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The BBQ (or Molson Works the Crowd)

By Belinda

I woke up on Friday morning to the drum of rain on the skylight. As I brushed my teeth and went through hurried preparations for my work day--hurried because the dark morning outside meant that I had wakened later than intended--I listened to the weather forecast. Two days of rain were forecast. Not good news. All day long it rained steadily.

Our events committee at work had planned a Fall Family BBQ for Saturday and at the last count there were 70 people coming. We had no contingency plan. Rain or shine we were having a party--but it would be so much better if it shined. I wrote on Friday that I was praying that the weather forecast was wrong.

On Saturday as soon as morning came I rolled out of bed, padded across the carpet to the window and peaked outside. No rain! I whispered a prayer of gratitude.

As I prepared for the day I listened to the weather on CBC Radio for the second day. The forecast had improved to cloudy with sunny periods. Again I thanked the Lord for the revised weather forecast.

As I put on my running shoes Molson misread the sign as a walk coming. He started snorting and sneezing, which he does when he's extra happy about going out.

"No, Molson, it's not what you think," I said, laughing, clipping on his lead, and opening the car door. He jumped into the back seat with no loss of enthusiasm at all and not a backward glance. As long as I was going somewhere, anywhere, he was up for the ride.

I couldn't help thinking that once again I could learn from our dog. Something about being flexible and falling in with God's plans when his are different to mine. :)

As we drove out of our driveway at 10.30 to head to the conservation area, I gazed up into the deepest blue sky. We had the most beautiful Fall day imaginable for the BBQ.

And we had such fun. The sun warmed our faces and shoulders and a gentle breeze fluttered the leaves above us, still summer green. One by one, vans arrived and people climbed out, some with wheelchairs and walkers rolling over the grass.

Families mingled, marshmallows were roasted in the fire pit and games were played. The strains of two harmonicas drifted in and out of the sound of conversations and the hours went by so fast.

Molson was the most popular guest at the BBQ. Like a newborn baby handed from woman to woman at a baby shower, he went from person to person; petted, walked, and fed surreptitiously.

I told one family member how Molson came to belong to us--how Brenda had been doing data entry as a volunteer at the kennel where he was born, and how he was reclaimed from a less than responsible owner. I told him how the kennel owner offered him to her free, on condition that he be available for occasional stud services.

The man I was speaking to smiled. "What a life," he said dreamily, "where can I get a job like that?"

Of course Mo Mo does so much more than that. He has a mission and he is fulfilling it perfectly.

My friend Dave called today and we were talking dogs. He said he disagreed with a behaviourist who said that dogs don't have emotions and that people project their own emotions onto them.

I so agree with him. God's breath is in all things. And he put a special puff of his life into dogs--I'm convinced.
"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." ~ Roger Caras

"My little dog -- a heartbeat at my feet." ~ Edith Wharton

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