Walking down a road with Charlie, ever vigilant because Charlie was not my dog. We'd been taking care of Charlie for a year. We, the old retired people, Charlie the high-energy dog, for our daughter, the globe-trotting, energetic individual who we would not believe was ours, had we not been there at her birth.
I’d go early, less traffic, less people, and, hopefully, less other dog walkers. The more alone we were the better.
Charlie picked up everything I didn’t see first. Sometimes a stick or somebodies’ sandwich crust, innocent. Other times unidentifiable lumps of crud that I’d have to pick out of his mouth because I had no idea if it would kill him. Though I often wanted to myself, at that moment...
That day he’d got something and refused to let me have it. His mouth was shut, but it was obvious there was something in there. I couldn’t open the strong jaws, but I could do a “trade” if I had something.
Searching my pockets, I'd come up with nothing, no treats, not even crumbs! Frantic, I saw a lump of absolutely unidentifiable gunk nearby. I took a tissue and wiped it on the gunk. Then I ran it by Charlie’s nose, hoping for the best...
He took the bait!!! He let his mouth go slack, I retrieved the object and with practiced sleight-of-hand, distracted him with shout, a tossed rock, and continuing on our way. He forgot all about the object.
I opened my hand, and found a saliva covered pearl necklace. It was beautiful, one large natural pearl on a silver chain! I did try to find the owner, but after six months I realized I probably never would.
I wear it every day. It always makes me think of Charlie, and smile.