22 October 2005
It was 2:45 a.m. when Sheila ran outside to bark. It was a quiet bark and she only barked twice, but I was out of the recliner instantly and opened the door to call her inside.
Only she didn't come. Refused to come. Stood there daring me to come and get her. This is not like Sheila, most of the time. I called and called and called (quietly) for about 10 minutes.
I was in my bare feet and didn't want to tiptoe thru the rocks and grass and weeds and probably some dog poop to go to the back fence to get her.
I got desperate and took her very favorite snack, Liver Biscotti, outside and lure her back. Nothing.
I even stood on the patio and fed her very favorite snack to Slingshot, since that was a surefire way to get her. Nothing.
(This morning Walt discovered a dead rat where she was standing.)
Finally I did pick my way in my barefeet over all those things hidden in the grass and I grabbed her by the collar and brought her back.
On the way back, I stepped on one of my birkenstocks, lying in the grass.
At least he hadn't eaten it, as I feared he might. He has picked up shoes before and usually just moves them from place to place. I picked the shoe up and brought it inside, looking for the other one in the house. It was nowhere to be found. I decided not to look for it outside in the dark, but to wait until morning, when it was light and I could see better.
This morning I went out, looking for my other shoe, and I found it thoroughly chewed to where it is no longer wearable because my toe hangs over and drags on the ground.
I also found my irreplaceable Easy Spirit shoes (they no longer make my size) that I use when I walk on the treadmill, partially chewed.
There was a sock, chewed.
My latest (just arrived) magazine from The Gorilla Foundation (following the history of Koko, the sign-language speaking gorilla) was torn to pieces.
Most of Sheila's toys were there too, showing that Slingshot was building himself a nice little nest, and feathering it partially with my footwear.
I am most upset about losing the Birkinstocks. I do not change or upgrade shoes easily and I'd had these Birkingstocks, I am embarrassed to say, for 15-20 years. It took a good 10 years before they felt comfortable, and now it's time to take out a mortgage on the house to buy a new pair and then spend another 10 years breaking them in. Birkinstocks are the cast iron skillets of the shoe world. The older they are, the more valuable they are because they have finally been molded just perfect for the foot of the wearer.
In fairness, I can't really blame Slingshot. I had seen him take a shoe outside before and knew that I needed to keep them locked up, and I did not. I left the Birkinstocks under my desk. The Easy Spirits were where I left them when I got home from the gym on Sunday.
So I'm beating myself up for not having locked up my shoes.
And I'm dreading starting the breaking in process for a brand new pair of Birkinstocks.
Slingshot is feeling more comfortable here (though he still doesn't like Walt and still barks and growls whenever he sees him), and even has started playing with Sheila--watching the two of them chase each other around at dusk is really fun.
But I definitely have to program myself to keep my shoes behind
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Old photo from the days when I was still able