Tuesday, December 23, 2008

When wire hair terriers attack

Our snow down here has ended; however, the system that left us with about 2 inches or so is heading northeast, straight up to Mom and Dad's place! If I left today, I would be driving in snow all the way up there, and they are expecting 3 to 5 inches. Ugh...

Funny story; my Dad is a snow spotter, so he is regularly speaks with the meteorologists out of the Duluth office to report snow totals (which, as of late, has been on almost a daily basis). Dad spoke to one of them this morning, saying that I was trying to drive up to the North Shore today. The meteorologist strongly recommended that I wait until tomorrow if I could. That pretty much sealed the deal. When I get a personalized, first hand weather report from the National Weather Circus advising me not to travel, it might be wise to stay put! :)

More often than not, whenever I try to head home for the holidays, I am faced with the shittiest weather for driving (Is "shittiest" even a word? Or would "most shitty" be more grammatically appropriate?). Long time readers will recall my trip at Thanksgiving of 2007 where I was caught in a snow/ice storm on the way to Mom and Dad's. And, there was also last year at Christmas where I experienced even more difficult driving on my way home. It is always an adventure up here. About the only thing I don't like about winter is having to drive in it.

So I decided to hold off on heading north until tomorrow. And I am happy about this decision for more than one reason; had I left today, I wouldn't have been able to share this gem of a story:

Since I was done with work before lunchtime, I headed home and decided to go for a run. The trails in the neighborhood had not been plowed, so there was 2 inches of fluff. The temperature was also 18 degrees, so it felt like a heatwave compared to yesterday. Slower going, but it was fun breaking through the fresh layer of snow

You might recall me telling a story about a wire hair terrier that gives me the business on a fairly regular basis. I haven't seen him as much lately because of the cold weather, but in the spring, summer, and fall, he is outside all the time. The dog is always tied up, so he has never come after me. But that is not to say he doesn't try! When he sees me coming, he starts barking and straining on his leash, seemingly wanting a piece of me. This has always made me chuckle.

Today I ran by the house of the terrier. The garage door was open, and a lady was working inside. Suddenly I hear barking and see this little dog tearing down the driveway.

He was loose!

The lady started yelling at the dog to stop, but he would have none of that. The vicious terrier saw his opportunity for the kill shot, and he was making a beeline for me at full speed. Finally, after all this time, he was getting his chance to attack that horrible runner who has been tormenting him for the last year or so!

Because it had snowed, the traction was not good. As the dog approached me, I stopped running. He locked up his brakes and, unable to stop, ricocheted off my leg and completely wiped himself out! It looked kind of like a "Scooby Doo" cartoon when Scooby crashes into something. Eventually he skidded to a stop. I started laughing.

To make matters worse, the little dog was dressed up. He was wearing this doggie parka that looked like a miniature winter coat (complete with a fuzzy hood), and there was also a Christmas-themed kerchief tied around his neck. He looked ridiculous.

Composing himself after the crash, he then jumped up on my leg. All the while, the lady was apologizing profusely, trying to contain the pooch.

"He usually doesn't do that when he has his collar on!" the lady said to me. If he was willing to throw caution to the wind and risk getting zapped by his collar, now I know he wanted to get me! :)

The dog was still at my feet, so I leaned down and started scratching him behind his ears...and he LOVED it! The terrier closed his eyes and started leaning into my hand as I itched his little head. Suddenly, I was his best friend.

"See, I am not such a bad guy!" I said to the dog.

The lady was very nice and kept apologizing to me. I told her it wasn't a problem. We wished each other a Merry Christmas, and she brought the dog back inside. This was a nice comedic moment that was worth sticking around for. I guess this means the lesson here is don't judge a book by its cover. Or in this case, a dog by his bark! :)

Merry Christmas and safe holiday travels to all! I will speak to you next week when I return!

Jean
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