Liam just woke up, stuck his head in the doorway and said, very tousled and sleepy looking, "Mama, we have school today," like, What the heck are you doing on the computer? I broke the happy news and he ambled off to the living room without comment. Every day he asks, "Do I have school tomorrow?"And if I say YES he lowers his head and looks sad, and if I say NO he let's out a big YAY! But even he has to admit that this Holiday Break deal has gone on long enough and that we all must pay the piper, i.e., go to school and, gulp, learn stuff.
Henry goes out and checks the possum hole, sniffs the 'winter' perimeter of the yard, which is a shortened tour of the vicinity due to increment weather, and then barks at the door. If I'm on the toilet, he barks louder and louder until I rush through the house to let him in. Where were you? he asks, rushing past to find a squeaky toy to rip apart. On the toilet, I say. Oh, you mean that huge water bowl that I'm too short to reach and drink out of? Yeah, that's the one. Then he barks at me to throw his toy, and then doesn't bring it back afterwards. Henry is lousy at fetch.
This is the eastern section of the backyard, taken to give you some idea of the snow pack we have, and that—even through this PV thing—the sun is still shining. The tracks in the front of the picture are from Liam, but the ones that run along the fence going all the way to the back are Henry. Notice how they're 'body length' with no paw prints to break it up. That's because he hopped. I do see little paw tracks going past the apple tree, though. Looks like he walked his way out there, got cold, and decided it was faster to hop back. I remember one time Henry went out in the snow and got stuck in a huge drift. He was so cold and the snow was so thick that he just gave up and laid down. I was at the back door, and when I saw him give up like that, I ran out there to snatch him up. You really have to watch your pets, folks. We think they're infallible, but they're not.
It's hard to imagine anyone leaving their animal friends outside in weather like this. Unfortunately, I know some people who would. My previous neighbors had two large dogs that they treated like lawn ornaments. They never went out there to play with them, they never took them for walks, and they never let them inside. I'd talk to the dogs through the fence because they were so starved for attention that they would literally run over every time I walked out my back door. They even started to dig under the fence, which the owner closed with a brick to stop progress. But the dogs found their way out several times anyway in another part of the fence, and who do you think they came to? That's right. I'd have to go knock on the neighbor's door, with two dogs yanking on a makeshift leash the whole time. I couldn't open a locked gate that had a 'we shoot' sign showing a human target on it. No one would ever answer. Finally, after one too many escapes, animal control talked to the owners, and just in time, because a huge blizzard arrived two days later. But then those people moved, taking the dogs with them. I can only imagine they are in a similar situation, with no pesky neighbors to worry about knocking on their door to complain.
I joked about the Wampas in Star Wars, but really it's the humans who are cruel.