I’ve gone and done it again. I scolded myself at my own stupidity. You’ve lost your fucking boss’ dog.
Not just any dog either. Her precious, prized possession; Mason.
Two nights before, Mason was spooked as I attempted to run out his energy at my apartment’s dog park. He was a huge, 75 pound infant and nothing scared him more than the garbage men. I wrapped the thick leather leash around my right wrist an extra time for good measure and grabbed the length of it with my left hand. But with the clink and clank of a single trash bag falling from the truck, Mason was gone.
Now here I stood in a God-forsaken field on the edge of nowhere looking for him.
“MASOOOON,” I bellowed, my voice reverberating through the thinning October air. My voice echoed within my head, but no one could hear me. I was a very small, pathetic, voice in a field of nothingness. But still, there I stood, shaking a baggie of dog food in my bright pink rain boots. Despite there being absolutely zero chance of rain, I found this choice logical.
I should’ve been in class. I lied and said I was with a “buddy”, but I certainly was not. Alone in this field I felt the most alone. Probably almost alone as Mason was. My eyes were trained to be hyper-alert to anything white, the color of his soft fur. So naturally, any trash bag and piece of styrofoam were a cause for alarm.
Damn it, I cursed the air. Her dog is her everything. And of course, he has to be afraid of EVERYTHING and EVERYONE.
Just as my hope was dwindling, I saw a significantly Mason-sized white object ahead in the tall grass. Elated, I attempted to move calmly and quietly through the weeds. As I crept closer, I could see the fuzzy texture of this white object. Yes, it definitely looked like a potential Mason laying down for a rest. The grass was tall and thin, reaching up to the middle of my thigh.
When I was about 20 feet away, more details of the scene came into focus. Black, flying, bugs. Swarming around the center of the white object, landing on it, flying into the air above it. Oh. My. God.
Did I just find the corpse of Mason?
Now, with tears welling up behind my eyelids, I burst into a full sprint towards him. Please don’t be dead, I bargained with the probably-dead dog.
My mind noticed before my body could catch up and suddenly, I was practically standing on top of the dog corpse I was chasing. But it was not the dead body of the 75 pound prized white lab mix. Instead, I stood before an old, rotten, ripped open, white couch. And the flying bugs were not in fact flies circling the rotting body of my dear Mason. They were….
Shrieking and swatting, I sprinted my way back through the grass that I had just previously conquered.
Gasping for air, I ripped off my baseball cap tearing up my hair with my fingers, threw my bag of dog food, all while clumsily running in those fucking pink rain boots. I walked right into the hive of big ass, healthy bumble bees. GREAT.
Once at a safe distance, I collapsed. Burying myself in the tall grass of the field, I knew I would be invisible, even though there was no one around to see. Heart pounding, hands shaking I just sat there until finally, I forced from my throat a mumble,
“At least he’s not dead”.
This story is an example of one of those moments where I feel as though I wake up, come to, or begin seeing in color. In that instance, I woke up from a bad dream in a field, with a swarm of bees chasing me from their hive in a ripped up couch that I thought was the dead corpse of a massive dog that I lost and was searching for. In that instance, I looked around and thought why the fuck am I here? It was one of those times where I seriously question how I get myself wrapped up in the oddities that is my life.
Oh, and to alleviate any stress that you might have been feeling through the duration of this story, Mason was found two weeks later and I’m pet-sitting him in this exact moment, remembering and reflecting on that time he put a dozen people through hell while he clumsily galloped to God-knows-where for 14 days.