It was late at night, nearly bedtime, and I’d been lying on the floor. Before I go down for the night, though, I’m in the habit of walking the backyard. You know, make sure nothing’s askew.
Sliding glass door was opened and I exited with my customary bolt of fake bravado and then stood in the middle of the lawn for some posturing. I then went about my routine. Walk the grass on the side of the house and then to the bushes along the perimeter wall. There’s almost nothing ever exciting or unusual out here. But tonight I got lucky.
My sense of smell is by far the best in the house. These other guys what with their little pug noses can smell only the most robust scents. Something was in the bushes. I went for it. After a very brief chase, it ended. Whatever it was I’d been chasing was now flopped out on the ground. I approached and got up very close. It smelt very interesting. It was wild, whatever it was. And then there was squeaking. I saw that there were a couple of little guys walking around on the ground right by the flopper.
[photo: the baby opossums]
I was getting some really great snufflings in, so much to smell here. When I’ve got a really good scent going, my nose runs profusely. It was getting sloppy, my nose. Dripping, if you’ll please pardon my being so graphic. I was then advised to walk away. I did.
The glass door opened and I reentered the house. My nose still dripping. But I didn’t care. I licked my whole black nose with my tongue.
“Good dog, Koobi,” he said to me.
Koobi. I don’t know why they call me that. My name’s Kira.
-Kira the dog
[I escort the dog out every night before we sign off. We had an opossum and her babies in the yard Saturday night. When I heard the commotion in the bushes I quickly snapped to attention. (Kira’d been nailed by a skunk three times, including one five day stretch where she’d been hit twice.) I don’t know if the mother opossum was injured or just scared, but it did play dead just as they are rumored to do. Three tiny babies were squeaking there on the ground. 15 minutes later the mother opossum and her babies were gone.
At Wife Klem’s suggestion, I offered the episode from the dog’s perspective. The boy just finished reading a book entitled Sheep by Valerie Hobbs, a narrative from the dog’s eyes, which served as the catalyst.]