Dallas Tales – Closing Ceremony 2021

I am in charge of this closing day ceremony. I love nothing better than planning a party. I guess I learned from my Mom. Mama rescued me from the yard next door about five years ago. She has been so sweet to let me attend camp every year with all the cousin pups. She is a real cool people Mom. That woman loves to plan a party and she always has stuff in her closet to decorate with.  I knew I’d be in charge this year so I threw in a few decorations from Mama’s closet for the party. She made this long string with ribbons tied onto it and tossed it into the garage. I knew I could bring it so I tucked it in my bag. String is so easy to tuck into a limb so it will be easy to hang. Luckily our closing ceremony falls on July 4th this year. There are always fireworks out over the lake here on July 4th. We will be far enough away the noise won’t be much of an issue. We’re going to camp out tonight way out by that old barn we had originally chosen this year. We all worked so hard on clearing it out it would be ashamed to not camp there.

Bear assigned all the pups a job. Hank and Willow will be in charge of rolling some stones to form a ring for our campfire tonight. Bear, Coco and Felix will drag nearby limbs for our fire. Dallas and Myrtle will gather and scoot some pine straw up onto the limbs. And yay they found a few paper bags we can tuck in to help start the fire. We’ll need to start the fire well before sunset since we have to use that magnifying glass we always bring to camp. That little magnifying glass prize from the Cracker Jack box has come in handy many times on our campouts. Too bad kids today don’t really know the story of Cracker Jack. The company started way back in 1896. It is caramel popcorn and peanuts and always included a tiny prize. The enclosed prizes were finally discontinued in 2013. This is a by gone era. But not to worry we have taken good care of our little prize. Starting the fire is a tedious process but the pups have used the method before. One pup holds the magnifier away from the fire ring just enough that the sun shines through the lens. Then when a little puff of smoke appears Bear swishes his tail enough to help the flames catch on. And just like that we have our campfire. Luke being our oldest at camp will be responsible for being our greeter. We have invited the Coyotes this year to this closing ceremony. Luke will be the perfect one to greet them. We have a special place for them on one side of the campfire. Coco, Myrtle and I have assembled quite the assortment of goodies for our campfire feast. We have pizza bones, left over corndog bites, chicken biscuits and of course my favorite rat meatloaf. I think our coyote friends will love the rat meatloaf!

Ok, guys the fire is started, it’s almost sunset and the fireworks will start soon. I see the coyotes approaching from the hill. Until we met Aztec, the chief coyote, the other day I had not seen a coyote up close and personal. They are actually so beautiful. I told Aztec of my concern about rabies and he said there had not been a case of rabies on his hill ever. Since all the pup cousins are vaccinated each year for rabies I knew we’d be ok for this meeting tonight. However I must say right now this meeting tonight is an exception and one that must not repeated in ordinary circumstances. Normally dogs and coyotes are not to mingle or come in contact with each other. Coyotes are wild and as such they are always on defense against anyone that might be considered a predator. Normally the coyote would consider dogs as a predator. Dogs are domesticated so they do not understand danger so much. Therefore tonight’s meeting is highly unusual.

Welcome to our camp Aztec! I escorted Aztec and his fellow coyotes to their spot by our fire. We gave them the very best spot in order that they might have a great view of the fireworks. The coyotes were a little jumpy, as they were not used to being around us pups. We all sat very still until they began to feel a little more comfortable. As camp chairman Bear greeted them with a warm welcome. Bear organized all the food so that the coyotes would have their eating spot and the pups would have their spot on the other side of the fire. I said the blessing over our food and I told Aztec he could tell the coyotes it was time to eat. I could tell they were pretty excited about the special treats we had provided. Just then the fireworks started. The coyotes were pretty alarmed but we assured them it would be ok. The sounds were not bad as we were way out by the old barn. They were amazed by the food and the fireworks. As the fireworks began to end some of their younger coyote pups were settling in for a bit of a quick nap. I think the coyotes finally realized for at least one very special night there could be peace on earth. Friends can come together, partake of a meal, be nice to one another and really see how wonderful this world can be. We must look out for one another and help one another when we can. When we really get to know others we see that they are mostly just like us.

I can’t think of a camp more fun and full of excitement than this year at Longhorn Camp. It’s my fifth year at camp with my pup cousins and our special guest Myrtle. I’m sure Myrtle will have so many stories to tell her friends when she returns home. Myrtle was so helpful retrieving much needed food for our little coyote pup. Bear was an incredible leader this year. He had to make so many quick and urgent decisions. Normally it’s just a matter of planning our fun events or what we will have for dinner. Hank stands out for his quick alert when those mean hawks were circling our little coyote pup. Bear and Felix showed such bravery leading the charge against those hawks. Willow, Myrtle and Coco were such big helpers for our final closing ceremony. They really stepped up! Our precious Luke was a real trooper and such a fantastic greeter for tonight.

This year it was high drama and life lessons we’ll not soon forget. That’s what camp is supposed to be about. Meeting new friends and understanding what makes them different but in many ways just like us. Love can heal lots of things. So I choose love!

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