The dog days are passing and daytime gets just a little bit longer each day, it’s nice to see a little bit of night time before bedtime. Jimmy and Ricky are in their homes, sitting on sofas with their parents, watching TV. Sally pats along the sidewalk, a pink tongue showing around black gums rests on slobber saturated white chin hair. Sally’s leash is attached to her collar and drags along behind her. She has been taught never to leave the yard without her leash, it’s not something that makes any since to her but she doesn’t think about it much. The cool, evening air is a nice change. Long hot summers and long white fur are not the best combination, but Sally hasn’t thought about that much either. Sally just pats along listening to the sounds her paws make on the concrete and dripping a bit of saliva that leaves a trail to be followed. The trail only lasts a few minutes on the still warm sidewalk. The sidewalk changes to bricks. Bushes and shrubs are provided at intervals that must have had a dog in mind. Sally has no destination in mind, she is not leaving, she’s just on a walk, a nice, quiet, uninterrupted walk. Pat, pat, pat she walks for the sound of walking just as much as for any other reason.
Ricky pushes aside the sliding glass door that opens to the backyard. The pool light is the only light on and it gives a creepy, shadow filled unnatural feel to the backyard.
“Sally!” Ricky shouts and waits by the door for the blob of white fur to bound into the open space and find her bed for the night.
“Sally!” he shouts again, a little louder and he throws the switch next to the doorway and turns on the back porch light. He waits a few more seconds and then steps into the backyard, barefoot and wearing PJ’s.
“Sally!” the backyard is small with very few hiding places. Ricky looks behind the few unlikely hiding places and then he sees the open gate. He runs back into the house.
“Mom!” he runs down the hall and finds his mother in the bathroom putting on face cream. “Mom! Sally got out!
His mother looks at him with blotches of white cream under her eyes and a dash of white on her forehead. “Where did you look?
“She was in the backyard, I’m sure of it. When we came in from our walk she saw the sliding door open and took off so fast for the backyard that she pulled the leash out of my hand,” Ricky paused for just a second to get his breath and then added, “the gate to the street is open!”
Ricky’s mom started wiping cream from her face, “get dressed, I’ll go down into the basement and tell your dad.”