4-20-15 Monday (Dasher 9-17-00 to 4-19-15)

Hi.  It’s me again.  Here’s a photo from last month that’s been waiting patiently to be posted.

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I felt like asking for the $2 off Christmas special.

This week we didn’t go to Carowinds.  The weekday hours (open due to Spring Break) have ceased until Memorial Day.  Wednesday we went to Studio Movie Grill to see a movie and have dinner.  Jim and I both fell of the diet train with huge tasty burgers.  We love the order from your chair convenience but we always seem to have service issues here.  Always.  The straws have finally gotten longer and now exceed the liquid line (here’s the story on the straws).  So, I ask for an unsweet tea with yellow packets.  The guy reads back as unsweet tea with a sugar caddy.  OK, sounds like it would have more than just sugar.  Some other guy brings me my tea with ONE packet for this huge tea.  I’m thinking, this is the sugar caddy?  I said I’ll need more.  I had to give him a number of how many.  Are they rationing them?  Eventually our food comes out, along with the side of mayo for the burgers.  No silverware.  We tell the guy who comes back with one set.  Uhhhhhhhh, we need another.  Dain bramage.

It was a busy week at work.  We were introduced to our mentees who sat with us for 2 hours.  The woman looked terrified at what I showed her.  She was thinking she had to learn it all in 2 hours or something.  I reassured her that this wasn’t training and that everything would be taught, step by step. 

How’s Dasher?  So glad you asked.  He’s doing pretty good for 14 years old.  Prednisone made him go from 17 to 22 pounds.  He can’t jump as high anymore.  He can’t make it up to the bed while we’re in it.  He just can’t clear the bed and our legs so many times he starts the night off with us, jumps down and stays in a bed on the floor.  We bought him stairs.  He won’t use them.  I have to try to get him to get over that.  I need to spend more time with him. 

He’s had a huge cyst on his back for quite a while now.  It’s gotten bigger.  He’s got a lot of moles which we used to have removed but the vet doesn’t think he’d survive anesthesia of any kind.  We call him Dashimodo (as in Quasimodo).  This week we brought him in to have it checked again.  It’s firm and no fluid came out of it.  It’s well past his hips and his spine so other than looking like a freak, he’s OK I guess.

We’re in Augusta this weekend.  It’s a rainy weekend but that’s OK, we weren’t planning on hanging outside much.  On Friday night, we went out to the bar and when we returned home at 2am, the bed had a large wet spot that went through the comforter, top sheet, bottom sheet and mattress pad.  The mattress itself was spared.  It was right under the a/c unit which we had on to help with the humidity.  Was the a/c leaking water or the hole the a/c sits in leaking water?  Jim took some of the casing apart to get at the screws.  With as much as Jim tightened those screws, it seemed like that unit could have been lifted off the damn roof.  It’s always something.  Luckily it happened before we changed the sheets in general and put on our brand new quilt.  But still, it wasn’t something I wanted to do when I was hung over.  The new quilt brightens up the room.  From a dark brown to a cream.  I’m happy to say that Jim’s fix took care of the leak.  Yay.

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Jim and I are planning a trip to Niagara Falls in June.  Well, he’s doing the planning.  That’s his thing.  My thing is just to look pretty.   He’s booked us a falls view on the Canadian side at the Four Points by Sheraton. We’re thinking of doing a helicopter tour and probably some other things.  Does anyone have input? 

I typed most of this entry on Saturday.  Here I am Monday with the rest of the entry…

On Saturday night, it was about 2am-ish when we walked Dasher for the last time for the night.  He seemed a bit sluggish as he walked up the stairs into the RV.  Once inside he sort of collapsed.  It seemed like he was having a seizure.  I yelled for Jim, got some honey, rubbed in on his gums and then he kinda recovered.  We brought him to the emergency vet.  He had some black and blue areas on his underside.  It was suspected as internal bleeding.  The x-ray showed no but since the blue was minor it was thought that it would get worse.  There were several other possibilities of what could be going on, but none of them good.  At 4:30am, we brought him back to the RV and we knew in our hearts that it was the last night with our dog. 

The next morning, he wouldn’t even go outside.  The most activity was him drinking.  We picked him up and put him outside.  He peed.  We made a 1:30 appointment with Banfield for a final evaluation.  Jim noticed his underside was almost black.  We laid with him on the floor.  He appeared alert but lethargic.  It was time to go.  I sat on the back seat with him.  He threw up, the food was chunks from the day before.  It’s like his body never digested it.  Further up the road, he shit.  It was all over my shorts (luckily we had our “dirty clothes with us).  We made it to the vet, Jim carried him in as I cleaned up and such.  We spent a lot of time hugging and loving on him before it was time.  The doctor came in, confirmed the inevitable and we consented.  We wanted to pay our vet bill so that we could leave immediately after the procedure.  Done.

