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December 7, 2018: A Conversation with Ryder

The following conversation took place shortly after I arrived home from town. I spent some time this afternoon at the Bishop’s Attic Thrift Store.

Ryder: What’s that you got in your hands?
Alys: It’s a springy Santa. Look. The base is a spring.
R: It bounces up and down.
A: Yes.
R: I want it.
A: You can’t have it.
R: Why not?
A: I’m going to use it as a part of the agility course.
R: Give it to me. I want to chew Santa’s head off.
A:Then I won’t be able to use it for its intended purpose.
R: Did you bring anything home for me?

Ryder with Squirrelly Whirly
Ryder with Squirrelly Whirly

A: No.
R: Why not?
A: I used to. Then you stopped being interested in what I brought you.
R: You are so wrong.
A: Okay, so you took the stuffed animals into the other room. Then you forgot about them.
R: But I did take them into the other room.
A: But you didn’t do anything with them.
R: Gimme that thing you have in your hands. I’ll tear it to shreds.
A: Sorry, this is taken.
R: So you said.
A: Ryder, I am so sorry.
R: For what?
A: That I didn’t bring you anything.
R: And you wonder why I get into the compost bucket.
A: We humans are often quite clueless. You know I love you to pieces. You are the best dog ever.
R: I didn’t even get taken for a hike today.
A: This is because Pete and I had to go to town.
R: I know, I know, and when you got back it was dark.
A: Yes, pitch black out.
R: The other day you took the old black horse for a night time walk. What about me?
A: You are right. Tomorrow I’m planning on getting out early and getting as many of the horses as possible out. I’ll take you along. We’ll go on the trails.
R: What if it rains?
A: If you want to go on an outing, we’ll go on an outing.
R: I can handle rain, but I don’t like cold.
A: The earthquake . . .
R: That was the most terrifying thing ever. The house started shaking and I started to run downstairs. Then I got pitched off the stair to the bottom of the stairwell. That’s where you found me.
A: We were so glad you were okay.
R: But what gives? The house keeps shaking.
A: Ryder, these are aftershocks, small tremors that occur after big quakes.
R: I don’t like them.
A: None of us do.
R: Do you think that there is going to be another big quake?
A: Yes I do.
R: When?
A: I have no idea.
R: Are you scared about this?
A: No, not really. I keep picturing myself being outside.
R: In the woods?
A: Yes, or on the road.
R: Do you picture me with you?
A: Yes I do. And let me tell you this. If I’m inside and upstairs when this happens again, the first thing I am going to do is grab you and hold you close.
R: I have one more question. What happened to Squirrelly Whirly? I have not seen him since the quake.
A: I don’t know. I’ll keep an eye out for him.
R: Please do. And the next time you go to town, bring me back a stuffed animal.
A: I promise you I will do this.
R: Thank you.
A: You are so very welcome.

Next: 342. 12/8/18: A Conversation with a Tooth on the Mend

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