Sunday, November 25, 2007

Zoe Becomes a Reindeer

Sailor here.

Today was one of the most exciting days yet. Zoe decided to practice her "Up On The Rooftop" dance for Christmas. She looked so funny! Only Zoe's dad Erik wasn’t amused.

Zoe and Katy were up in Katy's room. Katy was doing Katy things and Zoe was doing Zoe things, which means that she (Zoe) was hunting for cats or cat food. Katy let Zoe outside onto the balcony. The balcony is on the third story. So is Katy 's room. (That's kind of how things work around here.) Katy went back downstairs and I pushed my way into her room to see what Zoe was doing. I took a long sniff around and didn’t see Zoe anywhere. She was gone! I bounded downstairs, sounding the alarm.

“Mom! Katy! Erik!” I barked, jumping around in circles. “Zoe is in trouble again. BIG TROUBLE. Come quick!”

Everyone ran upstairs. I felt just like Lassie.

We couldn’t find Zoe. We looked high. We looked low.

"Not another Thanksgiving fiasco," I thought.

Well, it turns out that we didn't look high enough. Zoe was on the roof! She had jumped onto the roof from the balcony and then chased a squirrel across the shingles. She ended up (way up) on a section of roof above the front door. And there she sat.

And then she started sliding....

Mom said the roof is an 8:12 pitch.

Erik said the roof is very steep.

Zoe said, "HELP!" She started to shake and whine.

I was fascinated. “Zoe, are you afraid?” I asked. I didn’t think Zoe was afraid of anything.

Zoe said, “I am NOT afraid! I am mad at the squirrel for jumping into the maple tree.” She whined in frustration. “I’m simply sliding my back paws on the roof to make my point.”

Erik got a ladder. Mom put her back paw on the paw of the ladder to steady it.

“Come on, Zoe,” Erik said to his dopey husky. “Come to me.”

Zoe started to creep down the shingles, but lost her nerve.

“Um, I don’t think so,” she said emphatically. “You come up here.”

“Zoe, come one, it’ll be all right, come so I can lift you down,” Erik tried to sound soothing, but ended up sounding a little panicky.

“Well….” Zoe put one toe on the shingle below her belly. She inched her other toe to the shingle. Her back legs followed. She repeated the belly crawl.

Slowly, inch-by-inch, she crept toward the rain gutter and Erik’s outstretched hands.

Katy had the presence of mind to grab her camera and make us all famous. Mom had the presence of mind to ask Erik if the gutters needed cleaning. Erik had the presence of mind to growl, “Not yet,” without taking his eyes off Zoe.

When Zoe reached the gutter, Erik grabbed her by the scruff of her neck and slung her over his shoulder, fireman-style. He inched his feet down the ladder, balancing Zoe carefully. Katy looked worried, but I wasn't. I knew Mom was ready to catch them if they fell.

Erik carried Zoe into the back yard and set her on the ground. Zoe bounced in circles and ran to the oak tree to see if that pesky squirrel had reappeared.

Mom and Erik and Katy all looked at each other and then looked at Zoe.

“Well,” Mom said, “At least she didn’t decide to be Santa and come down the chimney.”

“I wonder what she’ll think up next,” Katy mused.

“I wonder if she learned her lesson,” Erik mumbled, wiping his forehead on his shirtsleeve.

“Nope, not me,” Zoe said, undaunted. “I’m a HUSKY!” She leaped up and sprinted around the lawn to shake off her Reindeer Nerves.

I looked at Mom and at Zoe. I laughed doggy fashion with my mouth open and my tongue hanging out.

“So, Zoe,” I called out, “how do you like being a reindeer up on the rooftop, huh? I bet you get a pair of antlers and a big red nose in your Christmas stocking!”

Zoe was not amused.

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