Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Pride in dirty tennis balls

Sensi had a fantastic weekend.
With all the rain we’ve had the past few days, it’s almost difficult to remember that Friday and Saturday were absolutely gorgeous days. And I happened to have both of them off work.
I set my sights on cleaning out the basement and also burning some of the brush and leaves we’ve accumulated since the fall. I left the basement door open and, thanks to the beautiful weather, spent more time outside burning than I did inside cleaning.
I hooked Sensi up on a very long chain, giving him access to the better part of the backyard. He had a blast.
Since it got cold so fast after we moved in, he really hadn’t spent much time in our new backyard.
He sniffed around the field grass by the barn, winded his way through thick brush by the swamp, rolled in the green grass and bathed himself in the sun.
The previous homeowners also had a dog, a black lab. And apparently, that dog had some tennis balls.
On Friday, I watched Sensi emerge from the brush prancing, his tail proudly wagging. He was carrying something black in his mouth.
“Whatchya got?” I asked him, and he pranced around me.
I could see a hint of greenish fuzz and realized he had found an old, rotting tennis ball in the woods.
It was definitely gross. Disgusting might be a better word.
But never, NEVER, would I take away from him something that is both harmless and was definitely a dog toy at one time, and something that he was taking so much pride in.
All day long, he played with that tennis ball. Our yard slopes downhill from the house, so every time he dropped it on the ground, it rolled away from him. He loved it, pouncing on it like a cat would. He batted it around, tossed it up in the air, chased after it relentlessly.
Everyone once in a while, he carefully set it down to take a drink of a water.
On Saturday, he found another and even grosser tennis ball. Between the two, he was simply elated.
I thought about bringing some of his not-so-disgusting balls outside, but I knew he would just ignore them in favor of the blackened, rotting tennis balls.
These nasty things were extra special to Sensi because he found them. A toy from his overflowing basket of toys just wouldn’t compare.
By the end of Saturday, Sensi must’ve spent almost 20 hours playing with those tennis balls.
He was so enthralled with them that he didn’t even notice the herd of deer cross the swamp a mere 20 or 30 feet in front of us.
I’ve never seen him so proud of toy.
Leave it to a dog, though, to take that kind of pride in the most disgusting tennis balls I’ve ever cross across.
The tennis ball in the photo is not from this weekend ... Sensi was actually a puppy in that photo.

1 comment:

  1. Maybe you should throw a few tennis balls out there to "age" before this upcoming winter so they will be ready for him to find next Spring!