Today, my DD was walking her best friend’s dog. She had a very very rough night and morning, and was feeling a bit weepy and tired, and we all thought the walk would be a good thing. She walked to the neighborhood market nearby to pick us all up sandwiches for lunch. On the way to the market, the dog (little miniature thing) needed to go to the bathroom - and there were people walking along on the sidewalk. She walked to the other side of the road so that he wouldn't bother the people, and went nearby a tree that was nearby the park. (Nearby is a key word, here).
They walked on to the market, and actually had a great time there. The puppy was well behaved and everyone complimented both the puppy and DD, telling her how sweet he was. DD was smiling, feeling GOOD! So, they began the walk home, and a man (I can't call him a gentleman) came racing out of his house with his hand held high as they approached. DD stopped to see what he might want - he held out a bag to her and snarled at her (yep) saying - "This is for you." She said, "Pardon me?" He told her to clean up the dog crap, that he had seen the dog crap in his yard; that she needed to get all of it, that not cleaning up after dogs was a crime and against the law. DD was a bit stunned at this tirade, and immediately began apologizing. She told the man that she didn't know, that she was very sorry, that she would not let it happen again, that this wasn't her dog so she didn't know the rules. She even thanked him for the bag, and for teaching her something. She told him that now she knew, and it wouldn't happen again. As she bent to pick up the dog crap, the man YELLED - "Get it all!" He stood over her. He told her that the dog had crapped in multiple places. He insisted that she pick up about four separate piles of dog crap in that bag before she finally stood up. She said, "Look. I am trying to be as nice to you as I can, here."
He said, "Well, letting your dog crap in my yard was a b**chy thing to do." He continued to berate her. She said something that I won't print here, and walked away - FAST. He yelled as she walked down the sidewalk.
Ok, are you kidding me?
When she got home, she was crying, hard hot tears. "How can people be so mean?" she wanted to know. I didn't have an answer for her, but I doubt that the man in question would have treated me like that. Or any older adult. Astounding. I wonder if his day was just great, that he felt perfectly fabulous after scaring my DD.
We had lunch and then watched "Into the Wild" together. One of the most incredibly beautiful movies I have ever seen - and one that affected me deeply.
And at the end of it all, it had a strong thread of meaning - about how we all NEED to be nicer to each other.
I hope, wish, and pray that the angry man finds peace in his day, his night, and his life.