Monday, June 18, 2007

Me and my Punxsutawney Liv

We've got a groundhog on our hands, alright. The only problem with ours is that she's afraid of her shadow. There's no prediction needed ... when she sees it, it's going to cause a stir.

Last Friday Alivia turned a 15-minute walk around the block into a 45-minute ordeal because it was a very sunny day. Yep, we turned the corner, the sun was at her back, she stopped dead in her tracks and that was the end of any kind of steady pace. Two steps. Stop. Point. Comment. Two steps. Stop. Gesture. Gesture some more. Two steps. Stop. Stand. Look. Look again. And so the whole block went.

For whatever reason, the little critter has major shadow issues. And while I thought it was something that would eventually be forgotten or overcome, it seems to be worsening. To the point that her last encounter with her darkened twin produced hostility.

During one of the 763 stops she made to scold, touch and point at the shadow, she told it not to look at her and stubbornly threw her hand in the air, as if to "shoo" it away. Growing more aggressive as it refused to obey her commands, she told it to "go away" and turned her back to it.

I, of course, wishing to move our little caravan of five along the sidewalk, tried everything to convince her the shadow was of the cordial variety.

"Blow it kisses, Liv," I said, trying to coax her into a more friendly mood. Not a chance. "Look, it's your friend. It just wants to walk with you." This got me no where. Finally, in a last attempt, "Walk a little faster. If you walk faster, it will go away," I said, thinking, please dear God let us just get to the corner so we can turn and it will no longer be in front of her. Slower, slower, slower we went.

Each February, wishing winter away, I hope Punxsutawney Phil won't see his shadow and hurry spring along, with sunny days here, I'm left to hope the same for my Punxsutawney Liv (at least for this walk).

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