Dogs and Dirt Roads 2016 calendars have just been ordered. I will have a handful within a week and will order more once I know how many to get printed. I’m super happy with the quality and images, I think you will be too!
These last few weeks have been pretty amazing.
I used to follow her around all the time but suddenly she keeps picking me up and cuddling me. I used to drive her crazy, always ready to pounce on her lap as soon as she sat down, on the bed, at the desk, outside, it didn’t matter to me. I wanted to be close. Now though, it’s Sleam picking me up and holding me against her chest, sitting down for ages at a time, doing nothing but loving me. She knows that the cancer is killing me. She’s spoiling me rotten and I love every minute!
There was a time before Eddie and I came to live with Sleam. I won’t go into details but I will say they didn’t like me and I didn’t like them, which is why I peed on their bed, a lot. That kind of backfired as they dumped me at the Shelter. I didn’t like it there, small spaces, and lots of strangers coming and going. I’d overheard people talking about Eddie, this black and white cat; he’d been there a year already and was running out of hope. He used to hide under the cages all day long, all on his own. Eddie didn’t play the game you see, the ‘customer service smile and purr game’. I got to hang out with him though, I liked him, he was my age almost, and a funny cat. Anyway, one day, this tall woman came in and lay on the floor and talked to us both as we hid under a huge cage in the corner room. Eddie went over to her, purred loudly, and then climbed onto her lap. I was amazed. I followed him. She took us both home. Life has never been so good.
It’s funny how much I love being held these days. I used to fuss and cry when she’d pick me, but Sleam would stroke me, once, maybe twice, and then put me down again. It felt good to be held though so I let her pick me up more and more. Now though, like I said, it’s her coming to me. My tummy hurts and it feels good to be held so I let her cuddle me. The other night I fell asleep on her chest. The dogs were on the bed too, well, not Harold, he’s happier on the floor-tiles.
I usually join him during the night but this time, it rained and Rosie and Ollie and even the annoying little kitten Stevie slept with me and Sleam. Stevie, I shouldn’t call him little any more, he’s bigger than me now I’ve lost all this weight. He was the one-pound weakling when he was found in a woodpile and came to live with us. He got so sick that Sleam had to hold him to her heart for days before he started drinking goat’s milk.
Anyway, the little tiger, Stevie’s learnt to be a great little mouser. Sleam’s home will still be rodent free; that was my job you know, keeping the kitchen clean of critters. Eddie, he went outside most days, hanging out in the yard, watching the birds, didn’t catch anything but he liked to hang out with the dogs. He even raised a few puppies. Eddie didn’t come back one night though; we’ve all missed him horribly. Stevie makes me think of Eddie, he wants to be a dog too, always playing with Rosie and following Ollie around the yard. Funny boys.
These last few weeks Sleam and I have a new routine. She feeds me junk food, oh my, oh my, I do love this food. Whiskas, Friskies, fresh salmon, ham, you name it, whatever I want she goes to Santa Fe and picks it up, even catnip!
I can’t keep the food down any more, but I try to hide how bad it is. Sleam hears me though, wakes up in the middle of the night, and simply cleans up my mess then strokes my head until I stop heaving. She picks me up and takes me to bed with her.
I hadn’t wanted to tell her about the cancer but her friend the vet worked it out. Sleam didn’t take the news well, but I didn’t expect her too. She rallied around though. Her job even let her have time off to be with me. I’m glad. She’d talked to the vet and they’d decided on a Friday to let me go but I wanted Thursday. I kept telling her, each time she held me, but she didn’t hear until she got to work one day. That voice in her head was me. Her boss told her to take the day off.
Yep, these last few weeks have been pretty amazing. Today, Thursday, the dogs sniff me, sleep next to me, they’re being gentle. I like being near them all. Even Ollie is cuddling me. He still steals my food but I don’t mind.
Stevie is outside in the tree, oh here he is, come to check on us. Rosie takes a nap with me whenever she gets a chance.
Sleam is writing. I sit in the sun and dictate to her. It’s a good day. I’ve had a great life – did I mention that? Life with Sleam and family has been wonderful. I know I’ve been loved. How good is that? I’ve known love.
The People’s Apocalypse http://amzn.com/1621062872
I forgot to mention that i had a story about building a solar oven in this anthology. It came out a few years ago. Since I’ve started writing more articles and short stories for publication, the process reminded me of others I’ve had published. Having to write a resume can get frustrating because I tend not to hold on to much, but here goes…
Circus News. The Eldorado Sun. Yoga Monthly. Madison Edge. Pink Paper. Madrid Arts Quarterly. Canary.
I edited, wrote, formatted and published a memoir as a ghost writer for JT Winneberger, about his life in Oklahoma in the 1930s and on into his now 90th year. http://amzn.com/B00WOLE2WA
There are some poems out there too in a few anthologies but I can’t (luckily) remember who or what or even when…
It’s time I kept track if I want to publish more and be paid, right?
I’ve been thinking about how I should do what I love and that is writing, dogs, camping, and the Four Corners area in the States. I’ve started writing a blog on wordpress in case any of you are interested in following along with my road trips. I’ll keep this blog upto date with my novels and articles too. Thanks for staying in touch.
I just posted a short excerpt from the beginning of Living The Dream to Createspace.com. Lets see what kind of feedback I get. Have you read any of the books yet yourself? And thanks by the way for all the new followers on here – its much appreciated.
Call for your stories! I’m editing an anthology of dog focused tales, with the theme of taking our dogs on the road when camping and on road trips in the Southwest…What was most fun? Most challenging? Tell us of a specific incident that made you laugh or cry, that made you wish you’d left them at a Doggy spa or one that tempted you to adopt yet another dog.
The book will be a mix of photos and articles and stories, available on Kindle and Amazon to start with, expanding as soon as possible to a bigger audience.
Word length of 150 – 2000. Images of 4 mgb or larger.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Roadtrips with dogs” in the title.
You can find me on Amazon, Rovers North, Google, Madrid Artists Quarterly and other places too numerous to mention. Oh, and FB there is a page called Roadtrips with dogs in the SW.
Thanks and pass this on!
Rebecca, recently retired, sipped her wine as Suzy and I listened to her rambling on about looking for something to do. She talked about how she’d always wanted to try pottery, missed doing her weaving, etc etc. Suzy, a long term friend of hers perked up.
“Don’t you still have a loom?”
“Well, yes, but it’s too small. I want the full size, four feet atleast so I can use the peddles and my whole body. You know how I used to make the rugs? Well, Keith had some friends visit us last week and Jane gave us a hand made rug as a thank you and I”m so jealous. I want to do that again.” She finished her drink and talked more about what she ‘should’ do. I listened in and drank my beer as the two friends talked. They both used to weave and so talked of who in town has a loom, who’s done what recently.
“What are thinking about?” Rebecca woke me from my daydreaming.
“How alive you are, talking about weaving, the types of looms, the way your eyes are all lit up. I reckon you should try it, find another bigger loom, why not eh? You have the yurt you can set it up in, don’t you?”
Suzy and Rebecca grinned back at me and started brainstorming, both excited at the new direction, the old direction.
I keep thinking of this moment and ask myself the same thing. What do i really want to do? What makes me excited? Writing, road trips, camping, planning trips and reading maps, driving little used back roads, hiking with the dogs, that is what I love. So why not do what I love? Write and photograph my road trips with the dogs?
Driving the National Forest roads in my 1972 Land Rover, towing my 1947 Teardrop trailer, packed with dogs? Why not? yeah, why not?!