The sun shines above, birds sing as they play tag among the treetops, the sky is absolutely cloudless, and basically today seems as beautifully untroubled as you could ever wish. I'm finishing off my last bite of breakfast, basking in an oak tree's shade.
My best friend next door wants me to join him in a game, probably cops and robbers, cowboys and indians, or some other adventure that provides an excuse for plenty of fence leaping and rolling in the freshly mown grass. Mom is not too pleased with how I attract dirt and stains, yet her wishes play very little part in my decisions on outdoor activity. I am a free spirit, and I do just about whatever I please. Being that this is Saturday, that's all the reason I need for enjoying every ounce of stain-creating athleticism my body can endure. As soon as I finish the scraps on my plate, clean the morsels that dribbled onto my paws by transferring them to my cheeks and my torso's covering, it's off to the neighbor's house I go.
From where I sit, I can see the beauty of all that surrounds me. As I soak in the colors, allowing my eyes to drink in the poetry that is my world, my spirits are lifted beyond any darkness that could threaten to change my outlook. It's all so enchanting, and so intoxicating, that I find the arguments offered by my friends to be nothing more than evil ideas inspired by jealousy.
True, I am not an only child, but when playtime comes, the occupants of my house don't join me, because it's not their desire. They should be able to lounge as they feel fit. Far be it from me to demand their attention or whine for company. I have friends to play with, and when they are called home for meals, it matters none to me in the least. The scenery in this yard offers plenty of exploration possibilities.
I am proud to call the people that live in that house my family. They are normally nice to me, and provide for me beyond what most can claim. When necessary, I can come inside and eat with them, share time in front of the television set, and when I behave, they have even allowed me to sleep in a regular bed.
Like I said, it's more than likely jealousy on the part of my friends to suggest that my life is less than perfect. On a day like today, it's the furthest thought from my mind. Fences that separate our yards mean nothing to me and my friends, as we all can leap over them with very little effort, if any. We all are in great shape, exercise on a daily basis, and like nothing more than running around the neighborhood, playing catch. Oh, and I just remembered, my family sometimes plays catch with me, too. It's one of the things that give me a special joy, when we all toss the ball around.
My friend is at the fence, asking me to come over. I wipe my face, leave my plate, and sprint to join him. We spend the day doing forgettable activities, wasting hours on nothing more important than adolescent bonding. Global events, historic discoveries and achievements by notable figures are galaxies away from our tunnel vision of youth. the span of four hours vanishes like a tea kettle's steam rising, and just like that steam, darkness slowly lifts to cover our day with its blanket. We say our goodbyes, and return to our prospective domiciles.
I look up to see the songbirds have long gone, the sun has closed its eyes in preparation for its daily rest, and my house, too, has lost its inner illumination. Just above the cricket's chorus, I can faintly hear family members saying goodnight to one another. With a peaceful heart, I hobble back to my own private sanctum, built by Daddy's loving hands, and settle myself for an extended nap. Until the sun wakens again, I ponder my family's dynamics and anticipate restful dreams.
My older sisters Cathy and Connie, the twins, are sleeping in the room decorated with posters of James Dean, King Kong and Bonnie and Clyde. Debbie might be asleep, or chatting on her pretend phone to her dolls, and if she is, she will certainly awaken in the middle of an unfinished conversation. Mom and Dad are either sleeping or debating whether they should let me inside.
I have always been good, but I have not always been a good child. Dad makes sure to remind me as often as possible, that he always wanted a son. I love him, although I have always been what he calls a disappointment. Maybe he is just disappointed I am not like him. Whatever the reason, he constantly tells me that I am not the first born child of the family, but I am the first animal.