The procedure was simple.  They put an IV line in while I paid the bill (I didn’t want to see that).  Once I returned, we pet him and kissed him and hugged him and loved him and cried, the doctor administered the anesthesia.  He fell asleep.  Next was the medicine to make his heart stop.  I felt like mine had stopped too.  We left rather quickly and tearfully.  I could barely see my way out of there.   I don’t think I’ve ever cried so much. 

The ride back to Charlotte was somber… as you can imagine.  We got home and it started all over.   Pet beds all over the place, his meds on the counter, etc.  We broke down again.  Jim unloaded the car while I started gathering Dasher’s things.  I felt like I needed to do this immediately.  His food bowls.  His beds.  His blankets.  Jim removed all of the pet gates and pet stairs.  I still have more to do.

We both took Monday off.  Jim worked from home for some of the day.  I washed all the pet beds and blankets.  We have like 12 pet beds!  We’ll donate most of his stuff to the local shelter.

Here’s some of my favorite photos of Dasher:

2011-06-19 0072012-05-28 0022012-07-14 0042013-06-03 0092008-09-13 Dasher wants Blog2008-09-16 CO Pike's Peak 162008-09-30 CO Jim & Dasher 12008-10-10 Four Corners 162008-11-01 UT Dasher & Clea2008-11-14 UT Bored Dasher2009-04-04 CA 362009-04-04 CA 462009-04-29 AZ 012009-06-03 NM 07 Roswell2009-09-28 012009-12-28 082010-07-29 0072011-03-12 0022011-03-13 001

We love you Dasher.

4-12-15 Sunday (Intensities)

carowindsI’m a little behind.  Not like a little ass.  I mean, behind with blogging.  I’ve been busy.  So I’m going to have to just sum up the past couple of weeks.  Carowinds has been a big part of it.  A few days after our craptastic first visit to Carowinds, I received a call from the Food and Beverage Manager.  He went on to say that he was sorry about my visit and wanted to know what he could offer me to make it right.  I was a little put off with that at first since I wasn’t complaining to get something out of it.  I also was expecting to get feedback from him.  Maybe a what happened or what they’re doing to ensure things like this don’t happen again.  So I replied that I didn’t need/want anything.  Tangent: too many people expect compensation when something doesn’t go right.  Bad meal should equal a free meal, definitely.  But there’s some things that just warrant a warm, sincere apology.  I wasn’t feeling that from this guy. End tangent.  As we spoke about some of the issues, the conversation went really well.  He said that they were working on clarifying the meal plan and that they added the funnel cake (which I can’t eat) from the Funnel Cake place and the Philly cheesesteak from Chickie’s and Pete’s (the 2 places we had issues with).  I mentioned I was disappointed with the lack of healthy choices on the meal plan.  I asked why salads couldn’t be part of the deal.  He said other’s had mentioned that so they added 4 salads and some wraps as well.  This was the type of reply/info I was looking for.  Action.  And so, a happy ending.

turkey burgerIn the meantime, since it was Spring break, the park was open until 8pm each night.  So, when we got home from work, we’d drive the 45 minutes to the park, go on a ride or 2 and then have dinner.  We did this about 4 or 5 times (I’ve lost count).  Unfortunately, 3 times in a row they were out of turkey burgers.  On visit 4 and 5 or so I didn’t even ask for them. 

The park has 11 roller coasters.  I think we have one left to do.  The lines have been short and fast.  It’s all been a much better experience there.  The new roller coaster, Fury 325 was… intense.  I think I kept saying “oh shit” a million times.  It was off the chain.  The park’s similar coaster is Dale Earnhardt’s Intimidator which wasn’t as fast or as tall but definitely was an “oh shit” ride.  Intense.  Intense.  On Fury 325 I did buy one of those magnet photos of us.  I scanned it but the quality isn’t that great.

Fury325Above: Unknown, Garret, Jim, freak with his arms up.

Yes, thank you, I am aware that I have the pinching a loaf face.  It was intense.  Have I mentioned that?

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mentorOther news.  Work = I’ve been selected to be a mentor for a new hire class that starts this Monday.  I was honored to be selected. I’m an nerd, what can I say?   There’s several mentors.  The new hires will learn in class and then practice or observe with us for a few hours a week.  I’m not sure about their experience level.  Will I be helping someone with systems more so than underwriting itself?  Will it be mostly about our underwriting guidelines?  A mixture of all?  I’m not sure.  I will say that they have a particular curriculum and even have a calendar with structured learning subjects and events.  I’ll start the process at the end of the week.  It looks well thought out.  It will look nice on my résumé!  

Easter was great.  We went over to Beth’s house. 

I didn’t take many photos but here’s what I got:

2015-04-05 007Above: Beth’s Mom, sister Angie and Beth

2015-04-05 005Above: Ann made a beautifully plated salad.

2015-04-05 006Above: Bunny bread from the Great Harvest Bread place.

Well, I didn’t get this posted last week so I guess I should do that and start another one.