The spongy, asparagus colored grass nestled gently in between the spacing of each of my paw pads as I walked my neighborhood last night. The crater filled moon was peeking through the clouds that followed me along my walk. I usually try to walk two or three miles a day between my morning walk, afternoon walk, and evening walk yet lately it just seems as if my five year old bones and muscles just don’t want to keep up. That all changed last night…
I felt an awakening had occurred. I spent my evening walk looking at the world through a different lens. I saw colors and encountered smells I had taken for granted for so long. As I was nearing one of the crosswalks I could hear someone ask for help. It was not a cry for help in a time of need but one of innocence. I looked around in my immediate circle and was unable to establish where the plea was coming from. The cloud above me broke into two and there he was standing a few feet from me. I made my way over to him and asked how I could be of service and droplets of water came rolling down his round tri-colored face. He mentioned he was an orphan. His parents had been picked up by the City pound and he had been spared when his Dad had thrown him into the rain drainage compartment along the road. His name, Clapton. I felt this surge of wind absorb me. I wondered for a bit and then I knew she was once again in my presence. How could this young boy by the name of Clapton be near my walking path if she was not to hold responsible? See, my grandparents named Layla due to my grandfather’s love for the namesake song Layla written by none other than Eric Clapton. There was no sense to be made of it other than it was her doing.
I helped him along the walkway with me and we walked and talked more. When I had asked him how old he was, he said “not yet two years old.” My heart sank…I knew that I could not allow him to stay out in the streets as we were expecting some cold weather and there was a slight chance of a storm. I quickly talked it over with my Mom and she agreed as well we could not leave him alone in unknown territory. It felt nice on the walk home. I felt needed, I felt important. It was as if my life had some sense of meaning again. He held my hand as we crossed every intersection back home and for the first few steps fear had completely set in. You all should have been there. Anyone who knows me knows that I have a problem with fear in certain areas of life as well. Yet, I knew if I was going to help him I needed to place any sense of fear I had aside and talk him through his. The first intersection was the hardest. We stood there for almost thirty minutes before he took the leap of faith and placed one foot and another in front of the other.
We finally arrived at our front door. My Mom gave me a few minutes before going in to sort of give some house rules to our new guest. I basically mentioned that for the most part my Mom was pretty laid back. We were able to sit on the couch just not on her side or my brother’s side which left a small section in the middle of the sofa. We had to eat our meals in the kitchen by the sliding door. I told him he would actually like doing so because we had a pretty decent view of the outdoors. If we were going to play with any of our toys we had to make sure we placed them back in the designated toy box. So after a few minutes he agreed to the house rules and I welcomed him inside.
What was he??!!! I had never seen a creature so ugly before. He had a weird stripping to his tail. The tri-color to his face was more visible it consisted of this gray, white, black coloring. His eyes looked as he had lost a fight, they were so black.
A few minutes later my brother walked into the living room and asked my Mom as to why was there a Racoon in our home. I yelled “a what??” I quickly opened the door to escort him back out. He stood there in tears, lost. Seeing as I myself will never be able to bear children of my own, I began to wonder was this Layla’s way of giving me the nod that life goes on.
I mean, does it really matter if he is from another species? He is a young boy who needs a mother’s love, why should it not be mine?