It’s been a while since I’ve posted on this blog. A lot has happened in my life since then. I’ve left my much loved old house in South Carolina for a suburb of Atlanta where I am nearer to family, have acquired a new dog, actually one and one half new dogs, and a new Ellen McKenzie mystery is out.
First, dogs. I live close by two of my grandchildren, who are now here every day. They wanted a dog, badly, but no one is home all day and it didn’t seem feasible. Then they found Lefty at a local shelter. He is a hound mix who somehow mislaid his left hind leg, young and was in need of a foster home over the 4th. Firecrackers and all that. The children volunteered me. He never went back to the shelter. He comes to me every morning and returns to spend the night and week-ends with them. In the meantime, a friend of mine, who works dog rescue, sent me a picture of a small black mop of a dog who had been tossed out of a car. I responded with “isn’t she cute”. Yes, she is. I’m not sure how it happened but she now lives here as well. Her name is Millie the Mop, or was until she got a haircut. Now it’s Millicent the Magnificent. Laney, my elderly IG likes them both, or at least tolerates them and the cat has finally decided it isn’t much fun to sulk in the garage and has re-joined the somewhat tumultuous life in the house.
Dogs have been a part of human life since wolves decided to come out of the darkness and share primitive man’s dinner around the campfire. However, through much of history, they were expected to perform a job of some sort to earn their portion of the stew. I did a lot of research into Colonial life for the latest Ellen book, Murder by Syllabub, and it doesn’t seem to have been much different then. Dogs helped in the hunt by pointing out the hapless bird who was destined to be that night’s dinner and then were expected to retrieve it without eating it. They herded sheep, goats, and cattle, pulled carts, and guarded the hen house by night. Not so much today. Most dogs today are pets and expected to do nothing more than be companions. They are quite good at that, at least mine are, but still, it seems they could perform some useful function other than barking at the mailman. I recently broached that theory to mine, even going as far as to read them a list of chores colonial dogs were excepted to complete.
There are two dogs in Murder by Syllabub and they have important roles to play in the story. However, they don’t exactly have jobs. Either of them. Hummm. Upon reflection, I guess barking at the mailman isn’t all bad.