Just before daybreak, our eldest dog, Dolph, passed away. He was twelve. Though Dolph suffered from numerous longterm ailments such as Cushings Disease, the cause was congestive heart failure.
Dolph did not have an easy life. Found wandering around San Francisco's Lower Haight neighborhood in the Spring of 2006, we adopted him, and spent the better part of the past year becoming family.
Abused and neglected, bearing an unfathomable number of bladder stones (25, or so our veterinarian told us), records indicated he was abandoned by someone who'd recently moved up here from San Diego.
I have no qualms about stating that the last twelve months were the best of Dolph's life. Despite the threats he continued to face, Dolph held them at bay for as long as he could. And, for a short time, was truly happy.
Needless to say, this is a real fucking tear-jerker.
Late last Friday afternoon, I was sitting in the living room working on my book when I heard the sound of gunfire close by. Slamming my laptop shut, I instinctively ducked down so that I was no longer level with the window. A minute and a half later, the firing stopped. Taking a deep breath, I crawled on all fours to our front porch. Slowly raising myself, I took a good look down our street where it sounded like the shots were fired. The intersection was empty.
When Jennifer got home, she took our dogs out for their evening walk. Two blocks away, she was stopped by a police car, which shined a light on her face, wondering if she might be the person that they were looking for. Once the police got a good look at her - a petite, pink-haired woman in her mid-thirties - the cops apologized and sped away. When she rounded the corner, Jen found two more police cars blocking the street. Something was up.
On Saturday night, we got online and started looking for news about Friday's gunfire. Not surprisingly, there were a fair number of articles about a recent crime wave in our hood. A couple of weeks ago, our neighborhood association apparently met with the chief of the local police precinct to discuss the recent violence. The cops had promised to triple patrols of our neighborhood. Hence Jennifer being stopped on Friday night.
On Sunday, we found a flyer on a telephone pole nearby, describing some thug who goes by the name of 'Time Bandit," who is allegedly responsible for a number of assaults here in Bernal Heights, as well as other nearby neighborhoods. The guy is described as wearing a hoodie. He supposedly asks his victims for the time before threatening them with a semi-automatic weapon.