White Dog and the rest of the Army was just settling down after dinner. It was a meal appropriate for the first night of Fall, a hearty turkey stew with carrots, potatoes, green beans and big fluffy spinach dumplings that soaked up the paprika laced broth.
"It was a perfect Autumn day," White Dog said. "Even with the excitement." Taiko nodded enthusiastically as he thought back over the fun at the Paws To People Park Meetup, his first official outing as an ambassador in the WDA's fight to end cancer.
The weather had been picture perfect New Mexican blue with a warm sun and gentle breezes. The grass at the park was long and lush from the recent rains; perfect for rolling and napping in. White Dog, YoYoMa, and Taiko had been voted Ambassadors of the day but at the last moment Puff made such a plaintive plea that she was also strapped into her marching harness and allowed to come.
YoYoMa sighed as he thought about the smells of the family party grilling a birthday meal clse to us as our group talked about Pups and Environmental Allergies (WD thought talking about allergies while out in a park was somehow ironic) and discussed plans to hold a Candlelight Vigil in November, National Canine Cancer Awareness Month, to remember the Warriors. The White Dogs told Nuka, who preferred to stay home, and Oso, who opted to stay and keep her company, about meeting Oso the constantly moving little MinPin and Zoe, who came with her brothers Dragon and Sen-ge.
"The funniest part," White Dog told her audience, "was at the end when we were all comfy in the grass and just enjoying the day. A sudden gust of wind came out of no where and lifted the shade canopy right out of its weights and sent it tumbling across the Park with our Paws To People sign streaming out behind like a kite tail. Surprised the heck out of dad and Elena who were sitting under it. Really, it surprised us all!"
Nuka and Oso looked at Steve in concern and when they saw he was laughing at the memory, relaxed. There was a deep breath of contentment all around as with full tummies and the warmth of family love we settled in for an evening of no obligations, of just an evening together. And then, in an instant...
CRACK!!! Suddenly we found ourselves under attack by a fierce and noisy thunderstorm. Our peace was shattered as Taiko and YoYoMa dove for protection and stared wild-eyed, shaking and fearful. We huddled together and pressed tightly against one another and waited out the tirade.
"It always rains during State Fair," Steve shared with our new boy. "Just a fact of life here in Albuquerque." Somehow, Taiko did not seemed calmed by the news and I saw Yo mentally counting the number of days left in the celebration.
May your Autumn be filled with a bountiful harvest of love, laughter, and shared happiness.