Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Waning Days in Raleigh
By July of 1998, I was resigned to the fact that my adviser was going to drag his feet and wouldn’t let me defend until the next semester which meant I had to call my employers and postpone my start date until September. Luckily for me, those guys understood and moved my first day until later in the year. I sulked and pouted a bit, but then I started enjoying the time off. I finished school work, writing my thesis, and making a seminar for defending my thesis which subsequently was used for my seminars on my job interviews. All that was between me and my degrees was defending my thesis early in the fall semester.
Being a night owl, I stayed up late and woke up late, often at noon. I’d piddle around the house during the day, surf the net (Does anyone remember CompuServe?), read some and watch TV. The evenings are when I would dedicate playing with Abby and the other dogs. I often grilled outside on the patio, after some rigorous playing in the pool with the dogs. By late afternoon, Abby, ready for me to come out and play, would sit on the pool ledge and scan the back door and side door hoping to catch a glimpse of me. She had such a long, sad face and worried that I wasn’t going to come outside to play with her. I’d often peak at her through my bedroom window just to see how sad she was. She knew how to give a guilt trip, and if that wasn’t enough, my mom would be the icing on the cake when she would come into the house and say, “You’re breaking your Baby Girl’s heart. Aren’t you going to go out and play with her, goddamnit?!”
When I went outside with a towel over my shoulder, Abby lit up and ran towards me. She knew the fun was about to commence. It was play time! However, I needed to spice things up and keep Abby lively and enthusiastic about playing since she bored easily. In that summer, I did this by playing a variation of “Cooky Coo”. Instead of running around the pool and climbing on top of the sliding board, I would sneak to the side gate at the fence from around the front of the house, sprint towards the pool while yelling ‘COO COO’. Abby went nuts over this, and moments after I jumped in the pool, I could hear her splashing in the pool after she had jumped in. I learned in these games not to resurface too quickly in such instances or else I’d take the risk of her landing on me when she jumped in.
Abby quickly caught on to this game and would start to scan the side gait at the fence as well as the side doors of the house. I would then find another point of entry such as the side porch and run into the pool from there. Other times, I went all the way around the house to the carport and ran to the pool that way. No matter how the game turned out, Abby always had a great time. If I was able to sneak into the pool, the surprise exhilarated her. If she caught me before I started my dash, she would meet me before I jumped in and play and wrestle with me there. Somehow, I think she had an intuitive grasp that she had ‘won’ the game. After that, we would get in the pool and play some more.
I look back with fondness at that time but with some regret that I didn’t enjoy those moments to the fullest.