Navigation and Perseverance

by John Wentworth Chapin

Gladys was looking through the peephole in her front door when the bell rang a second time. It was a beagle. She cracked the door and shouted Shoo!


The dog thumped his tail. “Please help me. I'm lost.”


“Go away.” She closed the door.


“I'll let you put me on YouTube,” the dog whined.


“My show is on,” she said through the closed door.


“Gladys Miller!” the dog shouted. “Live a little. TiVo it.”


She shouted back. “How do you know my name?”


“I looked at your mail.”


Gladys pulled the door open and snatched her mail. “You rotten mutt! That's a federal offense.” Ugh: the Victoria's Secret catalog was damp with spittle.


“Please help. My family went for a hike and I stupidly took off after a collie.”


“Where do you live?”


The dog growled. “If I knew that, I wouldn't need your help.”


“Are you one of those persevering dogs that travels a thousand miles to be reunited with his master?”


“Are you one of those lonely old ladies with too many cats? C'mon, Gladys, gimme a break.”


She frowned. “If you don't know where you live, how can I help?”


“I'm sure they put a notice on Craigslist. B-U-D-D-Y. I'm six and part Schnauzer.” He looked ashamed.


“What's Craigslist?”


“Seriously?” he asked. “It's a website.”


“I don't have a computer. But you could come in and have some water.”


“Sorry, Gladys. You're a poor investment.” Buddy trotted off in search of modernity and his family.