friends and family reunion road trip: day eleven: mostly waiting to see a vet, with some family time

Yesterday Cookie woke up with what appeared to be an eye infection. I was concerned that it might be conjunctivitis, which is highly contagious. We had a full day of daycare booked in Ashland, with someone I found on Rover, but obviously we couldn't do that without knowing what was going on. I called five or six different veterinary clinics in the area. With many doctors on vacation, everyone was booked solid. I took the advice of several of those calls, and we went to the Southern Oregon Veterinary Specialty Center -- the 24/7 animal hospital, not far from where we're staying. 

It looked like a great place -- very modern and efficient -- but they were very busy, likely with much more serious emergencies than ours. So we waited. And waited. And waited. For six hours.

It was boring and the dogs were not very happy. The treatment itself took about two minutes. But Cookie does not have conjunctivitis, or anything contagious. Kai is not at risk, and we can use any daycare services we have booked. Yay! It was also not a scratched cornea or anything requiring serious care. Also yay. 

The eye issue may have been caused by some debris getting in her eye, then Cookie pawing at her face, or something similar. We have some antibiotic/anti-inflammatory ointment, and the poor girl has a cone on her head for a couple of days, and we'll follow up with our vet at home.

By the time we finished up at the animal hospital we were so hungry. I used our last dregs of phone battery to find the In-N-Out (less than 10 minutes away), and we devoured that. I've eaten more burgers on this trip than I have in the past three years -- probably since our last mega road trip, when we moved to BC. 

From there we drove to the dogsitter's house in Ashland, hoping to salvage the last few hours of the full day we had booked and paid for. She had a large, shady, fenced-in yard, where three dogs (one her own and two other guests) were playing. Cookie and Kai were very happy to be off the leash. The cone doesn't slow Cookie down. Typical alpha dog, she takes it in stride. 

After we saw the dogs settle in, and chatted with the dogsitter a bit, we met M&M (brother and SIL), who had already collected my mother, plus nephew D and the lovely grand-niece. The place we were going to eat was closed, but even with many restaurants closed on Mondays, Ashland is still spoiled for choice. It's a touristy town built around the Oregon Shakespeare Festival: restaurants and cute shops galore. It was over 100 degrees and Allan and I were amazed that people were eating outside, or in places with only ceiling fans. No and no. 

We ended up at Louie's, which has several great, eclectic menus, including separate gluten-free and vegan menus, a kid's menu, and a fur-kid menu! The food was very tasty and the service was great. Definitely worth a positive Tripadvisor review. It was lovely to sit in the cool, have a glass of wine, and be among family, especially knowing the dogs were not waiting in the car.

After dinner, we picked up the dogs. They were (of course) thrilled to see us but relaxed and not at all stressed. Three hours of play did them did them a world of good. We went over to M&M's house (everyone minus my mother), and hung out on the deck with wine and ice cream. 

The temperature had cooled off, as it does here at night, and there was a breeze. There was also smoke in the distance, and the faint scent of smoke in the air. M&M have had their share of scary wildfire issues, with highways closed, long power outages, and evacuations in the area, although (obviously) they haven't had fire tragedy. We tethered the dogs to the deck posts, and after their somewhat stressful day, they were happy to lie down and nap.

After a little while, nephew and grand-niece said goodnight, and we continued hanging out with M&M. It was a lovely relaxing evening, drinking wine and gabbing about anything and everything. I'm so grateful to have such wonderful, close, loving relationships with family. As in all families, not all the relationships are happy and fun, and I cherish the ones that are. It's also so great to have close friendships with all the generations.

I have a fun note to share about an old children's book, but I don't have that together yet. To be continued.

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