He strolls down the sidewalk.......tail flagging as he greets joggers and an occasional speed-walker just barely glancing down at this majestic senior dog. He doesn't seem to care if you are looking at him directly or not.
No eye contact or eye contact. If you don't love him, he still loves you. Just dare to try and walk past and not glance- just dare to not notice his gleaming reddish-golden coat. Chest out....head up high with a wide open smile on his doggy face.
Yes, that's the dog. He's the DOG.
What's he thinking as he walks down the sidewalk- the same sidewalk he's been walking down for the past 2 years since he has lived here in this new town with his human family. For the human, it's the same trees, the same cars, the same houses, the same road signs, the same familiar sidewalk. Of course for the human, it's a good walk. Relaxing (for the most part when the DOG is not stopping for "doo-ty call") while taking in the fresh early morning summer air. But for the DOG, what's he thinking? Does he look up at the air bus coming in low for Dulles airport? Does he think "wow...we should dodge the big plane...or hope the pilot knows what he's doin' "! like the human with him does.
Does the DOG look at the crystal blue sky along with all the feathered and say "wow...look what GOD created". What is this dog thinking? His character never changes. He has the same reaction every morning. As if he has never gone for a walk before..... as if the scenery is new......as if it was the best walk ever..... as if the world could end tomorrow and this walk-right here today is the best-darn-walk-this -dog has been on in 9 years! or EVER been on in 9 years!
This same DOG has a couple humans he lives with. But he "owns" a Man. This man works long hours...and at times does not have the energy to go for walks or be the attentive doggy-dad he wishes to be.
This Dog's human has been under the weather. As his human goes through a series of test for pain, and chronic headaches.....the dog knows. He knows that his human - the one he waits for at the door each evening to come in and greet is thrown off somewhat. Not the usual character for this human who just happens to be owned by the dog.
During a long 3 month ordeal of testing and doctor visits, the human comes home to sit on the couch..... just waiting for the pain to subside.
And the Dog..... he walks over to his human and stares in his eyes. He takes his strong broad head ever so gently and nudges the human as if to say "I'm here". While the human has his hand on the broad golden head.....there is a sigh, and a smile.... (I swear it was from both) and still the dog does not take his eyes off the human he owns. Now, what is this dog thinking? There are no trees or birds to distract this dog..... there are no joggers or walkers passing by......or other dogs to play with.....or to show off for.
It's just a quiet room with his human. As the rest of the household prepares for bed, the dog waits for his human to make the move. His human gets up.......makes the gesture it's time for bed. The dog waits as his human takes his medication......brushes his teeth.......and slides into bed before the dog goes to check out the rest of the household. Everyone is tucked in. The cat (oh, yeah...that darn cat he thinks) is finally content with her night time snack.
The dog walks back into the bedroom and once again- with his strong broad head gently nudges his human as if to say "good-night".
And of course, the other human he owns takes him back out for his night time "doo-ty call". Back in the house..... back in the bedroom.....back to check on his human.....and then lights out. As our Samuel retreats to his favorite corner of the bedroom- I see that smile. Oh, that golden smile.
Good-night, he seems to say.
But what are you thinking my dear dog? I guess it doesn't really matter..... all is good in his mind.