Fire! Screamed the dog. The building’s on fire!!

No, it’s not, I said.

Yes it is, shouted the hound. We gotta get OUT of here!!

Puppy… we’re in church. It’s Easter. That’s incense, not smoke, and while I agree it’s smelly, nothing’s going to hurt us.

She was still uncomfortable with the idea so halfway through the first hymn we exited the building. Disappointing, because I love howling my way through that music. I don’t care who I offend, I sing at the toppa my lungs when it’s a good one. Don’t be standing near me when the organ fires up the Crm Rhondda. It’s not only a hymn (pronounced “CAH-rum RON-dah”, the name of the melody), it’s the Welsh national anthem. They know how to bellow a tune, even if they are overly stingy with the vowels. Welsh is seriously beyond me. The Hawaiians stuff in as many vowels as they possibly can, the Welsh are happy to just not use them.

Try pronouncing this: Mae fy nghi yn boen yn y pen-ol ond rwy’n ei charu (Welsh for “My dog is a pain in the buttocks but I love her”.) Nothing like Spanish, which you can kinda fake if you need to. I mean, there aren’t enough vowels.

Back to the dog. We left the sanctuary and she tilted her head to one side. Why’s the guy in the dress swinging a burning purse? I mean, I know you guys do some weird stuff, but what’s that about?

Oh, my god. That’s called a thurible. It holds the incense. And he’s wearing a robe, not a dress.

Whatever, snorted the dog, and started sniffling around. She’s not allowed to relieve herself in her guide dog vest, so I whipped it off in case there was a piddle in her future.

I glanced up and realized the lawn was a veritable rainbow of spots. What the heck?

Oh, NO.

Me: Okay, puppy, we need to go out to the lawn in front of the church. No piddles for you here.

Dog: Uhhh… NO. I gotta wee. And maybe more.

Me: No. C’mon, let’s go. Move it, move it, move it.

Dog: oh, honey, I sure am about to move it. There’s one giant movement a-comin’.

Me: Shit! NO!

Dog, with evil smile: Exactly.

I… helped… the dog leave the area before all… plumbing broke lose in the middle of the Easter hunt.

Dog: What th’ heck? I gotta GO.

Me: Let’s go let’s go LET’SGO…

The dog is now freaking heavy at 50 pounds but at least she didn’t decorate the bedecked lawn. And she wasn’t interested in the eggs because the church decided in light of dietary sensitivities, the mess of melted chocolate and the frustration of parents dealing with sugar-hyped kids, the eggs this year would contain stickers.

I found that a bit disappointing, but then, having had the dog near the hunting ground, hell, stickers it is. I can only imagine what she would’ve done if they had candy in them.

Actually, I prefer not to imagine.

Anyway, we went back into the service after she’d done what she needed to do. We’re still working on the “settle” command, so she’s up, down, sniffing around, saying hello to anyone she can (everyone is so polite about not paying attention to her unless we say it’s okay, but Miss M doesn’t see it that way.)

The other problem is how big she’s getting, but she still doesn’t have full control over her back legs as she sits. If she’s on a smooth surface, she doesn’t have the abdominal muscles to prevent herself from winding up doing the splits when sitting – her legs slide in opposite directions.

As the pews (benches) are seated on polished cement, but the aisles are carpeted, guess where she insists on sitting? Worse yet, she then settles into the “down” position and her enormous tail becomes a cunning object over which any passing parishioner can trip as it spans halfway across the walkway.

Miss M sitting half on the cement, half on the carpet
Sitting in the pew, butt on the carpet.

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