The Learning Experiences

Flash back – November 11, 2011.  Mayflower comes to live with me and Mama.

“Ding”.  “What was that?” asked Mayflower.  It’s the bell on the microwave.  It tells Mama when whatever she is cooking is done.  “Oh” replied Mayflower.  May is new to living in a house and hasn’t learned what all the sounds are.  “Ring, ring, ring,”…  Before she could ask I told her that was the telephone.  Someone is trying to call Mama.  If she doesn’t recognize the name on caller ID, she just lets it go to the the answering machine and checks the message later. After May was relinquished to GALT, she did not live in a foster home very long before coming to live with us.  Her history is very sketchy, so we’re not quite sure what kind of background she had.  Therefore she has a lot to learn about the “family/house sounds”   This is different from me as I had  lived with my foster family for  several months while  I healed from my surgery.  I went to GALT   from a racetrack after my injury.  I’ve been living with family/house sounds for six years.

I’ve learned that the washer and dryer make noises.  The dishwasher does too, but since Mama runs it at night, we don’t hear it as much.  The food disposal makes a noise that makes me growl and bark.  But the best noise is the garage door opener when the garage door goes up.  That means Mama is home.first

“Buzz”.  Door bell, I told May.  “But if it is a door bell, shouldn’t it ding- a- ling?” May asked.  Good question, one which I didn’t have an answer for.  All I know is there is a button on the outside of the front door that people push and it lets out a buzzing sound rather than a bell sound.  This lets Mama know someone is at the door.

“Do we need to bark?” asked Mayflower.  No we just stand and prance by it.  She’ll be here in a minute to find out who is on the other side of the door.  I, too, am curious as to why the door bell was buzzing.  We don’t get much company and Mama had not opened the front door leaving the storm door shut as she usually does when she is expecting someone.

Mama opened the door and “Surprise.  It’s Kelly (Mama’s daughter) and the twins (Mama’s granddaughters – Megan and Katelyn).  They’ve come to meet Mayflower.”  Said Mama.

The storm door opened and everyone swooped in with a “Hi Gigi!  Hi Mayflower!”   Mayflower wasn’t quite sure what to do with all of these people.  I, however, pranced and danced to see them.  They usually take me on nice long walks.  Katelyn, who Mama calls Katie, helped to teach me how to “sit”.  (Megan and I had a minor disagreement a couple of years ago.  She sat on my bed and I growled and snapped at her.  She had invaded my territory.  Then at one Thanksgiving, while Mama was cooking and I was lying where I was supposed to be – behind the table – Megan started twirling in circles in the middle of the floor where she wasn’t supposed to be.  I barked and growled at her as she was not minding Mama.  She does like to take me on walks now that she has gotten to know me, but she is still just a little shy when it comes to new dogs – especially big ones like greyhounds.)

            Everyone was excited to meet Mayflower.  And, I have to admit, she was more sociable than I had been when I first came to live here.  I’m fine now, but I was good at giving the “greyhound ignore” (turning my head to the side and not looking at whomever was talking to me.)

Katie and Kelly pet May while Megan just sits and sort of watches.  I think she wants to make sure May doesn’t treat her like I did.  (I also did it to Katie when she was trying to get me to play with my toys a few years ago.  Rescued greyhounds don’t really know how to play as they have never seen toys.  I became my normal unsociable self and growled and snapped at her.  However, Katie wants to be a vet, so she just ignored what I did and we made up.)

Soon we are all laughing and playing.  Megan joined in and Mayflower relaxed with the new people.IMG_0788a

After awhile, they left and Mama made her some dinner.  Time to watch TV and just chill out.  I like these times.  May and I just lay on the blankets in the living room and doze.  A dog’s life is very stressful, especially in this house.  Napping is the main activity with a walk added in usually once a day.Copy (1) of IMG_1091




Author: Suzanne Wagstaff-Gibson

Suzanne Wagstaff-Gibson is the owner of Gigi, Mayflower, Bear, Moonbeam and Jiffy. Her writings are based on the lives of her dogs. All of the photographs in the books are taken by her. She lives with her husband, Erwin Harve Gibson, Sr. in McKinney, Texas.

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