The mischievous breeze was born over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and played for a while among the palm trees of St. Augustine. Then, picked up by a passing wind, it moved on to dance along the streets and gardens of Newman Georgia, before laughing along the stilled waters of the backyard crocodile ponds on the outskirts of Charleston. Doing a couple of backflips, the little breeze played among the valleys and hollers of West Virginia, before swooping through the flowerbeds of Exmore. Soaring into the air it darted among the flags and sails of the boats in Crisfield harbor until it was picked up by a strong wind and was flung across the mountains into Upper New York state.
Toying with the gentle waves of Lake Ontario, the little breeze crossed the border into Canada without the now requisite passport and was lifted by the updraft at the base of the Scarborough Bluffs and was flung high into the air over the Meadow on top.
Far below it spied a stumbling scarecrow of a man out walking his black nosed waggy tailed dog. The dog was racing and prancing with glee among the tall grasses of the Meadow while the man followed along behind on shaky legs.
Delight filled the breast of the mischievous breeze and it swooped down and lifted the man's hat off his head, tossing it whirling high into the air.
Instead of being annoyed, as the breeze had expected, the man laughed and set off after his wind-born hat. But just as his fingers touched the brim of his hat, the little breeze lifted it again and set it swirling into the air, the man's little black dog in hot pursuit.
But at this point the breeze and the man and the dog were arrested by an angry noise.
A woman was standing on the pathway shaking her fist in a tomahawk chop and yelling "NO dog! Stay away from me! Stay away!"
Lindsay, for indeed the little black dog was she, hadn't even noticed the woman up to that point, her entire attention being focused on the suddenly animated hat. But the screaming and fist shaking was now proving far more interesting. Obviously this was a woman who wanted to play!
Her attention now diverted, Lindsay began to meander over to the playful woman, a smile on her lips and her tail wagging like a metronome.
Seeing Lindsay coming toward her, the woman shrieked louder and shook her fist more vigorously. Lindsay was delighted and nearly in love.
The man, however, being human and occasionally capable of a more sophisticated discernment, had come to the conclusion that play was not really what was on the woman's mind.
So he called Lindsay away. Obedient, but reluctant to leave such fun behind, Lindsay turned and ran back to him, just as the mischievous breeze lifted the hat off the woman's head and sent it sailing high over the air above the little dog, setting Lindsay off on another merry chase.
The woman was now in an apoplexy of rage. The man reluctantly called Lindsay off once more, clicked her leash on her collar and retrieved the woman's hat himself.
Carrying it over to her, he attempted to explain that yelling loudly and making agitated gestures were not the royal road to avoiding a dog's attention. But the woman just snatched her hat from his hand and went storming off along the path, various unprintable mutterings floating on the breeze behind her.
Much to the annoyance of the mischievous breeze, who once more lifted the hat from the woman's head and flung it far out over the edge of the bluffs and into the water's of the lake, 90 meters below.
There followed a stunned silence. Woman, man and dog rooted to the spot by what had just occurred.
It's job now done, the little breeze soared high into the air, caught a lift from the jet stream and went soaring across the Atlantic toward Europe, seeking other games to play and other people to play them with.
Tim, Mike and My Gap Year
9 hours ago