Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Story Time: Coconut

Every little boy wants a dog. I was no exception. When I was nine years old, and a few days into the new summer, I saw my friends with their dogs and I knew I wanted one too. My only problem was, we lived in an apartment at the time and dogs were not allowed. And it wasn't like it would be easy to ask my mother for a dog even if we were allowed because by the time I was eight years old I knew that if I asked my mother for something and she said no then that would be that. I would never get what it is I asked for so the trick was, if I was to get a dog, I would have to find a way to let her know I wanted one but without ever actually coming out and asking for one. Kind of let her come to the idea kind of thing.

And even though I knew I couldn't have a dog while we lived in the apartments, I also knew we were not going to live there forever. I had to somehow get the idea into my mothers head in so that when we did eventually move, she would get me a dog.

Then it happened! Just a few weeks into the summer and my mother took me to Florida for vacation. Right on schedule. I had a blast. The one thing I always enjoyed doing was bringing something back home from Florida.

Sure, mother always allowed me to buy a souvenir or two, but I liked to find something on the ground to bring back. Like one time, I brought back some awesome seashells. Or that time I brought back some small crabs in a bucket. Yeah, they died a few days later but what the heck.

This year was no different, and I wanted to find something cool to bring back again. My wish came true in the form of a coconut. I found a coconut tree and some scattered coconuts at its base so I plucked one to take back home with me.

Once we got back home, I placed it on my dresser. While in Florida, my quest for a dog was postponed. Now that I have returned, I started thinking about it all over again.

Then one day, while laying on my bed in the middle of the afternoon, after just eating some lunch, I glanced over at that coconut and suddenly, I got me a good idea.

I pulled out some kite string and glue, and wrapped the string around the coconut and then tied it off around a long piece of fiber that had grown off of it. I then glued the string to the fiber to ensure it would not slip off. I stood back to enjoy my creation.
My mother stepped outside on her way to the car to go to work when she came up to me to give me a kiss goodbye. She took notice to my new friend. "What are you doing dragging that coconut around on a string?" She asked me.

I looked up at her and smiled. "It's my dog." I told her. "I named her Coconut. Isn't she adorable?"

A queer look swept over my mothers face. It could have also been a look of great despair where my faculties were concerned. She may have thought I finally lost it. But to her credit, she simply shook it off and went to work. Meanwhile, I dragged that coconut around the rest of the day like it was a real dog. Sure, people stared and probably wondered if I had been kicked in the head by a mule, but it was all part of my plan to land myself a dog. I mean, let's face it, my mother is a smart cookie so I had to be a lot more smarter if this scheme was to work.

Days passed, about two weeks actually, when one day, mother and I was on our way to the store. We argued and debated about me bringing Coconut with us, but in this debate, I won.

When we arrived to the store, I jumped out of the car with my pet coconut-dog in tow right behind me. The string, and glue was still holding up quite nicely.

My mother was starting to hide her head in shame as onlookers smiled and shook their heads. "That kid is nuts."

And me just a smiling, proud as ever of my coconut dog. We got about halfway across the parking lot when my mother stopped and looked at me. "I know why you're doing this." She said. I played the dummy. "Doing what, mommy?"

"This coconut dog thing. I know why you're doing this. It's because you want a dog, don't you? A real one?"

"I already have a dog, mommy. Her name is Coconut." I proudly stood.

My mother took a deep breath. "Look, if you put that thing back in the car and promise me you will never drag that thing around ever again, I will buy you a dog the moment we move from these apartments. deal?"

I was so happy inside, but I still didn't want to tip my hand. "You mean, I have to get rid of Coconut?" I played like being sad. My mother shook her head. "No, sweetie, you can keep her inside in your room. She can be an indoor ......" she paused momentarily "..... dog."

"She's not a real dog." I replied. "It's my pretend dog. But I guess a real dog is better than a pretend one, huh?" I suggested while sticking out my hand for a shake, and then I declared, "Deal! I'll take the real dog."

And just like that, I was one step away from being a dog owner. Which, by the way, eventually came within another few weeks as my mother announced we would be moving soon and a few days before we finally moved, she brought home a dog. A three year old black lab that I aptly named Pepper. And the reason my mother picked Pepper out of the dog pound was because when she got there and began her search, all the other dogs were barking like crazy, except for Pepper. She just sat there wagging her tail and, my mother swore, she had a smile on her face. "I wanted a dog that didn't bark." She joked. This is why she selected Pepper. It was a match made in heaven. Pepper turned out to be one the smartest dogs I ever knew. She was never properly trained, but she could still do a few tricks, but only if I commanded her to do so. She also became a very good protector of me, and for the family. And you rarely ever heard her bark. Mother liked that best of all.

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