Today I actually called in sick from work. Sick enough to stay in bed until 10 watching the inauguration….But not too sick to drive out to Caldwell afterward; pick up Jen (she thinks I'm her Sheep Chauffeur) from Patrick's and drive over to Dianne's house.  Lindy and Rave, my 16 year old son, Carlos, and Scout, came along also.  Scout's crate was barely big enough to hold both her and her disapproval.

Jen lay draped across Carlos from Patrick's house to DIanne's.  She reminds Carlos of the Aussie who raised him, our beloved VB, who died at 15 a few years ago.  VB and Carlos were inseparable.  We called her our nanny.  Her devotion was unconditional, her patience saintly, yet she did eat at least half of all his snacks, a good portion of all meals.  She taught him her best skills.  Like peeing outside and befriending squirrels. (VB truly loved squirrels; let them eat from her dish). The Joy of Frisbee.
Neighborhood watch.  One time a neighbor lady stopped me to share her funny story of Carlos and VB, running along the fence together, chasing and barking at the mail carrier.   

"Up and down the fence they'd both go," she said, shaking her head. "The mailman tried to talk to the boy, and the dog… but ….they both just barked and barked. He even had a lollipop he tried to give your son.  That little boy really seems to cue off of the dog!"
At the time we did get a lot of junk mail.  Also at the time Carlos preferred snausages to candy.
Jen seems to have the same sweet yet stubborn personality. 

Jen and I worked better today. Better in that we both knew what we were there to do and one of us could just suck it up and patronize the silly Not Patrick for a little while since she drives us to sheep and has a treat in each pocket.  Our driving lines were straighter.  Things flowed more easily. 

DIanne worked Scout.  Scout kept running back to the car, where I was crouched being small behind the wheel.   Scout didn't bark as much as she has at Dianne, and monitored her distance from the sheep better than she does for me. I was happy that she had her time on sheep.  Dianne is a saint.  I wish I had thought to bring treats for her.  Next time.

LIndy and Rave did great.  Rave is a really sweet red aussie with a quirky personality and lots of talent.
They worked on her outruns and driving.  Each time they are visibly better than the time before.

On the way home, Jen crunched her final treat and Scout plotted her revenge from the back.

"Let's just keep driving," Carlos suggested, when it was time to turn into Patrick's drive, "Tell him we forgot…."

Sometimes I worry that Carlos' first girlfriend will be my age.  And hate mail.


Carlos and VB circa 1998ish