I don’t even need to call out his name anymore. I just pick up his leash and he is instantly there at my feet. Looking up and smiling as he waits. Like he has a sixth sense about it. He sits very still and straight as I clip the leash on his collar. As soon as it locks in he jumps up and runs around in circles no longer able to contained his excitement. I’m the only one who walks the dog in my house. Walking around the block just seems too tiresome for them. I wonder how anyone can deny this beautiful creature such absolute joy. I look forward to it every day.
I grab my poop bag, stick in my pockets (the one part I don’t enjoy so much) and head out on our trip around the neighborhood.
Soon as I get out onto the road I can hear a woman screaming at her children. Her voice is deep and angry. I can see them through their kitchen window. The little girl she is yelling at can’t be any older than 7. From what I can understand they were making cookies and the little girl spilled some flour on the floor. The mother was extremely upset. Then she called her daughter a very vulgar obscenity. My heart dropped. I fight off the darkness as it tries to surround me. I often hear this woman screaming at her kids. It’s nothing new, but I never grow numb to the words, my heart breaks every time.
As I walk away I wonder what makes a parent stop caring. What happened to them to make them no longer desire to nurture and teach, but only downgrade and abuse. There must be something hidden deep within them that prevents them from shinning light.
I reach the end of the street and the old woman who lives there is out watering her lawn. She says hello and approaches my dog to pat his head. She tells me that her pear tree in the backyard is overflowing with fruit and she can’t possibly eat it all. She tells me to bring the kids by and fill up a bag or two to take home. I tell her I will. I see how much she cares for that tree and know how much she enjoys giving away its fruit. She also loves seeing the children run around her yard. She lives alone since her husband died two years ago so I make it a point to always walk her way. She has a kind and soothing tone to her voice.
I walk around the corner and see one of my neighbors digging through his garbage can along the side of the curb. I ask him is he has lost something. He says that he didn’t lose anything, his wife through out a cup that had a screw in it. The screw went to his glasses and he needed to find it. I ask him where he had put the cup. He told me he had it on the kitchen counter and didn’t want anyone to touch it. But his wife always has to clean and is always throwing things important away. I told him that I hoped he finds it and continued on my way.
I can never understand how someone can get upset with someone else because they didn’t take responsibility for their own stuff. If it’s important to you and you don’t wish to lose it, put it away. Take responsibility. It’s completely yours, no one else. Not only that but why would he leave it somewhere like a kitchen counter that he knew had to be cleaned every day. Some people create their own negativity and chaos. No matter what time of day I walk by his house it always seems to be the darkness part of the street.
So I stop to let my dog relieve himself on the road. When he’s done I lean over and scoop it up into a bag. (Oh how I enjoy this so much). and I notice across the way, the part of the road that is lined with trees and brush now has quite a bit of garbage in it. Stuff tossed out the windows of cars passing by. I make a mental note to grab a trash bag when I get back home and come back out and pick it up. I don’t know why people think its okay to throw trash out of their windows and create something ugly for everyone else to look at. It’s a negative action that takes just a little more light from everyone’s world and in an existence where we need all of the light we can get. Ugly people infect everything they see and touch. They drive through your life shedding pieces of their blight in the hopes to make your world ugly too. They throw trash, they spray paint signs, they complain and blame and never take responsibility.
I cross over to the street that loops back towards my road. Children are playing in the street. They all stop to pet my dog. My dog absolutely loves the attention. The sun is out and I can smell the lavender coming into bloom. People are out working in their yards or washing their cars. This is in a way how I picture Heaven to be. Everyone getting a long, working together, children playing, dogs wagging tails and Spring flowers in full color.
I round the corner and run into another neighbor who is letting his dog urinate on the lawn across the street. He starts talking to me about something he heard on the news. I’m not sure what it was. Something about Obama and the health care system and how the government is out to repress the people. He always is saying something about poison in our water or chemicals in our air. Everything is a conspiracy to him. We both knew people who died at Sandy Hook Elementary. We both attended funerals and vigils. We continue to see and feel the effects of that day first hand and yet he still buys into the garbage and the lies people say about it in order to sell advertisements on their web sites. He knows how much the lies continue to hurt those families and yet he can’t stop himself. Darkness blackens him. He can not take responsibility for his own misery so he blames it on a manifested master plan to control everything and everyone in a way that has grown so big there is nothing any of us can do about it.
My dog pulled at his leash and I told him it was nice talking to him but my dog was ready to go. My dog is very insightful sometimes. He knows when I need to be rescued. Negativity hovers around that guy like dirt hovered around Pig Pen.
I passed by a house where I mother was sitting next to her daughter on their porch and she was signing to her. The woman has been deaf since she was nine. The little girl signs back. I don’t know what they are saying to each other but I can see the love and the patience in each others eyes. They both look up and smile and wave. I think back to the woman who was calling her daughter names at the beginning of my walk. She was given a voice which she abused, while this one had hers taken away. Very sad. The little girl looked up at me and gave me a sign. I felt the sun get very bright around us.
I suppose each person on my block is different from one another. We go about our lives and fight our own individual struggles. But it seems that those who open up the windows and let the most light in are happier. Those who share fruit from their trees or wave and smile add light to everyone’s life. Negative thoughts seem to only breed anger and distrust. Not taking responsibility for what is yours, blaming everyone else for your mistakes. Yelling at a seven-year old for spilling flour when it’s kind of her job to do so.
One does not need to work so hard at life. The darker and more negative you are the harder it becomes to turn the wheels. Just let go of all that, open up your doors and bask in a little positive for a change. You’ll see how much brighter things get and how the wheels just seem to turn on their own.
Don’t let ego stand in your way. Ego is the sand that grinds in the gears and dries the axle. But that I suppose is a lesson for another walk.