Monday, July 19, 2010



Layla still takes thyroid meds twice per day--after the morning and evening walks. In a Jerky Treat, please. Remember--she snaps and won't take it nicely from your hand. Due to certain gastric disturbances I have added Gas Busters to the dog pill regimen. Give one to Lola, too. For you humans there’s Beano in the pantry if you want to join the party.
And there are the usual allergy pills to dispense as needed.
Layla’s nerve degeneration is to the point that I have gated both her and Lola in the downstairs. Layla is like a dog on a bender now, and steps are a bad idea. The gate is a bit of a hassle. My apologies. The opening in it is made for a size 2 starlet. And—this is very important—the gate is positioned on the bottom step of the staircase, which means that unless you had your feet bound at age five, the tread is now quite abbreviated. And the gate is not bolted to the wall. It’s a “pressure gate” i.e. the pressure is on us humans using it not to employ it as a weight bearing railing.
As for the walks, Layla is still sufficiently jazzed about being alive that she somehow makes it up the patio steps. I have a ramp stored next to the steps just in case, but I’ve had no luck teaching her how to use it. I suggest rubbing it with a dead chicken, Cheeze Whiz, or paté de fois gras if you want to give it a go. As for getting down the steps, her  joie de vivre renders her delusional after she’s been out sniffing the grass. She thinks she can bound down the steps like a puppy. Don’t let her. She’ll hit the bottom like a canine Gumby. I stop at the top of the steps, remove Lola’s leash and let her go down first. Then I take off Layla’s leash and guide her down by the collar. I’m going to try to find a halter for her before I go.
The cats recently had teeth extracted. Snowflake is on antibiotics because one of her rotten teeth was infected. This medication may be finished before I go, but if not, it’s on the counter in the bathroom. Did you know that as cats age they can develop a condition in which the enamel of their teeth just wears away? That’s Piper. Snowflake, who is much more robust overall, just has unfortunate oral chemistry. She produces tartar prolifically. Both cats have stitches (the self dissolving kind) and have to be on soft food until the 24th. The bowls of crunchies are stored on the front closet shelf in a plastic grocery sack. So break them out in a few days. Have a party. Goldfish for the humans? 
Oh—Snowflake has joined the ranks of the thyroid impaired. She has liquid meds. In the fridge on the door shelf in a brown bottle. 1/4 ml. twice a day. This medication must be kept cold, so I just fill a plastic syringe in the kitchen and take it to her. A nice little surprise. I try to catch her before I let her out of the bathroom in the morning and then later in the day when she is  sacked out in her bed on my desk. Here kitty, kitty.
How to give a cat a syringe of meds?
1)    hold cat's head like a baseball (honest—this is what the vet said)
2)   wiggle the syringe into the side of the cat's mouth where there are no teeth
3)   fire away
Alternately, you can sort of kneel over her on the floor, pinning her between your legs.
Good luck. And thank you from the bottom of my heart. I promise to do the same for you should you ever need thyroid medication.

Good News Department:
Snowflake has stopped the loud meowing. Which is good cuz it’s about a million degrees in the garage now. Maybe her teeth were hurting her. Yes, I feel guilty. There are pain meds for the cats on the bathroom counter. You could try that if she takes up yowling again. And I have vicodin in my bathroom cabinet (for you--not the cats) in case all else fails.
Because of the gate and because it is summer, there is much less dog hair everywhere and almost none on the now rather beautiful black granite stairs.
The grevelia tree has made a similar seasonal transition and no longer produces 2 trash bags of leaves daily. It has stopped dropping sap as well which makes the patio a tad more pleasant.
AND I now have a juicer.

Bad News Department:
The Roomba died.

Extra Summer Chores Department—the good and not so good:
There are blueberries to pick!
Fresh mint for mojitos!

All dog poo going into the trashcan should be bagged first or a plague of flies will ensue. Scoop twice per day, please—morning and evening.
Should you like to barbeque, the gas must be turned on with the little yellow handle. Parallel to the pipe is the “on” position. The igniter knob on the grill has disappeared, and you must light the grill by removing the grate and manually lighting it with a lighter. Sorry. It's on my fix-it list. Remember to turn off the gas.
The sprinklers are set to go on every other day. But check and see if anything looks parched. And don’t you get parched, okay?

So remember, the wine on the kitchen counter is for you. Get wild and crazy with the liquor in the pantry. Check the freezer. If you like gin at all, try the Hendricks. There's Tonic on the bottom shelf of the small pantry. And seltzer for the mojitos.

The envelope taped to the pantry door is for you. Enjoy.
And enjoy the love of the creatures who invented unconditional love.
And enjoy my place. It's lovely here. I live at the end of the rainbow! Flocks of song birds and wild parrots. Cable TV. Help yourself to pay per view. Call long distance on my phone. Wireless Internet. There's a pool, jacuzzi and sauna in the community area. And I have made up new pool keys which include a front door key. There are pool towels and goggles next to the washing machine.
And as noted above, it's summer. There are freeeeee concerts in the park.
Have at that espresso-maker. Eat whatever I've got. 
I love you for being here. Very, very much.

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