Saturday, December 26, 2009

The dog days of Christmas

Seasons greetings, kids! Exams are behind me and I've been enjoying some well deserved down-time. (I kicked some serious ass in terms of marks at school, by the way. And I don't even have to repeat that lab exam, meaning, I DO know what I'm doing in terms of reading crazy blood and urine slides.) I've had time to clean my apartment. I've baked more batches of chocolate chip shortbread than I ever thought possible. I visited my parents at their swanky new house. I've been going out to see live music. I've been eating and drinking with friends. (All this stuff I never had time for before!) And I've also turned my teeny apartment in a doggie day care, kind of. Okay, well, not really, but I've been entertaining canine houseguests for the last couple of weeks.

It started with doing a favour for a friend of mine going out of a town for the weekend. I offered to watch her 9 month old pup, Charlie the Havanese. So Charlie and Siris wrestled all weekend, and Siris was very patient with him, and Senor Snuggles taught him all about how cats are always in charge. But he came with pee pads. Ugh. I had assumed that a 9 month old would be housetrained by now, but I had forgotten that in our condominium culture, some people consider pee-pad training to equivalent to housetraining. Charlie's people are just happy he goes on the pads, and not their carpet. Not for me, but yeah. Anyway, when it was time for Charlie to go back home, along came Rafi the Chihuahua.

Rafi is one of Ola's foster dogs, and Ola's home/dog boarding business was packed with holiday visitors (I believe 17 dogs was her total IN HER HOUSE) - so in order for Ola to have one less dog to deal with, Rafi came to stay with us. While I am not a fan of Chihuahuas in general, I'm definitely a fan of this one. Rafi was an aggressive case but has been reformed by months of living at Ola's. He's quite possibly the snuggliest dog I've ever met, even going so far as to sleep under the covers with me, curled up beside me. He's a chill little guy, not yappy for a Chihuahua, and much more Siris's speed, thankfully. He accompanied us to Christmas at my parents, much to their chagrin and won over my skeptical brothers. I'll be sad to give him back.

I'm trading him in for a Bichon. Yep, one of Ola's regular clients called her last minute and she was full, so I'm getting Snowy this afternoon, till early in the new year. He's apparently a delight, very easy and well behaved. Looking forward to meeting him. So, never a dull moment at my place this holiday season. To clarify, I am getting paid for these dog boarding gigs. When you already have to walk one dog three times a day, adding another ain't a big deal. It's been an enjoyable and cuddly way to make a few extra bucks while I'm off school.

In other dog related holiday-ness, Siris loved the velvety tree skirt at my parents' place so much that she thought she'd circle and circle and circle and eventually make it her bed. Except that in doing so, she nearly knocked down the whole tree, causing my mom to screech and scream, my dad to panic because of my mom's screeching and screaming, and leaving my brother and I to try to actually do something about the situation. Straight out of the Marley and Me outtakes! I caught the tree mid-fall and held it upright again. I think maybe two ornaments fell off. The non breakable kind, so we just put them right back up. Keith tightened the tree back into the cheap little tree stand it was in. The crisis was averted. But seeing the dogs freak out at my mom's total frenzy, I may have snapped at her to please calm down. She may have screamed at me even louder that she was NOT GOING TO CALM THE FUCK DOWN! Oh yes. Fun times on Christmas Eve. Poor Siris was in the doghouse with my mother after that. And me too, by extension.

But, we all ate good food, and drank good wine. I got to see my brothers. My parents' swanky new house is intact, and there is no permanent dog-related damage. I got some good gifts and I got to give some good gifts. So generally, another Christmas success. It wouldn't be Christmas (or even just a trip home) if Siris didn't piss off my mother in some capacity.

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