All the Trimmings (500)

No one made Thanksgiving feasts like my mom.  For one thing, the turkey was always juicy.  I don’t know why, but that’s a big problem for lots of T-Day cooks.

Thanksgiving meant company.  My mom’s parents lived on the top floor of our house, so they joined us.  My calabash Grandma and Grandpa, Frieda and Jimmy Lance, would visit from Los Angeles almost every year at that time.

My calabash aunt and uncle, Ruth and Bob Ballard would be there too.  Uncle Bob was my dad’s PCP, and Aunty Ruthie, a counselor at Radford High, was my mom’s best friend.

I don’t remember who all was there this particular Thanksgiving.  We had a dog named Dusty, a Weimeraner, a dog bred for hunting.  He was full-grown, maybe 70 pounds.  My Auntie Ruthie and Uncle Bob had given us Dusty when he was a puppy.

In those days there were no fences.  There were, of course, property boundaries, and Dusty had free run of our property.

There was a problem, however, and that was the dogs of our next-door neighbors.  Across the stream that bordered one side of our property, with a little bridge joining the two sides, that neighbor had two Dalmatians.  They were large too, both in the same weight class as Dusty.

Our family are huge animal lovers.  We did not like these Dalmatians.  They were bullies.  Psychological bullies.  They would never cross the bridge, but if they saw Dusty, they would come to the edge of the stream and bark at him in menacing ways.  They taunted him, as if they were spoiling for a fight.

This particular Thanksgiving I was salivating over the aromas that permeated the house.  Dusty went to the patio door, his way of hinting that he needed to get outside to do his business.  We let him out.

The party continued until all of a sudden, we heard barking like I’d never heard before.  I think Dusty was tired of being bullied.  It was time to cross the bridge and settle the problem with those Dalmatians.

My dad saw what was coming and bolted out the door.  I watched, along with everyone, as Dusty tore across the bridge and in a second, flipped the first dalmatian on its back and with one swipe of his paw, ripped it open from throat to scrotum.  It died instantly.

My dad had arrived at the bridge and was screaming at Dusty as he crossed it.  The neighbor was running down his yard too, calling for his dogs.  Neither one could get there to stop the wrestling match that momentarily left the second Dalmatian dead, its throat slit wide open.

Oddly, our neighbor didn’t seem upset.  I remember my dad and my Uncle Bob helping carry the bodies of the dogs up to my neighbor’s house, gripping them by the feet.

I don’t know how many people lost their appetites that Thanksgiving.  I don’t remember if I ate.  I’ve never seen anything like that again.  Thankfully.

* * * * *

Aloha #WriterMonday, I hope you are well. I need a haircut. Today’s #WritingPrompt is

meals

Use the prompt to generate a piece of any length, any style, and them post that piece as a comment below. I would love to read it : )

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