Our dog constitutes 98% of my life's meaning. Rusty knows this. In fact, Jill The Pill occupies about the same percentage of Rusty's priorities in life (or so he claims) . . . which is really bizarre considering that his tools occupy about 98% of our 1.65 acres, more or less. So if we're working with percentages here, that leaves about two percent of our love and energy to devote to each other. Yep . . . sounds about right. I'm lying: last night we played a Christmas song game that Rusty found on the Internet, made Texas-style tamales, and had a generally fabulous evening. Plus, The Stars won.
Okay. So about our Sunday trip north to the Auto Mercardo -- we decided to visit the store in Coco versus Tamagringo. There is simply nothing good to be said about Tamarindo. Oh, wait . . . as my mother would say: if you can't say something nice, come sit by me. No, wait . . . . that's Sally. As my mother would say: if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all. So here's something nice about Tamarindo: it is far from us.
Speaking of dogs and mothers, I know parents of human children who are more devoted to their pets than children. Of course, these parents are my age with grown children requiring fewer hands-on parenting skills; but my point is that the devotion to our pets knows no bounds. Here in Samara we have Perlita the Wonder Dog. Her owners coddle her. Yeah, Bill, you know you do. Then there's Miss Marley, second cutest dog on the planet. I want Marley's life. I want to be reincarnated as C&M's dog. Such a life. And Bonga certainly leads a charmed life, but she's a Tico dog and has her own Tica agenda. This doesn't mean that she's neglected. Hardly. Bonga gets what Bonga wants; but her wants fall into the simple-life category.
Max. Max is so pampered that his owner purchased a new vehicle with an up-front seat so that Max could ride side-by-side with his owner. Max's neighbor dips bread in left-over fried chicken bits for Max's morning snacks. True story. So the rumor that passed our ears when we first arrived in Samara turns out to be true: one is known here by their vehicle (its appearance, not its cost/make/model) and their dog. Cocker Spaniel Peter is a good friend. He must be distinguished from others because we know several Peters. Then we have Frasor's Mango and Miguel's Mango (same dog, long story). Everyone knows to whom Miss Piggy belongs; and we spend an inordinate amount of time worrying if we haven't seen Floyd in a day or two.
And don't get me started on baby Sheena. If I can't have Marley's life, I'll beg for Sheena's. Sheen has more toys than I have shoes . . . and that's saying a lot. About a week ago Sheena's owners stopped by the house just after dark. They came bearing a holiday sweet and, naturally, were invited inside. I was told by a near-frantic owner, Kathy! Sheena is alone! She is outside! She's been outdoors for an hour! AND IT'S DARK! Well say no more. I quite understood. I laughed, but I quite understood. Jill would never be allowed outdoors on the mountain, alone, after dark. Ever.
Anyway, back to the Auto Mercado. For this couple who finds excitement in portobello mushrooms at the Super Iguana Verde, the Auto Mercado was heaven. I returned with French 1664 beer, Vichy tonic, pastrami for Reuben sandwiches, and the list goes on. About $360 dollars later, we toted home our goodies, including (I suppose this is Rusty's Christmas present) a boogie board. What the man will do with a boogie board is a mystery to me; but this board had pool raft for Jill written all over it.
Now Jill has been a rafter since her puppy days. Those firm foam floats (nothing inflatable, naturally) are her favorites. In Texas she'd board the raft from the edge of the pool and even developed quite a knack for steering the raft by walking this way and that along its length. When bored, she'd direct the raft to the edge of the pool and simply step right off to the pool deck. So I thought that she'd love the boogie board. Maybe not.
As any good mother would, from inside the pool I gently placed Baby Jill onto the center of the raft, well-balanced, and held the raft with such stability that Rusty probably could have stood on it. And then it happened. A bee landed on my arm. Big bee . . . big decision here, Kathy. Repeated stings, or release the most adored pet in the world. I chose the stings. In fact, I never let go of the raft, and Rusty ran for two Benadryl, which he dropped into my upturned mouth as he poured in a smidge of cocktail to wash 'em down my gullet. Baby Jill was safe and none the wiser . . . she's become oblivious to a whiny mother.
Day two of rafting practice. By now Jill evidently believes that this sturdy board is probably similar to her Texas raft. She begins to walk about. And then it happened. She slipped right into the pool, popping up in a panic after being submerged at least six inches. Do I need to tell you about the look that I received? Betrayal. Unforgivable betrayal. But Jill, ya gotta get right back on that horse . . . which is something as ridiculous as telling her suck it up, this Doxycycline is good for you, never mind the vomiting. So back on she went. And damn if she didn't go under for a second time. I swear to you, it was not my fault . . . except that it obviously was as I should have anticipated some type of false step by a willful terrier.
Jill gets ear infections quite easily . . . happens when even a droplet of water goes into an ear . . . has since she was a pup. It's the nature of the fold of her less-than-perfect-but-show-dog-worthy ears. So now the pup has been completely submerged in the pool, twice, probably fearing for her doggy life; and we must administer her version of Swimmer's Ear drops. Imagine holding a writhing 17-pound mongoose. She's pouting to this moment. Jill asked Rusty, not her completely unreliable mommy, for breakfast-in-the-bowl. She's now in the A/C in the bedroom, ignoring me. Will we raft again this afternoon? Guess. Lo que hay.