Friday, February 26, 2010

Jasper's Exciting Evening

Poor Jasper had quite the rough night tonight. The day started off pleasant enough, but events soon turned traumatizing.

Early this morning, Jasper got to see his little girlfriend for the third time. His joy was adorable to witness. Jasper ran to his little friend, tail wagging furiously, and licked her pretty little face. His attentions were welcomed and returned, with Jasper's little girlfriend giving him a few doggy kisses as well. They played for a little while, while the little girl's owner (who is such a nice lady) and I chatted.

The rest of the day was spent with me working my way through an enjoyable book on the Balkan Wars. Since Jasper was so good-natured about being stuck inside with me while I read all day, I let him come with me when I went to pick up groceries. He was thrilled to get treated with a car ride, and was quite the happy, tail-wagging boy when we got home. Since I needed both hands to carry the groceries, I let Jasper hop out and run into the building without a leash. After all, what could possibly happen?

The upstairs neighbors' bulldog happened. That massive, ugly, gap-toothed beast was also off its leash. While the bulldog's owner ineffectually yelled at it, the hideous creature chased Jasper out into the parking lot and under a car. There Jasper cowered in fear, while the bulldog did its best to crawl under as well, without success. The bulldog's owner cajoled and threatened his monstrous dog, while I, having hastily thrown my grocery bags through the air in the general direction of the front door, tried to coax out my whimpering, trembling little boy. Finally, the neighbor caught his monster, and I was able to grab my baby. Jasper continued to tremble and whimper for the next ten minutes. I've never before seen him so shook up, in fact. Feeling pity for my poor little fellow, I gave him one of his special "treat" bones, which calmed him considerably.

I have a feeling that Jasper's fear of strange dogs will probably be escalated a bit from here on out.

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"Passage—immediate passage! the blood burns in my veins! Away, O soul! hoist instantly the anchor!
Cut the hawsers—haul out—shake out every sail!
Have we not stood here like trees in the ground long enough?
Have we not grovell’d here long enough, eating and drinking like mere brutes?
Have we not darken’d and dazed ourselves with books long enough?

Sail forth! steer for the deep waters only!
Reckless, O soul, exploring, I with thee, and thou with me;
For we are bound where mariner has not yet dared to go, And we will risk the ship, ourselves and all.

O my brave soul!
O farther, farther sail!
O daring joy, but safe! Are they not all the seas of God?
O farther, farther, farther sail!"

~Walt Whitman, "Passage to India"