The News From the Dog Walk
First of all, it was a beautiful morning, the kind that even if you live here takes a minute to sink in. The kind you might not believe exists without a photo-- that still doesn't do it justice.
Then, as often happens when we walk our dogs my friend and I get to talking and and pretty soon the three miles or so seems too short. She's getting ready for a trip Outside to see family, so has firewood elbow (the same as tennis, actually, from stacking cord wood) and a clean chimney to make sure the house sitters are prepared for when the snow-line reaches her yard.
The chimney sweep told her a good story.
Randy is a bit eccentric, he's also a very good mason, and a grandfather, and has long hair, a bushy beard and granny glasses and drives a big olive Army surplus-looking truck with a malamute standing on the roof. A live dog that is, that looks like a furry pony.
They got to talking about trips back East, and how different that country is from ours, and Randy said that the last time he drove South a few years ago now, he got lost in Manhattan and finally ended up at toll booth, but he didn't have any change, when suddenly his truck, with the dog still on top, was surrounded by heavily armed Homeland Security forces who escorted Randy and the dog to a police station and interrogated him from behind a one way window.
Apparently Randy and his rig had caught the attention of many New Yorkers who live by the post 9-11 rule, "See something, say something" : If it looks suspicious or out of place then notify authorities right away.
Randy, who is cheerful and polite, answered all the questions calmly and gave the officers all his IDs. After some time had passed, a military officer in a dress uniform (my friend said that Randy said he had "A hat full of gold scrambled eggs") came in and asked him his full name, and when Randy gave it, he said, "You were a Navy Seal in Vietnam, weren't you?" and Randy said, "Yes Sir." And then the police gave Randy and his old truck with the malamute dog on top a police escort with sirens flashing and everything right through New York, like a one man parade.
I don't know if this is all true, but I'd like it to be, and Randy really was a Navy Seal, and he has that rig and the dog-- and it is a great story-- the kind that tells a good truth.