This was a crazy month! First off, Mommy has been shopping around for a lifting harness for me to help me up and down stairs and stuff. She couldn't find the one she wanted so she decided to make me one. She didn't want to have to make the vest part from scratch so I got to go to a place called Bass Pro Shops to try on hunting vests. I was very good in the store trying on the vests so Mommy took me to a part of the store where they have GREAT BIG FISH in a tank! There was also a person in the tank cleaning it. I found it all very interesting. I was disappointed however when the check out people did not have bones. What kind of check out people don't have bones? Anyway, we got home with the vest and Mommy put it on me to figure out how to attach the lifting straps. That is when I realized that she expected me to actually WEAR the dorky vest she had me trying on!
Then we had the Big Storm which I wrote about in a previous post. Then Mommy and I took the Dumbest Vacation EVER, which I also wrote about already. Then Mommy made me the lifting harness and the day she finished it she got an e-mail from someone who sent her a link for a harness they liked. It wasn't the harness Mommy was looking for, but the one above it on the website was!! Mommy called the company and got advice about fitting me for it and ordered it that day.
Mommy felt so bad about the Dumbest Vacation Ever that she took me for a really short REAL vacation to Wisconsin. We went up on a Saturday morning and came home on a Sunday night. Mommy had hoped it would be cooler up there than at home, but it wasn't, but at least we had a nice lake to swim in. When we got there I ran down to the dock and was shocked to discover that the peddle boat was not out in the water! I stood on the dock and stared at the empty spot and whined. Mommy said, "Nobody put the boat in, and it takes two people to drop in, so we can't do the boat this time." Then she opened the boathouse door to get the cushy things I like to lie on on the dock and there was the peddle boat! I ran up to it and looked at it, then looked at Mommy, then looked at it, then back at Mommy, then I whined, then I sighed and lay down by it. Mommy said, "Fine, fine! I'll try to MacGyver it in for you." and then she went and got a garden cart and some rope and managed to get the boat out of the boathouse and into the lake by herself! I knew she could do it! I got four rides in two days so it was well worth it. We tried out the lifting harness Mommy had made for me and it worked well, but Mommy thought the one she had bought would be better, but it hadn't arrived by that weekend. Besides boating I got to swim and look for fish and take a short trail hike that I like to a hidden lake where I get to swim. It was a good short vacation.
A couple days after we got back the new harness arrived. Mommy said this was a very good thing because she could use it to get me down into our basement when the weather got to the 100s during the day. I didn't mind being in the basement, but I really resented that she put the baby gate up at the bottom of the stairs like I was an irresponsible puppy or something! She said she did it because she didn't want me to try to go up the stairs by myself and wind up falling down them while she was gone, but I still think it was demeaning. We've slept on the porch almost every night during July because it was so hot and Mommy spent a few days down in the basement with me cleaning it up because it was the coolest place in the house.
Then last weekend Mommy said we were going to take another dumb vacation, but if I was very good I might get a pet fish! So, Mommy put the empty ice chests into the car and we drove down to Grandma and Grandpa's house. There had been a really big rain storm the night before so we had to take a strange route down there because some of the roads we would normally drive were flooded and closed. The strange route ended up taking us by the pet store where Mommy was going to get me the fish, so I didn't really have to be a good boy, because we stopped there FIRST and got my new fish friend. He is a betta and we named him Pelles. (Pelles is the Welsh name for The Fisher King in the King Arthur stories for those of you not up on your Welsh Arthurian legends) Mommy took me into the pet store and I checked out all the other fish in the tanks while Mommy read the instructions for the "Betta Buffet" Mommy picked out a bowl for the fish and the gravel and then I chose a plastic plant and a plastic dinosaur to put in the bowl. The instructions said you got two plastic toys, but I was only interested in the dinosaur, so Mommy picked a plastic skull. Then Mommy held the cups of betta fish down for me to see and I decided I liked Pelles best. He was unusual looking as all the other fish were blue or red or purple, but he is white with red and blue on him.
The people in the pet store all commented on how I was the first dog they had ever seen who was interested in fish and Mommy told them that she was buying the fish for me. They laughed that she was buying me a pet. Then Mommy, Pelles and I drove down to Grandma and Grandpa's house. Grandma didn't believe that I was interested in having a fish until Mommy put him up on the counter and then brought me into the house. I went straight to the counter to watch him swim around and Grandma had to admit that I liked my fish! Then Mommy left Pelles on the counter and went out to get an ice chest and when she came back in I was standing with my front feet on the counter and I had the lip of the fish bowl in my mouth and I was trying to lift it up so I could put it down on the ground. Mommy said that was VERY NO behavior and I needed to keep the fish on the counter. I don't see why, after all, he is MY fish. So, anyway, Mommy helped grandma pack up some dishes and sheets and towels and stuff and then she put a whole bunch of boxes in our car and then she went downstairs and filled our ice chest with all the food she had taken down there on the Dumbest Vacation Ever and then Pelles and I got in the car and we drove to Grandma and Grandpa's new house. Pelles went onto the counter in there and I had to sit in an empty back room by myself while Mommy and Grandma and Grandpa brought in three cars full of boxes. Then Mommy filled up her ice chests with all the food that she had left at THAT house and Pelles, Mommy and I headed home. At first Mommy put Pelles' bowl on one of the end tables, but then she decided the spot was too dark and secluded so she brought up the table that my birdies used to live on and put Pelles bowl on that. That night I stole Pelles food and tried to open it, but Mommy caught me and told me THAT was NO too. I didn't know pet ownership came with so many rules. I love watching him swim and I check on him each morning and whenever I come in from my walks.
