Trying Times

An absent Teresa, a vanishing Nollind, and a worried and whiney companion. Could my week have been any worse? Well, in truth, probably, but it still wasn’t good.

It all started on Friday when Teresa packed her suitcase and didn’t return with Nollind when he came home. No problem. It’s happened before. Teresa gets on a plane to BC to see family, Nollind stays here to look after things, and we’re all fine … except for Chico. He worries. Who will get me my breakfast? Who will take us for walks? What if she doesn’t come home? Usually, after a couple of days of not starving, he starts to settle into the new routine and relax. Always such a relief, especially for me.


All was well … there was even quiche!

On Tuesday afternoon, I was in the house napping when Chico came rushing in saying something had happened. Apparently, Nollind had been up on a ladder by the fifth wheel, preparing it for our winter travels, and the next thing Chico knew he was being ushered quickly inside and Nollind and his dad, David, were driving away. A bit odd but nothing too worrisome. I assured my fretting companion that they were likely just going for supplies and I went back to sleep.

As I predicted, they were back by dinner, but something was odd. Nollind had a strange, lime green sleeve from his hand to his elbow, and he was in a hurry. We were fed, let outside, and then we were back inside and they were gone again. Hm … okay, now I was getting a little concerned, but still not worth losing sleep over. Maybe they’d gone for dinner. I curled up on the guest room bed and went to sleep.

The original green sleeve

It was dark when the neighbour came to let us out for a bedtime constitutional. Although it hasn’t happened often in the twelve years I’ve lived here, there has been the odd occasion when someone has come to let us out and/or feed us when Teresa and Nollind are going to be extra late. No reason to panic.

I woke up in the morning, surprised I hadn’t heard Nollind come in. I went downstairs to the bedroom to get my usual morning cuddle beside him on the bed. No Nollind. The bed was empty. Strange.


Morning cuddle time before “the incident”

Chico was still asleep and I thought it best to leave him that way as long as possible. If he woke up and discovered that Nollind hadn’t come home he was likely to have a seizure. I tiptoed out of the room and back upstairs just in time to see the neighbour at our door. Chico heard the door open and came running, initially too excited about having someone there and getting fed to wonder why Nollind wasn’t around—but that didn’t last long. As soon as we were back inside from a morning romp it started: Where were they? What’s happened to Nollind? Why have they left us? What if they never come back? Who will cook our food? What if we live here alone forever?


A worried, pouting Chico.

Worrying is such wasted energy. It doesn’t stop the bad things from happening, it just stops you from enjoying the good. Was I a bit worried? Of course. Nollind is my best friend and he was missing. Did I think we were going to have to resort to eating the cat (heaven forbid) or each other? Of course not. It was obvious to me that our very good neighbours had been alerted to whatever the situation was so we were going to be fine. If I’d been able to muzzle Chico or sedate him for a couple of days, things would have been even better.10-trying-times

Later that day, the neighbours were back again, this time to take us for a walk. Some play time with my friend Coco, a walk, some dinner, and I was a happy dog, ready for a nap. Chico, on the other hand, continued with the whining and worrying. Although I was missing our people too, and they’d never left us overnight without having someone staying in the house, things seemed well in-hand. I rested easy that second night.


Evening walk with the neighbours.

Thursday morning, David’s truck rolled down the driveway. Nollind had returned! The lime-green sleeve was gone and had been replaced with a white bandage and a sling. A few hours later, the neighbour brought Teresa home, from the airport I assume. As I’d been telling Chico for two days, all was well.

It turned out Nollind had fallen from a ladder and broken his arm. His dad took him to the emergency in Strathmore where they put him in a cast but also sent him to a specialist at a Calgary hospital. After feeding us that first night, they went to Calgary where he was admitted for surgery the next day. Because Teresa wasn’t home to keep an eye on him after surgery they had to keep him overnight on Wednesday. Thursday he was released from hospital and Teresa flew home to look after all of us.


They even took us along to town on Thursday night so Chico wouldn’t be traumatized by being left at home so soon after their absence

A much different, and logical picture than the ones Chico had painted. Let’s see, there was the, “They’ve decided we’re too much trouble and have gone travelling without us!”, which made absolutely no sense since the truck and trailer were still sitting in the yard. And then there was the terrible fiery crash theory—unlikely since one was travelling by plane and one by truck. What were the odds? But my personal favourite had to be, “T has been abducted by aliens and Nollind has gone off looking for her!” Precisely why I stay upstairs on movie nights—Chico watches far too many movies.

Well, best get a move on. Dame Dixie is here for a visit and it sounds like we’re about to head out for a walk. We’ll tell you all about her visit next time.



Sunset walk with Dixie



One thought on “Trying Times

  1. Very sorry to read about Nollind’s broken arm but happy all is well. You’re right, Logan, worry (us psychotherapists call it “anxiety”) can really get a creature, human or otherwise, all spun up. It can be our imagination running so wild that the possibilities take on lives of their own. We get wrapped up in the stories instead of staying with what is and we miss the good stuff. You did a good job of being present and helping Chico do the same. Take care, everyone!


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