Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Every Day is a new day....
We were both woken by tremendous noise this morning seemed like all the rubbish containers in the street were being emptied at the same time.
The noise was not just the sound of the containers being winched up but also the noise of several large well fed Amsterdam men.
Who had to accompany each action seemingly with a shouted conversation and if possible at a great distance from each other so everyone could hear.
They were yodelling at each other very loudly but incomprehensible to all but the men themselves.
This was at 7 am this morning, obviously their motto is I am awake and so you will be too.
Fortunately, although we both did wake up, we both drifted off to sleep again after the trucks had driven off.
Then the peace returned, well it did long enough for us both to drift off again until 9.30 when I woke up feeling very relaxed.
So much so that becoming conscious of the pain again as I am every morning did not produce a huge squeal of pain, today it was little sounds of pain.
As soon as Richie heard he went off to get some THC for me which relaxed me even more.
Then Richie brought his coffee in and we listened to radio and talked as he drank his coffee and played with the dogs.
An excellent dog bonding moment and Spike and Marleen were really enjoying themselves rolling around having their tummies tickled and then running for the ball.
Both excelling themselves because I am watching them play, they will always make an extra effort for someone watching, especially me.
They are such actors, I think all dogs are actors, Spike has his likes and dislikes, and he does not like Richie playing the harmonica or the trumpet.
If Richie plays one or the other even in another room Spike will start to whimper and then to wail loudly.
Marleen hates Richie putting things on his head, certain hats are not favourites and a pillow
even briefly is cause for disapproving barking.
And lots of it too plus looks, as you have never seen before
She also hates sniffing near her and being looked at too directly and basically anything she does not like at any given moment.
Our other dog Daisy was an incredible actress, if you told her that she was being very brave she would look very stoical, like she had been through tremendous trauma.
And if you said what a horrible time you are having she would tremble sometimes very extravagantly.
Often reminded me of Scarlet in Gone with the Wind it was such a dramatic performance from the dog.
Like the day she decided that rubber gloves were evil.
One day Richie put on rubber gloves like he had done for 10 years to either do the dishes or chop up hot peppers.
This time as soon as he had pulled the gloves on she jumped up dramatically, trembling violently and ran over to me.
Then she hid behind my legs and peeped out at Richie shaking and pressed up against my legs.
It was really quite bizarre as we had both been using rubber gloves for a variety of household chores.
Without Daisy reacting like this, once she did it once she did it nearly every time from then on and each time it was an Oscar winning performance.
When Richie had just moved back to Amsterdam in 1997 Daisy did not quite feel at home here, outside was an exciting new world but inside was more worrying.
Not long after they moved to the Haarlmmer Dijk we had a lot of mice invade on the look out for food.
This occurred every summer when the restaurant was closed for their holiday, this time the mice were jumping in via the gas meter box and sprinting over my bed to run to the kitchen.
I called Daisy and showed her the mice and suggested she catch them and instead she ran away.
That evening she jumped to catch a fly and went out of sight only to reappear with a dead mouse in her mouth.
We were delighted and gave her a biscuit where upon she went off and came back minutes later with a pile of mice, about ten in total.
She was amply rewarded and this was happily accepted but more importantly she now had a role in the apartment.
Daisy had a mission now and she became a happier dog and soon settled down to her new life in Amsterdam.
Everyday she would search happily for mice if we said where are the mice or said check out the mice or even if we just sniffed.
Then she would go off proudly and do an inspection tour of the apartment looking for mice, when she was finished she would come back to claim her biscuit.
After awhile she would sometimes initiate a mouse hunt herself and present herself all delighted with her little self and claim her biscuit.
Luckily she did not overdo it and just seemed to top up her daily biscuit intake by one, but one that seemed to matter a lot to her.
That was because she made it happen through her independent action, something that I can understand even better these days.
Independence is so very important to all of us, never realised quite how important it was until I had none left after becoming so handicapped.
Appreciate what I have still got even more than ever.
Every day is a new day and a new chance.
Here is a site with local info about Amsterdam