It was a memorable first encounter, to say the least. He was excitable, a big, blonde ball of stupid, four years old (or at least, that’s what we were told) and “too boisterous for a family with young children.” So they said, do you want to take him for a walk, see what he’s like? My parents new then that we weren’t leaving without that dog. But we took him out, each of us walking him for a small stretch. I took my turn, began to run with him down this small length of road when he, being an excitable ball of stupid, decided he was going to leap across a ditch. Me, being a bit of a runt at the time, got dragged along behind him.
But this just endeared him to us more. We took him home that very day, sitting in the back of Dad’s four wheel drive, full of life, wagging tail almost strong enough to leave bruises. We got him home and he began running in circles, all around the house. Exploring, sniffing, nose into every corner, asserting his dominance by running away from the neighbours’ cat. He came back inside, walked slowly around in a circle, then flumped himself in front of the wood burning stove. It didn’t even matter to him that it wasn’t lit at the time.
We bonded, him and I, over our mutual love of video games. I would sit for hours, losing myself in the majesty of the created world. He just loved lazing around doing nothing for hours at a time. We’d go out for a walk, then come back and get some quality time playing Final Fantasy, him snoring his head off as I lay on the floor with my head resting against him. He was a wonderful dog. Then I went to uni and seeing him became less common. But every time, it was as if I’d never left. He’d bound up to me, goofy and grinning, waiting for a fuss and for me to turn on that Playstation 2.
I was at University when I got the phone call. My mum, in tears, calling to let me know that he had to be put down. It was a travesty. He should have had years left. He’d already pulled through before, but… Not this time. It was kinder to him, but still I feel like he was taken from me. Too soon. Forever later would be too soon.
Well, this one’s from the personal side of things. Sidney was a wonderful piece of idiot and a wonderful friend. As I said, forever later would be too soon.
The Idiot in Tin Foil