I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. Once again, Lady Human is in violation of her curfew.
Me: I beg your pardon?
Me: I mean, what curfew? I am an adult human, remember. No bulldog-imposed curfews here.
Stella: You are supposed to come within an hour of church ending unless you let us know that you are going to lunch with humans.
Me: Do you really keep that close a count on my minutes outside the house?
Stella: If we don’t, who will? Where did you go after church?
Me: Well, truthfully, I went to visit my father’s grave.
Stella: Is grave a trick word that means you went to lunch with the humans?
Stella: Then what is a grave?
Me: It’s where someone’s body is buried after they die.
Stella: Die? Death happened to your sire?
Me: Yes, 5 days before Christmas, 43 years ago.
Stella: That sounds like a long, long time.
Me: It is a long, long time. And it’s like yesterday.
Stella: And his body was buried in a grave? Why?
Me: Because he didn’t need it anymore. He left it and went on.
Stella: I think I understand. Dogs bury things. We visit them later.
Me: Humans are…different.
Stella: So why did you visit your sire’s grave?
Me: One of my cousins lives far away. She wondered what the place looks like now. She has not visited for a long time. I sent her some pictures.
Stella: What does it look like?
Me: A field. Grass. Trees. Sun. Shade. Quiet. And nearby is this very large oak tree.
Stella: So, this is how you remember.
Me: One of the ways.
Stella: You believe that your father is with the Great Creator.
Stella: That your father is not where you visited today. Just what he left behind.
Me: Yes, even so.
Stella: Please feel free to visit that memory place whenever you wish, Lady Human. May I go with you someday?
Me: I don’t know if dogs are allowed because, you know, dogs…and grass.
Stella: I understand. It’s terrible to be the well-behaved one among all the misbehavers.
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