So, Christmas is here, once again. The older I get, the faster time flies.
Maybe that’s why memories, of Christmases past, grow stronger every year.
This year, I’m reminded of the first Christmas with Sam; the little pup from a liter our neighbors continually lost track of. More than once, we shooed him from the middle of our road. Scared to death he’d get run over. Even more afraid it would happen in front of our five-year-old, scarring him for life.
Having seen enough neglect, my dad knocked on the neighbor’s door and asked if they’d be willing to part with the runt of the liter. “Sure,” they answered. “We didn’t know he was out running around.”
So, that’s how Sam came to live with us. Not without a few problems. I’m still puzzled how a little four-pound ball of fur could topple over a fully decorated Christmas tree. Perhaps the five-year-old had a little more to do with the “toppling” than the pup? I’ll never know. Nor does it matter.
I loved Sam as much as anyone. He was the silliest, craziest, most independent dog you’d ever want to meet. His internal clock was uncanny. At 4:00 pm, without fail, he’d climb halfway up the stairs so he could watch me cross the street on my way from work. His joyful cries, welcoming me home, brought a smile each day.
I don’t doubt we saved Sam’s life and gave him 11 loving years.
But he enriched our lives many times over.