Spring changes and an uber ride

I love spring. I’m going to keep saying that even through it snowed about an inch last night.

Believe it or not, this was what we woke up to.

Ahh, Cleveland. At least it froze the mud pit that is in our back yard. We have grass, yes we do. Probably 85% of the yard is grass. But under the trees it is a little thin. Of course that is where the raccoon decided to climb.

I know people with 4-wheelers like the mud. I don’t. Thursday morning at about 6:30am I heard Chester barking outside. It was raining fairly hard so I thought he wanted in. That was a miscalculation. Chester had treed a raccoon and was jumping up and down in the mud pit under the tree. When I say mud pit, I mean a mud pit. Picture a demolition derby area after the cars tore it up and while it was raining. Chester and his glorious 79 pounds give or take a few was literally jumping up and down and running around the tree. Every time he landed I could hear a splat sound and see the mud rise to meet that delightfully substantial belly. I knew this was going to be bad.

I called him, realizing it was futile. I always feel bad for the neighbors, but at least it was raining so the windows were closed. Oh, I forgot to mention that he was barking incessantly. After getting no response from the first few calls, in escalating levels of firmness, I moved to shaking the box of Milk Bones. He didn’t even look. By 7:00, I thought he’d be tired. Nope. He was covered in mud, determinedly jumping and barking. The raccoon was sitting in the tree looking at him. Probably cussing him out. By 7:30 I had to leave so I put on my tennies and went out to drag him in.

As I got closer to the tree, I got a good look at the raccoon. Poor thing, it was scared…of ME. I was slipping and sliding and grabbing the fence to try not to wipe out. Chester realized I was trying to ruin his fun and ran away from me to the other side of the tree, barking. We went round and round like that a few times but I couldn’t leave the fence due to my perceived humiliation should I fall in the mud. My husband had suggested taking the leash out there, so I waved it around a little. I guess the vision of me slipping and sliding and waving the leash may have confused the raccoon (and the neighbors) but it didn’t fool Chester. He’s too smart for that.

When I got nearer to the tree (but not under the raccoon in case it jumped on me with claws and fangs bared) it moved. It jumped across the fence onto our neighbor’s shed, then to the trash can and scooted under the shed. Honestly it could have done that at any time. Seriously, raccoon? Evil thing.

Chester immediately stopped barking. I trudged back to the house with muddy shoes and grabbed every towel I could. When he came in, he was dark brown and smelled like funk.

This was taken after a previous escapade, but picture this with mud up the sides and you got it.

We should have hosed him off but to get to the hose I would have to walk in the rain and turn on the water, and the water was cold. I A) didn’t want to go back in the rain and B) felt sorry for the hound, who was more than pleased with himself. We used the paw washer and toweled him off as best we could which wasn’t very well. His belly rubbed on the wall, leaving a mud mark. He jumped on the couch leaving mud everywhere. He shook himself and got mud in my COFFEE for crying out loud. And paw prints? You guessed it. Everywhere.

The next day he was stiff and sore. I brushed a fair amount of mud off him, but he’s not pristine. I almost felt sorry for him as he walked down the stairs, not running full force like usual. Note I said almost. Honestly, I love spring.

So with the rising gas prices, I thought of Uber. I have only taken an Uber once, in Orlando several years back. My daughter and I went to Harry Potter World.

So cool, it was like stepping into the books.

We had a great time and wanted to go to a nice restaurant outside of the theme park. She picked a good vegetarian one and called an Uber. We started on our way and the driver was friendly. I talk to everyone, so it was fine. He asked where we were from. When I told him Cleveland he said “Ohhhh, like the serial killer?” Yes, we had a serial killer. He then asked about the girls who were kidnapped and held many years. I said yes, that’s us too. I swear he mentioned every crime that happened in the past 30 years. I got one or two words in, trying to remind him of the Orlando shootings that have occurred, but what a thing to talk about! Not exactly a good way to reassure customers.  Is that all he knows about Cleveland? Not even the burning river? I’m used to that one. People are fascinating. We chatted on like two old chums, and when we arrived my daughter said she was glad she lives in Brooklyn. This is not to say that the ride wasn’t fine, it was.  Just kind of strange when small talk is about true crime.

