As you might have seen on Monday’s front page of the paper, Bogie was the guest of honor at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church’s annual Blessing of the Animals Sunday.

Bogie, my nearly 3-year-old yellow Lab, was supposed to be the guest at last year’s Blessing. But due to a gross misunderstanding (i.e., I forgot), Suzie and I were in Salesville, Arkansas that weekend, perched on the banks of the beautiful Norfork River. The folks at St. Mary’s had to hustle up another guest of honor, for which I humbly apologized!

So they asked again, earlier in the year, and I said we were probably going to be out of town again, but it turns out we weren’t, so I agreed. With reservations.

Bogie, as you’ve probably read, is the most calm, obedient and good-natured dog I have ever known. But all except the good-natured part goes out the window when he is around new people and other animals. At that point, Bogie turns into a 65-pound bulldozer that’ll yank your arm out of the socket just to go sniff another dog’s behind.

I was secretly dreading the whole weekend, but I am a man of my word, at least the second time around.

So we showed up at the Trowbridge House for the Sunday afternoon event.

Bogie immediately went stone deaf and simple.

For a dog who can shake on command, sit, lie down, retrieve, has learned what “go around” means when he’s told it because he’s wrapped his lead around a chair and any number of other tricks, when another animal or person is around he turns dumb as a stump. Just plain stupid.

What followed was about an hour of arm and shoulder wrenching chaos that I thoroughly enjoyed.

I got to meet some other great pets, including two black Labs and a white one, all of great beauty. Not that Bogie’s not the handsomest lad of them all, of course, but I might be biased.

Fr. Frances Daunt, in his address, gave thanks to the Lord for a great many things, not the least of which was for “the hills of Louisiana,” which I cherish and haunt regularly, to which I replied, perhaps too emphatically, “Amen!”

After an hour, I begged off, excusing myself with the fear that I might, if subjected to any more of Bogie’s surges, pulls, bolts or straining stretches, end up resembling an orangutan. I do believe my right arm is a couple inches longer than my left now.

By the time we got home and I got Bogie back on his lead, he flopped on the floor of the shop and with a deep sigh fell fast asleep; I admit, I barely made it to the sofa and got my shoes off before I was horizontal and snoring, having dreams of what it might be like to be Plastic Man.

Also last weekend, I made significant progress on the bathroom I started building in the house some three years ago.

I finally got all the water lines installed with PVC pipe, actually a few months ago. Last weekend, my pal Larry Deslatte came by to hook the cold side into the main service line.

I didn’t trust myself to do it. I don’t trust what I did already. I hate plumbing, and have never been so bold as to try a whole new installation before.

But a few months ago, I was forced to run a whole new line to the kitchen when a burst galvanized pipe left us high and dry. That actually turned out all right, but my confidence was not restored.

So Larry came over and hooked me in to the new line, and we sat with cigars for a time waiting for the glue to dry sufficiently.

At last came the moment of truth. I went in the house and stood near the window where I could see the pipes I had installed and scream bloody murder if a geyser of water shot forth. Larry turned on the valve.

Nothing leaked.

Well, okay, the flexible line into the toilet leaked because the gasket was bad. But nothing else leaked.

I was beside myself with glee.

Now…on to the hot side! With any luck at all, I’ll have this project done before winter sets in.

I have not decided on a new career. I have a great new respect for plumbers. I couldn’t take the mental fatigue. Plus it’s really hard on the knees.

1 comment to Blessings

  • blufloyd

    My former Weim Aja got blessed on her own by some storefront holy roller.
    Not sure what brought that about but they were sitting in my Mom’s yard having a great time when I found them. She called him over if she saw him for years after.

Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>