Yes, I spent most of the last week lounging at the farm, much like these two characters you see in this photo. All of us generally stuck close to the woodstove and didn't move too fast.
Unfortunately I have been drying out from the old anti-depressants the whole time. But that can't stop me from some serious relaxing! My folks have their life set up as stress free as possible. He gets on the tractor and blows the snow out of the lane, so she can get to work. Then he does the chores and goes out to the shop to work. And that's about it.
My family and I really needed a good dose of hick hospitality. Big Daddy didn't have many breaks for the last three months, I've been jonesing on the nasty prescriptions, and the kids are so sick of school I'm ready to yank them and tell everybody we're homeschooling, while we'd be hitting all the free art galleries and calling it a field trip. We were more than ready to get away from our real life.
A funny thing happens to a house dog when you take him out to the country where the yard isn't fenced and the sky is black and the neighbours are more than a stone's throw away. He stares out into the dark expanse of fields surrounding the house and barks like a friggin Rottweiler. I was so proud of him, protecting me like that. Although I was pretty ticked at him when we first got there. As soon as we let him out of the car, he got sight of Barn Cat. The thing with Barn Cat is that he is the same size and colour as Cat. Plus Dog is kinda gimpy eyed, so maybe he thinks there are always two cats...regardless, Cat does not run. He stands his ground in the face of the obnoxious Puppy. Barn Cat saw the weird looking Dog and hightailed it. What does a dog do when a cat runs? He chases. He has to. So off they go, across the snow covered lawn, across the lane, through the ditch, across the barn yard, under the fence, and -oh no- into the corral. Well on Christmas Eve Day the temp had gone up to freezing, which meant all the nasty piles of horse manure in the corral were nice and soft. And there goes my HOUSE DOG through it. Are you getting the point of why dogs were not allowed in the house when I was growing up? So Barn Cat escapes through his little hole in the barn wall, leaving Dog to run aimlessly, all the way to the pasture gate, sniffing for Barn Cat and getting all kinds of wonderful stinks instead. So, out of shape and out of breath, I catch my grunting dog, pick him up by the pits, and carry him at arms length back across the yard. Inspection yielded only a few nasty bits stuck in his paws and a few flecks of suspicious matter on his belly.
So I grabbed him by the scruff of his neck and the extra skin on his back, and rubbed him in a nice clean snowbank. I was glad that he has so much extra skin and also that he has the kind of fur that "dirt" falls off of easily. And then later I gave him a bath in dog shampoo and rinsed the tub with Mr. Clean. We're not even germophobes. But this is shit, people. It's supposed to stay outside.
And the King is as handsome as ever. They got the usual for Christmas from me: a handful of grain, some hay, and some clean shavings. Why, it's Christmas Mr. Scrooge.
Other than the prickly skin and throbbing eyeballs, I had a great time. Oh, and I'm a year older than I was last time I wrote. I'm 35 now. Geez.