Even at Harry Potter World we had a true crime reminder…

There is no moral to that story, I just enjoy random moments. Kind of like the lady in the car dealer waiting room playing “A Horse With No Name.” (previous blog) I actually do like spring (if it ever quits snowing!) and have resigned myself to cleaning mud off the house and the dog for awhile. Part of dog ownership I guess!

Can I go out again?

Have a good week!

The neverending mud and Ohiospeak…

Chester loves the mud. He’s a mudder. I am not. I am so sick of wiping those (used to be white) paws after he goes out. He has decided that the chipmunk under the patio should be dug up. Not just the chipmunk but the bunny under the shed, the cat in the wayback yard, and by the gate. He is digging a hole all the way to the center of the earth as we speak. Now the center of the earth might sound dangerous but it would not be overly hot because of the wet mud that permeates the entire Ohio universe. In Ohio aka Cleveland aka our backyard the everpresent mud is everypresentwhere. Oh, and I mean everywhere. It’s on our carpet, our rug, our floor, our couch, the bedspread (I don’t know why because he NEVER goes on the bed…) my shoes, my husband’s shoes, my slippers, the side of the chair from when he shook, the counter. It’s also on him. This is not ordinary mud, no no. It stinks. Maybe ordinary mud stinks too, I’m not sure. I don’t see how it could. I cannot describe to you the smell of this mud. I sat on the couch and kept smelling it but didn’t see where it was coming from. I got on my hands and knees and sure enough, just like a fish in the car trunk for a few days (been there done that) there was a chunk of it that had come to fruition. I was able to remove the offending odor. Unfortunately if A =stinky mud and B=muddy dog then A+B=stinky, muddy dog. It’s destiny, me and the mud. Ugh.

Due to A + B above, we have been trying to take Chester for walks more. I took him yesterday or the day before, or shoot, could be last week, who the heck knows, and he peed on a fire plug. I started to think of words that we use here in Ohio that may or may not be the same as all over. Our mud is special, maybe our language is too. Take the word fire plug. Is that what you call it? or is it a fire hydrant?

Maybe it’s just my family. Families and friends make up words and phrases that have meanings that others don’t understand. I read once where a long time friend died, and the survivor said the thing they missed the most was not having anyone to understand the references and appreciate them. I think that will be difficult when it happens. My husband and I can quote almost any line from Seinfeld in any circumstance. But we’ve been married almost 40 years, there are alot of references.

Some other words—treelawn is the area between your sidewalk and street, if you have a sidewalk. We do not unfortunately. The Wayback is the, well, way back of a station wagon. We did have a station wagon…several in fact. When my husband first met me back in high school my parents had two Volare station wagons. One had a hole in the floor where my sister’s heel went through. My dad wouldn’t get a new car until the old one literally died on the street. 

When my family first got a television, it was a little black and white one, and there was no such thing as a remote control. The first remote control was dubbed the “clicker.” Not to be confused with the “clapper” which we also had. (clap on, clap off, etc) We say “pop” here in Cleveland, while two of our kids say “soda” having moved to NYC. Drives me crazy. A soda is an ice cream float type of thing at DQ. Speaking of DQ I’m hooked on the oreo-cheesecake blizzard. Or the chocolate brownie blizzard. Or just a SODA. But I digress…

I work in words for my job and can write professionally. When I speak I can go either way. My coworkers say we can make entire sentences out of abbreviated words and acronyms. Every field has its own lexicon. Families too; when our families are together we all lapse into the casual speech we grew up with. I sound something like, well, you know, OK, right? Shut up, seriously? Yeah? Get out. It’s delightful I’m sure.

With our social distancing I have been reading more blogs. I appreciate the writers who keep on keeping on. I like reading about other people and their traditions, customs, activities, and yes, pets! If the speech and words are a little different than mine it makes it that much more fun. I almost said funner. But I didn’t! (I might have if I was talking though)  Thank you bloggers for your time and thank you readers for yours. Read on, reader…

and just because, here is a picture of Chester and the fire plug he just peed on. Also one of my new supervisor at work (at home), Zeus. Okey dokie artichoke?

Mom’s proud of me:)
Get back to work!