Sometimes things happen in my life and I forget to write about them until long after they are past. I though it'd be fun to share some of them with you.
Gypsy Attempts Flight
One day I was driving along with my dog when we pulled up to a stoplight. Gypsy crawled into my lap and poked her head out of the window. A little old lady in the car next to us saw her and started cooing and waving and blowing kisses. I smiled and waved back. I guess Gypsy got confused because next thing I know, she leaned back on her haunches and sailed right out the window. Good thing it was the middle of the day because she skittered onto the pavement behind the old lady's car.
I froze and the little old lady's mouth made an O, but thank goodness for the Hispanic guy in the pickup behind me, who immediately leapt out of his car and crouched down, calling to my little Amelia Earhart. Knowing she was afraid of men, I thought his attempts would send her scampering across the median and into oncoming traffic. I threw off my seatbelt and jumped out of the car. At first I tried calling to her but I guess she was just as startled as the rest of us because she stood there looking around helplessly.
I darted over and grabbed her, then ducked back into my car just as the light changed. Rolling up my window quickly, I hugged her to my chest.
A few days later, I was taking her outside when I heard a voice behind me. "Hey, it's you!"
I turned around. It was the Hispanic guy. "Hey," he said. "I saw your dog fly out of the window over on Jasper Mill Rd. Craziest thing I ever saw!"
Turns out his name is Ignacio and he lives a couple of floors down from me. Now we wave whenever we see each other and he always asks me how my "Flightless Wonder" is.
The weekend after the mancub's fourth birthday, we went up to my Dad's house to celebrate. When we first arrived, the mancub was totally overwhelmed. He had grown accustomed to little Gypsy but was still afraid of bigger dogs. The sight of big ol' behemoth Telmah was too much for him, I guess, because every time he caught sight of any of the hounds, including Gypsy, he started shrieking, "De dog! De dog!" and trying to hide.
We went out on the deck and tried to teach him how to open presents. Totally unimpressed by the possibility of new toys, he toddled up to my dad instead. After studying him for a moment, he raised a finger and pointed.
"You are The Man!" he declared. We all busted out laughing. We had been test driving Big Poppa as a grandpa name but the mancub would have none of it. Throughout the rest of the afternoon, whenever he wanted to talk to my dad, he would address him as The Man. As in, "Hey The Man, what are you doing?" "The Man, you need to eat your dinner." "Please The Man, help me." And even last weekend when he came over to visit, he asked me, "How is The Man?"
Other adorable moments included the mancub dissolving into giggles for no apparent reason, being more overjoyed at receiving clothes than pretty much anything else, and climbing into my lap in the middle of the gift giving to take a brief catnap before jumping down five minutes later to resume opening presents. And let's not forget his crazy butt-bobbing wiggle dances at the sound of anything remotely resembling music, or him climbing onto the sofa and reciting bible verses loudly with occassional interjections of "Praise de Lord!" and "Holy ghost fire!"
Speaking of holy Ghost fire, last weekend T-Bone and I went to his friend Eille's church. You see, Eille was in a terrible car accident last year and had broken both her legs. To top it off, her two motherless nieces had just joined her from Cameroon and her husband was still in Africa, leaving her alone with the girls. However, the girls were able to care for her and she regained use of her legs well before the doctors had said she would. As a gesture of thanks to God, she wanted to sponsor this weekend's church service.
So apparently this was one of those churches where the preacher doesn't stop talking until the inspiration stops falling. We got there at 9:00 in the morning and wrapped up the service a little before 2pm. In between there was a lot of rising up to sing, sitting down to pray, and even flailing of limbs and speaking in tongues.
Even with all the aerobics, I kept nodding off. So I hardly noticed the flurry of activity as little girls began to leave their seats and assemble at the back of the church.
Now at Eille's church, they don't pass the plate for collection. No sir. About halfway through the service, the little girls rose and started handing out envelopes. T-Bone pulled out some bills for me to tuck in my envelope and stuffed some in his as well. I sat back complacently to wait for the plate to reach me but suddenly T-Bone poked me.
"Rise," he said. "We are going to process."
"We're gonna what?" I asked, totally confused.
"We will process," he insisted, glancing urgently down the aisle. I looked back to see a cluster of people gathered near the rear entrance. Are we leaving? I wondered. What about my donation?
No time to wonder aloud, though, as T-Bone had risen and was looking flustered. I grabbed my purse just in case we were leaving and followed a trickle of people to the back of the church.
We stood there for a minute before I realized that we weren't standing at all. At first it seemed that everyone was shuffling in place; then as the musicians picked up, I realized they were bobbing up and down in rhythm to the music. At some unknown cue, the women in the front of the line squatted down, butts thrust out, and began to bob more furiously. This had a ripple effect, with the wave of earnest butt bobbers rapidly approaching where I stood, the lone white girl in the crowd, stiff as a board and clutching my purse to my chest like I thought one of holy annointed was going to rob me.
I was engulfed in a sea of roiling worshippers. Not wanting to look awkward and judgmental by remaining motionless, yet afraid of causing bodily harm if I slung my own hindquarters around too vigorously, I settled for bending my knees up and down. The effect was not unlike a stork on a pogo stick.
The leaders in front saw that everyone had taken up their thrusting rhythm. One woman lifted her foot and planted it firmly in front of her, bobbing for a few beats before taking the next step. Immediately the whole group followed her slow rhythmic procession. As we were swept toward the front of the church, my fellow parishioners raised their envelopes high. Some of the women began to ululate; others howled in tongues; still others hitched up their skirts higher and squatted more deeply into their dance. The men cried out praises and prayers. A tall gentleman in the aisles snapped pictures; I blinked, temporarily blinded as the flash popped rapidly around me.
Finally, mercifully, we reached the front of the church. The tithers in front of me dropped their gifts into a wicker basket, then twirled off to dance their ways back to their seats. I made one sincere attempt at a genuine butt bob as I dropped my envelope in among the others. Feeling my face convulse and convinced that I looked more like an ad for Pepto-Bismol than a grateful supplicant, I tucked my chin under and scooted back to my seat.