Cody the Cuddlebunny

I’m such an extrovert/introvert split personality. Sometimes I get into homebody mode, where I can stay on the Houseboat for days on end without leaving the premises. I can’t quite explain it, but I do this odd dance, bouncing from one extreme to the other: on one hand, there’s the comfort and complacency of being home. Like yeah, I’m just doing my thang: internet research, listening to my real estate podcasts, cooking my meals, blogging, Pinteresting, OnStarring, and chilling with the dogs. It’s kinda nice and peaceful and quiet. When I get out of unabomber mode though, I like to catch up with everybody– host parties and email/call/visit with all my friends.

Last week was one of my more extroverted weeks. I met up with two of my former university interns (separately). Sometimes, if you can believe it, I actually like young people. Haha. No, it’s kinda cool getting the scoop on their summer internships and learning what they’re hoping and planning for the future. It was always really important to me to be a good boss. After all that shit I’d read about leadership and influence, plus having my own fair share of jobs with shitty bosses, I really wanted their internship with me to be organized, interesting, and positive. It’s been about six months since I left, so I was pleasantly surprised when they reached out and wanted to meet up. One intern is working a 9-5 summer job for the first time ever. She’s struggling (like so many) with the rigidity of that arrangement. That said, she’s gaining more clarity on what she wants to do in the future– hello, social media!! The other intern just graduated with a masters in computer science, so he’s been on an aggressive job hunt. We talked about networking events and job strategies… I’m planning to reach out to some of my tech contacts to see if they have any advice for a new grad seeking opps in UX/UI. Overall, I had a good visit with both students.

In other happenings, my retired buddy T recently invited J and me to scope out his new digs in Sunnyvale. He’s going through a divorce so for the first time since forever, he is living solo (well, with his dog) and LOVING it. T is one of the chillest dudes I know. We worked together at the gov agency, and he was such a great yin to my yang: no matter what I was fretting about, he was consistently positive, level-headed, and just plain relaxed. In his retirement, he’s continued to stay super active: playing racquetball, biking, kayaking, going on poker cruises. He’s a real role model for J and me, who have always struggled with balance. Anyway, his apartment community is a great spot in Sunnyvale that’s totally his style– a little old school in that the structures are probably from the 70s/80s, but his one BR apartment was recently renovated and the property is tucked away under a big canopy of old redwoods. It’s a beautiful, quiet setting that’s also walking distance to the Caltrain (he hates to drive). It makes me so happy when my friends are living comfortably and doing well.

Back on the Houseboat, things were getting a little crowded with Bubs being home again and with Sparky the Bubble Boy schnoodle joining the crew of Martin and Cody. Sparky is 14 y/o and well, he’s a good dog but clearly he’s quite coddled. I’m so fascinated by the broad spectrum of pet parents: they really run the gamut just like with human parents! When Cody arrived, his parents gave me like three lines of instructions. By contrast, when Sparky arrived, he came with pages and pages of detailed info, ranging from directions on hand feeding him to limiting his sun exposure to frequently refreshing his water bowl. In the owner’s defense, Sparky is older and more fragile, but still… When I supervised him in the backyard, it was a bit like witnessing a kid going to college for the first time: he really enjoyed the new surroundings, but he didn’t seem to know to stay out of the flower beds and to not dig and make a total mess. Which might explain why his parents was so adamant about him being restricted and limited so much outdoors… Kind of a vicious cycle, right?

It makes me a little sad, bc my brother comes to mind. He was so over-coddled and over-protected that as an adult, he never really developed responsibilities and common sense for basic survival (like doing laundry, washing the dishes, taking out the trash). It’s too bad, bc you can see that Sparky has personality and some zest, but it’s all rather muted bc he isn’t allowed to be free.

On the other hand, Cody is a total rambunctious bundle of energy and joy. Admittedly, there are differences in age and breed but with Cody, he also engages regularly with other dogs. He’s been in people’s yards. Like, he has the experience to know adult dog etiquette, you know? Man, in ten short days, I got so damn attached to Cody. Yup, I fell for him even harder than I did for Ramona. When his family came, I held it together just long enough for them to load up and get into the car. Then, it was meltdown central. Full on tears and wailing. I know, I am ridiculous. Thankfully, 1) I made Bubbey do a photo shoot to add to my Cody album and 2) I’d already experienced the heartbreak from Ramona, so the sadness didn’t linger forever like it did before. I do miss his spunk and playfulness though. A few days after he went home, I followed up (of course) with a text to see how he was settling back in. I was super stoked bc the owner says she’ll call on me again the next time they travel. Yay!

Btw, did you know all the area animal shelters are doing their #cleartheshelters campaign this weekend where adoption fees are waived? Sometimes I daydream about getting a second pooch, but you know Bubs: he doesn’t want to be tied down. For now I suppose Rover is satisfying all my needs. And Marty is loving it also: his appetite has come back full force. J is placing bets that Martin will make it to 17!! We’ll see.

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