From Last Week: Lena was pouncing joyously upon me, Kenry, and the swing. Joe attacked but it was too late. Before he could stop her she was on the swing and crack!!! The rusty chains gave way and down we went, baby and all, as Lena’s full 100-some pounds bounded onto the swing!
When the dust cleared, Joe was laughing too hard to breath. I checked Kenry all over and found him to be fine, just too shocked to cry. Lena was gone.
“What’s so funny, Joe?” I wondered, irritated. We could’ve killed Kenry, or worse, and it was all because of that dumb dog we’d had to take care of! Why was she back in the first place!?
“Sorry. . . Addy!” He gasped. “But you should’ve seen Lena when I threw that coffee on her! I wish it hadn’t made her jump on the swing, but she skedaddled like you wouldn’t believe!” He stopped laughing and looked at me. “How are you and Kenry?”
“Not very good!” I snapped. “Or, well, I’m not! The swing is destroyed and that crazy dog could’ve killed Kenry!”
Joe sat down beside me on the grounded swing, “No, she couldn’t have.” He tried to console me. “She was too busy running away.”
I huffed stonily. “Actually, yes, he could’ve been hurt. And it seemed like you were just over there laughing.
“No,” Joe’s expression looked a little hurt. “Lena just looked hilarious. My laughing didn’t mean I wasn’t worried.” His gaze turned to the still sleeping Kenry then back to me. “Are you both ok?”
“Yes.” I sighed. “And I’m sorry. She just scared me.” I glared into the blackness of the morning. “That Dog is annoying.”
Joe suppressed a laugh for my sake. “Is Kenry ok?”
“Yeah.” I turned to him and smiled. “Sorry for snapping at you.”
“You’re forgiven.” Joe grinned and I could tell it he was holding back laughter. The incident probably had looked funny. To Joe.
“I won’t forgive that dog though!” I groaned. “Hopefully she’s gone for good!”
Joe chuckled. “Your prejudice cause she always scares you.”
“No, because she’s a smelly, hairy, slobbery, loud, big pain!”
Kenry gave a peaceful little sigh at those words but Joe groaned, “I thought you liked dogs, Addy.”
“Most dogs are ok, but she isn’t. At. All.”
Joe sighed. “I liked her.” He stood and grabbed the empty coffee cup. “I guess I’ll have to fix this swing some time later. I’ve been saying I should and now I have to.”
“I guess that’s one good thing out of all of this!” I answered.
He smirked at me. “Even when she’s annoying Lena brings about good things!”
“Joe!” I rolled my eyes but it didn’t stop a chuckle from escaping my mouth. “You’re as crazy as she is!”
Lena Strikes Again!
The morning quietly swept by with no major incidents. The sun was a glorious, spring glow that awakened the world outside my kitchen window with great festivity and color. I was baking some food to have for harvest and rejoicing in the beautiful sounds and feels of spring when I heard a terrible, out of place cry. It was a screechy, sad sound. Wondering what it was, I headed to the door and there she lay. Like a big furry rug Lena was sprawled out before me. Her nose was touching the door and her eyes were gazing at me mournfully. She whined again, her voice making a pitiful cry that was octaves higher than any dog should be able to go.
“Lena.” I fumed. “Go Home.” The force in my words only made her wag her tail joyously. “Go. Home.” When I repeated the phrase she whimpered and stopped her tail. “Go home! Go home!” She started the terribly contented tail wagging again. Her white plume thumped the ground hard and fast. “Go home dog! Go home!”
She didn’t move anything but her tail causing me to march to the door. I waved my wooded spoon at her and yelled, “Go home, go home, go home!!!” My last, hollered exclamation ended with me stomping the floor. “I don’t want you here! Go home!”
Just then the door bell rang. The front entryway, perched delightedly beside the kitchen, held it’s door wide open so I could hear and feel the effects of spring. But anyone outside that door could’ve heard and felt the effects of my tantrum too.
