Posted on June 10th, 2013
hat you see before you is a plan turned magnificently on its furry, black head.
With vacation only one month away, there are things to be done. Packing is the least of it. There’s a gaping hole in one of the panes of glass on the security door and water is leaking out of a hose that runs to the rooftop swamp cooler. Also, I’ve been hanging clothes out to dry on a length of twine Scott tied up in the yard to try to extend the life of our dryer long enough to sell it in as a small perk to our housesitter. (Also, air drying your clothes? Very eco-friendly.)
There are a few things that we should be focusing our energy and resources on that aren’t 12 pounds and bitey, but in our defense I would argue that this animal is a puppy in name only. At seven weeks, she is enormous, spilling over the sides of your lap, growing Gremlin-style before your eyes. With a trunk and coat of grey paint she’d pass for a diminutive elephant, that’s how big she is. Yesterday, I overheard Scott calling her ‘tons of fun’ from the kitchen while he wrestled her into her crate.
We would be well-served by marshaling our reserves—whatever stores of productivity are packed into our bodies after the end of school, our family’s emotional equivalent to a camel’s hump—to find some swimsuits that fit us and begin drafting a detailed explanation of how to finesse the most temperamental of our home’s modern conveniences for the housesitter I previously mentioned.
The vacation was supposed to come before the puppy, not after. This was the month I was supposed to spend in careful preparation for our time away. Instead, I will be housetraining the beast pictured here, serving intermittently as a one-woman peace-keeping force maintaining order between the interloper and the Established Dog.
I believe in making room for the happy accidents. Allow for the unforeseen—even the downright questionable—and see what these opportunities might have to teach you. It could be nothing more than to pick your shoes up if you don’t want to find them in strips, strewn from the front door all the way through the kitchen. You won’t know for sure, though, until you’ve opened you’ve allowed yourself the joy of doing a thing entirely backward and boldly so, at that.
I’m off now to write that long-suffering housesitter a preemptive note of apology. (Woof.)∗