thru my old Writing Prompt posts and, on a whim checking your link, to find you alive & well. 😀

    Oh, happy day! I’m updating my sidebar forthwith! 😀

  5. Hello, Gandy, you look so cute in your picture!

    Hope you like your home, and your Humans!

    Our Human is Kiril The Mad Macedonian, the one who inspired us to become writers, and storytellers, in our own right, over the years. 😀

    ELVIRA: As a fellow young Lady, may I suggest 2 things – Watch your weight, and work on that Sassyness, it looks good on you! 😀

    NIKITA: And, don’t forget that it’s part of your responsibilities to help Mr. Fred to find the missing cylinders of his brain and ambition! 😀