H. Buice Zoutendijk
Many kids have dogs, but Buster Dog was a real human dog. I remember the first day Buster Dog came into my life. I was two years old, going on three. Daddy opened the front door of the old farm house where we lived, and stepped into the doorway with a small black and white collie pup nestled into his strong arms. The collie pup just stared at me, and as his ears spontaneously rose up high while he made little whining noises. He followed me with his big black eyes everywhere I walked. It made me giggle so hard. The more I giggled, the more Buster Dog whined. He even tried to jump out of daddys arms. At first, I was frightened. I did not know at the time what a collie was. I knew that Buster Dog was a dog indeed, because I had a toy dog that looked just like Buster Dog, and my toy dog was also named Buster. Everyone in the family, my Mother, my big sister, Brenda, and my big brother, Mickey kept referring to Buster dog as a thoroughbred collie while they patted him on the head, played with his soft white paws, and whistled to him, calling him boy instead of his new name that I just gave to him, Buster Dog, my new dog.
They were all talking in very weird voices, sometimes high pitched voices, Come here boy, come on, come here.I could really feel myself becoming annoyed as Mickey took it upon himself to go into the kitchen and retrieve from the old ice box a piece of Bologna, giving it to my new dog, named Buster Dog. Hmmm, he is bribing my new dog! I thought. Buster Dog ate the bologna in one big gulp and I never, ever saw him chew the bologna. I said softly, chew Butter Dog. (At aged two going on three; I could not pronounce the letter S, no matter how hard I tried). No one heard me say Chew your food Butter Dog. Buster Dog heard me, and I wondered how he heard my whisper, but he looked down smiling, trying to break away from daddys arms, at last freeing himself to be with me; his brand new friend!
I noticed that Buster Dog had a white shaggy tail. His tail wagged back and forth while all of the people in my family smiled, laughed, and taunted him. Thats right; they taunted him like they taunted me! I already knew and understood the moment that I laid my little eyes on Buster Dog that he knew me, and that we were going to become lifelong friends in his dog life. His hair was long and white with black spots. He had a long nose, and Buster Dog always smiled when he opened his mouth, especially when he looked at me!
I spent my childhood with Buster Dog. We decorated the Christmas trees each year, as Buster Dog pulled the strands of lights between his teeth breaking many of the bulbs, spent summer time playing underneath the water hose, spent winter time throwing snowballs and building snowmen , opened Christmas presents, and blew out birthday candles together, year after year. Buster only had to open his mouth, and his breath not only blew out the candles, but it melted the candle wax, and the icing on the cake! For some reason, Buster and I would receive the whole cake on my birthdays. Soon after a couple of birthdays, we both knew exactly how to obtain birthday cake.
Buster always followed me across the land of our old farm, chasing away anything or anyone who came close to me. He had a bark like Lassie, but when I looked into his eyes, I could sometimes see myself inside of his black gentle eyes. He was my protector, my friend, and sometimes I thought of Buster Dog as an Angel. One day we were running into the woods to the old creek to make a magic carpet (which actually was an old torn rug thrown out by my mother), and fly together to a land of bunnies, flowers, music, bones for Buster Dog, and plenty of candy for me. As the sun grew dimmer in the afternoon and we approached the red clayed muddy creek, we came face to face with a brown colored giant mountain lion. The mountain lion was bigger than me and Buster Dog together. It stood at a distance of about 30 feet, and I could hear a strange growling noise coming from the lions big mouth. The mountain lion had sharper teeth than Buster Dog, and her paws were very large with big black sharp claws. Buster Dog began to bark a lot, and his white shaggy hair bristled upon his neck. I had never seen Busters teeth so sharp, nor had I ever seen Buster Dog barking so fast. I began to shake and cry, out of shear fright! The lion came closer towards me, galloping, and appearing to have no fear of attack. I began to back up taking little steps backwards, being careful not to fall and become the prey of a ferocious wild cat! At that very moment Buster dog ran directly into, and attacked the lion, jumping onto the lions back, fiercely biting it with his sharp teeth. It was a fight like I had never seen, even on the black and white television screen. I cried harder, and in a sudden flash the lion ran away as fast as it could. Buster Dog chased after the lion, because I am sure he felt quiet heroic, and that he had conquered the horrible battle.
The sun began to drop behind the wooded trees, and I felt a shiver up my spine, because I was alone with no Buster Dog. Buster Dog was nowhere to be seen. I could hear barking at a distance, but no Buster Dog. I picked up the magic carpet, but felt too tired to carry it all the way home in the dark. I knew I had to though, because Buster Dog and I had to make our magic carpet trip soon to the Magic Land. It was pitch black outside. I felt very cold and scared. All kinds of noises began to erupt from the deep woods! I heard a hissing sound like a snake, suheeeh, sish, seeeee, sish and a sound of howlingWoooooooooo in the distance. I thought of what a wolf would sound like, maybe that was the sound I was hearing.Woooooooooo Then I heard gurgling sounds, Rahgut RahgutRahgut and I recognized that sound to be many sounds of frogs. The frog sounds were louder than the snake and wolf sounds, and I was not so scared then, because frogs cannot hurt you. I pulled the magic carpet up over my head and leaned against, what looked to be a very tall Georgia pine tree.
Finally, I climbed onto the magic carpet, and Buster Dog jumped on too, just as I was taking off. Buster Dog I am glad you came back, because you almost missed our ride on the magic carpet to Magic Land while you were chasing the big bad mountain lion. Buster Dog barked happily;he is thinking of the bones that he will get when we reach the far away Magic Land. Over the magnificent hilltops we flew, and my stomach was tickled by the swoops of the magic carpet, up and down like a roller coaster. The chilling wind was blowing my hair, and it felt like a big fan was about to blow me away. Buster Dog got close to me, his shaggy hair blowing like white strings in the air, as we flew joyfully across the land. The stars glistened, and the moon glow was guiding us to Magic Land. We both looked down from the carpet, and there below in a distance was the mountain lion. We escaped Buster Dog, we escaped the bad lion, thanks to you Buster Dog. Buster turned to lick my cheek I giggled, and my eyes opened; there above me was Buster Dog shaking his head fast, while pulling the magic carpet from my head, then licking my cheek. The new sun was just peeping over the woods. It was morning, and I had fallen fast asleep under the pine tree for the night! I grabbed my best friend Buster Dog and hugged him so tight to thank him for saving my life. I gazed into his black eyes, and not only was Buster Dog smiling, but I saw a quick twinkle from both of his eyes. I wondered, not only does Buster Dog smile, but he winks his eyes also?
I heard voices, the same voices that I heard when Buster Dog came to my house for the first time, and in the same frantic high pitched tones. It was my family looking for us. Buster Dog, please save me from the very big spanking that I am about to get. Buster Dog smiled, and barked a very loud happy bark, to signal the screeching searchers nearby.