White Dog came into the office shaking her head and plopped down beside me. Just about the same time, I heard the blessed roar of the vacuum cleaner springing to life. I reached down and petted WD's neck. "Good job!"
She had been out in the living room with the rest of the White Dog Army supervising Steve as he once again brought Bissell, our VC, to the operating table in an attempt to bring her back to life. "That's not Bissell," she said. "Dad got frustrated and the helpline isn't open on Sundays and the Internet doesn't even list what replacement parts are available."
"So what is that noise," I asked.
"It is Franken-cleaner," WD replied. "Dad never got rid of the old old one; the one that "fell" down the basement stairs; he had it in the storage shed." "But that one was a wreck and didn't work either."
"I know. But he wrapped duct tape around the crack in the dust bin and sealed the inside with silicone. Somehow he got the handle to stand up. Then he replaced the plug where Michael had pulled it out of the wall and broke it. He and YoYoMa found a belt from somewhere that seems to fit. And he is using the pliers to change the carpet height control since the knob fell off who-knows-where. He found a new cotter pin for the back wheel; it is too long but it works. Oh, and he wrapped tape around the hose so the brush clicks on snugly again and doesn't flop off."
I looked up to find the Fix-It Crew standing proudly in the doorway. "It works and will do for now," Steve announced. "At least we won't drown in dog hair before I can find out if Bissell is savable."
The new sucking monster wasn't pretty. I went out to look at its work and the living room rug was once again Chinese Red. As I sat down, Puff moved from her spot next to the coffee table. She left a small tuft of hair. "Hey!" I laughed, "no more shedding any of you, no telling how much life this old pasted-and-taped-back-together clunker has. Don't make it work too hard!"