Picture it. Harper’s Valley, 2013.
Monday; 6:35 AM.
It’s a quiet, overcast, morning. The temperature is a balmy 87*F preparing for the strenuous climb to today’s high of 106*. The camera pans across the sidewalks and tidy yards of Harper’s Valley homes and zooms in on the front door of Casa de Harper. But wait, (suspenseful music swells – very ominous…. very ‘noir’) Who is lurking there? Two shadowy figures hanging around as if life were cheap and there were no tomorrow. It’s Harper’s Keeper and his trusty sidekick, Harper. (Possibly the reverse.)
A series of seemingly insignificant decisions, all of them mine, left Harper and I on the wrong side of a locked door. There is a small metal flap-lock on our front door. I think it is probably designed to keep toddlers in the house rather than keeping anyone out. Since the burglary I have adopted the habit of flipping it on as retire. The logic, to the extent any can be claimed, is that, while it won’t keep anyone out, they will make enough noise coming in that we’ll hear them.
The morning, as Harper’s Other Dad was leaving for work, I took the Harper girl for a walk. I prudently brought keys along but I exited through the garage as the car, and the garage door opener, turned out of the driveway and sped away.
We enjoyed our morning constitutional. One of us took the opportunity to empty their bladder. When we returned home I realized that, while I could unlock the door, I could not open it because of the flap-lock.
Happily we had house guests so I knew the problem was a short-term one. I was, however, presented with a dilemma of etiquette. Do I choose the role of “bad host” by waking the guests to let me in? Or do I loiter on my own doorstep until they arise? Christian martyr that I am, I chose the latter.
Actually, it wasn’t that bad. I sent one of the guests a text saying; “Let me know when you’re up. I’m locked out” and sat down with Harper to begin this blog post. After about 25 minutes, one of the guests came to my rescue.
I had the opportunity to learn two valuable lessons from this situation. Like Henry IV waiting outside Pope Gregory’s door, I learned a little humility. Henry had to wait three days and it was snowing so he probably learned more but, you know…baby steps.
I also learned never to take Harper for a walk in the morning.