Friday, February 4, 2011

Under the Radar

This is sort of a tail-spin off of  one of the  previous Nicest People Posts, because it has to do with someone I've already mentioned.  Someone we met out walking.  But because I can't mention names here (you'll soon understand why), I will call these dear friends Mr. and Mrs. Whitehouse...  because their house is white.  Clever.

When we met  Mr. and Mrs. Whitehouse on one of our walks, it was love at first site --- for each of us. Chester paved the way, that's for sure, and our friendship is forever.  Mrs. Whitehouse, with beautiful hair the color of her house, and sparkly (& mischievous I might add) bright blue eyes, keeps a cupboard full of pupperonies just for Chester. We visit at least weekly, where Chester scores far too many pupperonies, for minimal tricks, and then gets a chaser of whipped cream straight from the squirt can into his mouth.  He then laps up water from an antique bowl, always in the same corner in the kitchen, with FILTERED water.  She spoils him. Kind of a grandma thing.  He loves it.  Chester adores Mr. and Mrs. Whitehouse.

You are perhaps wondering why Under the Radar is the title, or maybe not?
Here's the story. Mrs. Whitehouse, Chester's beloved "grandma",  had hip replacement surgery, and was not recovering as quickly as hoped.  Mr. Whitehouse, tall and gentle, with those same sparkly eyes & a memory as sharp as a tack,  adores his sweet wife , (and Chester too I might add), and he shared with us that his beloved-sweetheart was not doing well and would need a few more days in the hospital.

Well,  immediately, upon hearing this news,  Chester donned his super-dog-yellow-vest, Keith and I just wore regular clothes, and we were off to the hospital to visit our neighbor.  On the way, I sort of remembered that maybe,  perhaps, this was THE hospital that did not allow therapy dogs in patient's rooms. (I know, how could it be??) Sometimes it's best not to ask what the rules are,  especially in emergency cases such as these...and just ask forgiveness later, if necessary.  I shared this bit of  info with Keith, while holding Chester's ears closed (didn't want him to have to deal with rejection issues at such a young age-- he might need a therapy dog or something, ha ha).  Anyways, back to the story.

Keith informed me that he knew the back way, the basement way, into this hospital,  bypassing the front desk gestapos.  I love that guy, he smiles at danger.  And so, parking down under, we made our way through the basement hospital doors, down the hallway, and up the elevator to the 7th floor, kind of under the radar.  Walking past the nurses station like we belonged, we strolled into Mrs. Whitehouse's room.  She sat alone, staring out the window, with just about the saddest expression I have ever seen. She heard us before she saw us, and turned.  After spotting her four legged-friend (and I like to think, us too) she broke  into smiles and grins and welcomed us into her arms.  Kisses and hugs all around.  Before we could stop her, she of course offered Chester  her untouched hospital tray of food, which he sniffed and refused (interesting).  She then  unscrewed the top of her water jug and gave the thirsty boy a drink, while she sipped from her straw out of  the  same container.

Mrs. Whitehouse was thrilled to have us and we watched as her countenance changed from hopeless to hopeful.  While patting Chester who was glued to her side, our friend chattered on, in whispered tones, pointing to the two-way mirror the nurses were using to spy on her. Really, I thought? ...trying to examine the mirror out of the corner of my eye.   And then in hushed tones, she explained that the night nurses were going to take her to the basement and torture her after the sun went down. Hmmm, I was just in the basement....I didn't notice any torture chambers? Keith was shaking his head and rolling his eyes at me. After 35 years of wedded bliss,  he seems to know what I am thinking & reads me like a book.  He mouthed the word ANESTHESIA  and PAIN MEDS to me.  Oh, so not really a two way mirror and no underground torture rooms? His head was still shaking , obviously not surprised that I was considering this cconspiracy theory story. Personally, I thought Mrs. Whitehouse was quite convincing on drugs.

When we knew it was time to go, Chester gave a final round of kisses and tail wags, we did the same.  Hating to leave our friend, but thankful to see her smiling again, the three of us walked shoulder to shoulder, and tall, out the door and past the nurses station, greeting all.  We then rode down the MAIN elevator, smiling to Dr.'s and nurses and visitors.  We exited on the main floor, past the Front Desk, then out through the revolving automatic doors. I did notice Chester held his tail especially high, and pranced a little prancier, as we strolled past the questioning looks of the front desk ladies.   Mission Accomplished.  

Epilogue ~  Mrs. Whitehouse was home within 24 hours.  And now, months later, is back to ballroom dancing with her handsome husband.   I think perhaps Chester's visit was the turning point.  The names in this story have been changed, well to protect the just never know about those mysterious night nurses.
Still don't know if this hospital allows Therapy Dogs in ~~  actually, I kind of like not knowing :-)

1 comment:

  1. This is a wonderful story. I'm so GLAD you are using your gift and writing your stories.