I Never Get to Finish a Sandwich Anymore
I have always been an animal lover. From the time I was very young, I can remember having some sort of pet or pets that was out of the norm for the Los Angeles suburbs. In the early 60’s, I can remember having a clubhouse that was made out of an old tool shed in the back yard. My dad built onto it and made it into a sweet little place for me and my friends to hang out, along with our baby goat, Pixie. I don’t think that our neighborhood was zoned for livestock such as goats, but Pixie wasn’t alone. We had a rooster and a hen named Pete and Gladys.
My mother would bring my lunch out to the patio and I would sit and enjoy my peanut butter and jelly sandwich, while Pete and Gladys stood on the table over the plate and pecked bites out of the bread as I ate. Pixie poked at me from below with baby goat head butts until I shared a bite with him.
We also had a dog, a beagle. Pixie had no mother figure in his life except for the beagle, so naturally he thought he was a dog. Whenever my brothers and I would go out bike riding or playing in the street, Pixie was right there with us, romping and playing, chasing tennis balls and making everyone in the neighborhood laugh. One day a stranger stopped in his car and asked what kind of animal it was that we were running with. Before I could answer, George Leip, our next door neighbor piped up and said that it was a rare dog breed, a “Himalayan Yeti Hound”. The man drove off satisfied with the answer.
But all good things must end. Pixie eventually grew up and was eating everything in sight. It became pretty obvious that he was really a goat now, and when he decided to eat the mail out of the mailman’s push cart, he had to go. So off he went to the petting zoo at Knott’s Berry Farm.
But that was decades ago. Pete and Gladys lived out their years in our backyard. Since then I have gone through rats, huge catfish in a 200 gallon tank (who, incidentally, ate one of my rats who attempted to drink from the tank), snakes, hamsters, and numerous dogs, all of which shared meals with me.
But now I have my indoor dogs. There are four of them ranging in size from 10 lbs. to 65 lbs. When meal time comes, they all sit around the table, waiting for a morsel to drop. They know not to beg, and are very patient. Pepper, our Aussie mix has acquired the ability to grin in a big toothy smile, and uses that to her advantage to gain extra bites of food. It seems that I have found myself leaving the table hungry more often than not just because I am feeding her smile along with the other dogs.
It seems like a perfect way to lose weight, right? BAH!
I have asked Carla to add an extra helping to my plate now when I sit down. So now in the morning, I have three waffles on my plate instead of two and one of them goes to the dogs and I still get to eat a full breakfast. But when I decide to make a sandwich for a snack, there’s Pepper, and Mimi, and Molly and Scruffy. They are all sitting there looking at me with those puppy dog eyes…..(except for Pepper and her silly grin, and Molly only has one eye due to canine glaucoma). I can’t help but share my sandwich with them. I haven’t finished a sandwich at home in months.
But our dogs are our children now, and they keep us busy just like the original ones did before they all ran off to seek their fortunes. Dogs are permanent, they will never go out to seek their fortune and leave you forgotten (unless they are Disney dogs). They will always be there through thick and thin, providing comfort and joy during the rough times and they will always be happy to share the good times with you as well. They will protect you and your home and they deserve the best you can offer them.
It has been a wild past two or three weeks here in North Georgia. The Good Lord has blessed us abundantly with good friends and a hearty bounty from our garden. And although life can seem like it is taking a dump on you, you have to realize that maybe it really isn’t that bad. There are always people worse off than you that might need your help, and helping them is a wonderful and fulfilling way to receive God’s blessings.
I am glad that you took the time to stop by and read my rhetoric. Sometimes I ramble about anything that may pop into my head. I hope that you didn’t find it too boring.
So until next time, my friends, carry on. Work hard, do good deeds for a stranger, and give the Good Lord thanks for everything…even the bad times. Without the bad times to build character within us, we could never appreciate all of the good things that life has to offer.
I bid you peace.
©2011 by Del Banks
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