Thursday, May 15, 2008

Too Much To Do

News on the car is not good and it may be totaled. Just what I need is a car payment. Don't really even have time for car shopping right now. We'll see what my insurance company has to say today. As the cost of everything goes up, and my salary as a state employee does NOT follow, things will be getting tighter around here.

Trying to get things in order for my trip to Australia in two weeks. I'm going to spend some time in Cairns and visit the Great Barrier Reef before flying back to Brisbane to judge Dalmatians. Australia and New Zealand are the two countries I have always longed to visit, and although I can't really afford the extra days, it would be foolish not to visit the reef. This is probably the only time I will get to that part of the world, and all reefs are gravely endangered by global warming. Just the smallest rise in ocean temperatures has a grave effect on many of its inhabitants.

SO MUCH to get done before I can leave. Ron takes good care of the dogs and fish, but I always worry about all of them - Ron too. As long as I write comprehensive lists, Ron can manage the fish pretty well, but not being very interested in them, he needs thorough instructions. The older dogs he is fine with. Argus will stay with Jess & Don and the Shepherd girls, but Ron says he can manage the pup. I think I will see if the neighbor kids will walk her and play with her in my absence.

The puppy is doing well. She's been so easy to housetrain, and has only had one accident indoors so far. She's great in a crate, and very bold and outgoing when she goes visiting. We've really enjoyed her so far - except for old Sidney who has little time for pups this age. Of course the pups always identify him as the Alpha Wolf and insist on sniveling and groveling for him, which drives him crazy.

Coral is scheduled for a CT scan next week, in hopes of identifying the reason for the continual drainage from her left nostril. Expensive dental surgery to remove a tiny piece of tooth root did not solve the problem. The estimates from the Vet School were impossibly expensive, but my wonderful vet found a private clinic that would do the same work for a much more reasonable price. Ron is inclined to just let this be, but I would feel terrible if something serious was going on, that we could have identified and treated.

Old Sid is hanging in there and doing quite well at 12 1/2+ plus. The warmer weather has really made a difference in him. Today is finally supposed to be warm enough for him to have a bath outdoors. He can't manage my steep basement steps and really needs a bath, so I will run a hose from the laundry tup and bath him outdoors in warm water. He carries tons of coat, and when he sheds it is massive! I should be able to remove a lot of that dead coat when he is being rinsed off, and because he can stand on the concrete he will have good footing. If my back is up to the job, I'll bathe a couple of the others too, probably on my grooming table which is water resistant.

Also need to do 30-40% water changes on 35 aquariums tonite and tommorrow. I normally do each of the tanks every week, but of course I missed a week when I was at DCA, and will miss a couple of weeks when I am in Australia, so I need the tanks and their inhabitants to be in as good a condition as possible before I leave. I've decided that the fish hobby needs to support itself a bit better, so I by-passed a chance to go in on a group order of fish from Mike Hellwig. Really bummed by that as there are several species available that I really want, but this is not a good time to add fish. Rick is keeping several pairs of the blue peppered lyretail platies for me until I get back, as I want to concentrate on them this summer, but that's all the new stuff I plan to add for awhile.