Someone was knocking at the door. If it wasn’t for the dog, she never would have realized someone was at the front door. Just as the Great Dane stopped his thunderous barking, the door bell rang and the dog went crazy again.
She stood up from her gardening and yelled toward the front yard, “I’m back here!” Leaving her gardening tools on the ground and brushing the dirt from her slacks, Lily brushed a stray blond curl out of her face with the back of her hand. She did a little backbend stretch, adjusted her straw hat and headed toward the side gate and the front yard. Just as she reached the corner of the house, a golden mass of all legs and tail came tearing out the back door and knocked her over. She landed with a thud on her behind. The dog rushed to the gate, barking and jumping like he was an animal possessed.
“Jasper! What is wrong with you? Settle down and stop acting like a lunatic!” Jasper leaned down just in front of the gate, settled on his huge front paws and began whipping his tail back and forth with so much momentum; it looked like a one armed bandit swatting at a swarm of invisible locust. His hips were moving back and forth so powerfully, his hind legs could barely stay on the ground.
Lily wasn’t troubled about being knocked down, in fact, she was kind of use to it by now. That’s what happens when you share your home with a 100 pound dog. She began laughing at the crazy beast as she got back on her feet. I wish I had a camera with me, she thought smiling to herself. That dog is crazy!
“Who is it Jasper! Who has gotten you so excited?” She was not expecting anyone today – it was Tuesday and the mail delivery was not due until after lunch. Lily was close enough to the gate now that she could see over the fence.
Lily screamed. She ran toward the gate. “Jasper! Move out of the way! Move, Jasper, move!”
Lily franticly struggled to get the gate open. She lifted the latch and pulled on the handle, but she could not get the gate to budge. The crazy dog was jumping against the gate! Finally she was able to shove the huge animal out of her way. She threw the gate open and rushing through the opening; she leaped into the arms of the man she had not seen for fifteen months.
Stopping just outside the gate, Ethan dropped his military issue duffle bag and caught Lily as she flew the last two feet toward him. He tightly wrapped both arms around her and buried his face in her hair. They spun together, struggling to keep their balance on the uneven garden path. Jasper was just a second or two behind Lily and with a giant leap, knocked both of them down. Crashing on the grass, laughing and hugging each other, with the excited Jasper jumping all around them, it was legs, tail, hair and fur everywhere.
Finally able to catch his breath and easily pushing Jasper to the side, Ethan stood up and pulled Lily to her feet. Smiling he said, “Now that is what I call a Welcome Home!”