The actual realisation that I am home comes on Friday morning when I get up, and the first thing I see when I open the curtains is the rain: slashing rain. Unprecedentedly this summer it didn’t rain for over six weeks in Ireland and as much as the rain is needed I hope it won’t last for the next six weeks now.
My prayers have been granted and by midday it stopped.
The rain is gone, but the warm weather stayed, heavy and humid for this country always embraced by some breeze, but still pleasant and tolerable . Shorts and sandals can stay out of the wardrobe for another while.
I load my four legs gang in the car (my two legs gang stayed behind in Italy)and drive down to the beach. Despite all the rain the sand is already dry, but the beach is deserted, exception made for few dogs owners. These people usually let themselves to be discouraged by the weather and today’s black clouds, that are still populating the sky and promising more rain, are not that scary,yet.
The giant dog is having his usual seaweeds feast, and I have just given up trying to stop him from eating them indiscriminately. I better instead keep an eye on Clara whose dementia is deteriorating, and she tends to lose herself, on top of the plot, more and more often.
It is a delight to have beach nearly all to ourselves and undisturbed.We reached the far end where the rocks take entirely over the sand, and unless the tide is very low, there is no ground to walk on.
We turned back, beside it is getting late and those armless black clouds don’t look that armless anymore.
Kurt, for my satisfaction, seems to take a break from the seaweeds. His attention is all for the rocks. He is walking very close to the rocks and with his nose hitting the ground sniffing like crazy. I don’t really pay attention to him being just glad he had stopped ingesting material that more likely will be puked on my kitchen once upon a time white rug.I am more busy trying to not lose Clara who,one of the last times we were here,runs off confused and some kind soul found her for me at the fishmonger shop. Maybe she was not very confused but well aware of where she was going: we will never know!
After a while I am walking I turned to check on the giant dog to see if he is following and I see him pointing at the rocks with his front paw stretched up . Soon he tries to make himself go into the rocks through a little opening. Unfortunately, he is too big to fit in there and he got stuck.His tail is nervously moving side to side, and his hips wiggle frantically until he manages to free his head out of the hole. Whatever it is hiding in that cave must be of particular interest because he doesn’t give up not even when calling for him with my meanest tone.
He repositions himself in the front of the rocky cave and starts barking alternating his gaze to me and the rock. I get Clara on the lead and start walking towards him.
He barks and keeps trying to reach whatever is inside the rock with his head rather than with his paws. This,is when in every decent movie dogs make some gruesome discovery and usually bring their owners some human body parts:”Oh boy, this might be my chance to be involved in something criminously exciting!”.
I start running toward the rock dragging poor Clara who is undoubtedly wondering who is more of a moron: her mother or her brother. My run lasts literally few seconds because running on the sands required a level of fitness I can’t possibly have, also, whatever is in there, it must be dead and won’t go anywhere. I also stop running because I realise I am not in fancy Florida where dogs, born with an exceptional sense of smell and curiosity, bring amputated human limbs to their owner who, after abandoned themselves to a terrified scream, will call an efficient 911. Nop, I am not in Florida or Virginia, and I won’t call 911. I am in Ireland, and I will call a more boring 999 where the operator will assault me with hundreds of questions to know what my emergency is to be sure to redirect me to the right line. Once on the correct emergency department, they won’t track my location by my phone number, but I will have to give them an exact address and my phone number. Now that they have the full picture, I will be passed to the nearest local Garda station hoping they have a patrol car to send out.
As more reality take over my head, as more I slow my pace.No matter what the dog is after, Kay Scarpetta won’t show up on Skerries beach.
I call again for big ears german but having his full head stuck in the hole,again, he can’t hear me. His tail is now wagging happily from side to side, He pulls his head out, and after he makes few steps backwards, he turns around and starts running and jumping toward me with something in his mouth.
I can’t properly see what it is and I won’t hide that the worst of the hypothesis cross my mind: a body part? A dead animal?Rotten leftover food?
Now that the dog is getting closer I can see that whatever it is that is carrying ,is very colourful. At this stage, unless it is a human foot still wrapped in a happy sock, I tend to exclude that is something requiring the Police intervention. With all those colours must be sure something armless, right?
I let Clara off the lead, and she runs toward the mysterious object that Kurt had now dropped but that he is still guarding closely. She sniffs it but loses interest immediately. Now I am sure it is not something that was once alive considering Clara’s notorious tendency to roll herself on everything is dead and rotten.
Kurt picks it up and again and eventually comes to me. With a proud expression and an unstoppable waggly tail he drops his finding at my feet: It is a flip-flop. A Hawaiian style flip flop looking sad and miserable without a companion to match with.