What should have been 7 hours travel time turned into more than 10, thanks to a delay at Chicago's O'Hare where it was snowing. (Did you know the airport roof leaks?) Puppy was so quiet that people asked if he were drugged. I always answered with a polite "No" and the sickly smile that says, "I think that's asinine but am too polite to say so." And they kept asking me his name and I said "Miro" and I don't even know if it's the right name.
We get home and go outside for pleasant puppy playtime. We dash around. He stops. He’s eating grass! Is he going to throw up? The ivy, he tore at the ivy, is it poisonous? What about all the other plants? Dandelion greens, they’re OK. OMG, the gravel walkway! I forgot about dogs eating rocks. He picked up a piece! He dropped it. Maybe I should get somebody out here to cover the entire walkway with cement. Like tomorrow. Maybe I should cover the whole yard in cement—that’ll keep him safe. And inside the house, cement. He can’t chew through it.
The trees! He’s picking up pine needles; I'll cement the trees, too. He’s sniffing at the place where I put compost on the flower beds. He’ll smell the chicken poop. He’ll want to eat it; it’ll make him sick. Yikes! There’s a place where he could crawl under the house. Why didn’t I notice that? Am I out of my mind? Quick, find a barricade.
He circles, he poops. Good boy! Some more play and we go back inside. He slips through a gap in the baby gate and pees in the living room. Oh no, we’ve been here half an hour and already I’ve done everything wrong. I should be fired. The breeder will demand him back because I'm an unfit mother. I've made puppy think the carpet is the pee place. I’ll have to keep him out of the living room for the next three years.
Okay, time to put him in the crate for a while. Wait, I’ve forgotten how to crate train. Put some treats inside. Are these treats all right for puppies? He’s never had them before; they might make him sick. He’s in the crate; he’s crying. Wait, wait, I can’t let him out until he quiets. This is worse than bringing home a human baby for the first time. No human baby can make such an eardrum-piercing noise, thank goodness he didn’t do that in the airplane, they would have thrown me off.
He’s quiet, I let him out, he zooms around the kitchen. I have to put the recycling box up on the counter now. And the towels, get the kitchen towels out of the way. Home less than an hour and already the counters are covered with junk. The parrots are screaming bloody murder. After twenty-five years, don't they know an Airedale when they see one?
Oh, he's sitting looking at me in that perfect Airedale puppy way. Get the camera! Oops, the battery ran down. Last week I used up the battery taking photos of stupid buildings and now I can't photograph puppy's first Cute Look. But he's quiet now, he's sitting still, we're quiet.