Thursday, August 20, 2009

Sylvia The Employed Fixated On The Lost Adams Diggings

By Anne Sullivan
“Hurry up, Sylvia. Get out of my chair and into the pickup,” I said.
“Can’t you see I’m busy reading,” was Sylvia’s reply. “Please do not disturb me.”
“Out of my chair now!” I ordered. “We have to be in Socorro in an hour and 15 minutes.”
Sylvia didn’t even take her eyes from the book when she asked, “What’s the hurry and why are we going to Socorro?”
“Because you have an appointment to get your stitches out and your shunt removed. I know you’ve been trying to do it yourself but now is the time for professional aid.”
Sylvia perked up. “Will I see my friend Terri?”
“Yes, you will.”
“Well then,” she said, closing her book, “I guess I’ll go. Can I drive?”
“Why not?”
“You don’t have a license.”
“Do you have a license?”
“If you have a license to drive, it can’t be all that hard to get one. Where do I go?”
“Reserve, but a licensed driver will have to take you there and I won’t.”
Sulking slightly, Sylvia struggled into the pickup. I won the usual argument over who was going to drive and we were off with Sylvia staring at the greening grass dotted with yellow daisies and pointing out cattle and other beasts to me.
“Just relax,” I told her, removing her paw from my arm.
“Easy for you to say,” she muttered and she did not relax. Instead she talked the entire 68 miles into Socorro. “I was reading when you so rudely interrupted me. ‘Apache Gold and Yaqui Silver.’ That’s the name of the book. It’s all about the Lost Adams Diggings. It’s really interesting and well written by J. Frank Dobie and it has these wonderful illustrations by Tom Lea. The more I read the more I can visualize the treasure being in Swingle Canyon. I just have to find out where the old cabin was. It’s burned down but the treasure’s buried under the hearth. Maybe our house was built over the old cabin and that’s why no one can find any trace of it. We could take the floor up and if –“
“We will NOT take the floor up under any circumstances, Sylvia. I have spoken.”
“You have remarkably little vision, Boss. The book says there’s $100,000 worth of gold under there. We could buy a lot with that. It would pay for my operation and then some.”
“You don’t have to worry about paying for your operation. I put it on the credit card.”
“Don’t you have to pay for that eventually? I don’t want you having to go to jail for non-payment. Who would feed me?”
“Yes, I do have to pay for it eventually. And I won’t go to jail. Don’t worry your wooly head about it.”
“I can’t help worrying. They say the recession is over but I don’t see any evidence of it. You’re not employed.”
“I haven’t been employed for years. I’m retired. I get Social Security.”
“Will I get Social Security when I’m old enough?” she asked.
“In dog years you’re old enough now, but, no, you won’t get Social Security.”
“Is that because I’m a dog?”
“I think so.”
“That’s not fair,” she wailed. “I earn money. In fact, any earned money that comes into this house is money that I’ve earned.”
“True. It’s a good thing you’re self-supporting.”
“But I can’t support you and RingWorm and Gordo and Brandy. Hay costs a lot, to say nothing of Stouffer’s Frozen meals.”
“That’s all true.”
“This worries me. I even lose sleep over it. How am I going to support all of you? That’s why I’ve got to find the gold from the Lost Adams Diggings. When I do fall asleep I dream about it. Last night I dreamed it was so close I could smell it.”
“That was probably whatever died under the house. I don’t think you can smell gold.”
“I can. I’m a dog, remember.”

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