Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Close Encounters of the Larry Kind...

We're finally having a dark and stormy night here in Cincinnati, Ohio. Last night, we had the dark part and the storm rumbled in the distance but it never arrived. Tonight it arrived in full force. At one point, I thought there was a tornado in the back garden. The wind was blowing so hard and there were so many leaves blowing down from the trees that it was a little alarming.

Naturally, the puppies were in the midst of it, frolicking amongst the cascading leaves. They aren't afraid of storms at all and quite enjoy running out to see what all the fuss is about any time there's a clap of thunder.

I like storms a lot though sometimes, when they're loud and ominous, it's nice to have the puppies to keep me company. As a child, I was terrified of storms. I would cower near my parents any time there was so much as a clap. If it was night and I was in bed when a storm arrived, I'd immediately scamper to my parents' room and climb into their bed for safety.

As I got older, I began to be less afraid of storms. This is due to a rather harsh lesson in which my dad, tired of my childish fear, made me go out and stand in a storm and see that it wouldn't hurt me. It was slightly traumatizing at the time but it did work.

My younger brother and sister took my place in being afraid of them and when it was a stormy night, they would climb into my bed and we'd cuddle together until either the storm passed or, more likely, morning because they had fallen asleep and I hadn't the heart to wake them.

Nowadays, I love to lie in bed and hear the rumble of a storm. They're cleansing and therapeutic. They come after the tension in the atmosphere has built up to an almost unmanageable level, darkening the skies with a threatening gloom and only, finally, arriving to unleash the storm on the waiting world.

Tonight's storm has brought some much needed rain. The world outside my window is finally shiny with wetness under the streetlamps. The cars are kicking up the water as they drive by. It's been far too long since we had rain like this and it's nice to look out and enjoy it.

Of course, the rain meant the puppies and I couldn't take our evening walk around the neighbourhood. That's become a regular thing. I love it, especially on the cooler nights. We still see some of our neighbours though Larry the Potential Serial Killer hasn't been around much. However, alarmingly, last night, as we walked, he pulled up beside us in his car and said, "Hey Gorgeous! Haven't seen you in a while." I was ok until I realized by the "gorgeous" part, he was talking to me and not to my puppies. For one thing, I don't really feel gorgeous when I'm walking the pups and, secondly, well, it was Larry the Potential Serial Killer. Since when has he called me gorgeous? I was polite, though I made a mental note to make sure the puppies and I continued to avoid him. He wants to 'catch up.' As he got ready to drive up, he shouted out the window, "we have to plan when we can catch up."

Oh dear. By planning a 'catch up' session, this clearly means that Larry The Potential Serial Killer means more than a casual close encounter outside his house. If you've read my blog, you'll know I mean 'close encounter' literally. Larry is, as I've said, an 'up close and personal' talker without that lovely concept of "this is my space, this is your space."

I made an even stronger mental note to avoid Larry and his 'catch up' session. I was quite relieved when he drove off. I seriously hope he didn't think I meant I wanted to get together with him. I have this horrible habit of not realizing when I've innocently said I'd do something with a male friend only to find out he thinks it's a date. Fortunately, I have no intention of getting into that confusion with Larry the Potential Serial Killer. It does, however, alarm me that there might be the rather disconcerting possibility that, uh, Larry likes me. Damn me and my friendly ways.

Ah well, I suppose it should be good for my ego. Besides, it was a brief, if unsettling encounter. The pups and I managed to make it home where Rory, in her tendency to find ways to be slightly naughty even when she's trying to be good, managed to dislodge one of my large plastic flowerpots from its place on my plant rack on my patio. The pot fell to the ground and the dried up wedge of potting soil that had previously been the bed for a rather thriving basil plant bounced out. Rory promptly claimed her prize and grabbed the flowerpot which turned out to be bigger than she was. She scurried off down the garden with it. Seeing no harm, I left her to her own devices. Better a flowerpot than a baby bunny.

Of course, later that night, she decided she wanted to bring her new favourite thing into the house and arrived in the living room, her little mouth firmly gripping the rim of the flowerpot as she triumphantly managed to bring it inside. That's no small feat for a pup when the flowerpot is bigger than she is. I was going to take it away but she seemed so enamoured with it, I decided it was fine. It wasn't making a mess and she was having such a lovely time. She ended up laying on the floor, her head and half her body in the flowerpot for most of the evening. Meanwhile, Sookie just sat there and watched. I imagine, if Sookie were a human, she would spend much of her time, observing her sister, shaking her head and saying, "That Rory!"

This evening, Rory has abandoned her flowerpot. She has, instead, discovered the towel that I use to drape over their crate. She is currently lying on the towel, having a good old chomp while Sookie lays, watching intently, just a few feet away.

Still, given how wet it is outside, playing with a towel is actually a rather smart thing to do, even if that wasn't Rory's intention. It means I can use the towel to try off the girls' feet as they scamper in from being outside, lured by the call of the storm.

I love Autumn.

Happy Thursday!

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