Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Joys of Children

As much as I complain (not here) about what I half-seriously call the Halfway House or Where I Currently Reside, I have yet to meet a completely dog-stupid child here. The ladies and I just met our newest upstairs neighbors - Andrea and Ethan, ages 11 and 9, respectively.

I have a can of Pringles to thank for the meeting. As I was trying to lug my 40lb box of farm fresh produce, my lone stand of Pringles fell to the earth, succumbing to gravity and improperly secured tops. It's entire load cracked and crackled across the tile outside my apartment's front door. Woe!

After the ladies did their business, Celeste relayed the message that she was going to take care of them chips. Mina was having none of that - the "foyer" was a dark, scary place and who eats off of the ground anyways? (Mina does, but do not tell her I told you this). So it was just me and Celeste, hanging out in the dark, the only sound a constant crunch, snap, crunch.

Celeste heard her first, those wayward ears far more attuned to faint sounds - like the clomping of a pre-teen's shoes - than my apparently deaf ears. And thus I met the newest upstairs neighbors.

Girl: Is that a German Shepherd? *awed*
Me: She's a mix.
Girl: May I pet her?
Me: Yes.
Girl: We have an American Staffordshire Terrier named Nina.
Me: Mina?
Girl: Nina. She's three, we got her when she was four-weeks old on Thanksgiving.
Me: I have a little pit bull too.
Girl: How old are your dogs?
Me: 2 1/2 and 11.
Girl: *big eyes* ELEVEN? Can we meet her too?
Me: Uh, sure!
Then I had to convince Mina that there was something worth her while outside the apartment.
Mina: You want me to go back out there? I believe I just shat and peed, thanks.
Me: Come on, missy! Mina, seriously, come here.
Girl: Your dog's name is Nina?
Me: Mina.
Girl: Nina?
Me: Mina, with an M, like Magellan.
Girl: *blank stare*
Mina: *trots past the kids, down to the lawn* Um, what have you brought me out here for, minion?
Me: Mina, come meet the kids!
Mina: What? You brought me out here for a couple of rugrats?
Boy: *pets Mina*
Mina: Oh. This isn't so bad. Little to the left, kid. *cocks head to side*
Boy: This is the cutest dog EVER!
Mina: Cute? Uh, hey kid, hate to break it to you, but I don't DO cute. I do beautific. Or magnificent. Sometimes I'll even do gloriously amazing. Never cute.
Girl: *pets Mina* She's pretty!
Mina: That's a bit better, taller kid. *trots back into apartment* See ya, I'm done here!
Celeste: PET ME, I WILL DIE FROM LACK OF PETTING!!!!!!! OH MY GOD THERE ARE CHIPS!!!!! *eats some more chips*

And then, get this, the girl shook my hand and announced she was happy to have met me and hopes to see me again.

There are a total of four pit bulls who live in my pseudo-complex. I say pseudo, because it's really a converted neo-Victorian mansion. Nine apartments, and perhaps the only landlord in my town who is pit bull friendly. These people have Mina to thank for that - she wasn't the first pit bull, but she was the only one to come with her own folder, two letters of reference, and a resume of accomplishments. She set the bar real high.


PoochesForPeace said...

How exciting. Your last Celeste comment = hilarious. That's one of my favorite things about dogs- when they are so, so extremely happy and excited about the little things, it never fails to cheer me up.

Pibble said...

I just finished reading this, here at 6:30 AM on a Wednesday morning, dreading heading off to work. What a fabulous story. (And my dogs are looking at me, cocked heads, wondering why I'm giggling like a schoolgirl.)

Mina and Celeste, Characters Extraordinaire that I have never met but I feel like I've known them for years. I look forward to their stories and their mom's writings every day.

Celeste: Enjoy those chips. Mina: Keep that bar high. You both deserve it!

Princess said...

I know I'm cheeseball, but that brought tears to my eyes! Love, love love to hear stories about kids who love and respect dogs. (asking if they can pet them first) and knowing about their own dogs!! I'm in awe.

Congrats on having such wonderful neighbors and their names are so close!!

Don't worry Celeste I'm sure they'll be back to give you more pets!!

Kari in WeHo said...

we too have our folder and letters :) Mesa would act just like Mina around the kids and Baily would be a Celeste minus the chips because kids are way more important :)

Amanda said...

Love it! =)

Rinalia said...

PoochesForPeace - Celeste is very talented at getting excited. It's her gift. :)

Pibble - Thanks!! Mina & Celeste are quite the dynamic duo.

Princess - Total cheeseball! :) I've been quite impressed with the level of dog respect the kids around here show, it's unusual.

Kari - LOL, Celeste was quite torn between the children and the chips. Baily and Mesa sound very similar to the ladies. :)

Amanda - Thanks!