July 13, 2012

Things that Go Bump in the Night…

From ghoulies and ghosties
And long-leggedy beasties
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!

A Scottish Prayer

First it was fireworks — booms and bangs and cracks and whistles. Weeks before it was to officially start, it started. At all hours of the day and night. I lived on edge. When will the next boom happen? I shook. I hid. I wouldn’t eat. My curls uncurled.

Then early one morning (5:50 to be exact), two loud booms and even Gretchen moaned and said out loud, “Seriously?”

Turns out it wasn’t fireworks. It was the police. Busting into a neighbor’s house with sound “grenades” to stir up trouble at the home of local anarchists.

Seriously? When 3 doors up the street is the neighborhood drug dealer?

Okay, fine. I’m not going to argue. It was only two booms and then the silence of the morning continued…only…it didn’t.

A ghastly sound came from the backyard. Not fireworks. Not sound grenades. Not anything booming or banging. But something loud and slightly pathetic.

We all opened our eyes. Is that what I think it is? I asked.

Rewind: About a month ago, our neighbors (who own chickens) realized that one of their chicks was turning into a rooster. The realized this once he started to crow and after some consultation “got rid” of him because 1) roosters aren’t allowed in the city, 2) he was loud and growing louder every day and 3) he started his alarm cries at 4:30 in the morning and then, every half hour kept it up.

The neighbors (including us) were not happy.

Fast Forward: My eyes are open. It’s 6 in the morning. Gretchen’s eyes are open. She turns to Ann and says, “I thought they got rid of the rooster?”

Guess what? Chicken #2 turns out to be a rooster. Luckily, this rooster crows a bit later and not as often, but still, he’s a rooster in a city of hens.

Move over fireworks! Here comes the rooster!

And if that weren’t enough…

…BOOM!! So loud and so close the house shook. And yes, I bark. I mean, who wouldn’t? The windows rattled. The earth kind of moved. It was right over our heads and as much as I wanted to believe it was more fireworks, it wasn’t.

I was worried, but Gretchen wasn’t. She kind of ignored it. Rolled over and slept once she got me back into bed (because I was barking at the imminent danger). Then the next day we picked up Monty, headed to Roux’s house and kept our eyes on the sky as it turned this weird slate gray with light illuminating it from behind.

And just as we got to Roux’s house, rumble rumble rumble in the distance and a bright white flash across the sky.

Gretchen tried to ignore it (her way of trying to get me to ignore it), but while Monty and I pricked up our ears with every rumble, poor Roux was terrified. Her ears flat back, her tail tucked, and her desire to run somewhere very fast consumed her. Gretchen kept a tight grip on her leash and just kept walking — trying not to feed her fear and hoping that my calm presence (can you believe it? I was the calm one) would help her.

It didn’t.

And then came the rain in addition to the lightning and thunder. HUGE drops as large as my paws smacked us so hard we could hardly see. Roux kept pulling and panting. I kept squinting and looking to Gretchen for guidance while she fished her raincoat out of her pack all the while holding Roux’s leash with a death grip.

And Monty? Oh Monty. He’s a bit jumpy with the lightning and thunder (he hated the fireworks as much as I did!), but that doesn’t dissuade him from acting like a spaz in the rain. You see, Monty has this thing about waves at the beach. He’s obsessed. Chases them like a wild man and for some reason, when the roads are wet he thinks the tires of the cars on the road are making waves. It’s kind of the same sound and even though it isn’t really waves, Monty acts like it is and he goes NUTS!

So picture us — Roux pulling at the end of a very tight leash wanting to get away, me squinting to keep the raindrops the size of ice cubes out of my eyes, Gretchen trying to hold all leashes, open her backpack, and put on her raincoat, while Monty leaps and lunges and barks and bites at every passing car splashing through the fast forming puddles on the road now flooding like a river.

Good Lord, deliver us!!!

Once situated, Gretchen makes the wise decision to go back to Roux’s house. Roux’s not going to take care of her business she’s too freaked. And so we make our way through the downpour and light show back to Roux’s house. By the time we get there we are all soaked to the bone. Roux races to her bed and curls up, bending her Irish Wolfhound/Poodle frame into the size of a beagle. Monty and I shake. And Gretchen tries to figure out how to get back to our house without walking on roads where the cars sound like waves.

This was on Friday and what a way to end our week.

Fireworks…SWAT teams…roosters…and storms.

I know, I know. The photos on this blog show that we did have a good time…the warmth of summer finally here, rolling around at the Farmer’s Market, Woobie boarding with us and going on many adventures, Tyson being regal no matter what the circumstances, Monty smiling ALWAYS smiling, and Roux and I playing in the mud of the woods.

We even got a visit from a dragonfly!

Still, there are things going bump in our nights (and our days) and it’s put us all on edge. I can only hope that next week it quiets down a bit and we can all breathe a little easier. Our nerves could all use a little calming.



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