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When Ya see a Vagabond sleepin like this, ya know they’ve had a rough couple of days

July 1, 2012

Hay Ya’All, its Ben Awhile.

Still a figurin out where it is I’m headed from here, but gittin closer ta hittin the road again soon. Stopped downtown this past weekend ta visit a friend er two, but fouwks was purdee displaced cuz of some Pride of the Gaities event er sumpthin. Not quite shore what it was cuz there shore didn’t seem ta be anybody ouwt an the ones that were shore didn’t seem nun too prideful. Soes I didn’t get ta visit much with old friends, and my one new friend here was so displaced with all that Gay maihem, he didn’t even bother to git his bedrole out soes I just left him be.

One of the fellers that was at that Gaities event kinda stumbled up over upon me on his way out of the gate. I guess he was one ewe could a’tell was gay cuz he had allot of makeup all over his face. Actually now that I recollect on it sum, he’s prolly why I didn’t see ’em as nun too prideful. The makeup was a runnin all tagether an he was lookin more like a sad TV hobo than sumone celebratin gay festivities. He also looked more than alittle lonely so I aisked if he’d like ta sit a spell, so he did. He started tellin me why he was a lookin more like a TV Hobo than a prideful gayitie and it was a purdee sad story, but not as sad as most uv the fellers I’m usta talkin too.
I didn’t let on I knowed this, cause he jist needed sumone ta listen. Well, we bonded purdee good an he started feelin a bit better with me a listenin an bein with him, soes he started a turnin that ole conversation an aiskin me how a feller gits to whar I am write now, jist livin off the streets. Seems he could tell, unliek that new song that was playin OVER and OVER agin behind us at the Gaities event, that I shore wasn’t born this way, soes I shared with him abit uv my storee from before I gots ta here.

Since I’m now officiully uncountable as a member uv the population accordin to the US Govermint Census cuz I douwn’t no longer have a structure over my head, an since’n I’m now a might ways removed from my old gnomes an elfen friends, I gots sum time agin soes I’ll recollect alittle some uv what I told him for ewe alls….

Back a couple years an decades ago, my older brother was gittin ready to bring his third child inta the world. Since he had named the first two Rethal and Rambo, and his last name was Reineke, his wife put her two foots down and swore she’d a leave the third one a’layin in the barn if he went ahead an named it Rasha. Seems Rethal, Rambo, and Rasha Reineke was jist a bit too much ta spit outta yer mouth whin tellin the kin folk an inlaws yur new kids names. Soes my brother acqui-essenced and named her Rachael. Now, don’t aisk me what the difference is thare between Rethal, Rambo an Rasha vs. Rethal, Rambo an Rachael, cuz I was jist the brother. You’ll hafta aisk him. Anyways, I lieked the name Rasha soes I took it fur my new dawg.
Well, Rasha turned out ta be a purdee special dawg and everyone could kinda see that. Was as if she coulda thunk yer thoughts as ewe was thinkin um, an would be one step ahead bafore ewe could git the words out. She was what the breeder society fouwks who knew about speciul dawgs called a golden Chow. I thought she looked more cinnuminum, but I wasn’t gonna argue with those breeder fouwks. They’s seemed ta know it all and ewe all knows about knowitalls. Jist best ta let em think the way they dews cuz they ain’t gonna hear a word ewe say no matter how loud ya done say it, and if they dew pause enuf ta hear a word, they douwn’t nun believe what ya tell em anyways.

Anyways, I took Rasha to one of them thar Breeder shows one day they’all lieks ta take their dawgs to ta show off, an Rasha stole the show. She was a sittin in the doggie lineup liek they done aisked the dogs ta sit in, an lookin at me standin at the end of the leashes with the other folks a standin in the peepoled line liek they done aisked us ta stand, and wood’unt ya know it, she gots right inta, and started readin my mind.  She looked at the dawg to her left, an looked at the dawg to her right, an looked back at me an knowin what I was gonna say next, soes she went ahead an did it bafore the judges told me it was ok ta tell her OK. She got right on up from that sittin position, did her warmup dance, jerked up an’ back, an right ouwt of her collar lieks she always did when we got ta playin, and started runnin her figure 8s. She was a dodgin an a weavin in an ouwt uv those other dawgs, those other fouwks, an me. The judges started a gaspin an everyone a started tryin ta catch her while they was a tryin to yell at me at the same time ta do sumpthin, an someone even started ta cryin cuz thare was a road over yonder an they was shore she’d a git out thare and runned over. I was a laughin cuz I knowed Rasha didn’t never go in the road cuz she knowed she wasn’t allowed thare. She’d always stop fur me at the crosswalk an wait for the OK ta cross, even when she’d be a chasin the neighbor’s cat. Besides that, she was jist a playin with all these other new dawgs and people an why would she even think ta run way over by that thare road? Wae’ll she started ta slow down after lookin around cuz she could see thare wasn’t sumpthin jist right, right thare. Sees, all those other dawgs jist a sat thare starin and didn’t even git up ta play with Rasha. She figured it abit quicker than I did, but I wasnt’ far behind. Those fouwlk an those dawgs jist weren’t the playin kind. Those folks and even those dogs were purdee serious an more concerned bout howed thay all looked an acted moreso than if they gots ta play er show a spark er two.  Rasha an I did’unt go back none after that. They didn’t seem none to kindly toward us anyways, we knowed they wasn’t really our kind neither, an we didn’t need more uv those serious fouwks around liek them that douwn’t liek ta play none. Life isn’t all abouwt that, or jist all uv that….

