Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Alone Time

My mother used to claim that my brother and I plotted against her when we were little. We timed our naps so that when one of us was asleep, the other one was awake and getting into trouble. Sometimes I wonder if our dogs are doing the same thing. Except when they're on Red Alert ("all hands on deck!"), they're usually dividing up the sleeping chores and the bratting chores.

Berry and Georgie are the sleep specialists. Polly likes both sleeping and bratting. She's a social butterfly who doesn't like to be alone, and often she'll wake up a sleeping packmate by chewing its ear or leg or jowl.

But this morning I realized that everybody else was outside and Polly was alone inside. Not completely alone, of course - I was in the house too - but she was alone in the living room, looking pensive. I went over to her chair to check on her and we had this conversation.

Jean: Why are you alone in here when all the other kids are outside? Are you feeling OK?

Polly: I'm fine. Just leave me alone.

Jean: But you hate to be alone.

Polly: Well, right now, I need some alone time.

Jean: OK, but you tell me if you need anything.

Polly: (in a faint voice) OK.

Jean: (walking away)

Polly: Oh, there's one thing you could do.

Jean: What's that, my princess?

Polly: You could bring me a biscuit.

Jean: A biscuit in bed would make you feel better?

Polly: I think so. But maybe you should bring me a bowl of popcorn too, just in case.

Jean: I see. Anything else, madam?

Polly: A glass of champagne?

Jean: No, sorry. I'm not driving all the way to Kentucky to get you champagne.

Polly: (sighing) OK, I'll have to make do with a biscuit and popcorn.

Jean: Coming right up.

Polly: And don't forget to put butter on the popcorn.

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