Coffee heat rising

Dog Back; Human Unraveled

Whew! WHAT a Day from Hell!

If you’re ever (un)fortunate enough to land in (un)lovely Phoenix, remember this survival tip: never, EVER drive around this exquisite city in the rush hour. And bear in mind that evening rush hour extends from about 3 p.m. to something after 6 p.m. Morning? Make it 7 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. At least.

Y’know, I hated living in Southern California: crowded, crass, ego-driven, ticky-tacky junky dumps every which way you turned. Shopping was annoying, time-wasting, and often fruitless. People were so focused on themselves they didn’t even notice the other humans around them. Driving was a horrid, hectic, miserable hassle. Neighborhoods were bland, faceless grody collections of ticky-tacky apartments and cheaply built houses.

Chez Pitz.

Welp. Gotta say: I feel approximately the same about this place. The only difference between Phoenix and unlovely Long Beach is that Phoenix gets one helluva lot hotter in the summertime. In all other respects, the two garden spots echo each other when it comes to the…uhm…graces of living. Dump A and Dump B: one smeared up and down the Pacific Coast, the other oozing across the Sonoran Desert.

Started out the day perusing real estate online, briefly. Just in the past few months, housing prices have exploded.

We have, for example, this garden spot. The place is smaller than my house. Jammed closer to the neighbors. And when you come down to it, situated in a neighborhood that’s about the same as mine in terms of quality, economics, social class, and crime rates. The thing is on the market for a good $200,000 more than my place is worth (Zillow claims my house is worth $540,500…and here I thought I paid way too much at 235 grand…). That would be because it’s located in darkest Arcadia, rather than on the top end of North Central. It’s been on the market for two hundred and sixteen days and still hasn’t sold.

That, I would offer, suggests the asking price is WAY too high.

First thing this morning it was off to the vet’s, there to get her smelly teeth worked on. The vet is way to Hell & Gone over in the Arcadia Lite district, a good 30-minute drive under the best of conditions. Make it 40 to 50 minutes in the accursed rush hour.

Leave the poor terrorized little dog there. Traipse back home, still navigating the horrific morning rush-hour traffic, and mope around all day in the absence of my furry friend. Worry, worry, and worry some more about a) the state of the pooch’s health and b) the staggering amount I figure Dr. Bracken is going to charge for yanking rotten teeth and scraping the rest of them clean, presumably under full anaesthetic.

Back at the Funny Farm, wrestle with the finances, wrestle with the busted garage door, wrestle with the pool, fart around fart around fart around fart around. Study real estate ads, thinking…really…I do need to get away from the accursed Tony situation. Calculate how I could buy a new house without cluing the bastard to where I’ve moved. Not difficult, really. 😉

Waste an inordinate amount of time on these and similar ventures.

Along about mid-day, call — yes, I can come get the dog.

Back into the traffic, this time plugging into the early afternoon rush hour (wherever you need to turn left, you can’t!). Drive and drive and drive and drive and…and…huh?

OVERSHOOT the street where the vet’s office resides.


Now I’m LOST in darkest Arcadia.

Drive around drive around drive around drive around…can NOT FIND HIS STREET!

Pull into a parking lot, walk into a business, and ask them if they know where Meadowbrook (his street) is. They do not. They pull out a cell phone, look it up, and decide I prob’ly passed it some blocks to the north. This: puzzling, since their phone seems to be showing the map in an east-west layout.

Drive around drive around drive around drive around…STILL cannot find his street!

This is weird, because I’ve been going to this vet for a good 20 years (with a hiatus or three) and yes, I DO know where Meadowbrook Drive is.

Go into another shop. This place is close enough that the clerk can say…oh, yeah: it’s three streets up that way.

Drive around drive around…FINALLY find the vet’s place.

All this driving around is happening as the afternoon oozes on and the traffic thickens. And thickens. And thickens.

Retrieve the little dog. Staff tells me not to feed her and not to let her drink too much water.

Right. Don’t know much about corgis, do ya?

Amazingly, though…unlike the avaricious vet here in our part of town, the one who proposed to extract several of Ruby’s teeth, to the tune of something over a thousand bucks, Dr. Bracken has not yanked out even ONE of Ruby’s fangs…all of which are now shiny and white.

Drive and drive and drive and drive and drive, the better part of 45 minutes: through heavier and heavier traffic, dodging up side routes I happen to know about, admiring the very expensive and fancy real estate in Paradise Valley (is there any way I could afford one of these palaces?), scrabbling past a couple of chronically congested intersections…at last, make it into the ‘Hood.

Get the dog out of the car. She is PARCHED. Let her drink some water but try to keep her from drowning in it. Not an easy task.

Refrain from feeding the dog. Piss off the dog.

Reheat some left-over grocery-store pasta…bolt that down. Yech. Why DO Americans eat this stuff?

Reflect on how horrible Southern California was as a place to live in the late 1950s, early 1960s. Reflect on how much lovely Phoenix has come to resemble that scene. Want to go someplace else.

Anywhere else.

2 thoughts on “Dog Back; Human Unraveled”

  1. After all that, I’m glad that Ruby is back home and doing well. Congrats on her not needing any teeth removed.

    • She seems to be fine! And THAT is why the honorable Dr. Bracken is (imho) the best vet in the city, and well worth the torturous drive across the city to his office.

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