Thursday, April 21, 2011
Dog Tales: Bruce's Last Stand
I found this incredible dog link on my friend and EOI colleague Juana Larena's blog. It reminded me that I really should include the story of Bruce's Last Stand on this blog. It is a true and faithful account, I withhold no details to protect the innocent and if you have heard this one before, bear with me.
It was about three years ago as the spring was ripening on the bough, hinting at summer but still green and full of promise. I was lodging in a sad little apartment on the Canteras, a long, sandy, municipal beach in a city which is known for its beach. It was a dreary, lonely existence so I made the most of my neighbors' greetings and small acts of kindness. I tried to repay their favors with offers of assistence in my turn. So it was that I somehow found myself roped into dog sitting for Bruce (pictured here), an aging ornery dog, half blind and with a lope that betrayed his advanced years. I actually adored this great canine creature so his owner Roberto knew he could trust me to walk the dog when he was busy in his job stamping passports at the airport.
One afternoon I took Bruce out along the Parque Romano for his daily jaunt. It is quite a pleasant stretch of land with ample verges for dogs to sniff at brush and trees, to cock the hind leg and do their business. Bruce, like many an old mutt, was given to sniffing at other dogs' behinds. He particularly liked female dogs for although he was mostly blind, his nose worked and this day it took him in the wrong direction. He fancied a big poodle who was being led about by a very prim and proper woman. The owner in question did not seem to notice Bruce's snuffling about in her Fifi's backside but soon I realized that Bruce was not just whistling Dixie! Before Fifi poodle or her owner knew what was cooking, ol Bruce the wonder dog had mounted his prey in a most gallant manner! I stood there in mute dismay, holding the leash and looking away as if this would exonerate me. Well, the elderly owner soon caught sight of the mayhem and began shouting at me in an Eastern European tongue ( I think she was Russian). I am actually glad I did not understand any of this because it was probably not pleasant!
Anyway as the Parque Romano has a nice outdoor terrace, a nearby waiter, spying this public scene of sexual congress, came to our rescue. He kindly flung a bucket of ice water onto poor Bruce which ended his passion for glory. My furry pal pulled away and stared at me with disgust. I had really let him down, I know that now.
For Bruce is gone now. Gone to the great kennel in the sky. Roberto misses his old friend and flatmate terribly, I am told. And I do too. But I fondly recall Bruce's Last Stand!