by Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter and Boston City Paper 10/2009

So there I am, working at the home computer on a yet another late night software promotion, and Sue calls around 8 — she’s got a flat, but no worries, she’s already called AAA. I asked her where she is; she’s a few miles away in a nearby town, so I tell her I’m on my way. Then I hear, “Gotta go, there’s a dog wandering in the street.”

I get to the scene of the aforementioned flat and there’s a large golden dog in the back seat of the car. We’ll call her Goldie (not her real name). She’s an old girl with a bad leg, but very clean, very alert, and very friendly. “Hi,” I say to Goldie, “Are you da boo dog?” The tail starts wagging, she’s licking my hand and we make friends in two seconds. Her tags reveal the car got its flat in front of the house where Goldie lives, but no one is home. Looks like the old girl staged a breakout!

I ask Sue to cancel the AAA call (“No problem, BOB’s here!”) I replace the tire with a donut while Sue calls the owners, whose number is on Goldie’s tags. When we don’t get a response after a while, we leave a note that Goldie is safe and for her family to call us when they get home. We figure it’s best to keep her safe at our place. I explain to Goldie that we’ll get her back to her people ASAP but in the meantime we need to keep her safe. She seems to understand, if the calm demeanor is any indication.

Having her in the house is strange; since our Missy’s passing to cancer back in June, for the first time ever, Sue and I don’t have a dog. But Goldie immediately makes herself at home, lying on my leg, enjoying the attention and patting and talk, and she lounges on the floor, and in general being a sweetheart. This is one angelic little pup.

Her family calls after an hour or so, and we bring Goldie back home to her people. They’re very grateful. Sue gives them some glucosamine to help with Goldie’s arthritis and shares some of the ways we helped some of our pups alleviate their arthritis and joint pain.

As we’re driving home, I think that flat tires are annoying, but maybe there was some divine intervention at work — there was no other reason for Sue to get a flat in front of that particular house, on a road she rarely travels, where a dog had broken free, unless someone up there wanted to ensure that Goldie would find the help she needed.

There’s coincidence and there’s proof staring you in the face — and I believe that last night’s meeting was not a coincidence — especially when I noticed that Goldie’s family has a beautiful statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary on the side of their house.

In a world filled with so much bad news, little moments like this renew my faith that there are higher powers are keeping an eye on all of us, especially our beloved canine angels.

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