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Chet Baker's Home!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Baker comes steaming down the hallway at Ohio Valley Veterinary Hospital, toenails scrabbling on the slick floor. He's pulling Lynette as fast as he can pull her. I thought he was excited to see ME. But there was a schnauzer in the waiting room and he bypassed me completely to go meet it. That's my boy.

Deleriously happy here on Indigo Hill to tell you that I was able to go get Chet Baker this afternoon at Dr. Lutz's office. We didn't hear a word on him until almost 2 this afternoon, despite repeated (and undoubtedly annoying) phone calls from his worried parents, spearheaded by BOTB, no less; Dr. Lutz had two emergencies come in today, and for a veterinarian that usually means surgery. When she was finally able to call Dr. Lutz told me that Chet had eaten last night, and voided today, and the sample was free of blood or other weird stuff. Today, she said, he's not 100%, but everyone here agrees that he's almost all Chet. She thinks there was a digestive component to his illness.

Dr. Lutz thinks Baker had something--nobody knows what--but she said there really wasn't much change in his condition Thursday, and the improvement came today. It may have had something to do with getting his digestive tract going; it may be a virus that's run its course, or a bacterial infection. Whatever it is, it's going away.

He was all afire on the way home, peering out the windows, delighted to see anything but the inside of a stainless steel cage.
I know just how he feels. He threw me a glance as we came down Muskingum Drive, as if to say, "We ARE going home, right? You're taking me home?" Yes, Baker. You're going HOME. Poor little guy.

Phoebe and Liam were beside themselves. Phoebe carried him around and Liam smothered him with kisses.I had to buy school shoes, socks, and a fabulous Martha Stewart ("Santa Barbara") patio set that I'd been watching all season until it went on deep discount. So I stopped at K-mart before picking Chet up, and bought him a football to punish. He did his ritual dig through the plastic bags until he found the treasure. He always knows which toy is for him. The kids were all smiles, watching him chew and play, something he hadn't done since last Saturday.

This football is not long for this world. I thought it would provide a challenge for him since there's not much to hang onto. He romped and played awhile, ate some Intestinal Diet (we're being cautious) and a little vanilla yogurt, then collapsed on the cool studio floor for a good nap. He's already overdone it for today. But man, it was good to see him play. That boy will sleep tonight, probably in a great big bed all to himself--he favors the upstairs master bedroom and the green body pillow. I'd say he's earned it. None of us can brave his emissions long enough to sleep a night with him. Those, we haven't missed.
I got about a hundred kisses on the way home. His breath is not fabulous, but it smells mighty good to me. Chet Baker's home.
Gentle readers, we thank you for all your prayers, good thoughts, vibes, dog ju-ju, incantations, ritual dances, and love. I'm sorry to have tortured you with the tale of Chet's illness, but that's blogging. It's real life, and that's what makes it interesting. Rest assured that Chet is getting a whole lotta lovin' this evening, and giving as good as he gets. XO JZ


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