Friday afternoon I took a walk during my work break. On my way back to the office, at the stoplight, I waited for the signal to turn to green and when it did, I first looked to my left to the car that was eager to turn right into the crosswalk, even though I had the right away. I caught his eye and began to walk. As he passed, his foot was clearly pressed hard to the accelerator—body language—from his irritation and his impatience directed toward and out of his car.

I was annoyed. It seems that I also have a tendency to take humans communicating through their cars personally. I made it to the other side of the crosswalk, onto the sidewalk, when I saw a man and his dog. The dog was a grown puppy. He reminded me of my childhood dog whom I loved dearly. He was my pal. This puppy was a lighter golden color. When I set my eyes on the puppy, all traces of my annoyance faded away. Forgotten. A large smile covered my face as I continued to watch the puppy walk with his floppy legs and happy gait. He was a couple of paces behind his owner. Walking and walking, happy and adorably clumsy, then the puppy lifted a leg and peed right there—in the middle of the sidewalk. I was about seven feet behind. I didn’t laugh, but I continued smiling. The man saw me. He tried to pull gently on the puppy’s leash. It was no use. He then said to the puppy, “really? Here. Really?”

“Is he a retriever?” I asked, slowing down, as I was about to pass. He answered that yes he was. “He is absolutely adorable,” I said.

“Thank you. I really appreciate that,” he said, holding the leash as the puppy finished his business. As I walked by, the puppy gave me a quick hello with his snout. I moved ahead appreciative to see such a happy puppy with not a care in the world. I walked back to work with a lighter step.

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