The call to foster a dog (or two)

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Today should be titled Unhappy Monday. That’s because my various aches and pains are putting me in a very crappy mood.

I’ve been fighting off a cold or something since last week, and yesterday the cold started winning. Something is settling into my upper chest and throat, giving me a little cough and congestion. I doubt it can be the flu, since I had the vaccine back in September. But whatever it is, it’s knocking me out. Headache, that horrible feeling of fullness in my ears, extreme fatigue… yuck. Miserable.

And then there is the issue of my back. I woke up on Saturday with a sore, tight lower back. I figured it would wear off as the day went on. I was out all day, doing errands like running to the post office and buying the annoying list of everyday items I needed for the house (hydrogen peroxide, eye drops, dog bones, toothpaste), taking Hurley to two separate adoption events and stopping at the outlet mall to use my Gap Give-and-Get 30% coupon; I needed jeans. By the time I was in for the night, I was so sore I was wincing. I should have just gone to bed early and been done with it.

Instead, I decided to color my hair. I now have dark brown/red hair again, which is a color I haven’t done in a couple of years. It looks nice, I think. I need to hear from outside sources, though, to know if it actually looks good or not.

Yesterday was a total waste. I didn’t do anything. I simply laid on my back, tried to do some light stretching to begin working out the pain, read some more books and watched DVDs. Between the back pain and the cold-thing, I was pretty sure that work today was going to be a real challenge.

And it has been. It’s a little after 2pm now and I would give someone money to go home and go back to bed. I’ve been trying to keep busy but I’m losing interest in focusing as the day goes on. This head. This back. This little dry cough. Blehhh. Stupid. I hate it.

I can’t take a sick day because, guess what? I don’t have any sick time left. And my float days are gone (3 days each year that you can use as needed). I used all of it up back in April. I am trying to find out for sure, but my sick time and float time should replenish in January. Until then, though, I just have to do my best to not be sick or injured. I’m nervous. Especially since right now I feel both sick and injured and I can’t do anything but sit here at work. My supervisors have zero sympathy for my plight, I can tell. I haven’t asked to go home or anything, but the assumption is there that I stay and tough it out from the way my boss is looking at me when I tell him how I feel. And the other boss is a huge fan of coming into the office when you’re sick… she does it all the time.

I’m trying to get the courage up to ask if I can telecommute tomorrow, so that I can stay home and rest in between work. Once upon a time, I could telecommute without any issues but now it seems like it’s a forbidden thing for me. Others around me can do one or two days per week, but not me. It’s really annoying, especially when I can get more work done at home than here, but whatever. If having me sitting here, physically in the office every day, is some type of power trip for my bosses, then so be it. Not much I can do about it. What I do know, however, is I have met or exceeded all the goals that were set for me over the summer. I’m getting cynical again about being treated less-than the other people in my department. I have to try to not let those thoughts take over.

Well, anyway, moving on.

Let’s talk about dogs a little bit.

As I said, on Saturday I went to two adoption events. One was a large, multi-group event near my house with about 20 different rescue groups in attendance. Hurley and I made the rounds, talking with people and buying raffle tickets. I fit with these people, so it was a blast just standing around bullshitting with people from a couple different rescues and then a woman who was running the entire event. I was able to introduce Hurley to several different types of dogs and people, and he did great, as expected.

I hung out mostly at the pug rescue on Saturday, for some reason. The people there were just so friendly and so interested in Hurley, it was hard to walk away. The group had maybe 15 different pugs there, all inside a little playpen-looking area. Wow, were they cute! I was drawn to two older pugs, in particular: a bigger fawn one with his tongue permanently stuck out, and a black female with one eye who was just as mellow and easygoing as Hurley. In fact, at one point one of the volunteers asked me if I wanted to take a little walk with her. So, we did. She was great, and she and Hurley didn’t mind one another at all. It was fun to see him next to a dog so different from him; he, with his anteater snout, as we call it; and this pug with a squished-up face and bulgy eyes. I found myself considering adopting an older pug. One that no one seemed interested in because of age or cosmetic reasons. I’m still thinking about it, two days later. Oh, and one of the ladies asked me to apply to be a foster home, several times.

But I’ve long told the sheltie/collie rescue that if I were to become a foster, it would be for them. So I would likely keep my word in that regard. In keeping with that thought, next we stopped home for a quick lunch and then drove up to North Phoenix for the other adoption event of the day: this one was, of course, the sheltie/collie rescue group, at the same Petsmart where I met Hurley two years ago.

It was great. I saw some familiar faces, and the president of the rescue took a bunch of pictures of me and Hurley for their website. We hung out for well over an hour, just talking to people about shelties, collies and rescue in general; Hurley was called The Alumni and was paraded out to show people how happy these animals end up in their forever homes. It was cool. I was asked to fill out the paperwork/application to become a foster home for their group, but I put it off and instead said I’d do the official form online. I have to think about this decision a little more, just to be sure I can do it before I commit to anything.

And while we were there, we met a beautiful sheltie girl named Sandy. Oh, damn it… she was just a teeny bit bigger than Hurley, but with a light sable and merle coat and white eyelashes on big brown eyes. She was mellow and sweet, and at one point as I was chatting with her foster father, we looked down at our dogs and saw Hurley and Sandy resting against each other back to back, like bookends, at our feet. It made me melt. I found myself seriously considering Sandy. I kept gravitating back to her throughout the rest of the event, even though by that point Hurley was just tired and didn’t seem all that into interacting with anyone anymore (which was the main mood among ALL the dogs, in fact). She and Hurley looked amazing together. So calm and content, and so equally beautiful. Gah. It’s hard. Today I am still thinking of her. By the way, three different families expressed interest in Sandy, so she is likely not going to be available for me to adopt, which makes this easier for me to walk away from. Still… man, I don’t know! She was great.

Well, regardless of any of that, I am signed up to volunteer at a gift-wrapping event in two weeks that benefits the sheltie/collie rescue. They want a sheltie and a collie at each event to draw people’s attention to the table (which will be set up inside a Barnes & Noble), where two volunteers will wrap gifts for donations to the rescue. My job isn’t to wrap anything. I’m the person with the sheltie. I’ll be there to talk to people about the group, about shelties, and let people pet and interact with my dog. Once more, Hurley will play Ambassador and show off his mad CGC skillz. It should be a neat experience!

Overall, I am just looking for dog-friendly activities and events that we can attend, because it’s very fun to get out there with him and see what we are both made of, socially-speaking. He’s very much like me in some ways, I noticed: he isn’t flamboyant, or super noticeable, but he is amiable when dealing with someone one-on-one. He could use a little practice being in crowds. He’s quiet, and he’s fine being alone. But he’s still cool with all different types of dogs and people, too. Plus, we both love to eat tomatoes and chase down the cat.

Although typing this out distracted me for a little while, now that I’ve run out of things to say I realize yet again that I’m feeling like ass. I better go and do work and stuff, and keep trying to stay busy as possible so the day will end faster.

And…ewww… there is this plate of uneaten food on a table near my cubicle, left over from a meeting this morning. There’s cheese on that plate, and it’s stinky cheese at this point. I might go throw that stuff out when no one is looking. The smell of it is really getting on my nerves here. I’m surprised I can smell anything, with the bizarre, thick congestion, but I can. And I hate it. Let’s all ban stinky, room-temperature cheese.

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2 responses »

  1. Just reading this makes me want you to adopt Sandy. She sounds amazing!! 🙂 But I know two dogs would be a lot. Like two kids. Ha ha!

    I hope you are feeling better by now (I am a bit behind in my blogging)

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