I love Jack, as I am sure you all know. And I feel we have a routine and an understanding that we both uphold. So, despite the fact that I have a headache and summer cold, that my bones are sore and my throat scratchy: I keep my end of the deal – and take him for a walk. He gets two a day. One a faster workout. The other a general neighbourhood sniff.
The weather is perfect, no wind and 22 degrees. As we amble along, birds tweeting, river gurgling: I feel my mood shifting and improving. A minute, later the bugger is gone.I retrace my steps; calling him in my cracked, sore-throat voice. Nothing. I whistle. Nothing. Now I am getting frightened: there are all kinds of pipes and underpasses that he could have disappeared into. Especially if he was chasing something. We encountered guinea fowl earlier on the path and he loves giving them a run for their money, has he gone back for another go-around? Oh God – what if he gets lost in a maze of pipes and drowns in the storm water drain?
A security guard from the neighbourhood watch hears my panic and comes to help: the two of us cover the area over and over. But no Jack. By now I am drenched with sweat and almost in tears. The guard, far along the track suddenly yells: “Madam, Madam I have found him”. Then he takes a full step back and puts his hands over his face. I run over thinking Jack has been hurt and is lying bloody and damaged. And there he is, with a face full of human faeces. The smell is unmistakable. “Eish”, says the guard, “Madam that is disgusting”.
Jack looks at me laughing: what fun! Why the fuss? He has orange-brown sludge in his eyebrows, beard, nose, eyelashes. The guard is right – it is disgusting. He backs away – his work here is done. I drag my filthy dog home: walk and mood shortened and start the clean up.
When I tie Jack to the outside tap – he usually stands quietly. Not today; as I start pouring the (warm) water on his head, he starts shaking it wildly. Desperately trying to slurp up the last few morsels of deliciousness before they get washed away. He is splashing me and I’m losing my sense of humour fast.
Eventually I grab the hosepipe and unceremoniously douse Jack with cold water. Some which goes down the wrong way because he starts coughing and hacking as if he is drowning. This whole disaster is beginning to feel endless. Do I love him enough to give him mouth to poop resuscitation if he is? As I put my head close to check: Jack sneezes explosively and the wet stuff hits me full in the face.
This makes me gag, which makes him bark and pull away from the tap, which knocks me into the water. Whereupon my genius of a dog slips his collar, runs inside and wipes his face on the carpet.
Claudia and I take turns on Sundays to post quotes that resonate with us. They’re our “thought for the week” and often inform what we write. This has encouraged people to send us pieces that grab their attention. Including the one above.
I have gotta say Buddha – maybe it’s my head cold, but today I just can’t see it.
(Quote image in the public domain. Image of the poop eater campari&sofa. Not sure if the quote is Buddha’s. Took it at face value)