Dont Mince Words

Squirrel patrol 0

Posted on January 02, 2014 by Marna
Blurry, wagging tail.

Blurry, wagging tail.

There’s a strong possibility my shoulder will get dislocated soon. Dixie has discovered squirrels and I’m not sure a pinch collar will hold her back from the fierce chase she wants to have.

Dixie is a girlie girl dog. She was discovered on the mean streets of Long Beach, California during the housing crisis with pink nail polish on. More than likely, someone opened the door and let her go right before foreclosure. She was impounded, sterilized, and picked up by my rescue agency. You know the rest of the story.

When we lived in Santa Barbara, she saw a few ground squirrels on the cliffs at the beach, but they are like chipmunks on steriods. A month before we moved she saw her first squirrel.  Every day we passed that tree she’d stop and look up.  Up until this point, she liked her prey slow moving and her most notable captures were four possum and one skunk.  At the end of the day, she was a lady of leisure and liked the sofa more than outdoors.

Now we live in a neighborhood where there squirrel-to-tree ratio is bananas.  With the leaves off the trees, she sees everything.  She groans and whines to see the critters.  I now let her have one good run a day, if no one is around walking other dogs.  She chases them to the tree then circles it until she figures out they are not coming down to play with her.

Many people have worried that this southern California dog would not adjust to the east coast weather.  Neither freezing rain nor snow keeps her in the house. She has happily traded sunshine for squirrels.


Driving Miss Dixie – Welcome to VA 0

Posted on December 12, 2013 by Marna

vasignThe welcome to Virginia sign was a relief after traversing Tennessee.  While Virginia may be open for business, I hope Virginia also has jobs and single, emotionally evolved men over the age of consent.

Dixie and I travelled 2900 miles and everyone was right – as long as she was with me, she was fine.  She looked forward to hotel rooms.  In fact, in our last one, we had to get two queens instead of a king and she ran in and jumped from one bed to another like a four-year old.  Most of the time her dinner was served in the back seat at a rest area.  She didn’t care.  The car was home base and it was on the move.

I’m thankful I had warm weather for our trip.  The same areas we passed through now have ice and snow.  It was a journey I’ll never forget.  I’d like to thank my friends for digitally cheering me on and others for calling to ensure I was safe.  We did fine and now I know – Dixie is a traveller and I was a long-haul trucker in a another life.  Would I do it again?  No, driving long distance through three time zones is not romantic.

dixieWCOnce I got to my friend’s house in Richmond, she told me her dog had fleas.  I figured that out about three hours after my arrival when Dixie was rubbing her muzzle on the bed.  That evening I couldn’t sleep because Dixie was groaning and shaking her bed with the scratching.  I could feel the critters on me and running in my hair.  The next day, bombing and dipping occurred but there were still die hards around.  By Monday I was at the vet and discovered Dixie is allergic to fleas and the vet stated that the house had a severe infestation that was probably present since the summer.  A professional extermination was necessary.  Between that and an un-housebroken Yorkie,  I went home, gave my roommate notice and moved out two days later.

After 17 loads of de-flea laundry, dry cleaning, pills, baths, and sprays, I am now home.  Dixie and I are pest-free and happy.  NOW I’m open for business.

Driving Miss Dixie 2

Posted on November 26, 2013 by Marna


I love the smell of corrugate in the morning. I’m a bit of a professional mover. I save good boxes for future use. My move out of California has been flawless except for the stress Dixie has when she sees boxes and hears the squeal of the 3M packing tape.

Driving across country with a 70-pound dog while missing a nor’easter is my kind of fun.  I haven’t driven in “weather” since my last winter in Brooklyn in 2001.  I have packed the car accordingly:  small shovel, ice scraper, volcanic ash to put under tires, protein bars, dried fruit, and a case of CA wine. Dixie’s backseat charcuterie is more like a mobile lounge. She’s got her treats, kibble, bones and a plush faux shearling seat cover to stay warm.  And if things get tough, she’s got Benedryl and doggie painkillers in place of wine.

The stress for both of us will end as soon Santa Barbara is in the rear view. Tomorrow we hit the road for the next great adventure.  Goodbye California.

  • About Marna

    Marna’s writing career started as a Pentagon intern. Early exposure to $500 toilet seat press releases made her appreciate creative nonfiction. Now she has more than 25 years of senior-level marketing and communications success working with Fortune 100 companies, government, nonprofits, small businesses, startups, and agencies.

    Stats: 373 Posts, 128 Comments

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