Driving, Dogs, and Donuts in a 996

“Bad dog. That’s a very bad dog.” Those were the first words out of my mouth last Sunday morning. An hour later I was giving him belly rubs and telling him thank you. It’s amazing how a good drive can change your perspective on things.

Last Saturday the lovely wife and I decided to make our annual pilgrimage to the Johnson Farm Pumpkin Patch. If you have little ones or little ones who are young at heart I recommend going.

Part of the tradition is stopping at Dunn’s Cider Mill for fresh donuts and hot apple cider. If you time it right you can even get cinnamon and sugar on the cider donuts. Homer Simpson heaven.

Being the brilliant father that I am, I bought two dozen donuts.  And, my decision was confirmed as soon as I opened the steamy bag of goodness. The family van was filled with the soft aroma of hot donuts, cinnamon, and sugar. Intoxicating.

I drove along sipping my cider, enjoying the opposite combination of its heat and the cool fall breeze through the open widow, and the sun on my skin. The only disruption to my little slice of family heaven was having to fight for my share of donuts.

With our tummies full and the adventures of the pumpkin patch behind us, we arrived at home. One bag was empty and one bag was full.  My plan was to surprise my lovely wife and kids with the donuts on Sunday morning before church. Well, that was my plan.

Sunday morning arrived with a spectacular sunrise and the smell of hot coffee coming from the kitchen. (I love auto-set on that machine.) I slipped out of bed and snuck downstairs. Hot coffee in hand and Gods great glory lighting up my kitchen I remembered the donuts.

Spinning around I looked on the counter. Not there. I knew immediately what had happened and a shredded bag on the living room floor confirmed it. Heston.

Heston is still on the naughty list after eating the last of my chocolate chip cookies a month back, but now my donuts?!?! My once a year treat! “Bad dog. That’s a very bad dog.” came my first words of the day.  He peeked out from under the kitchen table. His big brown eyes saying “I couldn’t help myself.”

What was I to do? I looked at the clock, 8:30 am, then back at Heston, then at the clock again. Dunn’s opens at 9:00 am. I need to leave for church at 10:00. I can do this.

I ran upstairs and tossed on some cloths and a ballcap. Grabbing my keys and coffee, I was out the door within ten minutes - and on  a Donut Run mission.

I took the most direct route needing to make up time. It worked. I pulled up to the gate just minutes before they opened. First in line.

Dawn is a beautiful thing when you stop and watch it happen.

Soon enough an elderly gentleman made his way to the gate. He unlocked it, swung it open and I rolled in giving a friendly “Morning to ya” as I passed.

Once inside I was-again greeting with the smells of donut nirvana. I placed my order and was handed a fresh bag of warm donuts. My precious. I turned to walk out and was met by the old man again. “Is that your Porsche?” he questioned. Humm. I gave the easy answer, “Yes it is and it’s a great day for a drive.”

Leaving the parking lot I paused. Do I go right, the direct route, or do I go left, the longer route home? I went left. After all this is my Porsche and IT IS a great day for a drive.

I found myself on the back roads of my youth. It was as if distant memories were serving as my GPS. I seemed to know where to go, haven not driven these roads in more than a decade. I pushed forward, not lost but not found. Cresting one last hill I could see civilization again.

Once home I was greeted at the door by a very happy dog, tail a wagging. Was he happy to see me or more donuts? Not sure. I knelt on one knee giving him great praise and a tummy rub, saying thank you. Thank you for getting me out to experience God’s great creations on a Sunday morning before church.

And yes he got a bite of a donut as a reward.


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