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At 5:15 this Sunday morning one dog is barfing in the lanai.  The dogs chomp bits of the grass down here every so often when I’m not looking, but they can’t digest this stuff.

First breakfast is a big mug of screaming hot coffee and a piece of fruit.  By 5:45 I’m settled on the sofa with a book.

A half hour later the other dog runs full tilt into the closed lanai doors. A loud head banger, poor thing. It’s still dark outside for gawd’s sake and no self-respecting gecko should be running the lanai roof at this hour. I’m in Florida for gawd’s sake. It’s 46 degrees and pouring rain. I closed the lanai doors because the furnace kicked in when the temperature inside dropped below 64! Usually, the doors are wide open so the balmy, sub-tropic breezes (and the dogs) can move freely through the house.

Photo by Ruth Zarisky-Jackson

Photo by Ruth Zaryski-Jackson

At 6:45 sunrise is still obscured by dark clouds and the steady downpour.  The dogs are hungry. After they’re fed, I take them on their morning constitutional bundled in my Canada clothing, a long fleece hoody, lined leggings and raincoat, carrying a flashlight for the ‘clean up’. It’s a quick trip.

At 7:30 I imagine a lovely second breakfast: yogurt with peach slices and homemade granola.  The granola was a bit chewy yesterday from the 98% humidity so I dump the jar of it onto a cookie sheet and pre-heat the oven. Oh wait. There’s a bit more in the cupboard. I may as well toast it all crispy, grab the bag and dump it on the sheet, too.  It takes a while and some not-so-fine motor skills this early on a Sunday to salvage what I can of the coffee from the granola.

Two 50-pound dogs sprawled end-to-end on the couch while I was making a mess in the kitchen. I settle in the comfy armchair with my hard-earned bowl of yogurt. Back to the book.

9:00 … Still hungry!  Third breakfast is raisin toast, two slices smothered in butter. The aroma got the dogs’ attention. Hopeful, they hover at the kitchen door.  No sooner do I dash and reclaim one corner of the couch with plate and book, than sicky dog starts whining again.  I rush her out to the lanai. I lean down and direct her cautious sister in/out the lanai door a couple of times so she knows it’s open again. She likes this game. Butts my head with hers. After my eyes stop watering, I clean my glasses, then the lanai. When I return to the couch, breakfast is all spongy toast and tepid coffee. Back to the book.

10:30 … And, I’m still hungry. Another raisin toast and a third hot, hot coffee. Fourth breakfast is a deliciously hot, calm and silent affair. The dogs snooze on the rug where all good dogs should lie. The lanai doors are closed, again, with toss cushions propped against the glass.

The rain has stopped. Low, dark clouds linger. It’s barely 50 degrees outside.

Where’s the Tums?