It’s late at night. I am sitting here trying desperately not to move. Thank goodness I don’t need to go to the bathroom. I am allowed to turn a page in my book, but any shifting of my body whatsoever alerts the two labs who are sleeping nearby. (They in turn wake up the German shepherd sleeping in the kitchen.) Because I’ve been staying up later lately, it seems we’ve created a new nightly game. As long as I don’t move, everyone in the house gets to sleep. However, if I shift even a miniscule amount, both labs jump up and head to the door to go out. It doesn’t matter if it’s 10:30 pm or two am. It doesn’t matter when they went out last. All that matters is that I moved. Therefore I must be getting up and hey, as long as I’m up, wouldn’t I like to let them go outside?
Crap! My foot fell asleep. Now I have to move. It doesn’t seem like it should be a big deal. I’m blessed to live in the country. I don’t need to go out with them and walk around or scoop up any poop. Most nights I can open the garage door and just let them out one or two at a time. After they’ve completed their business in the woods, they come right back in, especially if it’s cold out. However, it’s been a little warmer lately. The labs have started to wander off for anywhere from 15-45 minutes. This means I need to stay awake in the living room and wait for their smiling faces to come back and peek through the sidelight window next to the front door. When they see me stumbling over half asleep, they race down the steps, through the garage and into the mudroom where I’ll be waiting to hand out treats like it’s Halloween. Once the labs come back, my sweet shepherd hobbles over. He’s been showing his age lately, but he doesn’t want to be left out, and he loves to do his job. So I open the back door for him and then go settle in on the couch with my book once again while he does his nightly perimeter check. This can take 15-30 minutes depending on how many good smells he can detect that night. Eventually he will also come to the front door to signal he is ready to come in. (Oddly enough he refuses to walk through that door, but he knows I can see him on the porch.) We meet by the garage door. He steps in and politely waits for me to push the button to close the garage door and twist the lock on the back door. He waits patiently for me to turn out the light and remember his treat.
An hour or more later and I can finally put my book down and go to bed. Sigh…. We’re going to need to find a new nightly game!