Friday, August 27, 2010


The neighbor’s dog got loose this morning, before the sun was even up. I had just gotten out of bed and was on my way to the kitchen for my coffee when I heard loud barking coming from my backyard (I always leave the side gate open so the raccoons and friends can get to the water we leave out for them…and so the wildlife coming the opposite direction can get through to the front where they hang out together and watch the coming and goings of the night owls – the human ones, that is).
I grabbed my robe and hurried out the kitchen door, concern that the dog had cornered one of the feral cats - but to my surprise what the neighbor’s dog was barking at wasn’t a cat or a critter at all…it was teeny, tiny woman! And she wasn’t cornered, but instead she was staggering around the yard in dizzying circles mumbling to herself.
“Now Ebha, sweet lass that ya are, you got here by some entrance, sure that ya did and you can leave by same…if only you can find the blamed place!” she cried.
The neighbor’s dog had stopped barking and had parked himself on the lawn and with head cocked to one side was listening as if the little woman was speaking to him.
I stayed motionless, certain that once the little woman moved a smidge to the left she’d see the opening in the fence and from there the trip back to the forest was all downhill – literally. But after watching her bump into an especially large kale and fall over backwards, I knew something had to be done before the little thing suffered a grievous injury, so I coughed softly and pointed toward the opening in the fence. Poor thing! When she turned and saw me, she scrambled to her feet, dashed in, out and around the carrot tops and streaked out of the yard.
I watched her as she tumbled down the embankment spewing words in a language I couldn’t understand (which was probably just as well) and finally disappear among the trees.
When I started back to the house I saw that she had dropped her purse, a rustic, hand spun, woolen bag. Afraid that the neighbor’s dog would drag it off I brought it inside. And here it sits.

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