Two sunny, warm days together on a weekend after a long, frigid winter seemed a blessing too big to be imagined. And to have nothing outside of home planned, nothing at all? Even more unbelievable! (Well, we did have to do Friday's forgotten blood work Saturday morning before we went to the gym, but that was a minor setback. And it had the advantage of staying any possible bad news until after the weekend.)
Babygirl and I went to the gym as soon as it opened, worked out and came home to wake up Squeaker. Since his Mom and Dad have had a lot of overtime lately, we enjoyed his company overnight. I slipped out and ran to Sally Ann's Boutique to see if I could find a couple of pairs of pants that wouldn't fall off when I stand up. I have succeeded in getting back to my pre-KidNeedsAKidney weight, which is delightful except that nothing in my closet fits except a couple of pairs of jeans that I kept hoping against hope would fit again 'someday.' I got my hair cut and arrived back home in time to make it to a very important appointment.
We went to meet Maybelle.
My old dog, Simon, is 11 years old. He's an awesome, big little dog, and even though his brother Garfunkel died years ago (we named them right, didn't we?) he's done well as an only dog. But he's gotten some arthritis, and he won't walk more than a block with me. I feel a little uncomfortable walking alone in a city at 5 in the morning in the dark.
So I've been cheating on him. For weeks now I've been checking local rescue sites, looking at available dogs, visiting on visitation days and putting in applications. (My firstborn is paid for and about to get married, so I was unwilling to sign her away, but it seems like one must do something like this to get a rescue dog.) I refuse to take a puppy or a very young dog - frankly, I'm too old to deal with that kind of crazy energy. But this six-year-old looked like she might, maybe, just be slow enough:
It is difficult to tell by looking, of course, because hound dogs always look slow and pathetic. According to the website she'd been in the shelter a year ago, placed and returned due to 'owner circumstances.' When I enquired, they euphemistically told me that the owner had to spend some time in a kennel himself, and returned the dog to be re-homed.
Squeaker came along with us, and we put him up on a chair for safekeeping. When Maybelle came into the little room to meet us, she walked up to him, eyeball-to-eyeball, and slurped him right in the nose. Did I mention she's 60 pounds and over three feet tall? She needs to add another 10 to hide her ribs. And she drools like Hooch.
It took a couple of days of back-and-forth paperwork, but she's home, snoring on the couch. She has beautiful indoor manners, and someday (SOON) she'll learn how to walk on a leash without dislocating my shoulder. She ignores cats and wants to be friends with every dog she meets. She looks sad and slow, but she LOVES walks. I'm thinking she'd LOVE runs.
But what she loves most is love. She is the sweetest, happiest-hearted dog I've met in a long time. Each dog has it's own voice - hers is a Brittish-accented nanny sort, a nice contrast to Simon's "I dunno, Davey...." goofiness. (Okay, you dog owners know exactly what I am talking about, so stop snickering.)
Welcome home, Maybelle.