Once Upon A Grooming Tub

Do you want to hear our grooming tub story?

This isn’t a “once upon a time” story. It starts with an internet search and a debit card, not deep in a primeval forest. No princesses or singing snowmen. In a nutshell: The Millennial (aka Cole, Day Camp Director) and I bought a grooming tub—from a company called Flying Pig Grooming. The name of the company sealed the deal for us.

We’d been dreaming of buying a grooming tub for a long time. A dream motivated by mud. Camp is about playing and getting dirty. Home is about lounging on furniture, laps and beds. I don’t need to spell out the disconnect, right? Sending home furniture-ready pups requires a quick trip to the shower. Our bathroom shower. The upside is our pups go home clean. The downside? Wet pup-scented bath towels and soggy Charmin toilet paper (soggy TP is the worst, and all it takes is one shake). The Millennial and I often talked about and dreamed of a time when the only hair on our bodies would be our own. And then that dream came true, just like in the fairy tales. The tub arrived.

Well, sort of.

Anticipation filled the house on Friday. The tub was due to arrive any minute.  But if it were that simple, this wouldn’t be much of a story. The tub hardware did arrive, but without the tub. I called the fine people at Flying Pig. They informed me UPS Freight in Chicago had been trying to reach us on a phone number we haven’t used in 15 years.

Our next phone calls were to UPS. “Hi, I’m trying to track down a grooming tub delivery, sent by the Flying Pig corporation.” Even the UPS representatives who spoke English had a difficult time understanding us. A million hold hours later,patience paid off. They located the tub. They could deliver it next week. Or we could pick it up by 6 p.m. Funny how you can live without a grooming tub for 17 years, but once you buy it, you can’t live without it one more day. Time to divide and conquer. Cole would take campers home with a helper, and I would head to UPS.

Driving Cole’s stick shift truck, I took off in Friday traffic and arrived at the address the UPS folks gave me. Climbing out from the inside of the biggest UPS truck I’ve ever seen, a lone mechanic named Brian greeted me. With more optimism than I felt, I told him I had arrived to pick up a grooming tub. He knew exactly what I was looking for and led me to a box the size of a shoe box. Nope. I explained it was a big box, weighing about 250 pounds. Oh no, Brian exclaimed, how on earth would we load a box that large? Well, I was kinda sorta hoping he would know the answer to that question.  Working together, we figured out that I was at the wrong UPS location. So I asked for the address of the correct location, but Brian promised he could do better. He would draw me a map. No address. WHO THE HECK DRAWS A MAP THESE DAYS? I am directionally impaired. My GPS is my best friend (Cole assures me that my GPS hates me).

Two miles into the next step of the journey, the railroad crossing arm descended for a freight train. A 22-minute freight train. I should have been nicer to Brian. Chatted with him, been more appreciative of his map, gathered a little good karma.

I wish I could say the rest of the journey was easy and straightforward. But I will resist indulging in alternative facts. Suffice to say I made it and raced through the UPS door before they could lock it for the weekend. I’m sure I made their crazy customer list as I babbled on about tubs and flying pigs. I hugged the guy who helped me reach my final destination. I offered to buy him and the whole damn office bags of M&M’s from the vending machine. They located the tub speedy quick and loaded it onto the truck even faster. I’d take them all donuts next week as a thank-you. But I’d never find the place again.

Mission accomplished, I thought as I headed home. And then it occurred to me. Once home, we would need to unload the 250-pound wooden crate and carry it through the yard and into the house. Descend down a steep set of stairs and lift it over a wash tub into our designated grooming area. Not a mom job, and I wasn’t sure Cole would understand that. Knowing my limits is not one of his strengths. So I called him and suggested that after dropping off campers, he should head home with a friend. A strong friend.

Soon the Men arrived home. Discussed the situation, found the right tools, and got the job done. I mostly didn’t watch (the tub was a big investment!). I did agree to push the 250 pounds of tub towards them on the stairs. When I voiced my concern, the Millennial assured me the tub would be fine. Kid has his priorities right.

Today we put the tub together, and it is shiny and beautiful. The design is crazy great and perfect for us and our pups too. The only thing missing is plumbing. You know, the hot and cold running water component. The part that adds function to form. The gleaming fixtures are in place, though, and that’s a start. Oscar is supposed to show up tomorrow and connect the plumbing. I know you will be waiting with bated breath for the tub christening. Or a picture of the flood. It could go either way. Just in case, I’ll put the Charmin on higher ground.

Stay tuned for part 2. 

Odd Loves Company!



A trip down memory lane. Hand drawn map to my final destination.

A 22 minute freight train slows things down a bit.


Men at Work.

The camera is in vertical position instead of horizontal position and the lighting is awful. I asked them to hang on a second but they were cranky about waiting and rushed me. The quality of this video is NOT my fault.

Flying Pigs Slide from Katybeth on Vimeo.

6 thoughts on “Once Upon A Grooming Tub

  1. Looking forward to seeing the final results. Looks like a big tub. I wouldn’t know about soggy TP but it does sound pretty horrible.
    What is the food of the day tomorrow? Office snacks have been lack luster.
    Have a good one.

    • It is a BIG tub. I’m sorry I didn’t see your comment earlier—I promise I will email you the food of the day for Monday! Video coming soon showing off our new grooming “salon.”

  2. Well, at least they packaged the thing well, right? Glad you found some help to get it unloaded and set up; hope Oscar is punctual and knowledgeable. This is a wonderful adventure — I was right there with you the whole time. What? You didn’t see me? Thankfully, I managed to avoid the back-breaking tasks! Onward and upward to Part 2!

    • You were so much help I would like to extend an invitation for you to come and wash dogs any old time. Part 2—better late than never. I hope to pull it together after Craig’s post tomorrow. Right after I give 6 baths. 😀

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