Saturday, October 16, 2010

Wandering South

Well, I hope to hit the road again in a day or two, so at that point, my postings may become erratic, as they are subject to the whims of my AT&T internet connection. AT&T advertises they cover 95% of the USA, I seem to often be in the 5% area.

If you have read my posts, you know I just hate AT&T and am ever so sorry I am stuck with them and their horrible 2 year contract. Thank goodness my cell phone is not with them. They have awful customer care. They tend to want to wear you down,keeping you on hold for 10-20 minutes, then transferring you to someone who keeps transferring your call elsewhere with more lengthy holds. Eventually you reach someone who barely speaks English, who reads laboriously slow from a manual, insisting you change numerous settings on your computer. None of these ever fix the problem, but it sure screws up your computer. I think all this is done, so you never ever want to call them back.

My main reason for calling them in the past, was because coverage was non-existent in areas they advertise as being covered. Last time I spoke to them, they kept me on the phone for well over two hours of torture, what with the lengthy hold times between transfers to people that won't talk to you, to listening to someone mispronounce the English language to the point of being totally unable to understand what gloops are. I still ponder what the heck gloops are and how they affect my coverage area.

I can still hear and mimic the last operator now, as I strained to understand "Oh peen they con toll pane ella, see elect neat work con ex tee ions, see elect pro pit titties..."

I am leaving New Hampshire with a final destination of Orlando, Florida. At least that is what I THINK I am doing. It should take me 4-30 days to get there.

How's that for planning?

My health comes and goes, so that can always affect a trip. I strive to do all I can each and every day, but sometimes the body resists and I am forced to focus solely on healing. Life interrupted. I lose track of time, living in uncertain confusion. Getting out of the hospital didn't make me instantly well. I've lived much longer than my initial prognosis, so overall I am extremely happy. Now I've given up on medical care and drugs. My budget is so ridiculously tiny, there just isn't anymore money or credit left for medical help. I'm taking alternative approaches to better health, some considered a bit extreme, but certainly the price is far less.

I even gave up on the diabetic medicines. I wasn't planning to, but I hit a rock wall with the drug store saying I didn't pick up my refills before the expiration date on their computer, so I have to go pay a new doctor for new refill prescriptions. They wanted a huge cash fee up front before seeing me and I'm living in a motorome trying to make ends meet. Which overall, it is cheaper living and working in a motorhome that paying for a fixed address. The medical nightmare is just a big mess I won't go into, so bingo, I gave up the diabetes medicines. Now I am fighting to reverse diabetes.

My puppy is a medical expense in my budget. That may make you laugh!

But thanks to the dog, I get out and walk every day. Some days I walk miles over the course of the day, and others, I barely creep around the immediate neighborhood. The walking is definitely improving my physical stamina.

It's getting pretty darn cold in New England, and it's cheaper to be warmer, so headed south I am. A friend may go part of the route with me,then fly back one-way to their home. I sure hope so. It's tons more fun to have a human companion around. I love my puppy dog, but he's lousy at conversation. However, he is stubborn and egotistical. He does have his way of talking to me, besides barking. He does this humming talking thing that can be downright hilarious. It sounds something like "Hm hmmm hmmmmmm" with his pitch changing on each "hmm" depending on if he is begging for his toy or begging to go out and play with some doggy that usually outweighs him 20 times.

My friend told me that dogs don't see size at all. A dog is a dog to a dog, no matter what his size. My tiny pooch sure is enthusiastic about meeting any dog, from a Great Dane to a puppy his size.

Which by the way, we have made some solid inroads on the barking issue. I have never had a yappy dog and sure don't want one now. I am used to big dogs, so I've had to adjust to having a tiny dog.

Small dogs have BIG attitude and haven't a clue they are just a wisp in the wind.

My experience with other people's small dogs in the past, is that they seem to be chronic yappers over nothing. I have tried my best to work with my canine kid, to NOT be a yapper. I've also tried to teach him loads of commands. Some he gets and others he is stubborn about. *SIGH*.

Children are the best dog trainers, because they have the patience to work over and over with a puppy or dog on the same commands.

My dog doesn't get the command "sit" at all. But mention one of his toys, like the bear, tennis ball or Frisbee, and he will correctly fetch the named toy every time. He has learned NO and STAY pretty well.

He can be left alone in the RV or someone's car with the STAY command and not cry or whimper.

Recently he has discovered in my friend's car, the sheer thrill of hanging his head out in the wind. Why do dogs love that?

The answer is blowing in the wind...

Of course I end up either tethering him or holding his harness, so he doesn't inadvertently bounce out the window. Usually, I don't have it down far enough for him to fit through anyhow.

In the motorhome, I always have his window rolled up tightly if he is sitting in the passenger front seat, when I don't have a friend along. That is because I have crank up and down windows. I can't reach from the driver's side of the motorhome, over to the window handle, while driving, so his window has to stay up all the time, even though mine is almost always down for the fresh air.

I tether the doggy anyhow, when I am driving, so he can't wander around the brake pedal or climb into my lap. He would love to sit in my lap while I drive, but I don't allow that.

I like to give 100% concentration to the crazy drivers around me, while I am navigating my motorhome. I need puppy safe and sound, so I don't have to worry about him while I am driving.

Of course recently, when my friend drove the motorhome for a few hours here and there, puppy discovered he could cuddle in my lap for the ride. He just loved this. But mostly he sleeps in his cat bed while we are traveling.

However, puppy can SMELL a campground a mile away. Literally! As I approach a campground within 1-2 miles away, he wakes up and gets super excited. However, when I pull into a parking lot like at the grocery store, he seems thoroughly bored, not the least bit excited.

Sometimes we get to tour a campground and pick out our own spot. He wags his tail enthusiastically, as I slow down to study the empty camping lots. I guess he knows that a campground means he, his rug, his tether and his toys go outside to play on the new temporary puppy patio. He loves walking on his leash through a new campground, checking for other dogs to play with and flirting outrageously with other campers, if they make the fatal mistake of making eye contact with him, for even just a nanosecond. He is a happy dog in great spirits all the time.

RV Dealers have him completely confused. He thinks we might be at a campground, but he isn't sure why we don't stay long. One day we stopped at a place full of used RV's parked on dirt and weeds, but no one was around to show us any. We let the dog out to walk around the lot with us on his leash, and he became excited, thinking we were camping there. He tugged on his leash (he can really tug hard too for such a lightweight dog) resisting the idea of getting back in my friend's car to leave again.

Someone I dearly love, who has passed away, was also known for their sheer stubbornness. Sometimes I wonder if he is reincarnated into my dog. I see so many similarities beyond being ornery. What a thought!
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