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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Patience (08/21/08)

TITLE: Dogmatic Patience
By Linda Germain


It seems like it has rained for forty days and forty nights and now the news man says there is a crack in the levee threatening us with an unprecedented flood disaster. More than one person has bugged my owner to evacuate but he has a reputation as a very patient man. He thinks it’s best to just bide his time and wait.

Some of our anxious neighbors call to ask if he has seen any looters breaking into their homes. If they were that concerned they should have stayed too. I heard him say he has prayed for God to keep us safe. He pats my doggie head and reminds me again that he is uncommonly patient.

The rain stops for a brief spell and I hear strange voices outside. I start to growl but he tells me to settle down, they won’t hurt us.

“Yoo-hoo! Anybody in there?”

I pad up the steps behind him to the second story as he heads for a window to lean out and check on the visitors bobbing around in some kind of a yellow rubber boat. He hollers back.

“Only an old man and his four-legged friend.”

“Come with us, Sir. The levee is about to break and you won’t be safe here.”

“No thanks!” My brave person assures them, “I have prayed for protection for me and my dog, Lucky. I’ll just sit here patiently and see what the Lord does.”

They leave, shaking their heads. I rest my golden blonde chin on the window sill and look down. Being a rather tall canine, I see the porch below is covered with liquid. A sudden whooshing sound elevates the water right up to my eye level. I don’t know what a levee is…but it must have burst.

My human grabs my collar and we head for the attic. There is an old rocking chair up there for him and some musty smelling quilts for me. He tells me he doesn’t mind resting until God intervenes. He says it is a virtue to be patient.

When I see water seep under the attic door and across the floor, I decide it’s time to make a comment.

“Woof, Woof,” I say, with as great alarm as I can muster.

He seems to understand and climbs an old step ladder and pulls me up through a hole onto the roof. I’ve never been up here before. This is pretty cool.

As we sit close together and lean against the chimney, a helicopter hovers over and a man with a bullhorn yells, “We’ll send the rescue basket down and you climb in; bring your dog too.”

My person yells back, “No thanks…we’re okay.”

They can’t believe how patient he is to wait like this, but they leave too.

I hear him pray, “Lord, I’ve asked for you to do something to help Lucky and me. I have been so patient all day, and now I feel abandoned.”

I don’t know what this word patient means, but it seems to me that he has had two different chances to be saved already. What is he waiting for? Sometimes I just don’t understand those strange two-legged animals.

The rain continues and cold water covers us by a good ten inches. I hear the familiar purr of a boat motor and someone calling out. My natural instinct kicks in and I begin to paddle toward the sound. Some people keep whistling, “This way, boy. Come on, you’ll make it.”

I am hauled on board and covered with a towel. I get lots of hugs and congratulations on my swimming. I look around but don’t see my human anywhere. I bark as loud as I can but no one speaks my language. After I have had a good meal at a place called the Rescue Squad Headquarters, I hear them talking. One of the men reads what’s written on my tag. He says he knows my person. I perk up my ears.

“Yeah, they found him. He was nearly dead. I understand he is a patient over at Mercy General; stubborn old coot wouldn’t accept any help. At least Lucky here had some sense.”

I settle down on a fluffy blanket by the heat vent and lay my head on my dry paws. I sigh as I fall asleep thinking about how much grief I have to put up with, but then again, I am a very patient dog.

Moral: To get saved, Action trumps Patience

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Member Comments
Member Date
Dee Yoder 08/28/08
Ahh...very clever play on words. Love this dog and his amusing voice. He has much more sense than his "human"!
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/31/08
Your title really fits your story. The moral is certainly apt for the current situation. Great job.