. . . Tallulah and I celebrated our own little local holiday miracle: the completion of three nightmare traffic projects.
Months ago a small problem developed with the pipes beneath one of our neighborhood streets. Then it got worse, and then it became a major flood. For some odd reason, the humans in charge didn’t seem to have a solution. Just when it seemed the situation couldn’t get more frustrating, there was a natural gas leak in the middle of the night. And that’s when the humans in charge got serious about things. They tore out all the paving for an entire block, installed huge pipes beneath the ground, and covered it all with brand new pavement. The whole ordeal has been such a hassle that Tallulah and I really think the humans living on that block should close the street–just for the evening–and have a blowout celebration.
Our second little local miracle involved a street that has been under construction since before Tallulah was born. When Tallulah came into the world almost five years ago, the city of New Orleans was deep into a major drainage project designed to take water from areas near the Mississippi River, carry it through massive culverts, and eventually drain it into Lake Pontchartrain. Sounds great–and it is great and we’re very thankful and goodness knows the city needed some drainage improvements–but those massive culverts just happened to run beneath the neutral grounds of three very busy Uptown avenues. (New Orleanians call that grassy area between two sides of a street the neutral ground.) It was quite the ongoing nightmare. The one closest to us just happened to be the last to be completed; but days before Christmas, crews finished the striping, opened both lanes of traffic in both directions, and completely sodded the neutral ground for the entire length of the street. Tallulah and I are looking forward to long leisurely strolls on our beautiful new neutral ground.
And to complete the trifecta of traffic project miracles this holiday season, we finally witnessed the repair of the lights at a fairly busy intersection. The lights had been out for what seemed life eons, and reports of accidents and near misses circulated throughout the neighborhood. We were told that the city was waiting for a replacement part, which our human Mommy suspects was being delivered from Mars. And then one day, as she walked home from her errands, she saw the light . . . or rather the traffic lights actually working. She was so excited, she hugged the repairman who was there to do the work. Tallulah and I suspect that was the first hug he ever received for fixing a traffic light.
Tallulah and I are beyond thankful for these local holiday miracles, which are sure to add immeasurably to the safety and enjoyment of our daily walks. Here’s to no more detours in 2019!
. . . Tallulah and I took a moment to reflect on 2018. It’s been a great ride, and we cannot wait to see where the road takes us in 2019. 😉
Wishing our friends a happy and safe New Year’s Eve and best wishes for a fabulous New Year!
Spring has sprung at my house, and I couldn’t be happier. My human mommy and I have spent our ninth year together in the garden . . . weeding, trimming, digging, planting, and enjoying the fruits of our labor.
I’ve been Mommy’s Golden green thumb in the garden since I was just a tiny puppy. Before we moved to New Orleans, we had a really big garden. It took days and days and days and days to get it into shape.
Our garden is smaller now–just a few pots and a little groundcover and mulching. In many ways, it’s a much simpler task . . .
. . . and in other ways, it’s more of a challenge. But I’ve been working closely with Tallulah to teach her the ropes and I think she has a bright and sunny future as a Golden gardening assistant.
What’s better than one Golden in the garden? Two Goldens in the garden! Tallulah and I wish you a very happy spring, filled with warm breezes and vibrant blooms. And we wish our human mommy a lifetime of Golden green thumbs in her spring garden. Happy spring!
A note from Miss Harper Lee’s humans . . .
We spent St. Patrick’s Day on Cloud Nine because today we celebrated Miss Harper Lee’s ninth birthday. We’re counting on a little luck of the Irish to bring us many more happy and healthy years with our sweet girl. Cheers to you, Miss Lee. You fill our home with joy and love and peace . . . and you mean more to us than we could ever express.
It’s been a minute . . . or two . . . since I’ve seen you. When last we visited, the new year had just begun and I shared those silly resolutions that my human mommy had for me. No worries; that foolishness didn’t last through the first week of 2018. So what in the world have I been doing for the past couple of months?
Baby New Year played a cruel trick on us in early January with an unusually cold blast of Arctic air. Our lows dipped into the 20s for several nights in a row and the highs didn’t get above freezing. I know that doesn’t sound too impressive to my friends in colder climates, but for a couple of southern Golden girls living in New Orleans, Louisiana, it was pretty chilly. We had ice on the sidewalks and broken water pipes throughout the city. On the positive side, Tallulah and I were cordially invited by the humans to join them in their bed. Turns out Golden Retrievers can be super heat generators and quite in demand during severe cold snaps.
Fortunately, that cold snap didn’t last very long and by late January Tallulah and I were out on the town. We joined the humans for a day in the French Quarter in honor of our city’s 300th birthday. Here in New Orleans we love a party, so we’ll be celebrating throughout the year.
By early February, the humans were deep into Mardi Gras madness. We didn’t see them much. It seems like every time Tallulah and I woke up from a nap, they were headed out the door to another parade. And when we did see them, we hardly recognized them. It was just a blur of wigs, sequins, and beads.
As soon as the last piece of king cake was consumed and all the Mardi Gras decorations were safely stored, the humans packed their bags and flew south . . . all the way to Hotel Punta Islita in Costa Rica. They awoke to this magnificent view every day, spent hours on the beach, kayaked to the ocean, learned about macaw rescue and howler monkey habits, and generally fell in love with the country and its people. Mommy said the only thing that could possibly have made their trip better would have been a couple of Golden Retrievers. I’m assuming she meant Tallulah and me.
