Skip to content

Audrey Semprun, 06 Oct '12


We’re not pups anymore – Rufus and I: Just an old dog and his owner: Or just an old owner and her dog. And what a big dog he is - all one hundred and maybe more pounds of him. I got him as a puppy. I had rescued him. He had yet to see his first summer. He’s a big, strong, Rottweiler and Shepherd mix.

Out on a walk. The lead is taut. Stop to take a picture. “Could you please hold still? You’re messing up my shot.” Another blurred shot – Like the ones that I take of the world without my glasses. Useless as they are.

“They’re just readers,” the doctor tells me. “You can get some at the corner store.”

Where did he learn to be such a lousy sales clerk? Didn’t he see that I was there to spend my hard earned money? I bought the glasses; the ones with the pretty frames. Yeah, like I could find them at a Five and Dime. Is there really a Five and Dime? I think that’s before my time…

I see a sunset. I capture its beauty. It looks like God painted a Monet in the sky. The image is seemingly blurry, but it’s really not, that’s how God designed it. Beautiful. I see Autumn in the oranges and the blue.

I try to capture another shot. This one is blurry. I give up on the dog standing still. I drop the lead. “Go on, Ruuf,” I tell him. “But don’t wander off.”

He stays close by and my hand is steady once again. I like to call him Ruuf. Never did care for his name being Rufus. I wanted to name him Brutus. Didn’t get my way though. Not like when I named Barney.

I wrote a poem about Barney. “Sometimes life is perfect and we are young,” it said. I found Barney on a farm. He was amazing until he about got his head beat in by a neighbor. He spent a week in the hospital, and his eyes were blood red for weeks. Then he was a bit mad. He almost killed me once. “Off!” I finally shouted out the call words that he had been trained to obey. So simple, but what a challenge to remember in the thick of things!

I was just playing with him when I roughed him up a little bit. Never did that again.

It was winter. Barney had a lot of winter in his life.

But Rufus, he’s a good old boy. Every day he stands at his gate and gives me this whine-bark that he wants to come and play. And if I’m in my hammock in the yard he stands Sentry – so close that I cannot sway in the breeze.

He never jumps up on me, but nudges in so close that he almost knocks me over. I consider it his hug. But when the night-time comes, he’s on duty once again. He won’t come in out of the cold.

We capture a few more pictures and it’s getting dark. I get distracted a couple of more times with my photo journey and realize that I had turned to go home one street early. By the time I figured that out I was already half way up the block.

By now it was full on dark. I know how my husband worries. No complaints here though.

I pick up the pace. My wrong turn has cost me an extra block and a half. The lead is taut.

“Come on boy,” I coax. “We got to get home.”

Comments · 8

Page 1 of 1

  • Audrey Semprun said...

    I've had my writing on hold for quite a while. It's good to have an avenue to get the muse moving! I know that I'm a little rough around the edges, but the ice is thawing. I appreciate the writing community that I have found.

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Jessica Cambrook said...

    This was a lovely little snapshot into someone's life, it was great to read and it flowed well. The only thing was "the lead is taunt" should be "taut". I hope you keep writing!

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Anthony Blackshaw said...

    I agree with @Jessica Cambrook. I quickly became interested in the character's life, sucking up every last morsel of information (I'm naturally curious - or more accurately nosy). Really enjoyed.

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Audrey Semprun said...

    Thanks, @Jessica Cambrook. I corrected the word. I wondered why spell check fussed at me. Sometimes I can't hear speech correctly. I looked up taunt. One meaning was twit. I was amused. :) It meant tight to me! Now, taunting, I would have recognized as teasing. Appreciate the head's up, and especially the encouragement!

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Audrey Semprun said...

    Thank you @Anthony Blackshaw. I just corrected taut as per @Jessica Cambrook help. It was a great walk. I was taking photos for Instacam's weekend challenge. This week's challenge is #whpshiftingseasons.

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Angela Watt said...

    Hi Audrey - I really enjoyed this and in particular liked the opening few lines. I also liked the inclusion of the seasons - Rufus not yet seeing his first summer, Barney having a lot of winter in his life. I thought that was well done.

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Audrey Semprun said...

    Thanks, @Angela Watt. I appreciate the feedback. That line about Barney having a lot of winter in his life is bitter-sweet, to be sure. I loved him as a puppy, but didn't really have much in common with him after his injury. He bonded really well with my ex though, and that was good.

    • Posted 7 years ago
  • Audrey Semprun said...

    I'm sorry to say that Rufus passed away this past Thursday. 11/15/12. This story captured our last outing together. I'm grateful that I had a chance to share our special bond. Rest in Paradise, my friend.

    • Posted 7 years ago