I experienced an awkward moment this week.
There was another blog post planned for this week, but, the more I thought about what happened, the more I felt the need to share it with you and purge the stain from my soul.
It started innocently, I swear. I’ve mentioned on this blog that our Corgis, Tanner and Emma are both Therapy Dogs. Therapy Dogs provide service and comfort to others and we take them to assisted living facilities, nursing homes, retirement centers, memory care units and children’s reading programs. It’s a great experience for everyone, the people, the dogs and us.
So, this week we brought the Therapy Pups over to an assisted living facility to meet with some older folks who always enjoy interacting with the furry little critters. We’ve been at this facility a dozen times. The residents park their wheelchairs in the day room, or plant their frail bodies on sofas and take turns petting and snuggling with the dogs.
The old folks brighten up as they give the dog a scratch behind the ear, or a pat down its back. So, what could be awkward about this?
I went to a wrinkled old woman, ancient, really, and held Emma the Corgi so the woman could meet the cute little pup. The facility staff claimed the woman was a “bit vision impaired,” so I wasn’t surprised when she reached out with a trembling hand to search for Emma’s little Corgi head. She rubbed the dog’s ears and stroked down her back. Before long, the woman’s hand wandered and was petting me.
I gently placed her hand on Emma’s head and told her how soft Emma’s fur was. Within seconds she was back to petting me. “Soft,” she said. It was much like this…
So, being the gentleman that I am, I suggested to my wife to go take Tanner to visit with the blind lady. I didn’t mention my groping. So I waited, but no people petting. Huh.
When it was our turn again, Emma and I returned to the old woman. She stroked Emma’s ears, then went up my arm again. Petting me.
What the hell? I’ve become an attraction in a Petting Zoo.
A few minutes of awkwardness for me in exchange for a couple minutes of happiness for the old gal. I guess that’s not too bad.