Please bare with me. The setup and the lead in story are kind of lengthy but important. Trust me and I hope you will be as amazed as I was.
First the setup. As some of you know, I am in the process of writing a book series. In the story line of book one is a dog named Roxie who is accompanied by an angel and in book two there is a dog named Abado, which is Spanish for 'Beloved'.
Then the long lead in. Today my wife, Joanna, and I took a road trip to see her parents for their 65th wedding anniversary and her mom's birthday. A few days before we had been told they had a new friend hanging around their house, a mix breed dog, presumably a heeler and something else. As we pulled in the driveway sure enough the dog was there.
I am a dog lover so I naturally approached the dog to give it some attention. It reacted like a dog that had been abused, hesitant to come to me, cowering, tail tucked, etc. I got down to it's level, talked softly, and extended my hand slowly with palms up. It took a little time but the animal began to trust me soon enough and before long the tail came up and some trust was restored. I continued comforting the dog but after some time I went into the house.
A couple of hours passed and I looked out the patio window and saw the dog resting in the middle of their acreage. I went out to the dog again and was greeted by the same fear and caution. This time the dog came around quicker and between petting sessions and ear scratching she chased me around. I spent quite a bit of time playing with her this time and eventually we both sat on the porch steps and caught our breath. Oddly enough a stray tabby cat, butterscotch color with light green eyes came onto the porch and stretched out to catch some rays. They appeared to not be interested in each other, no growling, hissing, or sniffing.
I have always talked to my dogs and did so today. I said the typical 'Good girl' and 'Good dog' but also said things like "What's your name? I know I will call you Abado after the dog in my book. Hey girl, the older people in this house are really nice but they don't want a dog to take care of at this time in their life. Don't get me wrong, they love dogs they just don't want to care for another pet now. But, here is a tip. The woman of the house is allergic to cats and therefore doesn't like them. If she's sees you chasing the cat away you can earn some brownie points with her. Now, I am not asking you to hurt your friend here, just shoo her away when the woman is watching. Also, hang around the property and growl protectively and behave as if this is your home and you are guarding it. Oh, and no more digging up plants or chewing up their stuff."
Anyway, you get the point. I hung out with the dog and cat for quite awhile before I went back into the house. I saw the message light flashing on my phone so I picked it up and then suddenly realized my glasses were gone. I only use them for reading and when I am not wearing them I just hang them in the 'V' of my shirt. I immediately knew what had happened, it had happened many times before. I told everyone I would be back, I had to go search around the areas where I had been chasing and playing with the dog to find where they had fallen off. The acreage is heavily wooded, therefore lots of leaves on the ground. You guessed it, after an extensive search I came up with nothing. Oh well they are cheap reading glasses anyway.
The time came to leave and we were all out by our car saying our goodbyes. The dog was hanging out in the background so I petted her one more time. Dad said he had a few rancher friends who might be interested in the dog but if they didn't take the dog he wasn't sure what they were going to do if she stuck around. I told them she had a name, Abado. Mom gave me a puzzled look so I told her it meant 'Beloved' in Spanish. She chuckled and then I added, "Hmm, maybe she meant A BAD O?" which got another laugh.
I reminded Dad to be on the lookout for my glasses and asked him not to run over them with his zero turn mower. He just laughed, looking at the leaves with a "Good luck with that" look on his face. More hugs and handshakes and then my wife got in the drivers seat and I took the passenger side. Mom and Dad stood on my side of the car when Joanna started the engine. With a last "See you later" I closed my door and fastened my seat belt. With only last wave goodbye I saw the dog standing behind Dad's legs so we didn't have to worry about running over her as we pulled away.
It took me a split second to process what I had just seen but before Joanna started pulling forward I simultaneously opened my door and excitedly blurted out, "You have got to be kidding me! NO WAY!". As I got out of the car Mom and Dad looked at me wondering what in the world I was doing. When I got down on my knees and called to the dog they both noticed what I had already seen. The dog was standing there, looking at me
WAIT FOR IT....
PAUSE FOR SUSPENSE BUILDING...
DRUM ROLL PLEASE...
with my glasses in her mouth!
Kind of a silly question but Dad said, "Son, are those your glasses?" The dog slowly came to me and allowed me to remove my glasses from her mouth. I knew they had to be mine and of course they were mine, missing nose bridge piece and all. With a lot more scratching, I thanked the dog profusely. After a few more outbursts like "AMAZING", "UNBELIEVABLE" and "WOW" while running my fingers through my hair, I finally told Dad, "Tell me where you want to buy her dog food and I will prepay it." as I laughed (We are currently living in a studio loft, unsuitable for a dog, or she might have come home with us right then and there!)
As we finally drove off I looked back at Abado and my wife's parents. It was obvious by the way they were excitedly talking and pointing at the dog they were still talking about the amazing event.
So, feel free to draw your own conclusions. To me, it is an amazing story no matter what. Multiple witnesses and I wish I had thought to take a cell phone picture of the dog holding the glasses in her mouth. As for me, I am going to believe it has divine roots. I have tried to be a non-believer of coincidence or random circumstances, particularly something like this.
It reminds me of my son being backed over by a car years ago and standing up unscathed after the car passed over him. The driver was so shook up he couldn't go to work and later retold the story to me face to face, and he was still shaking. He too said things like coincidence, what are the odds, random circumstance, lucky, etc. I finally said something like "That's why people don't believe in miracles anymore, they pass them off as coincidence when they occur. Accept it for what it is, a miracle." After he thought about it a few moments he did exactly that, smiled at me and embraced me warmly.
I occasionally will still blurt out, "That was lucky" , "That was a close call " or something similar but sometimes I catch myself and take a moment to give credit where credit is due by saying, "I am sorry Lord, I take that back. I meant to say, Thank YOU, Lord."
So how does this story end? You can bet The Bentley's will have a new mixed breed dog named Abado the next time we visit Mom and Dad. That is of course assuming they will part with her at that time, they were shocked and amazed almost as much as I was.
All the way home and even right now, I can still see the image crystal clear in my mind's eye. That dog looking at me with my glasses in her mouth. I can assure you, Abado, will know nothing but love the rest of her days.