oh where, oh where…

oh where, oh where...

{Well, this is the third time today I am telling this story, and the second time in writing … suffice to say it’s been an otherwise slow Sunday.

I was nearly home from a trip across the street, when the unmistakable form of a small animal running around in the distance caught my eye. A family of three was chasing their little Boston terrier around the large parking lot, and making little to no progress on the matter. He ran, he jumped, he yipped, he yapped, he evaded them effortlessly while blithely charging toward traffic.

While I wasn’t thrilled with the spectacle — a little dog offl-leash, out of control and unsure whether to be elated or terrified by his new freedom, and his “people” seeming just as baffled as to what to do about him — I, along with what I’d wager is the majority of people, do not enjoy seeing terriers being flattened by pickup trucks. So, I stalked back across the street to see if I could help herd the little devil back to his would-be captors. In the end, all it took was me standing there, since the addition of a fourth person walking out from behind a van was evidently wholly unanticipated by the dog — his facial expression was quite exquisitely Boston-terrier in that his eyeballs suddenly appeared to comprise 90% of his face.

We actually ended up corralling both him and an innocent bystander, since he raced toward a van that had just parked and had someone walking out of it. The Someone bore it admirably, though, and was appropriately unfazed by the gruff but rather conviction-lacking barks of the cornered pet. One of the group picked him up and carried him off under one arm, which probably did not help what little dignity he had, and they disappeared heroically into the sunset (or rather, in the direction of the mall).

The amusing part of it all was that it really felt no different from any average day at work, in which virtually the same actions and cast of characters (confused bystander, assorted hopeful but somewhat loud and ineffective family members, and my mostly-just-standing-in-the-way self) are involved in a similar ballet multiple times per shift. The only difference is that it’s usually an exuberant toddler heading for the door instead of a barking Boston (though both have the ultimate goal of a large and dangerous parking lot). The toddlers are slightly more maneuverable than the dog, as they are delightfully selfish and tend to respond well to bribery, flattery and personal questions (“That’s a cool puppet — do you like dragons?”); that said, there is a roughly equal chance in both situations of being bitten by your quarry.}

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