Encounters…a Little Further South
By Beverly Hicks Burch
For any new readers, let me refresh the scene a bit. Last year I had a spat of “encounters” with critters…beasties if you will.
There was Mr. Chicken Hung Phooey…or as we fondly called him “Dead Chicken Walking”. He had a companion and together they brought us hours of joy…NOT!!!
Mr.Chicken Hung Phooey
Then of course there was Punxsutawney Phil’s long lost cousin…yes, a groundhog. No one informed me groundhog’s lived in East Tennessee AND they were citified. I had to find out the hard way…after one bada**, bully, gi-normous specimen took up residence at the house after Tall & Handsome started working in Georgia…before me and Little Bit…Watson the Wonderkin had moved a little further South with T & H. Smoky Sam (Phil’s cousin), my groundhog also crawled under what I used to refer to as my “lead sled” and chewed up the wiring harness making the ol’ gal undriveable…a blessing in disguise…(Bev has a Jeep now).
So, the move happened and the last few months have been spent settling in and getting use to the new home and a new city. (Yes, we are STILL unpacking, but there is light at the end of the tunnel…a very small light, but light none the less.)
When we moved into this nice, normal, settled neighborhood I thought my days of “encounters” were over. All I saw were people walking their dogs…my favorite animal…along with horses. Oh, joy! It was almost like nice little Stepford pets everywhere…no chickens…no groundhogs…and then I met Jack!
Jack is a medium to largish white dog that lives behind us with his “parents” and “sister” canine. He reminds me of a white German Shepherd, but his owner assures me he’s just a mutt…whatever that assurance means. Jack is VERY verbal…did I mention he barks…A LOT.
We were thrilled to discover our house had a fenced yard…and not just any ol’ fence mind you…an eight foot tall fence! That is ample protection for our 15 pound Wonderkin. He dashes out the back door and bounds around his new backyard like a little Gazelle…exploring every nook and cranny. And, eyeballing Jack…and marking the fence…their first encounter was a sight to behold.
Jack was going berserk…bark!…bark!…bark!…and so on. And then “IT” started. I saw for the first time in my life a real-life, honest-to-goodness, ummm…whizzing contest. All, I can say is this…I was really under impressed…what a waste of time. I think Watson has learned, though. Now most of the time he just quietly stands at the fence and watches as Jack goes berserk…posing, snarling, barking, etc. Then little Wonderkin turns and walks away…what a guy!!!
Watson the Wonderkin
Jack has a way of inserting himself into your life when you least except and in ways you’d never think. Example? Well…
When it’s cool enough I sleep with my window cracked…I can’t stand a stuffy room…or a room that is too warm. One evening I was especially tired…you try moving for the 5th time in four years! I was fastly and soundly asleep. All of the sudden, I started having the strangest dream! What does it mean?!
In my dream I heard a duck…Quack! Quack! Quack! Quack! Quack! How odd! And it was very soft…not a loud duck. Was this the Spirit of Donald telling me I needed a trip to Disney World?
Gradually my consciousness was slowly aroused and I was aware of hearing Watson growling…well, there goes that dream. Watson had gotten down off the foot of the bed and was propped up at the window looking out. Poised I listened to what he was listening to…
Jack! Jack! Jack! Jack! (Quack! Quack! Quack! Quack!)
Yes, Jack’s mistress was outside calling him…he had been outside in all of his Jackness and she was trying to retrieve him inside…
As Tall & Handsome says…Oh, brother…
© 2008 Beverly Hicks Burch All Right Reserved.