THIS TIME TOMORROW I WILL BE ALONE WITH A PUPPY. And two seriously unthrilled hellhounds* and a husband who has gone to bed. I didn’t sleep at all last night because every time I began to drift off I was mobbed by gigantic hellterrors** with antlers and talons like an eagle’s and whole rows of fangs and little red glittering eyes.*** I think possibly I have an attitude problem. AAAAAAAAAAAAAH. Why didn’t I stick to that delinquent-gorilla-fostering programme? Why did I think I wanted a bull terrier puppy?
To my utter lack of surprise, I have not managed to finish this editorial tweak of SHADOWS so I will have the interesting experience of trying to work with a puppy in my lap since I’m going to try this Holding Strategy which is supposed to produce Calm Laid Back dogs, even when they were bullies to begin with.† It will be even more interesting when I print the whole ms out and try to read hard copy . . . with a puppy in my lap. . . .
Did I say AAAAAAAAAAUGH? Let me say it again. AAAAAAAAAAAUGH.††
* * *
*Who are presently crashed out in their standard post-dinner-struggle manner. I am ravaged by guilt. They don’t realise The World Changes tomorrow.^ Guys! Wake up! This is your last evening! Er . . . let me rephrase that . . . last evening when there’s only four of us.^^ You should be awake! Having precision nostalgia and glaring at me! You don’t realise how exquisite our time on the sofa was tonight!^^^
^ Although I think Darkness has suspicions that something is not going to hellhound plan. Chaos looks at the travelling crate that has been riding in the back of the car with them all week and thinks, well, whatever, humans are weird. Darkness looks at it and thinks whaaaaaaaat is this about. It’s the same with the new crate in the sitting room at the mews. Chaos thinks eh, it’s a thing, isn’t it time for another walk so I can mug my brother some more? Darkness thinks, hmmmmmmmm, what is she up to? Today I draped a blanket over the crate so it’ll be more secure and den-like for a puppy who weighs about one-tenth of a hellhound,# and fluffed up one of the polyester throws I use as hellhound bedding inside the crate, and Chaos opened one eye and closed it again and Darkness sat up and stared.##
^^ Unless you count frelling computers, rosebushes, my piano and/or Wolfgang.
^^^ Have I mentioned the difficulties of knitting with a hellhound in your lap? You do hear about people’s hands and wrists starting to hurt if they knit too much, or to a really tiny gauge, or a frelling frelling frelling pattern, or a hard unyielding yarn, but you don’t hear so much about eye- and shoulder-strain from knitting holding your needles over your head. If I forget and bits start trailing across Resident Hellhound+, RH tends to kick violently. Stitches can be lost this way, never mind the bruises. And I still haven’t figured out a successful plan for handling something that gets larger than a leg warmer, like the back or front of a sweater. Have I mentioned that I’ve started another sweater? No, I haven’t finished the first one. I haven’t quite finished knitting the second sleeve . . . and I don’t want to face finding out that the bits don’t fit together. I especially don’t want to find this out on a week when other things are happening. Like your family is increasing by one hairy four-legged incontinent member.
+ Usually Chaos. Darkness customarily lies tactfully along my leg or (excellent as the weather gets colder) across my feet.
# Although not for long. Although I’ve had several people tell me soothingly that the biggest puppy in the litter does not necessarily grow up to be the biggest dog . . . We’re channelling little and delicate here, okay?
## Also there was serious language when I found out what a total pain in the rear the catches on the new crate are. Maybe I should have bought the one that cost three times as much. For a couple of plastic latches? Faugh. I’ll buy clamps at the builders’.
** I don’t even like terriers. But bullies (and Staffies^) are sui generis really.
^ And anything else some outraged terrier owner wants to write in and tell me I don’t know squiff about. Maybe. I don’t like most terriers. But then I don’t like most people. I don’t like most books. I don’t like most things.
*** Not in a good way. For you Hellhound readers.
† HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Um. I wonder if it works in reverse? Will a puppy in the lap calm me down?
†† Olivia and I have been texting each other all evening.
O: Don’t panic. It’s going to 2b fun!
Me: She’s not as big as Yeti [standard bull grandmother, Southdowner's foundation bitch] yet, right?
O: curled up on my lap atm, she is size of Yeti’s head
Me: Yeti has v big head
O: u r impossibull!
Me: I’m abt to b impossibull, 2morro. She’s even cuter than fortnight ago, right?
O: She is adorabull.
Me: . . . text as u leave 2morro?
O: Yes will text you when I set off, that’s a generous 2 hours 4 u 2 run around cottage like headless hen.
Me: THANK U SO MUCH. Is my girl 1st to go?
O: She’s first, having last snuggle on lap, *sniff*. She is sweetie. Only today person who had them 4 day said she was calmest. . . . U believe me, right?????
Me: OF COURSE. WOULD U LIE?
O: Good, be reassured, be very reassured.
Me: Resistance is futile, right?
O: Absolutely. You need wodges of kitchen roll & scads of newspapers—that & ur sanity r all u need to hang onto.
Me: Sanity? Um . . . I think it’s too late.
O: W bullie prob a good thing.
Me: I thot that was why u decided to let me hv 1.
O: Yes u hv sufficient insanity 2 qualify 4 bullie ownership. . . .
. . . . And on that positive note, you will forgive me if I go to bed early, not that I’m going to sleep or anything. . . .
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