“Oh Lord.” I whispered in sudden prayer. “Please help them not to have heard me!” But the answer ‘no’ to that prayer was almost inevitable.
My footsteps echoed in doom as I added a second prayer in hope that is was one of my sisters or at least the mailman who probably heard all sorts of tantrums. I stepped into the entryway plastering a smile on my face. God was teasing me that morning.
“Hello!” Millie Herberts’ grin was as big as Lena’s when she greeted me. “I just stopped by to borrow some sugar; I hope you don’t mind. I was making cookies and realized I didn’t have any sugar and I thought to myself, ‘Now I’m sure Addy has some sugar on hand and I bet I can borrow some!’ So here I am!”
“Oh, yes, I do. Why don’t you come on in?” I wondered.
“No, I’ve got to be going. I just came for a cup of sugar you see. That’s all I need.”
“Alright.” I headed to the kitchen with Millie behind me and got a cup of sugar. Dumping it in a plastic bag I questioned, “Is a cup all you need?”
“Two cups will be fine.” She decided.
“Ok.” I added a second cup.
“I like you’re dog.” Millie commented, peering through the screen door at Lena who was drooling happily.
“Oh, she’s not our dog. She just came over here; she’s our neighbor’s dog.” I corrected her.
“Oh! Ha.Ha! So that’s who you were yelling at to go home! Ho! Ho!” Millie grinned toothily. “I figured you didn’t normally great guests that way.”
“No.” I smiled politely. “I don’t.”
“Oh well, no hard feelings, I know what dogs are like!” She gurgled. “Thanks for the sugar! I just figured you would have some and thought I would have to come over and see you. Just to get the sugar of course. How have you been?”
We talked for an hour. Millie Herberts always had plenty of stories to share.
After two cups of tea and all the stories she felt like telling me, she left. Thank goodness. I marched back to my kitchen and cleaned.
“Really Addy! Really? You blow up at a dog right as Millie Herberts strolls up to your door! Oh, Joe will laugh and so will everyone else she tells! But, THIS is not funny! That dog!
Family Member Number Four
Joe, thankfully, did not laugh. He knew better than that.
But he was quite pleased to see Lena. In fact, when she started coming over everyday, He was pleased to see her. Still he always sternly reprimanded her and took her back to the neighbors who were beginning to weary of her antics. (They weren’t the only ones that were getting wearied.) But at last I gave in. Held up the white flag. And surrendered.
To a dog. And the fact the neighbors said to keep her. And Joe’s delighted smiles at the thought. That last one was the one that won me.
“If that dog won’t stay where she belongs then I guess I can stand having her around.” I grudgedly told Joe.
His grin was big enough to make it all worth it.
“Thanks Addy. I always have liked this dog. She reminds me of grandpa’s old shepherd dog, Leonardo.”
I managed a smile. “She’ll stay only for you, “
And so Lena joined our family welcomed by Joe’s happy hugs, Kenry’s giggles, and my plans to build a pen. Days past and along came the morning when I awoke and found myself singing with the sunrise. That morning as I sat on the porch, with Lena at my feet, I couldn’t help but think everything over again. Though I wasn’t happy with having a drooly teddy bear sleeping in my flower beds, I knew Joe liked her and, sadly, Kenry did too.
“Well, Lord.” I chuckled, looking up at the white, porch ceiling as if it would help me see Him. “You gave us Lena, unfortunately, but then you’re God so I’m trusting you. But please, don’t let her cause any more problems!”
The sound of Kenry crying brought my attention to him. I took my feet off Lena, she made a good footrest, and stood up. She slobbered happily as she watched me go and I tried to hold in a smile. Maybe Joe was a little right. She was almost kinda cute. Almost. But the puddle of drool I slipped on just before I got to the screen door took the almost away. She still was Lena the annoying, slobbery dog.
So, Addy isn’t too delighted with Lena. What do you think of her? I personally find her funny. But the story isn’t over yet. Next week we get to see what Lena thinks of Addy. And she just might have an opinion all her own!