Reason for Caller ID
It was a dark and stormy night. It really was. A hurricane was headed to the east coast. The winds were whipping the leaves and loose branches off the trees. I was sitting in the living room next to my arsenal of crutches and walker, waiting for the electricity to be halted at any moment due to the storm. The dog’s constant barking at the wind was even annoying me. What was more annoying was that they kept “thinking” they wanted to go out. Then they wanted to come in. On and on the silly game went until I opted to leave the back door to the yard open. It was as painful as it was exhausting getting up, grabbing the walker, shuffling to the back door to let them in or out. They are silly dogs and I love them, but that night, with my nerves on edge due to the impending storm, my patience was running thin. As I would let them out, they would run through my walker or underneath my crutches with the frenzy of dogs that had never been outside in their lives.
They are happy dogs and I am thankful for that. After several minutes of barking at the wind outside, they would bark and scratch at the door to be let in. When they entered the house, it was if I had been gone for 5 years. The whining, the crying, the jumping and the excitement of them being let in would follow me all the way back to the living room. Up and down, barking and whining whether they came in or out. People say the barometric pressure affects the dogs and their behavior becomes strange. Not my dogs. They were “gifted” and always like this. The solution this night was to leave the back door open for a while and they could waltz in and out whenever their little hearts desired. Problem solved. They loved the freedom of dancing in and out of the house to the fenced in back yard. If they could giggle, I think they would have. They were happy, and I was relatively happy.
Half an hour later, they both rushed in side by side and jumped on the couch. I noticed their behavior to be a little strange, even for my dogs. They were sneezing and rubbing their heads on the couch. And then it hit, the smell, the faint odor of a skunk. As quickly as I could, I got my walker and shuffled to the back door. The dogs followed in their usual manner, underneath the walker. We moved through the house as if we were co-joined. I went to the back door and slammed and locked it shut. Close call I thought. No more in and out tonight. The animals in the neighborhood must be just as looney as my dogs were due to the storm. As I wheeled around and went back through the kitchen with my Velcro dogs by my side, I noticed something in the middle of the kitchen.
I froze. The dogs froze. Did I mention the 2 cats I had who also froze? There in the middle of the kitchen staring at us all was the biggest skunk I had ever seen, staring right into my eyes. It was a standoff that I was about to lose.
Within seconds, almost in slow motion movie time, the skunk spun around like a child’s water sprinkler, spraying me, the dogs, the cats and the kitchen. Round and round he went, like he was playing ring around the rosie with himself. As soon as I realized what was happening, I put the walker in high gear, grabbed the dog’s leashes and phone and went out to the front porch.
The skunk was locked in the house. Nice play.
I am convinced my friends subscribe to Caller ID because of me. They have learned that if I call, there usually is some bizarre plot or adventure they find themselves lured into.
I called my friends John and Jill. John was out, but I tracked him down like a bloodhound and screamed in the phone-“get over here please, you can’t imagine what’s going on.” Of course he could, which is why I didn’t tell him. I just hung up.
What followed was as ludicrous as what had just happened. John appeared as I was sitting on the front porch crying. The dogs were still barking at the wind, and we all smelled. John stood there in the street 20 or so yards from the front porch yelling. “What the hell’s that smell’? When he realized the smell was coming from inside the house his first inclination was to leave. Can’t really blame him. He went to his car and appeared back with a small towel covering his face, as a thief would wear robbing a bank, gagging all the way to the front steps. I begged him to go in the house and get rid of the skunk. Peals of laughter and “Are you fu&*#ng crazy”?
The night ended with my calling an Animal Remover who came to the house, spent 2 hours “talking the skunk” out of the kitchen and into a pen. The skunk went peacefully.
The dousing of the house cost $1200. 4 industrial Odor Remover machines were used with herbal spray. My clothes had to be thrown away, the couch had to be thrown away along with all the bed linens.
The dogs were washed with a mixture of baking soda and 20 bottles of Summer’s Eve, thank you, that John had to buy at several all night grocery stores.
The dogs were washed at midnight in the back yard during the hurricane, by someone that John and I both knew, who had no sense of smell, or time for that matter.
John’s brand new sneaks, purchased that day, were discarded immediately.
Yes, my friends still answer the phone when I call, but usually with fear and trepidation.