The humans returned from their getaway just in time to join me at the my Visiting Pet Program annual meeting and picnic. My fellow volunteers and I devote the year to bringing love and leaving smiles at nursing facilities, hospitals, summer camps, universities, and conventions. Tara’s Toast to Volunteers gives us an opportunity to celebrate the people and pets that make the program such a success. This year, we got to ham it up in a photo booth and visit with a pet psychic. She told my humans that I’ve lived many lives, which has helped to make me very wise. I think she nailed it.
So now you know what I’ve been doing. I’ve missed you, and I’m eager to catch up. What have you been doing?
Last night, Tallulah and I accompanied our humans on a little stroll to see Ghost Manor. Let me take just a moment to state the obvious: My family really, really needs to step up its SELFIE game. Can you believe that we took literally dozens of selfies and this is the best we have to offer? This selfie is, as the kids would say, definitely not on fleek. But it got just a little embarrassing to continue the attempts as the crowds milled about, so this is what you get. Selfie failure aside, Ghost Manor at night was even better than I’d imagined when we visited a couple of weeks ago in the daytime. (Click here to refresh your memory.) The skeleton quartet serenaded us from the porch. A beautiful lady danced in an upstairs room . . . before she was consumed by flames. And all the while giant eyeballs peered down on us from above. Creepy!
OK, friends, we really need your help. What are your best secrets to capturing the perfect selfie?
Quick, Mommy. Just snap the picture. You’re interrupting my favorite TV SHOW with this little photo session. It should come as no surprise that this NOLA girl is a pretty big fan of NCIS: New Orleans. After all, it’s filmed in my hometown. The storylines are pretty good, but mostly I watch to see if I can identify the locations and spot some of our more famous residents. I’ve even seen the NCIS: New Orleans crew filming around my neighborhood while I’m enjoying my morning walks. I like to slow down and show them my pretty side. You never know when there might be a casting call for a Golden Retriever, and I’m always ready for my close-up. As for Tallulah, she’s more into YouTube videos. She could watch puppies and chicks and bunnies all day long, but her nose smudges on the television screen can be a bit of a problem. 😉
I hope you have some super fun plans for the weekend. We’re expecting a rainy one . . . the perfect excuse to snuggle on the couch and catch up on a little television viewing. Cheers!
To understand my October Photo Challenge entry for YOUR NIGHT, you have to understand my day. Saturday started with a Visiting Pet Program outing to see my friends at Colonial Oaks Living Center. I stayed true to our VPP motto–Bringing Love and Leaving Smiles–as I went from room to room to see the residents. I also visited with the staff, who needed a little cheering up after a sad week. There was no time for a nap when I got home, because my LSU Tigers had an important football game against the Auburn Tigers . . . or War Eagles . . . they can’t quite decide who they want to be. My Tigers found themselves in a slight scoring deficit early in the game, but I didn’t give up on them and they rallied to capture the win. It took a lot of effort on my part to get that victory for my team. I was tired, but I had one last social engagement for the day. Tallulah and I closed out the night by accompanying our humans on a little Magazine Street stroll to celebrate New Orleans’ Art for Arts’ Sake. We visited with artists, saw lots of costumed humans who were getting a jump-start on Halloween, and stopped into our favorite watering hole where our human mommy enjoyed the air conditioning, our human daddy caught up on college football scores, and Tallulah and I did what we usually do: attracted and reveled in attention. By the time we returned home, I was a bit exhausted. I curled up on my blanket on the couch, which is kind of a special treat for me, and I said goodbye to a busy day and hello to a relaxing night.
Tomorrow’s photo challenge is BEST FRIEND. I’m pretty sure you can guess who that’s going to be. 🙂
New Orleans is all about MUSIC. I wish you could join me on my morning walks. We hear every genre of music you could ever imagine coming from the passing cars, bicycles, and even pedestrians. Sometimes the neighborhood restaurants and bars forget to turn off their sound systems and we’re serenaded with the tunes that diners and revelers enjoyed the night before. But our favorite music comes from the students at ReNEW Cultural Arts Academy, who just happen to be our neighbors. They are the future of our city and the future of its soundtrack . . . and we love them.
Here’s hoping that you have a song in your heart every day. Do you have a favorite song or a favorite genre of music?
On Day 12 of the October Photo Challenge, it’s time for some Halloween DECORATIONS! Welcome to Ghost Manor, by far the most spooktacular house in my neighborhood. I did my photo shoot in the daytime because, quite frankly friends, Ghost Manor at night is just way too scary for this Golden girl. Ghosts fly from window to window. I can only imagine that they’re trying to escape . . . and I don’t want to be standing on the sidewalk if they get out. When the ghosts disappear to wherever they go, the skeletons start waltzing to and fro. And then dripping blood blocks the view. Time to turn your attention to the fog that fills the graveyard below . . . and hope no one pops out of the ground. If you’re feeling really brave, click here for a tiny nighttime glimpse.
Not scared yet? Really? Check out Ghost Manor on social media . . . and don’t say I didn’t warn you.
How many humans out there decorate for Halloween? And to all my fellow dog friends, do you get just a little spooked by creepy decorations on your daily walks? It’s ok to admit it. We’re all friends here. 😉