Sunday, August 14, 2005

The Retraining Commences

Every single year without fail, I have to retrain my husband and my beagle when I return to the trenches of school. My husband loses his vacation from chores, his live-in maid, and his daily gourmet meal service. My beagle loses his buddy and companion who kept him from sleeping all day, thereby making him fatigued enough to stay out of trouble.

After just three short days of work, my house seems to have fallen apart. My husband will never be able to keep any secrets from me because of his incredible ability to leave a trail wherever he goes. I can wake up 3 hours after him and I can tell exactly what he has done all morning. It doesn't take a lot of sleuthing to discern that my pool bag on the washer with the SPF 8 beside it means that he lathered up on his way out the door to golf. I know, because he left all the evidence there plainly on the washer. Along with a pile that is the morning paper, sports removed and read and left on top, a granola bar wrapper, and yesterday's cup of orange juice remains. (this means he took a new cup with him and had to take the old one out of the car to make room.) The truth is, he's really not so bad. He just gets spoiled by me cleaning up after him all summer, which I didn't mind doing since I wasn't gainfully employed at the time. The dog, however, is a different story.

It is amazing how much the personality of a four year old beagle can abruptly be altered due to an excessive amount of sleep. Everyone knows that dogs sleep all day, but I've discovered that in the summer, I keep Gus awake just enough to knock the bad out of him. If he has that edge of sleepiness, he'd rather cuddle than, say, eat a roll of toilet paper, which is precisely what he did the other day when the exterminator left the bathroom door open, a veritable cotton smorgasboard for Gus. Since Wednesday, Gus has also gnawed through my hands-free cellphone earbud. He later opened the pantry door, grabbed a stack of napkins and spread them over the vast majority of the living room and dining room, racing back and forth with bits of Bounty Medley clinging to his exposed eyeteeth. A little later he absconded with three (3)different clean dishtowels. When left to his own devices, he viciously barked at, lunged toward, and savagely tore apart the branches of my favorite cactus plant. Finally, he laid waste to one (1) particularly necessary automobile insurance policy. Now? Now he's outside barking bloody murder at the combine which is collecting the corn from the field behind our house. The nerve of that guy.

These events occur like clockwork every year when I return to work. Only two months off, but it takes a good month and a half to retrain the household and restore it to normal.

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