Puppy dog nails and biting winter winds

Chaussette's face close upWhat began as a simple quest to give Chaussette her first nail clipping turned into a mini-Arctic adventure. Dog nail clipping had never occurred to me as a necessity before—I must have walked Peri so often that it was never an issue for her—but Chaussette’s early life in a hay-filled barn had apparently done nothing to dull the needle sharpness of her claws. I’m extremely fortunate to have my friend Angie—for reasons too numerous to list here—but prominent among those reasons is that she’s a professional dog groomer. She kindly offered to provide Chaussette’s first canine beauty experience, a generous offer that I was eager to accept. However, the twisty country roads that lie between my house and hers proved to be a bigger obstacle than I’d counted on. The snow has finished and the plows have plowed, so I blithely bundled my puppy and my now-recovered son into the car and set out. I drove cautiously due to the occasional patches of exposed ice, but all was generally well until I reached the turn onto Angie’s road. The bitter winds (which are still tirelessly blowing as I type) had laid a series of snow drifts over the junction. My ’98 Mazda Protégé, which I call Gwendolyn for no reason other than that I like the name and enjoy anthropomorphizing things, used her sad little share of horsepower to fight her way through the drifts. We made it through—barely—and arrived safely at Angie’s house.
After a successful clipping, a valuable lesson to Chaussette about avoiding hissing arched-back cats, and a pleasant visit, I re-bundled child and puppy and embarked for home. Alas, the drifts had grown in the half hour I’d spent at Angie’s, and my efforts to fight back through proved fruitless. I realized that sheer luck was all that had prevented me from fishtailing into the ditch—it was certainly no skill on my part—so I backed up and used the magic of technology to summon Angie, who appeared like a Knightess in a Shining Pick-Up. I watched her run repeatedly over the drift, attempting to subdue it with the might of her four-wheel-drive, but she clearly decided that pick-up tracks wouldn’t be adequate to get me through. She stopped, rummaged in the truck’s bed, emerged with a shovel, and commenced an energetic attack on the drift. She’d already refused payment for Chaussette’s nail clipping, and I could hardly repay her generosity by leaving her to fight the drift in the wailing wind while I watched from the warmth of my car. So I trotted over with my emergency shovel, and we worked frantically to clear the worst of the snow before the wind cut off all sensation in our hands. Ah, Global Warming, you were not with us this day…
Fortunately, our efforts paid off, and child, puppy, car and I made it home in one piece. Our efforts proved fortunate since Angie was almost immediately summoned to the school to collect her newly-emptied son, who’d apparently succumbed to the stomach flu that’s rampaging through the elementary grades, and the little passage we’d carved out turned out to be the only viable way for her to get to town since the rest of her road proved impassable. All things happen for a reason, I conclude, and our sojourn in the whipping wind wasn’t in vain. Still, both of us will welcome equally productive sojourns in the gentle warmth of a spring afternoon when (right now it seems like “IF”) it comes.
Here are two quotes from Sage that I feel necessary to record before I forget them: “Can we visit the President at his house? I want to ask him if leprechauns are real.” Also: “I want to live with Grandma so I can scoop her dogs’ poop.” When I asked why he would consider this a prominent perk of living with his grandmother, he explained that unlike me, SHE has a pooper-scooper, which seems to be equally awesome no matter WHAT it’s involved in scooping.

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One comment

  1. That dog is so dang cute!!!! By the way, what time to you go to the bakery on Fridays? I could maybe meet you for coffee?

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