August 12, 2011
Hello everyone, Wimsey here coming to you from the Upper West Side of Manhattan where I have been spending much of the summer lounging about in Central and Riverside Parks. Of course sometimes the lounging turns into sprawling and, much to the consternation of my human Maria and her friend Elizabeth, I have a tendency to monopolize the paths. I find the cement makes an interesting alternative to the dirt for a much-needed bit of shuteye and has the additional advantage of being inconvenient to passing humans.
(This particular path is in the cool and leafy Ramble section of Central Park so the cement stays at a pleasant temperature for my napping pleasure).
And as I say, the rest was much needed as I have been under the weather lately. My medical tests show that I am suffering from a urinary tract infection and so I am being pumped full of antibiotics which fortunately come encased in rolls of turkey. I must say this result shocked my humans who have become accustomed to my ailments remaining medical mysteries—even a past anal gland infection involved an obscure organism that normal dogs don’t get. But then again I am not a normal dog. I pride myself on maintaining an inviolable air of medical mystery as evidenced by a set of medical records the size of the Encyclopedia Britannica.
But I digress. In spite of not feeling up to snuff it has been a pretty active week---make no mistake that an under the weather Hound is still a Hound; a pesky bacterium being no impediment to a pesky Hound. So lately I have been jonesing to visit to Elizabeth’s apartment—if you call it jonesing to drag Maria over to Elizabeth’s apartment every day like a guided missile and then turn into cement. I like to think of it as insisting. When Maria is working Elizabeth takes care of me during the day and now that Maria is out of work I am missing my second home. The fact that Elizabeth has a closet containing bully sticks, likes to cook me meals and can frequently be persuaded to spend an irresponsible amount of time in the park have absolutely nothing to do with it. Anyway I was supposed to spend a day with her so she could “assess” me medically. (I like assessments that include scrambled eggs and yams in my food bowl).
But as usual nothing involving me works out as planned and I rather turned into a Hound version of that old movie The Man Who Came to Dinner. I ended up spending the week. My overnight visits generally send Elizabeth into a state of sleep deprivation psychosis as she is a light sleeper and I am a noisy nocturnal Hound—loud ear flapping being an essential part of the nap repositioning process. But this time she broke out the Ambien and owing to the fine folks at Sanofi-Aventis actually managed to get some sleep. So although my nighttime antics did wake her she was able to fall back asleep instead of spending the night thinking of all the unpleasant things she would like to do to me. But then again she did have a nightmare that she came back to her apartment and there were three new bloodhounds and a litter of puppies in the bathroom.
Anyway I had a very good time and got to see lots of the staff of Elizabeth’s building. A third of them are terrified of me because they are afraid I will bite them (ludicrous), a third of them are terrified of me because they are afraid I will drool on them (likely) and a third of them think I am great in spite of the fact that I have large teeth and full flews. And speaking of these flews, there is nothing quite like the soothing sound of dripping drool to motivate a human to hasten the preparation of my dinner (Elizabeth puts my scrambled eggs in the freezer to make them cool faster while she attempts to clean up the mess. Apparently the consistency of the drool turns her kitchen into an ice rink).
That’s why it is a great advantage to feed me al fresco. Here I am with the remains of my favorite tuna sandwich at the Loeb Boathouse Cafe—the only mess to clean up is the container. But don’t let this picture fool you. I don’t consume tuna sandwiches from containers on the ground. I like them broken into nice pieces and hand fed to me. The only downside is that occasionally Elizabeth takes a bite which necessitates some corrective baying.
But I don’t always need to bay to call attention to the failings of my humans. For instance when I felt the temperature rise in Elizabeth’s apartment to a level inconsistent with my personal comfort I merely had to glare at her, stalk into the bathroom and lay down on the tiles to send her scurrying to activate the AC. And at 12:15 am when I needed to call her attention to the presence of my favorite neighbor in the hallway I merely had to engage in some vigorous air woofing by the door. My air woofing never ceases to delight my humans, (although not perhaps at 12:15am), as it makes a nice change from my vociferous baying and manipulative squeaking. But then I am a Hound of many vocal talents, all of them annoying.
Elizabeth and I also spent quite a bit of time in both Central and Riverside Parks, albeit at a leisurely pace commensurate with my invalid status. Here I am offering a suggestion to the lady in the Central Park information booth and receiving her grateful thanks in return. My humans frequently get asked for park directions from tourists and although they know the park very well they seldom have an adequate way of directing people. Suggestions such as:
Take a right at the big tree with the branch that looks like it’s going to fall on your head
Take a left at the rat eating the picnic leftovers
Take the second right at the guy in a toga painted green singing show tunes
Walk straight passed the mime who will attempt to incorporate you into his act
Take a left at the man lying on top of his girlfriend
Head straight past that large guy with the gang tattoos
are generally of doubtful utility. Of course if it is directions to any of the park’s restaurants or snack shops that are required my humans just sigh and tell the tourists to follow me. I am always headed that way.
But things closer to home were busy too. I got to pay a visit to the Boat Basin
Café (fortunately Riverside Park also has places for me to cadge food) and as usual I attempted to order Elizabeth a beer so I could play with the plastic cup afterwards. Sadly, Elizabeth did not feel in need of a beer at 10am (although she was probably in need of something stronger given all the time she was spending with me.) I am eagerly awaiting the day when I can order a beer from my brewery, Baying Hound Aleworks. There is a possibility that this may be happening sooner rather than later but rest assured that whenever Baying Hound beer arrives in my hometown I will be baying in bars and patrolling Times Square wearing a sandwich board with my face on it.
And speaking of sandwiches, the TV show Gossip Girl was filming down the street (I feel a strange affinity for TV shows that feature bratty and entitled characters) which necessitated repeated visits to their catering truck and some serious discussions with their crew about donating the goodies to an under nourished Hound such as myself. I didn’t get any food but I did get some scratching which I always find agreeable, especially from men who smell like food.
We also heard this week that our friend Mary Margaret has acquired a bloodhound puppy. Now this is astonishing, not only because she reads this blog but also because she’s actually met me! I still have fond memories of slobbering on her, baying at her and extorting belly rubs, food, water bottles and anything else I wanted from her during her all too brief visit to New York. But the puppy is female and sometimes lady bloodhounds, like their human counterparts, are a bit more mannerly and less inclined to be knuckleheads than we males. Remember I said sometimes.
And speaking of Hounds, this is Ruby (the woman) and my friend Marty (the basset). Ruby was walking Marty for her friend and had heard all about me. And she’s looked at this blog. Ruby is getting a dog of her own shortly—a doodle. My humans congratulated her on her choice.
So that was my week. I am back home now and Maria is again on Hound duty. Elizabeth is scrubbing her apartment and drinking gin.
Until next time,
Wimsey, Gossip Hound