Local man and good samaritan Melvin Wordsmithe narrowly avoided death, or worse, during a recent visit to the local Nursing Home where he and stalwart Therapy Dog, Bear, provide weekly visits to the infirm of mind and body.
Melvin had a sense something wasn't quite right on this visit, for as he was organizing Bear's carry all containing Avian water, a supply of Cheerios, and doggy breath mints, he was approached by a doddering senior pushing a walker who paused, looked meaningfully into his eyes and asked quite seriously, "Are you here to cut toe nails?"
Naturally Mel told her "No, that was last week....I'm here to trim nostril hair this week," which seemed to satisfy her curiosity.
With that first encounter out of the way Mel proceeded to the Alzheimer's ward, a place near and dear to both he and Bear.
The people being 'housed' in that wing were always happy for the visit, and Mel found he had a lot in common with most of them, as they shared the same sense of reality. The food was also pretty good.
Bear was especially fond of "Miss Peggy" who always managed to drop her food on the floor much to his delight and he had grown quite fond of 'mushy peas.'
Mel's favorite was "Jack" who never seemed hungry and was willing to share. On this day
the meat loaf, gravy, southern steamed green beens with bacon, and mashed potatoes were especially good, and Mel mopped up the residue with a delicious corn muffin
much to Jack's delight.
After the meal, as was their want, Jack and Mel talked about life in 'The Wing.'
"How long you in for this time Jack?"
"Well, they've got some new women here since the last time....pretty hot too. May stay a little longer if I can get enough sleep."
"How's that Jack?"
"Women....won't leave me alone...so bad I have to lock my door at night...comin' round all hours trying to jump my bones...mind ya, better than life on the outside with me wife, but all the same, a man's got to rest somewhat!"
Seems Jack puts on an act whenever life at home gets too boring and the wife starts nagging, so he does something outrageous like jumping on his Harley and driving up and down the street naked yelling 'God Save the Queen!" Works every time!
Mel & Bear continued their rounds until they got to a special patient who loved dogs, but didn't want any contact with humans.
Being well trained, Mel always let Bear into the room alone, where he promptly jumped up in bed, licked his friend joyfully, as the two settled down for conversation and stress relief.
It was at this moment, Mel, leaning up against the hall wall carrying Bear's tote bag, that two new, rather burley , interns approached him.
"Sir, " said one, the one with the bald head and tattoos on his neck, "are you supposed to be out of your room?"
Thinking this hilarious, Mel could only laugh madly , at which point both interns secured his arms telling him, "Sir, your home is here, your kids dropped you off last night....this is your home now....come along, we'll take you back to your room!"
At this point Mel began to struggle despite the ridiculousness of the situation as he was frogged marched down the corridor heading toward the "Used Parents" wing where a selection committee voted on whether or not your estate, or your kids, were willing to continue to have some one change your diapers. A kind of 'Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down' kinda thing much like what they have in the UK.
Realizing that if they ever got him behind those locked doors in the "Dead End" hallway, he'd never see the light of day, and too weak to fight off two interns on steroids, Mel called out for Bear.
As Mel tells it later, the 85 pound Golden Retriever, who never met a person, bird or squirrel he didn't like, came running out of the room where he had been visiting like a hound from hell leaping to his master's defense!
Bear bit one intern in the ankle, and when he bent down gave him a good snip on the nose, then turned his attention to the other death camp guard and took a chunk out of his left arse cheek.
Now free, Mel and Bear made a run for it up the corridor and barely managed to escape before the institution was put on 'lock down" and all exits sealed.
The matter was later cleared up after Mel's attorney contacted the Home Office of the Institution, now under control of the Federal Government, and threatened to expose them on national TV unless they dropped the charges of Escape & Evasion, Animal Cruelty,
Letting a dog run loose, and practicing Therapy without a PhD.
When last heard of, Bear & Mel were said to be off to West Virginia where they were invited by a Naval Veteran who had heard of their ordeal, for a visit and to ' chew the fat' in a more welcoming clime.
"This guy Frankie J seems all right in my book, "said Mel, "he told me he had a mound of Spam and Vienna Sausages stored up, and he just needed someone to help him eat his way through them before it all turned green!"