I don’t have writer’s block. To the contrary, I’m very busy putting the final touches on my first book and beginning the personality profiles and research for my second book. However, we have a lot going on here at home. It’s spring, we are landscaping, cleaning, planting seeds, household repairs…you know, spring stuff. So I’m thinking about my blog and for some reason I started thinking about a short story I wrote a few years back. It’s the result of a writing contest I entered. The theme was ‘what would your pets tell you about their day if they could speak.’
I’m going to tell you there’s a good bit of truth in this story. I really had two males wolves and I used their real names in the story. Our neighbor at that time was named Joe and he really loved the wolves and they always got his leftovers. And finally, there really was a poodle. Now to find out what I’m talking about, here’s the story:
Pulling into the driveway I notice the gate is ajar. “Oh, great,” I mutter to myself. Where have they gone now? As I exit the car, I begin calling, “Isaiah, Isaac, hey, boys, where are you?” No response and no sign of either of them. Walking up to the gate, I scan the lower meadow for either of my wolves; dreading the long drive through the neighborhood searching for them.
Suddenly, they both come bounding to the gate, obviously happy to see me. “Why is the gate open?” I ask rather sternly.
“Well, it’s actually Isaiah’s fault” states Isaac, my two year old, gray, timber wolf.
“Uh huh,” I reply rather suspiciously. Isaiah is the older of the two wolves. “Isaiah, did you open the gate?”
“Yes, but I can explain. You see, that nasty postman was here again. He keeps coming into the yard, and spraying that awful pepper spray at us. We were no where near the fence. In fact, Isaac was asleep under the pine tree down back, and I was on the lower porch, surveying my Kingdom. When all of a sudden, for absolutely no reason, that awful man, after putting the mail in the box, which as you know, is up there beside the road. He sneaks down the driveway, and begins spraying that toxic matter into the wind, so it drifts toward me, stinging my eyes, burning my nose, and leaving a disgusting taste in my mouth. Well, I just couldn’t take it anymore. I leapt from the porch, raced toward the gate, and just as I was about to jump over it, he turned and ran, an obvious admission of guilt if you ask me. But, wanting to be sure he knew the fence is only here to protect myself, and Isaac, and to deter intruders from trespassing, I lifted the latch on the gate. At which time, he jumped into that silly vehicle he drives, and sped away. It was all really quite comical.”
“I see. And Isaac, did you witness any of this?”
“Yes, but only the last part. As Isaiah said, I was asleep under the pine tree. But, when Isaiah jumped from the porch, and began racing toward the fence, he woke me with his loud, expletive language. I came around the house to see what all the commotion was about. So I did see the cruel little man running to jump in his vehicle and drive away. Although, I did tell Isaiah, I thought he should put the latch back down on the gate. I didn’t think it was a good idea to leave it open all afternoon. But then, when did Isaiah ever listen to me. Besides, he had his own reasons for wanting to leave it open.”
“Isaac, I think mom has heard enough. So, how are you this evening?” Isaiah asks me in a pseudo, innocent tone, but is looking guiltier by the second. And, he is obviously trying to change the subject off of the open gate.
“Yes, well, I can see we need to discuss this further. But first, I think I will change my clothes, and give the two of you a little more time to get your story straight.” Walking through the back door, but leaving it slightly ajar, I watch to see if they will follow me. Never ones to be put on the spot, I see them both nosing their way through the door.
“What’s for dinner?” asks Isaiah.
“Hamburger helper, would you like for me to add some peas?”
“No,” answers Isaac. “Mr. Joe threw leftovers from his lunch today over the fence. He made ravioli with chicken. Isaiah really liked it. I only ate a little. But, I think I will pass on the peas.”
“Isaiah, are you okay with no peas?”
“Sure, Mr. Joe’s ravioli was really good. I like Mr. Joe; he’s a really kind man.”
“Yes, he is. And, he likes you both very much.”
Once we have all eaten our fill, and the boys are rolling in the wild mint to freshen up, I stroll down to sit with them and watch the sunset. Slowly, they each sit up, sniff the air, then coming to sit beside me.
“So, Isaiah, are you ready to tell me the ‘other’ reason for leaving the gate unlatched?”
“Do I have to?”
“No, you can let Isaac tell me.”
“Oh, all right. Well, it’s really quite innocent. Did you know we have new neighbors?”
“I noticed a new car in front of the empty house at the end of the road. But I haven’t seen the humans yet. Have you seen them?”
“I saw them yesterday. There is a man, a woman and a little girl.” Isaac offers before Isaiah can reply.
“Okay, so what do the new neighbors have to do with leaving our gate unlatched?”
Isaiah is starting to look very embarrassed. Clearing his throat, he stares at the ground as he tries to sound nonchalant. “Isaac’s correct. There is a man, woman, little girl…and a poodle. She’s a rather petite, sophisticated female with impeccable manners.”
“She’s one tenth your size.” Isaac snorts with a devilish grin.
“A poodle? Isaiah, honey, what are you thinking?”
“Oh, mom, you should see her,” Isaac is having way too much fun embarrassing Isaiah. “She prances up to the fence, strutting like a call girl on the strip in Vegas. I swear, she preens, and poses, and then as soon as she sees Isaiah coming toward her, she cowers like a school girl. She should be ashamed of the way she is acting. I mean really, a poodle and a wolf?”
“Isaac, that’s enough. Let Isaiah finish his explanation.”
“She is a mature female. She has bred many seasons with other poodles and now she is looking for someone to grow old with. Besides, you had me neutered, remember? Nothing can come of this, but some extra companionship. Do you have any idea what it’s like to spend my days with only another male wolf half my age? But the truth is I merely wanted to get to know her better. She really isn’t my type at all.”
“That’s good to know. So, I think the two of you need to remember the rules, and keep the gate latched at all times. I will speak to the manager at the post office on Saturday about the nasty postman. And Isaiah, I think for now, you should restrict your socializing with the poodle, to just polite conversations through the fence. Do you both understand?”
“Yes.” They answer in unison.
“Good, now I think I will go and watch some television. Good night, boys.”
Each tell me goodnight as I walk to the backdoor. Mental note to self, first thing tomorrow morning, buy a pad lock for that gate.