Thursday, December 20, 2007

Of Doors and Dogs Now Gone

Oh man, exhausted. Been run ragged the past few days with chores as we get the old homestead ready for the relatives' visit. Things have been polished and buffed, ornaments have been hung by the stockings. At this point, I really don't care if that makes sense or not just so long as it's done. Not to mention that I've also had to buffet myself in the vast seas of unwashed humanity as I bravely venture into the retail experience because I still don't have all my holiday shopping done - just have my mother to go but she's annoyingly difficult to shop for.

Anyhow, I'm not just drained physically but emotionally as well. Today, as part of the repairs I've been making around mother's home, the small to middling maintenance things that she needs her big strapping son to provide, I put up some insulation over the big glass door that leads to the backyard. The one that we don't use much anymore now that the dog's gone. So to save a few dollars and to keep a bit warmer, it's now been sealed up. Won't make much of a difference since no one's likely to want to go outside much and there are plenty of other ways to get there but, yeah, it made me think about my deceased pet yet again. And that wound is still fresh enoughto put me in a black mood.

It's hard to escape it, though, because it's the holidays. Her name was Prancer. And, as you might imagine, she was a Christmas present from a time when me and my many siblings still cared about what was under the tree or about when, exactly, it would be permissible to wake our parents up instead of how late we could sleep in and still stumble to the family dinner in time for the gorging. And we didn't just name her because of the song but because of the way she used to walk. How when she was small and little she'd, well, prance around the backyard. Lifting her paws up proud and high to make her bouncy way through the snow. We thought it was hilarious. Thought everything she did was cute and precious. Back when she was just a puppy, of course. But this time of year was always her time. She was the sort of dog who loved the snow. Loved to run and play and toss it up in the air and snap at it - eternally surprised at the cold. In that same backyard that I've now closed off. In that same backyard where I spent those painful moments in the warm sun realizing that, just like the day, her time was drawing to a close. The sun was warm and golden that day. The breeze full of the gentle promise of fall. You couldn't have asked for a nicer day. But I would have liked for her to have lived long enough to see the backyard full, once more, of snow. She always liked it and I think she would have enjoyed one last walk with the ground frozen beneath her paws.

So, yeah, that's the kind of thoughts that have been buzzing around my mind today whenever I've had time enough to stop and let them brood. Which, fortunately, hasn't been very often. Just busy and with a last weekend to go before the Christmas we've been preparing for it doesn't promise to get any less hectic. Always something to do at the last minute, some last errand I'll have to run. Have to pick up my brother at the airport tomorrow, for example, and his flight supposedly lands in the middle of the night, at time even the airport calls "Officially Too Fucking Early". I suspect it might be a bit hit or miss around here until after that's all over with.

Also, Wintersday unfolds tomorrow and that's sure to suck up some of my free time as well. I am fully prepared to spend a lot of time enjoying myself. Which I am going to do even if I'm not having any fun doing it, dammit! But I do plan to get in as many rounds as I can. Make a good push on my gamer track in the next few weeks. Blow off some steam. That sort of thing. Since I never got around to putting up a guide last year I should have some things to put up about it, too. But, until then.

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