Saturday 15 June 2019

'Stonewall' by Sheree Shatsky

My sister holds the dog’s leash. “What are you doing?”

“Walking the dog.”

“You’re watching TV.”

I pause the video for the title. Walk Your Dog TV: Virtual Dog Walk. “Millie loves it, don’t you, girl?”

The dog rolls on her back, four paws high. She stretches and wags her tail. I ruffle her stomach. Her rear leg thumps good time.

“Pretty certain this isn’t the walk Grandma had in mind,” my sister says.

“Pretty certain Grandma didn’t watch YouTube.”

She pushes in beside Millie. An unseen dog walks the wet granite setts to St. Michael’s Mount.

“Where’s the dog?”

“Behind the camera.”

We virtual walk past a young girl slapping puddles with her pink rain boots.

My sister shakes her head. “There’s no dog. Kids can’t walk past a dog without squealing or making kissy faces. ” 

“Maybe this dog’s sort of normal looking.’

“Maybe this dog’s a guy wearing a camera.”

“Great, thanks for ruining the walk for Millie.”

“We’re not walking at all!”

A couple strolls by with two Corgis.

“Millie would be all over those dogs,” my sister says.

“Maybe English dogs have better manners.”

“The camera never deviates off path. It’s all trod, trod, trod.”

Joggers flashing red shirts run towards St. Michael’s, giant in the sky.

“That seals it. No chasing, no barking by Virtual Dog? Wait, how did we get on the beach?”

“We walked the dog through the island already. Pay attention.”

She throws Millie’s leash across the back of the couch and settles in. “This is Cornwall, right? Grandma always did want to travel.”

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