Hello from the home of the Bad Dogs of the Desert!
There’s nothing like 700 miles of pelting rain to convince you a trip south is indeed the right decision. The rain fell from Vancouver well into California as we dead-headed our way towards Twenty-nine Palms, California, home of Miz Liz and her infamous “bad dogs”. It had been a year since we last saw Liz in her home and we were excited at the prospect of hiking through Joshua Tree National Park with her and our buddies Dennis & Meg who would meet us there.
I think it was somewhere in Oregon when the scratchy throat began. Oh well, I guess I’m going to get a little cold, no problem.
We drove until about 2am then grabbed a power snooze in the back of the truck at a rest stop. Four hours later we were on the road again and the “cold” was getting comfy in my head. At 10pm we checked into a Motel in 29Palms. A deliciously hot shower followed by a nutritious dinner of cheese-flavoured Doritos, Ichiban noodles, and a Coors Lite would be just the ticket, I reckoned, to bring me back to health. Tomorrow morning we’d be basking in the sun at Miz Liz’s palace and all would be well!
Sometime in the middle of the night I awoke with the horrible realization that there were approximately 27 hedge hogs dancing the Macarena in my stomach and someone had turned the thermostat down to Antarctic-Degrees-Celsius. On top of that, someone was pouring hot, liquid lead down my ear canals; another someone had set fire to my eyeballs and was inflating them with a tire pump. Meanwhile, Mike Tyson was busy perfecting his right and left hooks on my kidneys. I was in the grips of a monster flu and my sole consolation was that we were in a motel room and not camping on some deserted stretch of nowhere.
At this point I’d like to be telling you about all of the scenery and activities that I’ve been enjoying since we arrived but about all I can offer is some rather engaging descriptions of the inside of my eyelids. It’s not so bad though, if you’re going to have the flu I can’t think of a nicer place to have it!
Our reunion with the ever-charming Liz was not the hug fest I’d envisioned. Prez made first contact, warning our host to keep her distance from the “infected one”. From a safe distance, I worked up the strength for a pathetic wave shortly before I was shuffled off to the guest house bedroom – where I would spend the next 24 hours sound asleep. Dennis and Meg had not yet arrived so Liz, fabulous host that she is, entertained Prez while I engaged in a serious inner-eyelid inspection.
I’ve been getting a little better every day but I’m far from well. In the spirit of giving, I have passed along my flu to the Prez who still insists that he’s fine despite his clogged nose and gravelly throat. Liz seems to be holding out but she was staving off a chest infection before we arrived and hosting a house full of guests doesn’t seem to be helping. Dennis and Meg remain virus free…for now. Team Meyer 2007 has gone for one hike thus far but without yours truly so I can only give the second hand account via Prez:
“It was really cool, with this canyon, and water, lots of birds and squirrels!”
Bet you feel like you were right there, huh? Well, I did get to go on the hike to the Carousel Restaurant for breakfast this morning. After a filling breakfast, we all stumbled outside gasping for fresh air. Seems the ol’ Carousel is quite overdue for an air filter change or two! FYI, I’m happy to report that biscuits and gravy are still alive and well in America – defribillulator salesmen everywhere can breathe a sigh of relief.
Emily is not having such a great trip (as if that is a surprise). Happy as I may be with all the dogs running around here, the Canadian Carpet Panther is not enjoying the canine companionship. Dennis’s dog, Sarge, an Airedale terrier has taken to stalking my fussy feline with a Glenn Close-like intensity. Chase and Cassie, the aforementioned “bad dogs”, have not yet clued in that there is a cat in their midst which is odd considering that Cassie is always on the lookout for potential food (I witnessed her trying to eat a piece of firewood today).
And speaking of the furball, let me take this moment to apologize profusely for her Chronicle last week. Had I not been so busy preparing for this trip, I would have taken a moment to edit her scandalous comments. Our New Year’s Eve at Pat & Joyce’s place was super fun (ask me someday about the game we played with cucumbers between our legs) made even more so by the fact that they didn’t know we were coming. As far as our unsuspecting hosts knew, we were well on our way to Mexico until we snuck in their basement door! This was the first time in nine years that we have been able to ring in a new year with our ex-next door neighbours and very dear friends – it was a hoot! (Although I have my suspicions that the party might have been the origin of my flu, compounded by lack of sleep and one or two drinks – what’s with the laughter? OK, one or two drinks every hour).
I was also deathly embarrassed about Emily’s “hairball incident”. Kozy and Tweeter have been generous beyond description – putting us up on in the mansion, cooking us five-star meals, plying us with hooch, letting us (me) watch Ab Fab for hours on end, providing Emily with soft blankies to sleep on – and none of us should be hacking up anything onto the rug. Shame on you Emily, shame!! Rest assured, she will no longer be allowed to guest write any Chronicles – I may have to take away her internet privileges too.
Well, the sun is shining, as it does every day in this wonderful place, and I need to try to get some food in my cranky belly, so I’ll sign off. May your New Year be prosperous and may all your pets be illiterate!
Until next Chronicle, I hope this finds you all healthy, happy & lovin’ life!