Melbourne has had an EXTREMELY wet week since Monday night. Of course, when the rain came down, were we safely inside, snug and warm? No. It just so happened that J and I were exactly at the half way point of our loop around our back park. With all four dogs.
When we got to the end of the first block, I asked J if we should turn back - it was getting dark and the clouds looked nasty! We decided to keep going and a little bit later, I realised something that really shouldn't have surprised me. I have been walking the dogs all summer, while J is at work. He has only been able to come out with me a few times as its usually far too hot when he gets home. So he doesn't really know his way around the park, even though its just at the back of our house. He thought we were much further round the loop than we actually were. (He also tried to take us over the bridge that crosses the freeway and takes us miles from home, but that's another story). Either way, we travelled up another block, turned deeper into the park, crossed the creek and then it hit.
One of the weirdest moments of my life - jogging, yes JOGGING, through the dark, pelting rain, my headlamp only illuminating the silvery raindrops right in front of my nose, following a rapidly disappearing man who is running along with three dogs belted to his waist. A man who DOESN'T KNOW his way around the park. Thank heavens I had Czar on a leash to keep me company. Oh, yeah, and my right shoe coming off with every step.
Once we got home, there was a mad rush to grab towels and dry the dogs before they shook all over the house, like that Dulux ad. Since my right shoe was already half off, I kicked both runners off and headed inside, while J held the four panting dogs under the eaves that were cascading water everywhere. (Mental note, must clean gutters before winter.) I was so wet that I got to the kitchen lino and discovered I had a stream of rain water leaking from the cuff of my 3/4 length pants. Of course, despite my best efforts, I did leave beautiful footprints on the rug. Mad scrubbing of dogs with towels then took place. Fortunately, they were pretty tired after that run. Then we were able to sit back and watch the lightning.
Next morning, it was still pouring. I spent a frantic 15 minutes gathering items from the garage, before venturing out to attempt to put a tarp over part of the pen roof. After climbing around in the rain, getting increasingly late for work, I scurried upstairs, so be interrupted by a call on our rarely used landline. It was J, already at work... in a nice, dry office... wondering what I'd been doing - he'd been watching on the security camera. As I was increasingly feeling like a participant in a wet t shirt competition, and the dogs who'd been so carefully dried were about the get soaked again, I felt the interruption was a little poorly timed, although I appreciated his concern. So, feeling like the most horrible monster, I put all four dogs in the pen. In the POURING rain.
Tuesday night, after we dried the dogs off, we put the roof on the pen. J did an amazing job, cutting metal struts to fit the braces that were cut when we moved, fitting everything together and putting a 3m x 3m piece of roofing on top of the 2m tall walls. So now, the pen has a proper, fully water proof roof on it, rather than the shade cloth that dripped and leaked everywhere. At least, on half the pen - the other half still has shade cloth on it. And of course, the dogs will probably still lie anywhere in the pen, except under the roof, but now they have the choice.
On Wednesday, the rain kept falling. And falling. And falling. When J got home after work, it wasn't so much the roof of the pen that was the problem. It was the floor.
Next trip to the pet store, I have to look for floaties for the dogs...