“Reggie The Egyptian Rescue Dog ” :Reggie’s First Christmas

Should a dog that prays to Allah and believes in his powers be celebrating Christmas? I am not so sure but my heart tells me that if we all accept some divine presence there is no reason a Muslim dog could not celebrate Christmas. Both Jesus and Allah helped people so why not celebrate their lives but again I am not a sophisticated religious type only a dog but if it makes your soul feel good I feel good about celebrating Christmas. Just in case in my morning prayers I tell Allah what I am celebrating and ask for forgiveness should I be wrong.

We dogs are up early and there will be no sleeping in on Christmas Day! Bob is surprised we are up so early but we go on an earlier than usual morning walk and it is snowing with big fluffy flakes that make our noses cold. All the dog walkers wish a “Merry Christmas” to each other.

We come back home and quickly have our morning kibble and a traditional Greek Christmas breakfast for Bob and Fay, Melomacaruna (honey cookies), corobedies (almond cookies with icing sugar) and baklava. We all get a few crumbs of each and Karim and I remember a few shopkeepers and bakers gave us stale Egyptian pastries that taste like these Greek pastries. Fay once had a grandmother that lived in Egypt for a few years. Do I have some cosmic connection to Fay? Fay and Bob have several cups of tea. Oh why are they so slow! We want to open our presents!

But wait, there are socks hanging over the fireplace with our names on each of them. Bob tells us Santa Claus was here when we were sleeping and left special presents in stockings. We are watchdogs so how could this be! We tear open the wrapped presents in the stockings. There are toys and balls in a pile when we are done. Then we all have a big box we tear open with our teeth. A new bed and a set of shiny bowls for kibble and water with our names on each. We are barking with excitement and Bob calms us down and we begin to play with our toys. We share them but the beds and bowls are our special property. We spent the morning playing with our toys and racing around the house careful not to knock the Christmas tree down. Dillie knocked it down when he was a silly puppy and it fell right on him. He laughs about it today but he tells us he was a very scared puppy even though he was not hurt.

Fay puts a big turkey in the oven. A turkey looks like a big chicken but it is stuffed with wonderful smelling stuffing. There are little cabbages called Brussel sprouts and carrots. Around noon there is a smell like Karim and I have never smelt before. Dillie tells us it is the smell of the turkey cooking. He also says we most likely will get a piece of turkey meat! Oh all of us can’t wait.

But there are Lexis, Mick and Drew coming for an early dinner. Lexis is the daughter of Fay and Bob and Drew is their son. Lexis and Mick have a little daughter Katie. But before they come over we are all going upstairs to watch what Bob calls a Christmas classic narrated by Burl Ives called “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”. It is beautiful story and we three dogs are joyed to see a deer as the hero of the story. Wow! He can fly and his nose glows red! Perhaps he is descended from some magical creature from the times of the pharaohs. And we all love Santa Claus and now know how we got our presents.

When you are a street dog there is no magic except perhaps how Karim and I arrived in Canada. This whole Christmas celebration is magic.

Lexis, Mick and Drew arrive and Bob has set a roaring fire. We greet our guests and snooze by the fire as the humans open their presents. In fact we get a present from Lexis and Mick and from Drew. Doggie peanut butter cupcakes. Fay says to us that we are getting a special Christmas meal so we will wait until New Year’s Eve for the peanut butter cupcakes.

The humans drink a bottle of something that goes pop when it is opened and they turn on the radio to listen to Christmas Carols that we dogs have been listening to for weeks and are growing tired of listening to.

Fay and Bob get the dinner ready and Bob makes a special sauce called gravy. He takes our Christmas present bowls and puts carrots, the little cabbages, mashed potatoes, carrots and a big piece of turkey meat in gravy. We all gobble it down and Karim and I feel like great Egyptian leaders of pharaoh times eating a feast fit for the pharaoh! The food makes us very sleepy and we fall asleep in our beds. Karim, is not used to eating so well so the poor guy farts up a storm. Dillie says it is the Brussel sprouts. We wake up as the guests leave and the cold air bathes us.

It seems like Bob and Fay spent a couple of hours cleaning up. After that we go to the bathroom outside in the backyard and go upstairs and watch a funny movie “Home Alone”. Karim laughs and Dillie is asleep on Bob’s lap. Karim and I try to get as many belly rubs as possible!

What a day! Bob takes us out for a walk in the crisp cold air in our new coats and after that humans and dogs go for a sleep. I have never been so happy. All a dog wants is to be cared for and loved and I am getting that in Canada. I wish a Merry Christmas to my original master Anwar and I think I hear a big laugh and Anwar saying, “I love you Reggie”.

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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