Jack’s Walk

Jack, October 3, 2019 ©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack, October 3, 2019 ©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s been rainy and damp for a few days and this morning the temp was only 10°. It’s certainly not my favourite weather, but as my dad used to say, “it’s better than no weather at all.” Jack says he doesn’t mind the change. He has more energy when it’s cool and it gives him a reason to grow hair. Jack likes to grow hair, lots and lots of hair, and by the end of winter he has a thick, lush insulating coat which he then sheds all over everything come spring – except Jack never does a full shed. Normally we go to the east coast for the summer and Jack needs an undercoat to swim in the cold waters of the Atlantic. This year, though, we fooled him and stayed home in hot and humid Ontario where his remaining undercoat was unnecessary. I kept waiting for him to shed through June and July and even August, but Jack held on to that undercoat through all the hot days of summer. By the end of August I’d given up and figured he’d just start the slow build up to maximum coverage for winter. I was wrong. At the beginning of September Jack went into full shed mode and the hair came out in heaps and clumps and, Oh Boy, did it come out fast. It’s only the second time in Jack’s life that he’s been without his undercoat and neck ruff and the first time was way back when he was a puppy. He isn’t quite finished shedding yet either. You can see the blondish bits around his neck starting to clump and by tomorrow they’ll be ready to pluck. Soon he should start putting on new hair and I’d like to track how long it takes for him to grow his thick, full coat back so I’m going to photograph him about once a month to see how long it takes before he’s as hairy as a wookiee again. Here he is today looking svelte(ish) at the beginning of Autumn. We’ll see how it grows.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

I’m sorry that Jack and I didn’t get here yesterday. By the time I got home from Michigan I was so tired that I totally crashed. Jack didn’t mind the crash. He was so happy to see me that he’s glued himself to me and he won’t let me out of his sight. He’s been quietly following me around wherever I go and he just sits and watches me. It’s a bit unnerving, but I understand. Jack’s been feeling a bit left out since my mother took sick and I started spending most of my time at the nursing home. Then, just I started cutting back a bit from that, I took off completely for 2 days. Poor Bubba. He’s used to having me to himself most of the day.

The time away was just what I needed. I got to play with giant snakes and giant tortoises and I even held a tarantula. We accidentally discovered the largest Salvation Army store in North America and spent hours roaming through the place looking at all kinds of interesting stuff. My friend found a brand new Anne Klein black wool coat for $21.00. I found several funky pieces to add to my wardrobe and as we were checking out we were given an extra 30% discount because we were early birds. We hit a few other stores, found a few more deals, ate out, talked, laughed and finally made it home, tired but happy. Today it’s back to reality and even though I’ll be extra tired for a day or two my mind is clearer and I’m ready to return to caregiving.

The Art of Book Design: Thy Servant a Dog

Told by Boots, Edited by Rudyard Kipling. Thy Servant a Dog. London, McMillan and Company, 1930. photo via: Abe Books

Told by Boots, Edited by Rudyard Kipling. Thy Servant a Dog. London, McMillan and Company, 1930. (Dust Jacket photo via: Maxinjo@pinterest)


The book is available to read at The Internet Archive

The Art of Book Design: The Dog’s Grand Dinner Party

Jack found out that last week was Cat Week and he’s pissed. He reminded me that we don’t even have a cat anymore and tersely noted that I should have made it dog week. He also said that I got this gig because of him and that I should be more grateful.

Ahem… Sorry Bubba. Allow me to present to you DOG WEEK. Let’s start with a party to celebrate.

John Karst. The Dog’s Grand Dinner Party. New York, McLoughlin Bros., Inc., 1869.


via: Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature where you can read the whole delightful book.

The Art of Book Design: Me and my Pussies

Honor C. Appleton. Me and my Pussies. Illustrations by the author. Thomas Nelson and Sons Ltd., 1927.

And so ends Cat Week here at The Art of Book Design.

I couldn’t find a copy of this one for you to read, but the David and Joyce Milne Public Library will let you look at several of the illustrations. They’re completely charming.


Cover Photo via: Stella and Rose’s Books

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

September’s been quite mild this year and we’ve had lots of sunny days so I won’t complain about the bit of rain we’ve had today, especially since Bubba and I managed to stay dry. For once, our timing was right. Jack likes to walk around 11:00 because that’s when the school up the street lets out for lunch and the teenagers flock to the sidewalk in gaggles to do their visiting and vaping and they all love Jack. They call out his name as we approach and Jack just wades into the crowd where about 20 kids call him to come all at once. Some of them bend down or crouch and Jack will bestow kisses on them. The others he’ll rub against or give them his bum to scratch and most of them happily comply. He weaves his way through the crowd positively vibrating with happiness and spreading joy. It’s a wonderful thing to witness and it makes me a happy voyager.

Jack’s Walk

Help me, I’m melting! ©voyager, all rights reserved

The air was full of mizzle this morning and I didn’t want to go for a walk. Jack, however, did want to go for a walk and as I went about my chores he kept paddling along behind me making soft, little noises and sighing. When I finally gave in and looked at him he gave me his very best Elvis smile, the one where his left lip curls up and 3 side teeth shine out. Then he slowly raised one eyebrow and gave me the full-of-mischief-liquid-amber-Elvis-eye and for full measure he finished with the flirty Elvis huff. Ah shit, the triple Elvis – I’m helpless to resist. I’m not even into Elvis, but when Jack does the face it instantly makes me want to fill his happiness bar.

So we went for a walk in the misting rain. Without an umbrella because carrying one would leave me with no hands free for pick-ups or pending doom. And it wasn’t that bad. We got damp and one of us smells a bit funky, but so what. Then, 10 minutes after we arrived home the sky brightened, the rain stopped and the sun appeared. Well, Good Morning Sunshine….your timing sucks, but Welcome.