Saturday, February 16, 2008

Marking the Spot

My intent yesterday was to work on the baby sweater I started knitting the other night, however, somewhere along the way, my plans changed.

I ended up reading!

I started reading another new book Thursday night and yesterday afternoon and evening, when I had originally planned to knit some more, I ended up reading, then fell asleep for a while, and back to the reading. I finished that book about 1:30 a.m. -while waiting for my grandson to finally give up the ghost and go to sleep. He didn't do that till about 2 a.m. though and then, since I was wide awake, I tried to catch up on blog reading I had put off doing yesterday afternoon and evening too.

The book by the way - "Case Histories" by Kate Atkinson - was quite interesting. Definitely a page turner! And, a big thank you has to go out here to my Blogger friend, Claire (that Cheeky little Brit, ya know) for having provided over the past so many months explanations about words, usage and such that are British terms, therefore different from what is often used in America. It really came in handy that she had given these various definitions because this book takes place in England and had I not learned some of these things from reading Claire's blog, I could very easily have not had a clue as to what was taking place in this story.

Now reading that book and following Claire's blog for oh, about a year now, has nothing whatsoever to do with the title of this post. But, reading two other bloggers posts last night does.

First, reading two blogs done by Misty Dawn (Misty's Words and My Dogs Keep Me Sane), I read about her problem right now with one of her dogs who just happened to have gotten sprayed by a skunk. Yes, of all the disgusting things that can happen to a pet, I think that has to be it. And that reminded me of how shortly after my son moved back here, bought his house, etc., the dog he had then (Andrei, who died a year ago this past December) had escaped from the house one night. Clate had driven around trying to locate Andrei for about 3 hours but then, decided to give up on it till daylight, figuring when the dog tired of running around, he'd come home.

Well, he did -he came home but he came home wearing the really strong scent of skunk too. Clate had called down here to ask me if I know any good remedies to remove skunk spray and I'd tried to find some by surfing the internet. One that I found said to wash the animal with tomato juice so Mandy had gone up to the grocery store and got several cans of tomato juice and she had tried to help Clate bathe the dog - not once, but several times that day, using the tomato juice. Although he was definitely a much cleaner dog, the aroma was still there, still pretty strong. What's more, because he was primarily an indoor dog, the smell had also permeated his house too. Phew! It was months before you could go in that house and not detect a twinge of the skunk odor! So I could really commiserate with what Misty and her husband were going through with their dog and also their house.

The other blog I read that dealt with smelly things was Dooce. Now, for anyone who has never read this blog, let me tell you this, brace yourself because it is a rare post that she puts up that isn't funny and some, like the one she put up yesterday about one of her two dogs tracking in doggie poop all over her house -well, it was downright hysterical. It was also one of the few posts she puts up that she had opened up the comments to that post as well and I think there are probably at least 200 comments now about that post. Some of the comments are about as funny too as is Heather's writing.

But, reading about her issues tracking down which dog had done this dirty deed and all the work Heather and her husband had to do then too in trying to clean up the mess -trackage all through their new home, on their new carpeting, etc., reminded me of something that had happened to me about 32 years ago this coming March.

When Mandy was about 6 weeks old, I developed some post-delivery issues and had to go in the hospital overnight to have a D&C -surgical procedure of the female type. I might even have been there two nights - my memory kind of fails me in that respect. But anyway, my Mom was living then, in this house, right next door to the house my ex-husband and I had built, so she brought all three of the kids over here to her house to keep them rather than her staying overnight in my house.

So for at least one night, possibly it was two, Frank had our house all to himself. That house had electric heat and he decided there was no point in keeping the heat running at a really comfortable temperature in all the bedrooms, since the kids were not there so he turned the thermostats down in the bedrooms - left the heat on but turned down a little in the kitchen and living room as he figured he would just sleep on the sofa then. And, he closed the doors to all three bedrooms.

When I came home from the hospital the day after the procedure, when I went to go to bed that night, as I lay there trying to fall asleep there was this really sour, very putrid smell wafting around the bedroom. I couldn't figure out what the heck it was so I decided to try to find out what on earth could be going on to make our bedroom stink so bad. I checked the closet - nothing there (other than shoes and they didn't smell like this odor.) I looked under the bed -nothing strange there. So, I started trying to move pieces of furniture around a bit -starting at the entrance to the room and working my way around the bed to the other side.

All the while I was looking for the root cause here, my mind was asking too what on earth had my husband been doing in that room for one or two nights that I'd been gone.

Finally, when I moved the nightstand by my side of the bed, I discovered what was creating this really nasty stink. Our cat had crawled under the nightstand and in that corner, had taken a nice big crap!

How the heck could this have happened I wondered because that cat had always been very good from the time we first got him about using the litter box.

Then I realized what he'd done. When he had closed the doors on each of the bedrooms after turning the heat off in them, he had also inadvertently locked the cat in our room!

It took me a good bit of scrubbing the carpet there before I got the smell out however, after that, we didn't dare leave the door to our bedroom open then as the cat would then sneak in there and go to that corner and do his business there again -since he had already "marked the spot" ya know!

See what great stories reading other people's blogs can conjure up in us?


Misty Dawn said...

My puppy still smells. She stands there giving me that "Why don't you want to cuddle me anymore Mommy?" look, which breaks my heart, until I get a wiff of her!

I read the post on Dooce too! She's always hilarious!

Now, I've got to go looking for that book you recommend...

Hammer said...

Once a cat marks something I can never get the smell out.

Jeff B said...

Doing some catching up here. From beautiful flowers to cat crap... overnight. Isn't it amazing how the human mind works?

Travis said...

This is weird, but I really enjoy getting comfortable with a book and alternating reading with little cat naps.

SnoopMurph said...

Ugh, cat smell is awful. One of the two cats next door have marked the chairs outside of my front door and I think they use the bushes as litter box areas. If I open the front door, there is a horrendous cat smell. It drives me insane.

I need to go to bed and start reading my book too!

the mother of this lot said...

This is why I don't have dogs or cats!

Dianne said...

I love the phrase about waiting for your grandson to "give up the ghost" - never heard that before.

poor cat!

snoopmurph: if you put tin foil around the chairs and by the bushes (I know that's a lot of foil!) the cats will try to dig where they marked and will hate the feel of the foil. I've done it and it works.

there's also stuff out there but I'm not convinced it doesn't make them sick so I won't use it.

thanks Jeni for letting me hijack your comments section ;)

molly gras said...

Pet poop and the interminable tracking patterns of said fecal mess.

It really has to be the bane of pet ownership. And as far as skunks are concerned -- I live in absolute dread!

Ta-ta and have a great rest of your week.

Theresa said...

Yes we learned about skunk smell the hard way- and tomato juice just covers the smell and does not take off the oil- our vet gave us a mixture to make.

When Sam was a kitten he got locked in a closet and peed in it-never could get the smell out completely- to this day he does not like closed doors.

The joys of pet ownership :)

Palm Springs Savant said...

oh there is nothing worse than cat crap.

I love to read too btw...and even my kitty likes it, he sits in my lap and purrs away...