The Last Straw

You can’t make this stuff up.  I have now been subject to three horrific events in the  span of just a few weeks.  You may recall my recent brush with the law when Momma and the photographer brought me onto a vacant lot with a HUGE “No Trespassing” sign on it in Naples.  You may also recall that an animal control officer intervened and focussed on me:  was trespassing and not on a leash and I was in violation of the law!

Then, back in Minnesota, there was the incident when the police stormed our house when Momma inadvertently armed our security system with the distress code.  That night, the heart stopping siren rocked our house to its very foundation and likely caused irreparable harm to my little (okay – big) ears.  Uncle Chuck, perhaps we have a cause of action here?

It seems we were not yet done with the excitement, however.

Momma had returned from her Scotland trip at the end of May, all aglow (key word here – stay with me) about her golfing and sightseeing there.  I had experienced a nice, restful time with Dr. Becca with all of the comforts one would expect in a stable household.  I was hoping against hope for more of the same upon Momma’s return.  It was not to be.

The first few days went deceptively smoothly with Momma tending to household duties (calling people up to do things for her), socializing, enjoying water sports and golfing.  She often brought me to my home-away-from-home, Camp Bow Wow, which I have grown quite fond of.

One of Momma’s first maintenance calls was to our landscaper.  She said summer was getting on and it was time to get our yard looking shipshape (she just loves those nautical terms!).  In just a few days they came out with a boatload (!) of mulch and weed killer and various implements including shovels, rakes, blowers and trimmers.  When they left, Momma was very pleased.  The yard looked good – although maybe a little overdone on the mulch.  But whatever, she thought – at least the weeds were covered up.

Everything was going swimmingly (!) until one morning when Momma was making toast in the kitchen and noticed smoke billowing up the side of the house.  Alarmed (that term comes up a lot at our house), she ran outside in her nightgown and robe for a closer look. Yup, there was a fire somewhere – smoke was definitely coming from the front of the house.

Just at that moment, our lawn mowers were coming up the driveway and Momma yelled to them (somewhat hysterically) that her house was on fire.   Wondering what Momma had done now, they rushed up the driveway to help.  Meanwhile she ran into the basement, quite concerned that the source of the fire was down there (“Not my wine cellar, Lina!”).

By now Bob and Jake, the lawn crew, had determined that the fire was in the mulch abutting the house and called 911.  They immediately went to work trying to snuff it out.  At this point, Momma realized the yard would soon be filled with young men in uniform, and that she should change from her bedclothes into something more suitable.  When she came outside after hurriedly selecting a (hopefully sexy) top and shorts, the police were already at our door.  I meanwhile cowered inside the front door, unable to believe that the cops were at our house again.


Dear God, not again …

Soon we could hear the wailing siren of the approaching firetruck, and official vehicles filled our cul-de-sac.  At what point, I wondered, could we be deemed a public nuisance?

As the firemen – in full firefighting gear – converged on our house, Momma attempted to explain what had happened.  Apparently the mulch had covered a light fixture which was equipped with an extra-hot halogen light bulb and started a fire.  Predictably, she did not know the answer to the question of how long the light bulb had been on.  After a thorough inspection, the firemen determined that the danger was over.

Next the fire inspector helped Momma turn off the circuit breakers to the landscape lighting – so there was no chance she could inadvertently turn the lights on and start the house on fire again.  Apparently, it did not take him long to discern that Momma was a walking talking hazard.  Here is the scene as it unfolded at our house:


What can I say – I have reached the end of my leash . . . I mean rope.  All of these traumatic and terrifying occurrences are getting to be just a little more than I can take. Therefore, I have decided to take matters into my own paws.  What do you think about the following ad?


– Potty Trained

– Light Eater

– Can Fetch and Perform Tricks

– Vaccinated (I hope)

– Papers in Order (I hope)

– Good Listener (but you may have to speak up)

– Experienced Emotional Support Animal

– Comfortable with Officers in Uniform

Please let me know if you are interested, but don’t tell Momma.

Lina, Rescue (Me) Dog!



3 thoughts on “The Last Straw

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