(8:30) Final WC:2047. Dinner's finished; I'm off to relax before bed. It's been a good day:)
(3:15)Updated WC: 1740. Took an hour off; don't know when I'll get back to it:)
Word Count (so far...it's 1:30, and I've got to rest my wrists!): 1503. I'm definitely at the end of chapter 3, and I may pick this up again in a few hours. But I've done well for the past 3 hours!
Okay....time to lighten the mood a bit with one of my favorite stories about our old dog, Fudgie!
Fudge (Deep Dark Chocolate Fudge, as my sister christened him when she was 11) came to us as the runt of the litter. My aunt had a Great Dane that chose to pick her own mate that year, and soon this Black Labrador puppy with the huge paws and legs a mile long came to our house in February 1982, having been born on Christmas Day, 1981. He was adorable; the long tongue that hung past his chin when he panted, the long legs which tripped him up as he grew into them; the silky ears which when rubbed earned you the big brown eyes looking soulfully at you saying, "I love you!"
He wasn't a licker, even with that long tongue. No, Fudgie was a sniffer. He once insulted the cat by sniffing him all over while curled contentedly in my mother's lap, but later forgave the dog when he discovered he was an excellent 'doorbell' for my mother. Both animals were put outside for the night; my mother got up at 5 am to do her Quiet Time before the rest of the family was awake. About half an hour later, Fudge would realize someone was awake and start barking. My mom would let him in; the cat would jump down from his insulated cat house and dart between both Fudge and Mom's legs and into the house. Mom would then feed both animals, return to her QT, then shower and wake the rest of us up if it was a school day.
But the funniest story about this dog occured after he discovered a love of chewing sticks. We lived 5 miles out of town, and had 13 trees in our yard. Fudgie spent many happy hours peeling the bark from the various sticks which fell, and he'd even retrieve them if thrown. He also loved frizbees and balls, but his first love (apart from my sister!) was clearly bark.
My dad enjoyed walking him in the Purdue Horticulture Park, and over at the Co-Rec area (Fudge attracted many admireres, and I think Dad enjoyed the female attention! It also worked for me with the college boys, ha ha!). One day, after their normal hike through the trails, they returned to the truck and Fudge decided to leave a little something behind. He squatted and proceeded to do his business...and it kept coming...and coming...and coming.... Dad looked down to see why it was taking so long, and noticed what was coming out appeared to be rather long and compacted. Upon further inspection, he realized it was also solid. Being the helpful man my father is, he reached into the truck and found some napkins from McDonalds, and reached down to assist the dog with his straining. And it kept coming...and coming... and by this time, a couple of people had given him some weird looks, and even made some comments. And when it was all over, Fudgie turned his head with a look that plainly said, "Oh thank you!"
Dad said the compacted bark was at least 2-3 feet long! Says something about the digestive tract of a dog, eh?
Fudgie lived to be 12 1/2. He left us in 1994, right before my daughter was born. He spent his last day playing with my 2 year old son and seemed to be having a good day, instead of the arthritis bothering him. When we left, he simply wagged his tail, sniffed our legs once more, and retreated into his doghouse for a nap. Mom called me later that night with the news he hadn't come out for his dinner. We have many pictures of him, but none that I can upload. I'll try to post a picture of my current Black Lab, Lucky. She's a close replica, but there will never be another Deep Dark Chocolate Fudge.