This week I yapped with Lily and Jack Pritchard and even got to ride in their golf cart. At the front door, me and my assistant were greeted by Lily, a pretty little Silky Terrier.
“Well, hello there, Bonzo, honey!” she said, coming right up for the Wag-and-Sniff. “Ah’m Lily Pritchard and this heah’s my Mommy, Sarah. We are just TICKled you’re gonna interview me and mah goofy step-brother, Jack. He’s in his crate because he just goes CRAzy when we have company. Or when’s its dinnah time. Or when we’re goin’ for a walk, or a ride. Or he sees a squirrel. Why, he used to grab the Spanish moss outta Mommy’s flower pots. And take tissues outta Daddy’s pockets and petooie little pieces all ovah the place. He’s only 9 months old, ya know, still a puppy. Anyway, Ya’ll come on in. I’ll introduce you.”
“Thank you, Miss Lily,” I said. We followed her to where Jack was, in his crate, wagging to beat the band.
“Jack, this is Mistah Bonzo! ’Member, I told’ja he was gonna come and interview us for the PAYpuh? Now, Mommy’s gonna put your leash on you, so you gotta behave, you heah?”
Jack got so wiggly as his Mom approached with his leash I thought he’d just wiggle the crate right across the room. When he came out he stood still long nough so I could tell he was a fine lookin’ poocheroo, curly black hair, great ears, pawsome long snout and that terrific Poodle posture.
“I’m real happy to meet’cha, Mr. Bonzo,” he said, straining to jump up on my assistant by way of greeting. Lily and their Mom both said, in Very Stern Voices, “GET DOWN, JACK! NO JUMPING UP!”
My assistant just laughed and patted Jack on his curly topknot, which didn’t help. I’ll have to talk to her about that later.
“I LOVE company, Mr. Bonzo. I’m so excited you’re here. I’m learning so-o much stuff. Well, tryin’ to. But there’s a lotta words! Stay! Sit! Come Here! Get Off the Couch! Don’t Jump UP! That’s the hardest one. Did you hafta learn all that stuff when you were a pupster?”
“I sure did. But don’t worry. You’ll get it. I know it doesn’t seem like it now, though,” I told him, remembering my puppy days and how I had the hardest time remembering the difference between Sit and Down. Even now I have to remind myself, “SIT means only caboose down and DOWN means tummy down.”
“Jack,” Lily said, “Mommy’s gonna take off your leash if you PROmise to stay heah, and not go gallopin’ off. Think you can do that?”
“I think so,” Jack said, wiggling in excitement.
His Mom carefully unhooked the leash. For a nanosecond he stood still. Then he shot across the room, jumped on his Mom’s chair, then over my assistant’s chair, then down.
“JACK!” Lily and her Mom said together. Loudly.
“Oh, right!” he blurted, and hopped into his Mom’s lap. He wasn’t ackshully a lap dog and his legs were hanging all over the sides, but she gave him a treat anyway. “He gets a treat just for being cute,” Miss Lily said with a smile.
“Tell me, Miss Lily, where did you both come from?”
“Ah’m from South Carolina,” she said. (“So that’s where that southern drawl came from,” I thought to myself.)
“And Jack,” Lily continued, “he came from Upstate New York. Mommy really wanted a poodle, so they searched all over and found Jack. Daddy (his name’s Graham) went all the way up there to get him, just for Mommy. Wasn’t that just the sweetest thing?”
“Indeed it was,” I agreed.
“Did you know our Daddy can FLY. He teaches other humans to do it, too. That’s what he’s doin’ right now! And, Bonzo honey, I have ackshully flown WITH him. Up in the a’uh! I’ve been in a Cessna 170 and a Piper Arrow! Ah even have mah own doggles!”
“Shut the doghouse door!” I exclaimed.
“Ah KNOW! Daddy says he’s been a Fleet Commander, in charge of 1,200 humans and multimillion-dollar operations worldwide, and now he’s out walking us and carryin’ a Poop Bag. But he totally loves us. I’m definitely a Daddy’s girl and Jack’s a Daddy’s boy.”
“Mr. Bonzo!” Jack called. “Guess what we get to do NOW! Go to the dog park with Mommy in our golf cart! Come’on!”
Their Dad has just come home for a sandwich, so Miss Lily stayed with him. The rest of us piled into the golf cart. It wasn’t far to their neighborhood dog park, and Jack introduced me to some super pooch pals: There was Lucky, a Maltese; Missy, a bulldog mix.
“She sits with her owner, all calm,” Jack told me. “We call her Steady Eddie. And there’s Jax, he’s a Labradoodle. Looks like a lion. And Homer, he’s a poodley mix. And this is Casey, he’s a Standard Poodle. He’s The Boss.”
Casey was way taller than Jack, nice black coat. “He’s right about that!” Casey grinned.
“And I’m the baby of the park,” said Jack, proudly.
Too soon, it was time to go. Heading home, I was picturing Lily in her doggles, flying through the clouds next to her Daddy. Wow! That’s one for my Bucket List.
Till next time,