Loneliness is one of the collateral damage effects of COVID 19. There are increasing reports of people whose social lives have been turned upside down by mandates to stay home, away from crowds and the possibility of COVID 19 infection. If you’re a party animal, this is life as you’ve never known it. Days and nights away from clubbing, sports, concerts and the hot, new movies at your local multiple plex theater. Crisis hotlines are top-heavy with folks not used to spending time away from the madding crowds.
We’re lucky. Senior citizens, deep in our retirement years and not especially sociable folks. Living in a small town with few places to make merry has eased us into the quiet life. We have a bonus with our furry kids demanding nonstop attention while giving us often unwanted other entertainment.
Entertainment as a Barkathon lasting from dusk till dawn. Barkathons that keep Mom and Dad awake. Well, more Mom. Our dogs are oblivious to the COVID 19 nightmares and how it’s changed the lives of those who supply biscuits, dinner, more biscuits. The Barkathons override the frantic breaking news reports and COVID 19 updates that now have an all too familiar sound.
Our nightly high point is when Donzo appears for his pandemic updates and is almost immediately drowned out by the frequent disdain of Duke and Bonnie who seem to be having barking fits as they listen to the incoherent blatherings of the White House jester.
In the midst of yelling at the dogs to shush, we realize they’ve distracted us from major portions of the POTUS drivel. A good thing. And Bonnie’s very deaf so yelling at her is pointless The furries somehow sense that the orange-haired gent on the screen is like the clown toys they love to chew up and toss around. An epiphany! Duke and Bonnie are trying to spare us the anger and frustration we feel every time the weird man speaks to us in tongues.
It’s harder to appreciate the Barkathons during the wee small hours when we’re trying to escape into dreamland where all is right in our world and dragons have been sequestered. I don’t think our dogs realize we are trying to what they do for most of the day.
We are tinkering with the idea of barking at the furries and disturbing their rest. We’ve tried without success. They think it’s a game played by Ma and Pa. If they do understand our frustration, they show little compassion. Barking is their thing. Their Right. I believe they think barking is necessary for Dad who’s been hard of hearing for most of his life. They dismiss the success of my cochlear implant and bark LOUDER to see if they can triumph over my CI. It’s a conspiracy where the dogs prevail and we, HU-mans, will always lose. Bark! Bark! Bark!
All the attention given to the dogs erases any possibility of loneliness during the pandemic. They keep us alert, insisting we march to their sound of a different drummer.
I suspect the dogs expect an award. Maybe the Presidential Medal of Honor for keeping their owners alert. Bonnie, especially, believes her shrill, nonstop barking is akin to stories she’s heard from the Dog Father. She is merely retelling an ancient doggish myth. The 24/7 barking tops any stories about celebrities the old man tells over and over again.
Loneliness? Not here! The furries kids have our 6, Bark! Bark! Bark!
Game. Set, Match.
More biscuits, please!!