Damn, what a day. The border hounds came today for an unannounced spot check of the Cabezas. Thank god they weren’t from child welfare—that inspection we might have flunked. Chevre, was puking all morning (thus showing her affinity to the cats, who do the same with no compunction. In fact, Em-dash hovered in interested sympathy whenever Chevre started to heave.) Dolores, convinced that this was due to the bizarre food I had fed them for breakfast (biscuits and gravy) was torn between her politeness as a guest and her wrath as a mother. Flaco was yelling at Juan Pablo, who had let the rabbits out. Cliff, overwhelmed, had retreated to the bedroom, and I to do arm work on the porch. So the inspectors walked up the path to see me taking my frustration out on the target hung by the front door. Not, perhaps, the best impression. I was most impressed, and perturbed, by the fact that they carried side arms. They expected, what, deadly force resistance to checking of papers, etc? Still, I put my foil down in a hurry.
And it turned out to be not just another verification of paperwork, but a whole new round of blood tests as well. Evidently the original clean, negative samples for the Cabezas were misplaced, and they needed new samples on file. Chevre and Juan Carlos were compliant, having had to deal with this their whole short lives. Evita pitched an absolute fit, howling and crying, rolling about on the floor. I thought Barsook was going to go after the agents on her behalf—not a good thing, given their armament. In the end, Evita consented to having her blood drawn while hugging the chow, and burying her head in his considerable fur. Barsook, in turn, fixed the female agent taking the blood sample with an inimitable chow stare, making it quite clear that Evita was Under His Protection. By the time the Feds left, I had a migraine and retreated to the laundry room for a little peace. Barsook escorted them out and peed on the gate.
The laundry room is about the only peaceful place left in the house. I am appalled, in retrospect, to realize how much space Cliff and I had to ourselves her. We have fit a whole extra family in, three children and all, and the house is merely full, not crowded. Cliff and I still have the master bedroom and bath to ourselves. Flaco and Dolores have the guest room, and share the bath with the littlest ones, who sleep together in what was Cliff’s study. Evita has my meditation room on the third floor. Cliff firmly insisted the big space up there remain the exercise room, but it is rapidly filling with children’s toys, mixing plush animals and toy soldiers with the free weights and yoga props. As long as Cliff has a clear path to his rowing machine, he is happy, but the clutter is driving me nuts.
So, the plane flight tomorrow will seem peaceful by comparison, I hope. Much as I hate, hate, hate airport security and health screening these days, at least I can retreat to a corner with my laptop and iPod and get a little writing done. It is a night flight to Pisa, so I plan to sleep on the plane. Speaking of sleep, I had better get some now. A good practice tonight, but tiring. As I get older, my opponents seem to get younger and younger. Makes it all the more fun to beat them! And so, Ibuprofen and good night.
Oh, and my word for the day, courtesy of Evita, is "pendajo." I think I am glad that the agents did not speak Spanish...