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One function of this blog is to give you an idea what it is like to be a mature adult in the odd world of camp. Yesterday, I tried to share some of the simple joys of the experience. Today, I write about a less cheerful topic.

I am having mixed feelings about Dodger Ma’am - our Bassett hound.

After greeting campers and serving as an affection sponge (which is one of her key functions along with wearing silly outfits to amuse campers), we retired for a well-earned night of sleep.

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Of course, I forgot about the random fireworks that popped off intermittently for an hour or so. I have no evidence that these pyrotechnics bothered your children, but they did make the dog fidgeting. We do not allow Dodger on our bed, but we make an exception for fireworks.

How did our intrepid hound reward our loving generosity?

She woke us at 1am to go outside. She had new friends to meet.


Yes, after a stressful evening of listening to pyrotechnics, Dodger Ma’am celebrated by partying with what - I can only assume - was an entire surfeit of skunks.

[Interlude. One of the awesome aspects of our language is the fact that Groups of animals have inexplicably amusing names. A few of my favorites: Murder of crows Crash of rhinos Shrewdness of apes Coalition of cheetahs Cowardice of dogs (the reaction to the fireworks makes this one stick) Flamboyance of flamingos Business of ferrets Thunder of hippos Mob of kangaroos Raft of otters Ambush of tigers In addition to being amusing, most of these also sound like names of bands from the 1980’s. Returning to our blog.]

So Dodger Ma’am managed to find a surfeit of skunks. OK, no actually evidence confirms a true Skunk Convention, but if she did not find a surfeit she found a single, over-achieving skunk.

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Proud of her newly acquired scent, she re-entered the house through the dog door, rolled enthusiastically on a carpet and then started to scratch on our door. We heard her as she did so at 4:03. We attempted to ignore her.

At 4:04, the aroma slithered under the door and greeted us.

There would be no ignoring that.

Susie Ma’am washed the dog for half an hour. So she now smells fresh as a daisy.

If that daisy were located under a skunk.

OK, I am glad I got that of my chest.

We now return to your regularly scheduled blogs.

Steve Sir