White Dog rested in the Momma Chair and oversaw Steve carrying in groceries from the car. She smiled her approval at the relay team: Opal who announced the outdoor portions from the Watching Window; Bailey who met every trip with bags from the front door to the kitchen; Roman who took over at the kitchen gate and guarded the bags while Steve went back out for the next group of bags.
White Dog watched from her bed. "I admire Opal's tenacity. She just calmly tries from the beginning every night after dinner."
Every night after dinner is cleared away, Opal prances up to Roman attempting to draw him into playing with her. She daringly bumps noses with him. tries to rest the side of her face against his. Play bows then frog hops at him. Many times we have drawn in a breath to call her off.
Poor Roman, reading his expressions, is not afraid she is being aggressive but has NO clue what Opal wants. He backs up as she insistently dances forward and back trying to teach him the rhythm. Sometimes she is so unrelenting that Roamn goes over and sits next to Steve for protection while for a word from momma to make her stop.
"Opal, Sweet One," I intervene. "Roman does not know how to play very well. He never learned the games you know. Why not go and run with Zsofia?" Opal thinks her brother very odd that he lacks such basic skills but she respects his desire to abstain...or maybe she respects the gentle "momma" edge to what I am saying.
As she walks away, a little sad, I hear Roman breathe a sigh of relief.
White Dog turned her back to distance herself from the embarrassing scene.
My doctor came by today after the visiting home nurse reported that my oxygen saturation was a bit low. She bounced right in greeting the White Dog Army as she walked to the bedroom; even Roman stepped up for a respectful "hello." As usual, Bai and Zso thought she had stopped by to see THEM and to tell them about her dogs.
As a precaution, the doctor had ordered a chest Xray and the technician arrived just as she was finishing up her exam. "I will move out to the front room," she said "to finish up my inputting. That way I can call out any other questions I think of but the equipment for the Xray can be set up." She was replaced by a nice man in a lead apron...and the doctor's fanclub left with her.
The tech was still unfolding his amazing portable machine when Zsofia brought in a baggie and dropped it at my feet. Clearly, she wanted help opening the ziplock; it appeared to hold a smattering of oats. "Steve, I do not know where she got it but Miss Z has a bag of something I do not think is hers," I called. "Could you come get it and herd her out of the Xray path? No need to create a glow-in-the-dark White Dog."
Steve picked up the bag. "Where did you get this," he asked her as they both went back into the living room. My doctor was just sliding her laptop into her huge carryall. She looked up and saw the baggie Steve carried. She laughed. "Looks like SOME doggie was rummaging through the doctor's kit bag."
"That looks like the remainder of my granola mix. Usually mornings are too busy for breakfast and I grab it to munch in the car between patients." She looked around at the White Dog Army. "Maybe next time I will need to bring extra to share."
Steve looked at Zsofia. "You know better than to put your nose into people's bags and help yourself. Now apologize to the doctor."
White Dog said, "Opal is not the only one. Dad brushed me out this morning because he found one of the little pests strolling on my back. They seem to be everywhere."
White Dog laughed. "You can be such a goofball, Zso! I love that you can always make me laugh." Zsofia was her playing her "Do you love my parts?" game. It usually starts by Zsofia thrusting her head under my hand. "Do you love my ears, momma?"
I respond by stroking the softness of her ears and reassure her that I do, indeed love her ears, her long elegant nose, her deep soulful eyes, and her soft cheeks.
White Dog has days where she rallies and makes us all smile our encouragement and celebrate our senior leader's surge of energy.
Today was one of those days. She smelled the lamb shanks slow cooking in the kitchen and walked to the bedroom door to ask Steve, "What time is dinner, dad?"
White Dog nodded to her sister, "go ahead, Opal, and hop up there. Momma will not mind at all. I often have found resting in momma's chair recharges me and makes me feel safe. You can lean against the cushions and just feel the power of her love."
Bailey, who also often enjoys resting in the deep, wide chair, lifted her head from the sofa. "But NO chewing up anything."
White Dog smiled. "Roman is handling the rest of the White Dog Army sharing his new crate with much more calm and elan than I would have guessed would be the case. Even the couple of times he had to wait while dad lured Bailey out of her lounging palace Roman did not show teeth or growl. We should be pretty proud of him for that."
White Dog admonished Opal, "Sister, stop chewing on the wire. You will catch it behind your teeth and break them or chip the enamel. It will hurt. Momma, make her stop."
"Sweet Opal," I sang to her, "come out of Roman's crate and play with me. You have two bins filled with all manner of things to chew and tug and make squeak. And all of them are MUCH better for your mouth than the kennel wires."
Both White Dog and I were recipients of the famed Eskie Selective Hearing until I threatened, "Well, if that is so tasty you will not mind giving up treats for it. Choose now, continued gnawing or afternoon duck jerky treats."