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A Dog, a Turkey, and an Iron

June 9, 2009

I’ve been trying to decide what to do with Izzy (my Chihuahua) while I’m away between June 19 and June 30th. We’ll be in Tennessee for our annual pilgrimage to the Great Smoky Mountains between the 19th and the 23rd, and then flying out to San Jose between the 24th and the 30th, and while I cannot stand the idea of putting her in a kennel during this time, neither am I one of these people who drags her little barking dog around with her every stinking step she takes. Especially since it would cost me upwards of $300 to fly her out to California.

 I think I’m going to get my friend June to house and dog sit. This has the added bonus of getting my flowers watered, and possibly even deadheaded, although I’m not going to ask for that. Maybe she’ll just like taking care of other people’s plants and want to do so. And maybe she likes to clean toilets, too. You never can tell.

 When I broached the idea of house-sitting to June, she was pretty enthusiastic at first. “Yeah, I’d love to!” After all, we have Tivo. And I believe June has a roommate, so she’d actually have privacy—not, I told her, that she’d have to stay overnight, if she didn’t want to. That was entirely up to her. She just needed to let Izzy out at night before she went to bed, and out in the morning. She could sleep wherever she wanted.

 Then I made the mistake of telling her about Izzy, the Turkey, and the Iron. It started innocently enough. She asked if Izzy was a nice Chihuahua, or if she was a vicious, hostile Chihuahua. I reassured her that she was a cuddler and she loved people, but that she did like to bark and was very protective.

 “She’s extremely sweet, but she does like to bark—at everything. She thinks she hears something in the yard and she goes off. The other day, I ran home for a few minutes to grab a leo for Autumn and was in the den checking email, and Izzy ran into the back of the house and started barking her fool head off. I just ignored her. She wouldn’t stop, though, and it just kept escalating. After around five minutes of ignoring her, it suddenly occurred to me that, as I had forgotten to lock up (as I frequently do—hey! We live in the country! People tend to trust each other round these parts…), someone could have snuck into my house and been hiding out in the back, and was at that time just waiting for me to leave so they could finish stealing whatever it was they came to steal…”

 …I paused in my email typing as the thought struck me. Visions of a burglar, crouched and cornered by tiny Izzy, snarling and dancing and barking ferociously as she waited for me to come and take over, danced in my head. Nooo. Couldn’t be. What to do? All the weapons of choice were in the back of the house, with the burglar. I looked around. All that was available to me was the iron, which I had been using the other day and hadn’t yet put away. I could feasibly swing that by the cord and stay a safe distance away… Izzy’s barking was getting more and more insistent. Decision made, I yanked the cord out of the wall, grabbed the iron firmly in one hand, kicked off my sandals (they tend to squeak), and began to tiptoe down the hall. It suddenly loomed very long before me.

 As I approached the end of the hall, it was clear that Izzy’s barking was coming from Autumn’s bedroom. I peeped around the corner and as soon as I did so, sagged with relief. Izzy’s forelegs were perched on the windowsill, and she was still barking threateningly at the vista before her in the yard—a turkey strutting in the front yard. As tears of laughter streamed from the corners of my eyes, it strutted on under our fence into the woods.

 A camera might have been a better weapon of choice in this instance.

 June’s reaction to this story was typical of the city-bred. I could tell she was immediately rattled by the idea of staying, alone, (I’ll reiterate that point: By Herself) in the country. I’m not sure we’re a hundred percent on the house-sitting idea at this point, although she did gulp pretty bravely and say,

 “Umm…I think I might lock your doors when I stay over, if that’s okay.”

I tried to reassure her that she’d be fine. After all, she has Izzy the Warrior Dog to defend and protect. Who could ask for anything more?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 9, 2009 11:40 pm

    Awesome. Enough said! And, for the record, I would totally house/dog sit for you (and even deadhead your flowers) if it meant I got to stay in the country for a week or two. It sounds heavenly. (well, minus the barking.)

  2. June 10, 2009 11:10 am

    Okay, this post had me smiling. It made me remember a certain time in Summit Valley when we had a prowler outside our house. I’ll never forget how terrified I was, but since I didn’t die I guess it turned out well in the end.

    I hope she is feeling brave enough to stay with the Warrior Dog!

  3. hintonrae permalink*
    June 10, 2009 11:11 pm

    Gerb–I so wish we were neighbors!! I don’t know which to be more worried about: the cat, the dog, or the flowers…

    T4–happy to make you laugh at me. I’m such a doofus sometimes. The turkey messed up all of our grass seed today, btw, scratching for worms. Go figure.

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