White Dog laid her head against my heart. "Your heart is still racing, momma. Please try to refind your balance," she said as I hung up the phone to cancel Steve's emergency rush home. All was well but my body was still reacting to mere minutes ago when that was NOT very apparent.
I walked into the living room to the White Dog Army all crowded on the watching chairs howling in panic. Over them I heard the mean voice of someone screaming, "Go on! Get out of here! GET OUT!" I looked out of the window to see our neighbor across the street shoving his dog into the gated entry and flailing his arms as he screamed at a cowering white dog who seemed confused and lost. The dog had its back to me and I could not see it clearly nor judge its shape/furs/breed.
White Dog. OMG! WHITE DOG! I did a quick head count...nine. Who was missing? Opal and Pearl, the newest girls who were JUST beginning to assimilate. I pushed through my bewildered WDA to check the other rooms of the house. Not there. I went to the bedroom and called into the yard, where I could hear Opal barking, After a couple of calls she came inside and looked at me with her head tilted.
"Where's Pearl?" I asked her. Pearl had not responded to my calls to come in, She responds to Steve (sometimes), she was not yet at that level of trust with me unless she could see I was holding a treat. I sent White Dog and Zsofia out to bring her in...Sachi went to help but all three came in without her.
I ran (as best this disabled old lady can) back to the front windows, the white dog I had seen was nowhere in sight. I grabbed the phone and dialed as I went out to the front porch to see down the half block to busy Central Avenue. "Steve? Is there ANY possible way that Pearly could have escaped when you left? or from the yard?" A quick description of the situation had him returning home ASAP (it was rush hour).
Meantime, I mustered my courage and slowly tottered my way out to the yard. Pearl could not be seen from the deck and there was no movement when I called her. I knew I was taking a risk of falling but the thought of Pearl scampering down Central pushed me as I held on tightly to maneuver the steps and walk past my studio. No sign of her but also no sign of an escape route. I was followed by a line of very concerned White Dogs.
Holding onto the far corner of the deck I spotted a bit of white past the storage barn behind the studio, next to the wall. "PEARL!" I called and she looked up, startled. She darted around the other side of the deck, up the ramp and into the house.
Suddenly I was shaking, I think just from the adrenaline expenditure. Cautiously I inched my way back and sat on the steps for a few minutes before getting inside. I collapsed into my chair and again picked up the phone...this time to tell Steve that he could turn back to class.
Pearl was asleep on the watching chair. We all asked the Universe to protect the White Dog on the run and return him/her safely to where he belonged.