One more storee bout Rasha here than I’ll gits ta the part ewe awls wants ta hear. Wasn’t too long after that dog showy day that my Grandmother’s best friend, lifelong work partner, vacationin and huntin partner, all-around partner, and also my Grandfather passed away. They had been married an a working side by side on the farm everyday fer 62 years, when he up an hadta go two the doctor fer a minor operatiun, but done didn’t make it back ouwt uv the hospital.  Seems one uv the staff members was sick an gave him their infectiun. Ewe’d think if a staff person uv a hospital was infected, they’d make um stay home so the sick people thare didn’t git the staff infectiun an die. But the day my Grandfather was there that’s zactly what happened an he did. I also think that cuz it was only the second time he’d ever even a been to a hospital or a doctor fer that matter, and bein 82 years old an all, he jist didn’t know where the right exit was that he was supposed ta git up an walkout of, soes he didn’t. Some fouwks jist don’t like to aisk fer directions especially whin thare goin somewhare, an bein in a hospital an all, git confused with all the doorways marked ‘exit’ an end up takin the wrong one. Guess’n I’m liek my Grandpa in that way soes I’m gonna avoid the hospital fer as long as I can too.

Well anyways, Rasha an I started thinkin after 62 years uv livin, an workin, an vacationin, every day tagether with the only and same someone you’ve always worked an vacationed with, maybe my Grandmother shouldn’t be left all alone out in the country in that big ole house. Since I hadta go on a buithneth trip ta New York fer a spell, and Rasha lieked the country, she wenta stay with Gram (my grandmother). Everyday I called Gram ta aisk her how Rasha was doin and everyday Gram sounded a little better an alittle happier when she’d tell me the storee of what Rasha did that day. See Rasha knew that Gram was hurtin purdee bad even though Gram would never let on she was hurtin about my Granpa up an leavin her, so Rasha was payin extra attention ta Gram an makin sure she was gonna be OK through this missin process. She remembered Granpa an the way he took care of Gram, so Rasha was determined ta make her feel as safe an comfurtable in her house way ouwt thare in the country jist the same way Granpa always did. She knew these two two-leggeds were abouwt as speciul as two-leggeds come so with only one uv em left she was payin extra special attention.

One day when a feller came ouwt thar ta Gram’s house after Granpa was done gone, she did jist liek at the dawg show an showed she was jist a differint breed a dawg than all those jist regular dogs. She got ta readin Gram’s mind. When a new gas feller came to the door an said he had filled Gram’s gas tank, but she didn’t remember orderin it, an tried ta come in an git Gram’s check, she told him ta wait at the door. Rasha was layin there sleepin at the top uv the steps, but she still heard it. When the feller came in after Gram had gone up the steps, she started a growlin. Gram heard her growl abit, an Gram always havin that singing kind of voice aisked the man if he had a come in. Wa’ell he knowed that he had, but he didn’t say nothin back. Rasha didn’t think that was none to polite not respondin ta Gram in her singin voice, soes she let the feller a know that and started a barkin purdee loud. Gram got up to go see what Rasha was a barkin at, that feller decided he’d jist go on up those steps an get that check, an Rashta decided she’d had enough of his disrespectin Gram. She jumped up and leapt at that feller ta make sure that was the last step he was gonna be takin fer a spell. He’s lucky he decided ta turn an high tail back ouwt that door. It’s also a good thing fer that feller Gram had jist got the latch fixed soes Rasha wouldn’t go ouwt on her. Actually, it was prolly a good thing fer me as well. I was runnin ouwta buryin room up in my woods anyway. When the gas company came ouwt the next day ta fill that tank twice, they only charged Gram fer the one tank since they said the other feller didn’t really put much none in. In fact, they’d didn’t even know who he was or could even recollect that he worked fer them.

When the neighbor came over the day ta hear what had happened, Rasha jist layed there a sleepin at the top uv the steps an let her come in an walk by. She knew Gram knew an trusted the neighbor an Gram didn’t even hafta tell her. Nothin at’all liek that gas feller whare she knew sumpthin jist didn’t smell right…

After that episode, Rasha made sure not ta leave Gram alone in a room by herself much, cause she was seein Gram was startin ta worry about livin way ouwt there by herself, especially with that gas man still a lerkin around somewhare. Even when the grandkids would come fer a visit and want ta take Rasha fur a walk, she’d lay down at the end of the yard, cuz Gram wasn’t along an was back there in that house by herself. She knowed who she was supposed ta be with, what she was thare fer, an how far her boundry was. Funny how four-legged jist seem ta know an respect that better than two-leggeds, er maybe we jist forget it too much when we’re dealin with our own kind.  Prolly wuud’unt be so many uv me an my friends here on the ouwtside if’n we did. 

Yup, Rasha took good care of Gram that summer an when I got back from my summer uv New York buithneth, I saw jist how gooda care Gram took uv Rashta while I was gone too! When I went ta pick her up, she musta gained more than 20 lbs. Gram was usta cookin a hot lunch for Granpa an his workin fouwk everyday on the farm soes she was a cookin a hamburger fer lunch every day fer Rasha just liek Granpa was thare still (I knows he prolly was). Sees, when ya live in the country and work hard, an ya raise Black Angus beef fer 62 years, ya always have plenty of real good meat in the freezer to feed a workin bein, two or four-legged a hot an hearty lunch. Ya’all knows they shore earned it!

We’all, I guess I got alittle carried away tellin about Rasha and Gram. Guess you’ll have ta wait till next time ta see how it is I got from bein a country kid, then ta workin that New York buithneth, then ta jist now hangin ouwt here a talkin with this gay feller who ain’t none too proud. Hope ya don’t mind waitin fer another story cuz liek my buddy there, this vagabond’s kinda tuckered ouwt.

Vagabond Ted

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