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A Wednesday Wanderer No More

6 October 2023

Jolene, the Jumping Queen, is a Wednesday wanderer no more. Even though Dear Husband spends 90 percent of his time outdoors with her, making sure she does not wander off, she remains homebound, all of the time. Her invisible-fence training is progressing splendidly.

Jolene came home to Larkhaven on a Wednesday, and she’s been home, at Larkhaven, for a month. Or so I say.

Dear Husband mathematically defines a month differently than I do, but he mathematically defines many things differently than I do!

In strictly arithmetic terms, we agree. In artistic modes, we do not.

My sense, or sensibility, of a month is four weeks. For me, the end of that span does not necessarily fall on the exact day from one unit of the Roman calendar to the following one. For hubby, the technical and unchanging definition is precisely 4.3 weeks, or something akin to that figure. I’ve been ignoring it for aeons now, and shall continue to do so. My Muse demands it of me.

This contentious contention concerning dates and days does indeed date back to our dating days of both working for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Our mutually salaried-era of the U.S. federal government ended when I promoted myself to wife and mother, and I thereafter took a firm stand to not engage in the fabrication of an economic bubble that was formed, to a large extent, by the DINCs, the double-income couple, in America.

We’d each get paid every two weeks, but there were some months when we received 3 paychecks in a month. Me, I was just happy to get a paycheck, regardless of when or, pretty much, how much! But Dear Boyfriend&Spouse was persistently persnickety about the payment schedule, mostly because of his rather ingrained Scots feeling about bill-paying requirements. Not that I didn’t pay my bills on time, but, back then, I didn’t mark my calendar only by fiscal debts. In all honesty, I still don’t.

The Ides of March are, for me, part of the plot of a Shakespearean tragedy! And that fiscal cliff, I steer clear of it, wherever it’s supposed to be this month, this year, this week!

Steering clear of the puppytooth is my much more immediate and constant concern. The active jaw of Jolene resembles the Pac-man of the computer game of my youth, albeit without the echo-ey music and the need to plunk another quarter in the video game-machine.

Jolene’s chomping motion proceeds at a rapid and unstoppable rate, necessitating strict verbal training. Somehow, my voice gets a more prompt response than does the voice of the Outdoor Trainer and Aggressive-Play-Master. My resonant instrument is reserved purely for those special moments when a firm NO means NO. Over-use, much like under-use, of discipline leads to a joke of a parent and an offspring that goes off that fiscal cliff!

Jolene won’t be hurling herself off of any nearby cliff, although she’s fascinated by rock-climbing and walking along the gang-plank of logs and tops of benches. Her legs are ruling her world at the moment.

She’s arrived at that young, coltish phase of her growth spurt, a duration that shall last at least a month, however one defines it. Her legs look too long, and her body has entered that snake-like appearance that is very deceptive. There’s mighty muscle development underway. She’s got a very strong core, as was displayed in the Jolene-the-Jumping-Corkscrew Pup video (at 7 weeks) that is now part of her Puppy History Digital File.

She’s starting to brown up, beautifully. Her mother, Windkist Ginger Snap, is a lemon beagle, a phrase that does not denote, or connote, a loser, but instead indicates a hound of two tones. Ginger is red-and-white, and she’s a winner, that’s for sure. Mating her with the tri-coloured Seventhson He Likes It! Hey Mikey! was a bold act of breeding, one that has borne fantastic results!

Leah, at Windkist, has acquired a new stud dog named Canadian Champion Shillington, Small Town Boy, or Gus, for short. Not that he’s short. He’s a 15-incher with an impressive set of parents:

Champion Lanbur, Prince Thou Art (Dad)

Canadian Champion Shillington Starburst (Mom)

Gus hails from the Nova Scotia strain of the Lanbur lineage. As you can see from his pic, Gus is going. He’s got big presence, and big movement, as befits a Scots with vigor, canine or otherwise.

In the event that a girl-pup did not materialize for Dear Husband and me during this past July, I’d selected a masculine name:

Romeo, Windkist Riding the Bronco.

I guess I envisioned myself calling out: Romeo, wherefore art thou, Romeo?

I saw myself, even more, chiming Jolene, Jolene, Jolene, Jo-leeeeene!

Now I have never known a gal named Jolene. And the story behind this musical composition by Dolly Parton is that she encountered, in a bank, beside her husband, a teller named Jolene (back when banks had tellers, and transactions were done with CASH). Jolene really wanted her man, the hubby of Dolly. When this song became a hit, and necessitated a vocal performance by its songwriter, Dolly wasn’t exactly thrilled about it!

My UPS driver, after meeting Puppy Jolene, happily informed us that his First Girlfriend was named Jolene. So there are sirens out there named Jolene!

This siren of divine benevolence, our Jolene, came to be on 9 July 2023. The blessed event was a complete surprise for me who doubted this possibility would come to pass.

Miracles happen in that manner, when we least expect them. Jolene is a big miracle in a small package, a bundle of amazing and adroit energy that is learning to self-regulate. This morning, I found her pup-basket overturned. She’s trashed her room, I thought, recalling the triumphant statement that Dear Preschool Son used to routinely hand to me, at 6 a.m., about his Younger Toddler-Sibling and her bedroom.

I straightened up the Pup-Room mess, like an obedient mom-in-training! I willingly conform to the demands of this canine species that’s been centuries in the making of a most admirable magnificence.

Some beagle terminology is necessary here to properly appreciate the path to perfection of the conformation of a breed that’s been in the championship works since the days of Queen Elizabeth I. During the past 20 years, it’s all come together to produce a super-race of beagles, and Leah at Windkist has been a fundamental part of that quest for excellence.

Like the majority of true-beagle owners, Leah thought she was exaggerating the moment when she, one of the breeders of Uno, saw that he’d won Best in Show at Westminster. She had to watch the historic event on video-tape to get the full effect, and comprehend the reality.

We were there, with her, in spirit, on that night of hound-nights!

When a beagle “rocks the wicket”, it means the height at the withers is perfect. The height of a beagle is measured from the withers to the bottom of the paws. The withers mark the highest point of the back, the intersection of the neck and shoulder blades. Unlike the human body, the physique of the beagle does not include the head and neck to calculate height.

Jolene should reach a maximum height in the range of 13 inches, making her a mini, like the beloved Bridget. She could grow to 15 inches, which still conforms to the breed standard because there are two classes: 13-inch and 15-inch. Bridget’s father, Davy Crockett of the Alamo, was a large 13-inch beagle, with attitude that he passed on to his daughter!

It’s still too early to tell which attitudes have been transmitted to Jolene du Pré, Talking in Your Sleep, of the Windkist du Pré’s. She’s sweet and gentle, feisty and feminine. She’s also extremely sensitive to sounds. Whenever she growls while tugging on her sock that’s in my hand, and I growl back, she stops all motion, cocks her head, and stares at me with surprise and a small measure of apprehension.

I must learn to soften my growl for those ears that hang low.


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