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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

With the girls / PART THREE

MOVIE NIGHT - part one

Or, a missed cue.

A quick "park" and we were on our way to Family Video. Elaina, Sofia and Natalie entered ahead of FLD Dutch and me. Good thing. He and I barely made it through the door.

"I've got to see this one before you can come in!" a woman yelled and ran toward us, almost knocking over a rack of video jackets. After our confrontation in the mall the night before, I thought we were going to get thrown out.

"Oh, he's ADORABLE!" the woman exclaimed as she poured herself all over Dutch. Turned out she was the owner of the store and a dog-lover as well. Nat stood by for support as I tried to explain why it wasn't such a good idea for her to play with the now lunging and woooo-wooooing puppy. By the time I had extracted her from the ballistic ball of fur, Elaina and Sofia had "Perfect Pitch" in hand and were waiting for us by the checkout.

Wait, I said. We need to get some candy.

"We always stop by Kroger on the way home," Elaina said. "It's cheaper."

One way to keep kids from missing their mom too much is to do the exact same things with them that she does. Kroger's it is then, I said.

I didn't bother to remove Dutch's blue "Future Leader Dog" bandana; Kroger's was only a mile away. We lucked out with a parking spot right on the end, leaving us a short sprint into the grocery store.

The candy aisle was smack dab in the middle of the store, so Dutch got practice heeling through crowds of people on a shiny, scent-saturated floor. He seemed to do fine, even though he kept trying to scratch himself on three legs. I coaxed him along.

In the candy department, the four of us perused our options. A bag of baked barbeque chips, Salsa Sun Chips, Red Twizzlers. Didn't these girls like chocolate? I grabbed a giant box of Whoppers.

"Aunt patti!" Natalie screamed. "Dutch is peeing!"

I turned to witness a contrite, but relieved, puppy in a sprinter's pose, with a growing puddle beneath him. He didn't just pee a river, he peed a Great Lake! And me, caught without my cleanup bag--I thought it was just going to be a quick trip in and out of the video store. All I had was a poop bag in my back pocket.

I should have at least had my camera. I swear this little puppy can read. He "parked" almost on top of a bright yellow triangle sign that said:


I immediately told Natalie to find me some paper towels. She thought I meant in the store bathroom. No, get a roll off the shelf, I'll buy a roll. We were in a grocery after all. She froze. Elaina, I said, can you find me some? The 15-year-old quickly saved the day.

I used so much paper towel that when we went through the self-checkout what was left of the roll was not heavy enough to signal the computer register. I had to place the poop bag, which was now a pee bag, on the scale instead.

Never again.

Never again will I forget my camera...or ignore a cue from a just-learning puppy!

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