Dearly beloved, sit down and I will tell you a story. Once upon a time, I lived in Honduras in a house made of adobe and clay tiles. The house was simply a long row of rooms side by side, with a porch on the back side, connecting all the rooms. The house also had two courtyards, separated by a wall and a door.
While living there, we often had different stripes of young men come to stay with us for a week or a month or three. They comprised a large portion of our social lives, and as in this instance, were our free amusement as well.
The hero of today’s story was one such young man who was Exceedingly Proper- the model of propriety and modesty, with his carefully curated outfits, and his carefully executed speech and mannerisms. For this story, we’ll call him Charlie.
And now to introduce the villain. Erandique is simply overrun by bony little dogs. We often thought that if half the dogs of the town would eat the other half, they’d all be better off because there would be half as many and they’d be better fed. One dog in particular had an exceedingly annoying habit of jumping into our courtyard, from the low wall on the outside, then finding himself trapped because the wall was on a hill and much higher on the inside. So he’d sit in the courtyard, howling about his woes, until we could chase his unwilling hind end out the little door and release him back to the street.
One night at bedtime the brainless dog hopped over the wall again and commenced his howling. Enough was enough, we all decided. It was time to teach the dog a lesson so he would cease his foolishness once and for all. There were a bunch of visitors at our house at the time, so we had plenty people to give the dog a proper scare, just enough so he would stop the madness.
A couple of guys chased the dog into the main courtyard, the one we lived in, so we could get him out the door. But the poor little dog took one look at the crowd of people on the porch watching and fled into the first door he saw, which was the boys’ bedroom. He emptied his diarrheaic bowels onto the floor, then dashed through the wet spot and up onto a bed, leaving tracks and howling all the way.
The guys herded him through the stench back onto the porch, where he dashed through the flock of billowy cotton skirts and screaming girls, finally heading toward the correct open door to the outside world. Enter Charlie. He was holding a stick and in mad pursuit of the dog as he raced down the long porch toward his doggie freedom. In one final effort to make this a lasting lesson, he threw the stick at the dog, only, it hit a convenient bucket of water instead. The bucket tipped over, flooding the porch, just as the unfortunate Charlie arrived at the same spot. He wiped out, and the model of propriety and modesty slid to the end of the porch on his backside as the dog ran howling out onto the open street.
We simply screamed with laughter, and the dog set up a chorus of howls outside, letting all of his friends know to never attempt that particular courtyard. Everything was put to rights eventually, Charlie up on his feet, and the awful “scare-arrhea” (as we dubbed it) cleaned up from the boys bedroom, although the smell lingered for some time.
And the dog never came back.