Finally this month Mommy and I went to visit Auntie Naomi and Uncle Fred at their place in Door County, Wisconsin. I was very upset when Mommy took Pelles out of the house and didn't come back with him, but she said he couldn't come on this vacation and Benji's mom was going to babysit him. Even without Pelles I had a great time at Auntie Naomi's house. The night we got there Mommy put on my new lifting harness and we went to something called a "campground" to visit with Auntie Naomi's daughter and her boyfriend and his parents. I'm not sure what a campground is exactly, but it seems that the people build a fire and then sit around it and eat and drink and talk. I napped for most of it. Mommy says I'm not the camping type of dog which is why we've never done it, and I was happy to get back to Auntie Naomi's house and go to bed. The next morning we went to a place called Cave Point County Park that I had been to the first time we went up there to visit. Mommy remembered that I liked it a lot and she wanted me to get to go there again. It was great. We walked a little bit down a trail and then Mommy used my lifting harness to get me down on a rocky slab where I could play in the water and people could admire me. It was very crowded so there were a lot of people there to admire me.
Then we went back up to the trail (Mommy used the lifting harness to help me back up the rocks) and we walked a bit further down the trail to see what the shore looked like from there. I wore my lifting harness as my walking harness so that Mommy could help me if we got to an obstruction that I couldn't cross on my own. There were a bunch of fallen trees on the trail so the humans were slow, but I got around all of them on my own.
Eventually we got to a bit of rocky beach where there weren't a lot of people and I wanted to go back down to the water so Mommy said okay and helped me down with my harness. I wanted to go down to that section of beach because there was a HUGE pile of dead alewives on it. Alewives are little invasive herrings and they die off in big bunches when the lake gets really hot really fast and then they wash up on the shore. Well, Mommy got as far as saying, "Don't..." when I dove into the pile and started to roll and roll. It was heavenly!
Mommy didn't think it was great though so she went back to the trail and gave Auntie Naomi and Uncle Fred her stuff and then we waded into the lake and Mommy tried to rinse as much of the dead fish stink off me as she could. Mostly what she managed to do though was get the dead fish stink on her. After that we went back to the car and we drove to the Pamida with all the windows open for some reason. Mommy bought shampoo and laundry soap and we went back to Auntie Naomi's house, but I wasn't allowed in. Instead Mommy and I got in our car and we drove down to the beach by Auntie Naomi's house and went in the water there. The shore was really mucky and Mommy lost her shoes in the muck and had to get them out and then rinse them off in the lake before putting them back on. I was really rather tired for yet another swim and so I didn't want to go back in, but Mommy said I had to and we waded into some water up to my belly and then Mommy pulled out the bottle of shampoo and the swim turned into a BATH!!! That was very mean. Then Mommy washed my harness and we got back in the car and went back to Auntie Naomi's house where Mommy changed into her pjs and put all her clothes and our towels into the washer. Everyone had lunch on the porch since Mommy was still too smelly to be allowed in the house and after lunch Mommy took a shower. (Mommy had planned to shower first, but Auntie Naomi was hungry so they ate first).
I was very tired that night so I stayed home ALL ALONE for the first time at Auntie Naomi's house while Mommy and Auntie Naomi and Uncle Fred went out to eat with the people we visited at the campground. I was a good boy and didn't even throw up or anything.
The next day Auntie Naomi and Uncle Fred took us to see the cabin where they used to stay before they moved up there and then we took a Feed the Fish tour. Feed the Fish is a movie that your humans may have seen. It stars Tony Shalhoub, who grew up in the area, and it was filmed all around there. They showed us the places where major scenes took place and then the little green shack that Tony Shalhoub owns and in the movie looks like it is in the woods, but is really by the lake. We got out of the car so we could walk by his property and I made sure to pee on it.
Mommy says we are lucky Tony Shalhoub wasn't there or we might have seen this:
After the shack we drove by a barn that in the movie looks like it is right on the lake, but it is actually in the woods! Those movie people are weird.
After the tour we had lunch and then we packed up and headed home. On the way we stopped at a point that is 1/2 way between the equator and the North Pole.
Then the road went back down and we could drive on it again. Mommy says it was a drawbridge and it opened up to let this boat go by:
After that I pretty much slept the whole rest of the way home. Vacations are tiring and this month has been exhausting.